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Express Haute Route – Speed Ski Touring

Route:

Haute Route – France & Switzerland

Category:

Skiing – Speed Ski Touring

Route description:

The most famous ski traverse in the world, completed in a blistering three days. A very high level of fitness and experience is required. The timings are very tight, and any “faff” with kit or otherwise just wouldn't work.

Most days involve 8 – 9 hours of skiing, often starting in the dark with head torches. The time pressures come from the snow heating in the afternoon, so teams must be prompt and stick to schedule.

There are some advantages to starting early though, as we are out of sync with all the other teams on the Haute Route, and we aim to arrive in Verbier and Arolla mid afternoon, giving us plenty of time for resting, eating and snoozing!

Although the trip is scheduled to take three days, our normal bookings are five days long, which gives us a warm up/shake down day in Chamonix, plus a contingency day at the end.

  1. Argentiere (Grand Montet) to Verbier (Mont Fort refuge). 973M of ascent, 18km. Around 5hrs. Time pressure to reach Verbier before the last lift
  2. Mont Fort to Arolla. 1663M ascent, 21km. Around 8 – 9 hrs. An early start required to skin across the Lac des Dix before the snow warms up
  3. Arolla to Zermatt. 1900M of ascent, 25km. 8 – 9 hours. A big day climbing up from Arolla after an early start. Superb descent into Zermatt

Lightweight ski touring equipment is essential, as is well fitting boots. We travel light, so a stable forecast is required.

Required experience/skill level:

Advanced

Length (in metres):

See route description

Time/duration:

5 days (three days on tour)

Starting point/base:

Chamonix, France

Maximum guide ratio:

1:3

Normal season:

March - May

Links/ featured courses:

Comments/notes:

We have had good success with two previous Express Haute Routes, both with experienced teams who have previously completed some "Speed Ski Tours" with us. Please do get in touch to discuss the level of skiing and fitness required if you are interested in an attempt.

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Scheduled Ski Trips for 2019 - France, Italy, Switzerland and Russia. Details here: ... See MoreSee Less

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6 days ago

Vertical Frontiers Ltd

Awoke to a wild and blustery day at the Britannia refuge this morning. Plans were scrapped, extra coffees were drunk and we headed down.

Finished the day with some scrambling and summits on the Perron traverse above the Emosson Dam. A day salvaged.

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Fresh snow but summer temperatures on the 4000m Allalinhorn today.

It was nice to follow a track this morning. Tomorrow’s trail breaking is going to be a workout 😬

#verticalfrontiers #climbing
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1 week ago

Vertical Frontiers Ltd

Back up in the #alpine again and enjoying the autumn weather and conditions.

Lots of rime ice on the Marbrees traverse this morning. Scottish.

Off to tick off a couple of Swiss 4000m peaks this weekend.

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#climbing_is_my_passion
#britishmountainguides
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Perfect autumn climbing weather. Photo: @allyswinton of Sara scrambling across the Perrons yesterday. The classic rocky ridge line above the Emosson reservoir.

It’s been a mixed few days weather wise, and the original plan of climbing the Grand Paradiso was out on hold. Flexibility is the key to a happy trip :)

#verticalfrontiers #mountaineering
#climbing_is_my_passion
#britishmountainguides
#chamonix
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+33 (0) 787371926

We are open for enquires 7 days a week all year, we check and respond to emails once a day during the high season

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