High Mountain Guides / What we do / Alpine Mountaineering / Mission Impossible

Mission Impossible

High on the Eiger's Mittelegi Ridge. One of three classic alpine objectives on the 'Mission Impossible'...

'The Mission' tackles the 3 highest mountains in the Alps but 'Mission Impossible' challenges you to attempt the Alps 3 most renowned peaks and 3 of the worlds great iconic mountains...The Eiger, The Matterhorn & Mont Blanc.

To climb these peaks in an entire mountaineering career would be an achievement but to climb them over two weeks would surely be 'a bridge too far'...not possible...for most anyway...or maybe, for those with the right credentials, it might just be achievable!? Those with sufficient fitness, determination and mountaineering skill can apply to take on a truly memorable and demanding alpine mountaineering challenge, The Mission Impossible...

2017 Course Dates & Prices

Course Aims

  • To Climb the Matterhorn, Eiger & Mont Blanc over a 2 week period
  • To climb some other good quality alpine mountaineering routes as part of the training and spare days
  • To experience a very tough mountain challenge and improve as an alpinist

This course starts in Chamonix and aims to make three training & acclimatistation climbs before starting the business of tackling the big three demanding peaks. See below for a detailed itinerary.

The three iconic mountains all present their own set of different challenges. These will put your mountaineering skills, as well as your fitness and mental resilience sternly to the test :

  • The Eiger (3970m) Alpine Grade D / AD. Whilst relatively low, the Eiger is the most technical of the three peaks and presents steep rocky sections of ridge with some physical fixed rope handling. This is all topped off with a beautiful exposed and narrow snow ridge to a classic lofty summit and sustained and intricate descent. The Mittelegi or South Ridges can be taken according to conditions. Plan A is to traverse the mountain via the two.
  • The Matterhorn (4478m) Alpine Grade AD. The Matterhorn combines some of the technicality of the Eiger with some of the high altitude and big mountain feel of Mont Blanc. The result is a long, tough and spectacular days alpine mountaineering. We usually climb the iconic 'Hornli' Ridge from Zermatt but it is also possible to climb the Italian Ridge from Cervinia.
  • Mont Blanc (4810m) Alpine Grade PD. With less steep rock than the other 2 famous peaks Mont Blanc provides the huge snow peak, alpine & glacial dimension to the challenge. By either the 3 Monts or Gouter route the ascent of Mont Blanc is long, physical and tough. For those on a 1:1 guiding ratio there is the option of trying the classic traverse via the Aiguille de Bionnassay.

12 Day Mission Impossible Itinerary

This is a suggested itinerary based on good weather. It may be necessary to change the programme to make best use of local mountain conditions.

  • Pre-Course full on fitness training 3-6 months prior to the course and then, ideally, some walking and acclimatisation training in the hills above Chamonix for a few days before the course starts. We can offer advice on how to get the most out of these pre-course elements.
  • Day 0: Evening introductory talk, meet other group members and ask any questions about the week. Weather and itinerary briefing. Kit check & sort out any hire equipment needed for the week.
  • Days 1-3: Acclimatise for the ascent of Mont Blanc whilst tackling some of the classic technical alpine ascents of the Chamonix Valley up to Alpine grade AD. Check out the link below for some suggestions. The routes undertaken will combine scrambling and climbing on rock, snow & ice and will include at least one night spent in a mountain hut to aid acclimatisation.

Chamonix Mountaineering

An impressive collection of galleries giving an insight in to the quality and huge variety of mountaineering within and around the Chamonix Valley. Routes include classic beginners alpine ridges, 1000m+ classic North Faces, winter style Chamonix Goulottes and many more.

