Tour Du Mont Blanc - 12 day Alps Trek

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Details

The Tour Du Mont Blanc is rightly the most popular long distance hike in Europe. Spectacular views of Mont Blanc itself, plus too many other snow capped summits to count, glistening glaciers, flower filled valleys, alpine villages and the opportunity to experience three different countries on one trip.

Mont Blanc is more than just a big mountain it is a mountain range, which is compact and complete in itself. The 25km range has about 400 summits and more than 40 glaciers that tumble and fall from the peaks. It forms the border to 3 of Europe’s major countries in France, Switzerland and Italy which we pass through on our journey. Also radiating from the range are the valleys of the Arve, Montjoie, des Glaciers, Val Veni, two vals Ferret and the vallee du Trent and the route passes through and over each of these.

We will take 11 days for the trip and will be following the traditional route (anti-clockwise) as we pass through France, Italy and Switzerland, on our way to completing a full circuit of Mont Blanc.

Luggage Transfers
We have also added a luggage transfer option for this year so you hike with a daypack carrying your essentials for the day.
Note: There are just three nights when this is not possible, because there is no road access to our accommodation.

Each day is guaranteed to be different as we experience the scenery changing before our eyes, while we hike a total of 105 miles and climb a total of almost 10,000 metres.

A typical day involves leaving our village, or alpine hut, early and climbing up to one of the passes, where we will get great views of shining glaciers and summits, followed by a descent into the next valley, where will reach our accommodation in early to mid afternoon. We can then relax with a beer and enjoy the view, read, or nap before dinner.

Accommodation

We will be staying in varied accommodation throughout. From simple hotels at the start, middle and end of our Tour where we will have twin share rooms with private facilities, to very simple Alpine hut accommodation which have shared bunks for sleeping.

During the tour, our accommodation will be simple, dormitory style, either bunk beds or alpine style, continuous mattresses, with shared facilities. For those not used to dormitory style sleeping, it does take getting used to, but it is also part of the “alpine experience”, where communal living and shared sleeping is the only way to experience the high mountains.

All accommodation along the tour however, does have showers. Breakfasts are usually very simple whilst dinner is usually three or even four courses!

Dinner is also served to everyone at the same time and these are quite sociable occasions where we often see familiar faces of others on the Tour.

Hiking

The Tour Du Mont Blanc is a complete circuit of Mont Blanc and we hike a total of 105 miles (170km) and climb a total of about 10,000m over the 11 days we are on trek. This means that each day on average we will climb about 1000m and descend a similar distance and hike for about 10 miles. Each day the actual distances and height varies from the average and some days are longer this.

There are several variations as we travel round the circuit and so generally we will take an easier option where one is available.

There is an optional non-hiking/rest day on Day 8 where it is possible to get the bus from La Fouly to Champex. For those who still wish to hike, it is one of the easiest and shortest hiking days on the tour, relatively flat along the valley and passing through pretty Swiss villages. Skipping the hiking on other days, can be quite difficult or impossible, as it can involve a long ride out of the current valley and around into the next one.

The hiking is all on good paths and trails, but as we are hiking for multi-days, the days can be quite hard. It is therefore important that you are either fit already, or you are an already experienced hillwalker who has done at least one multi-day trip. If you are not prepared, then the hike can be very tiring and it is unlikely you will fully enjoy it. Therefore, this is a trip for experienced and regular walkers.

Itinerary

Sun 23/7 Day 1 fly out to Geneva, rendezvous in Les Houches (twin, hotel)
Mon 24/7 Day 2 Les Houches – Les Contamines (French refuge) BD
Tue 25/7 Day 3 Les Contamines – Refuge Des Mottets (small dormitory, auberge) BD
Wed 26/7 Day 4 Refuge Des Mottets – Cabane du Combal (4 person rooms, mountain hut) BD ***
Thur 27/7 Day 5 Cabane du Combal – Cormayeur (ITALY) (twin share, hotel) B
Fri 28/7 Day 6 Cormayeur – Rifugio Bonatti (dormitory, mountain hut) BD ***
Sat 29/7 Day 7 Rifugio Bonatti – La Fouly (SWITZERLAND (dorm, auberge) BD

Sun 30/7 Day 8 La Fouly – Champex (twin share, auberge) BD*
Mon 31/7 Day 9 Champex – Trient (dormitory, auberge) BD
Tue 01/8 Day 10 Trient –Tre-Le-Champ (FRANCE) (dormitory, auberge) BD
Wed 02/8 Day 11 Tre-Le-Champ – La Flegere (dormitory, mountain refuge) BD
Thur 03/8 Day 12 La Flegere – Les Houches (twin share) B ***
Fri 04/8 Day 13 morning to explore Chamonix**, early evening return flight B

Included meals are as listed above (B denotes breakfast, D denotes dinner)

*There is an optional non-hiking/rest day on Day 8 when there is an option to get the bus from La Fouly to Champex. For those who still wish to hike, it is one of the easiest and shortest hiking days on the tour, relatively flat along the valley and passing through pretty Swiss villages.

**For those interested, you can go into Chamonix on our departure day and take the Aiguille Du Midi cable car up to 3842 metres. It is the highest cable car in Europe and from the viewing platform we get even closer views of Mont Blanc. The cable car is an amazing engineering feat in itself and it travels 2747 metres in 20 minutes and would make a fitting end to the trip. Approx return cost is €60.

Costs and Booking

Total Cost £1150

To book, click on the RSVP NOW button and pay your deposit of £150 by paypal to reserve your splce

The remaining payment of £1000 is paid in two staged payments of £500, four months before departure and £500, two months before departure.

These payments should be made by bank transfer and our account details are below. Your place is only confirmed once full payment has been received.

By BankTransfer

Bank Account Mountain Hikes
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(please quote 'TMB' plus your name)

Please note that the deposit is non-refundable.

We pre-book and pay for all of the accommodation months in advance, so appreciate prompt payment of the deposit and balance

Included:

- Guided walking throughout by Kevin Blissett who is a qualified International Mountain Leader
- All accommodation (3 nights twin-share, otherwise auberges and mountain huts)
- Meals as listed above on accommodation page (B denotes breakfast, D denotes dinner)
- Daily luggage transfer (except for three nights)

Not included :

- Lunches – we buy pack lunch from the refuge, or food/snacks en route each day,
- 3 dinners (at start, middle and end of the tour) – we shall eat out as a group.
- Any local transport costs,
- personal expenses,
- transfers to and from Geneva airport to Les Houches, Chamonix and flights.

Travel

We would suggest flying out from the UK to Geneva – there are plenty of low cost airlines that fly out from various airports.

From Geneva, it is about an hour transfer to our rendezvous point in Les Houches in the Chamonix valley. Transfers can be booked at www.alpybus.com (http://www.alpybus.com/) or www.chamexpress.com (http://www.chamexpress.com/) or www.mountaindropoffs – all offer a similar service in the region of approx €40-50. Alpybus has easy booking system and you pay in cash at the end of each journey and it is also the cheapest.

You should note that it is not possible to take walking poles in hand luggage. Therefore, to save everyone paying for checked in baggage, if anyone is travelling together, we would suggest you check in one piece of luggage.