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Ski Monte Rosa (4634m), Swiss Alps

Skinning through light powder snow high on the Dufourspitze

Ski Monte Rosa, Swiss Alps, May 2011

Ski lines on Monte Rosa North Flank

Left hand line is the classic Dufourspitze / Silbersattel Route. Right hand line is the Grenx Glacier Route (heavily crevassed)

The fine new SAC Monte Rosa Hut at C. 2900m

 

Enjoyable post dawn skinning on the Dufourspitze north flank, Monte Rosa

Cloud capped Breithorn (left) and Matterhorn behind

A moody and slightly stormy morning on the Monte Rosa

Good but cold and windy skinning with down jacket and mitts on!

Superb deep powder skiing at 4200m on the Monte Rosa

 

David & Gordon rightly proud of their powder tracks

Thigh deep powder at 4200m on the Monte Rosa north flank

The superb skiing continues...

Great turns at 4000m on the ski descent of the Dufourspitze

6 Thumbs up for the mid-May ski off the Dufourspitze north flank

Back to the comfortable Monte Rosa Hut and ready for Rosti & Applesaft....and applestudel and coffee!

The Ski Approach to the Superb Monte Rosa Hut

With the mighty Liskamm behind. Depending on conditions / time of year, the approach can be made from Rotenboden on the Gornergrat railway or via the Schwartor and superb Schwartgletscher.

Pre-Dawn Start from the Monte Rosa Hut

The C. 1700m climb to the Silbersattel starts with an excellent 0300 breakfast in the Monte Rosa Hut. A fine start to any day!

Dawn on the Monte Rosa Ascent

With the Strahlhorn, Rimfischhorn, Alphubel, Dom & Tasch 4000m peaks on the Northern skyline

Negotiating the Crevassed Upper Glacier En Route to Silbersattel

The the huge bulk of the Mont Blanc Massif on the North Western Skyline

The Last Few Steps to the Silberstattel (4515m), Hard!

With the Matterhorn behind.

The Final Ascent to the Dufourspitze from Silbersattel

Many Ski Mountaineers will be happy to logically conclude their ski ascent at the Silbersattel whilst some will want to tackle this steeper mixed upper section, with fixed ropes, to reach the Dufourspitze. At 4634m, the principal summit of the Monte Rosa Massif.

One of Many Good Pitches on the Ski Descent of Monte Rosa

 

The Classic Ski Descent To Furi Gives 2650m of Skiing

This section is around 3500m and gives lovely open pitches on the North West facing Monte Rosa glacier

Skiing the Lower Grenz Glacier Below the Monte Rosa Hut En Route to the Gorge & Furi

The lower section, if in good condition, provides a superb long journey element to the descent & saves the reascent to Rotenboden. It does involve some serious terrain however in the lower gorge if snow conditions are not right.

The Lower Gorner Glacier Gorge En Route to Furi

A short walk is sometime required after the gorge after which a reascent to the Zermatt pistes can be made for a final ski down to Furi / Zermatt

All Good Ski Journeys (And Seasons) Come to an End!

The grassy pistes at Furi mark the end to a great Monte Rosa Ski Journey and the end of the 2014 spring ski mountaineering season. Here is to another good one in 2015...

Approaching the Monte Rosa From Rotenboden

Late in the spring, once all the snow has gone, this summer path can be used to approach the Monte Rosa Hut. Some engineered paths, a ladder & a bridge give access to the glacier. If the lower Gorner glacier / gorge can not be skied, then the re-ascent to Rotenboden adds a fairly physical end to a day skiing on the Monte Rosa!

Approaching the Monte Rosa Hut Via The Gorner Glacier.

Matterhorn, Dent Blanche & Obergabelhorn in the background

Wild Atmospheric Windy & Crevassed Skiing High On The Monte Rosa

This crevassed section just below the Silbersattel provides some intricate route finding and careful negotiation both in ascent & descent. Decent conditions in May 2015 but we still skied one crevassed section roped together.

Stiff Spring Snow Skiing Just Below 4000m

With the Weisshorn Filling the background

Returning To Zermatt After Skiing High On The Monte Rosa

A brilliant end to the 2014-15 ski season....