  • Days 4-6: The Ascent of Mont Blanc. Please check our detailed Climb Mont Blanc page for a lot more information, inspiration and FAQ's etc

Climb Mont Blanc

An ascent of Western Europe's highest mountain is a big challenge and superb mountaineering expedition. Our six day course allows time for training and acclimatisation which means you are able to enjoy the ascent and climb some other great alpine peaks along the way.

more>
  • Day 7: Well earned rest day!
  • Days 8-9: The ascent of the Matterhorn. Please check our detailed Climb The Matterhorn page for a lot more information, inspiration and FAQ's etc

Climb The Matterhorn

A long, tough and brilliant day's alpine mountaineering on the world's most iconic mountain, The Matterhorn. There can be few alpine climbers (or even armchair climbers!) who have not dreamed of scaling this strikingly beautiful peak. The classic route starts from the pic... more>

  • Days 10-11: The Ascent of the Eiger. Please check our detailed Climb The Eiger page for a lot more information & inspiration

Climb The Eiger

The colourful history of the Eiger brings this mountain, like few others, in to the popular domain and means it is both famous and notorious not just with mountaineers but with the public at large. A lot of the Eiger's fame comes from its enormous, steep and imposing north face,... more>

  • Days 12-13: These days acts as contingency days if any of the ascents are delayed due to inclement weather or unsuitable conditions. If weather, conditions and energy levels allow they are spare days to enjoy another fine ascent.
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I am back home now, savoring the wonderful memories I collected in the Alps -- and readjusting to the time-zone change. I enjoyed my Alpine adventures very much, and I enjoyed Phil's company and expertise -- and his willingness to accommodate my wishes. All my objectives were met, and I am especially pleased that I was able to add on the Monch and the Jungfrau to my list of summits climbed. Thanks again for arranging for me to climb Mont Blanc earlier than planned so that we could enjoy the superb weather. Thanks to both of you for making my Alpine adventures so pleasant and successful.

John from Colorado, Mission Impossible Completed August 2016

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Who Can Climb The Mission Impossible?

Similar to our 'Mission' course, high levels of fitness, stamina and determination are required to complete these 3 tough mountaineering challenges. Some strong previous hill walking, mountaineering and climbing experience will be beneficial and we usually find that people who are only able to train in the gym do not do very well on such an extended mountain challenge. Furthermore the Eiger & Matterhorn present technical mountaineering challenges so some rock climbing experience is required (up to around Alpine IV / UK Hard Severe / U.S. 5.6) and experience and competence is required with the use of ice axe and crampons. Further training will be given at the start of the course but this is not a challenge for newcomers to mountaineering. The summit days will be 9-13 hours long, technical and at altitude, so you should be physically and mentally prepared for this considerable challenge. Please get in touch to discuss your mountaineering experience and fitness levels if you are not sure.

2017 Course Dates & Prices

Our course includes 12 climbing / guided days and an introductory talk the evening before the first day.

Courses are run on a private guiding basis in July, August & early September..

Guide to client ratio is 1:1 or 1:2 for days 1-6 and 1:1 for days 7-12

Cost

£5595 based on an individual booking with 1:1 guiding for days 1-12

A team of 2 booking together could reduce this fee by sharing a guide for the training & Mt Blanc phases of the trip although this may compromise flexibility slightly during the course. Get in touch to discuss your requirements.

What’s included in the Price?

Our courses are priced on a 'guiding only' basis which means you pay the exact cost price for all other expenses like hotels, mountain huts and lift passes. These expenses amount to about 1200 euros which includes 13 nights half board accommodation in a hotel & mountain huts & lift passes. You could reduce this figure if you wanted to stay in a gite or camp and increase it if you want to stay in a more luxury hotel.

  • 12 full days mountain guiding with an IFMGA Mountain Guide
  • Car transport during the course
  • Loan of any technical mountaineering equipment required

What’s not included?

  • Chamonix accommodation. Prices start from camping at C.10 euros per night, Bunkhouse for C.20 euros per night and hotel accommodation from around 40-50 euros upwards. Please see our Chamonix Accommodation notes.
  • Accommodation for the Mission Impossible is generally best arranged with a flexible component e.g. self catering to allow for changes to make the most of the programme according to weather and conditions.
  • Mountain huts & lift passes, for you and the guides. Allow about 50 euros per night half board accommodation. The guides expenses are split between the group members and are discounted in huts, hotels and on lifts and trains. The best way to deal with these expenses is to make a communal group 'kitty' which you contribute to and all expenses are paid out of.
  • Flights and transfer from the airport to Chamonix.
  • Lunches, extra drinks, snacks etc during the course
  • Insurance

Course Kit List

Mont Blanc Equipment List

Mountaineering equipment required for climbing Mont Blanc in normal summer conditions. Makes and models are examples only. Technical equipment (crampons, ice-axe, harness, helmet) can be hired from us. Try and ke... more>

More Details

For more details on our terms & conditions, to fill in a booking form and make a payment, please visit our booking page via the link below

Contact

We are always delighted to hear from past, current and future clients so whether you have a booking enquiry, want a conditions report, or some mountaineering advice please do get in touch to discuss your plans...

Good climbing & skiing,

Rob

High Mountain Guides

Tel: +44 115 888 2994

Skype: High Mountain Guides

Email: Please use the form below

Other Relevant Courses

The Mission

Climbing the three highest peaks in the Alps in one go is a superb mountain challenge. It is also a very tough and highly physical expedition. You will need high levels of fitness, determination, mental and physical endurance as well as good weather, conditions and a bit of luck... more>

Climb Mont Blanc

An ascent of Western Europe's highest mountain is a big challenge and superb mountaineering expedition. Our six day course allows time for training and acclimatisation which means you are able to enjoy the ascent and climb some other great alpine peaks along the way.

more>

Climb The Matterhorn

A long, tough and brilliant day's alpine mountaineering on the world's most iconic mountain, The Matterhorn. There can be few alpine climbers (or even armchair climbers!) who have not dreamed of scaling this strikingly beautiful peak. The classic route starts from the pic... more>

Climb The Eiger

The colourful history of the Eiger brings this mountain, like few others, in to the popular domain and means it is both famous and notorious not just with mountaineers but with the public at large. A lot of the Eiger's fame comes from its enormous, steep and imposing north face,... more>

Comments

August 2016 - Mission Impossible Completed!

Well done and congratulations to John from California who not only completed the clean sweep of climbing Mt Blanc, Matterhorn & Eiger he did so with style, speed and climbed some other fine peaks along the way....including the Monch on the same day as the Eiger traverse. Impressive, especially for a 68 year old!

John built up early in the week with ascents on the Italian side of the Monte Bianco range including the Tour Ronde. He had arrived already quite well acclimatised from climbing in the Colorado Rockies. So when the forecast dictated going sooner rather than later in the week, the opportunity was taken, hut bookings were changed and a swift early ascent of Mt Blanc was made. This left a couple of days of the first week remaining to enjoy some more technical and varied rocky ascents in the Aiguilles Rouges and an ascent of Pointe Percee in the Aravis.

After a rest day the team set sail for Zermatt and climbed easily to the comfortable new Hornli Hut for the night before making an impressive swift aller retour on the Matterhorn next morning in good dry and surprisingly quiet conditions. After Rosti at the Hut on the way down a relaxing descent to Schwarzee and pleasant evening there allowed the climb to be savoured in the wonderful ambiance of the Zermatt skyline, and of course Matterhorn towering above!

A deliberately physically easy transfer day had been factored in for the next day and options of short climbs around Zermatt were wisely foregone to save energy for the Eiger, so a transfer was made to the Mountain Hostel in Grindlewald and on up to the Mittelleggi Hut in good conditions the next day. The traverse of the Eiger was done in such good style that, unusually, after a drink at the Monchjoch Hut, an afternoon ascent of the Monch was made!

The weather was finally closing in on the afternoon of the last day, but only later on and this allowed plenty of time for another swift and final ascent. This time of the Jungfrau and a fitting end to a substantial 2 weeks of alpine climbing and completion of the Mission Impossible!

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