Perrons Traverse Chamonix

30 September 2021, Chère Couloir & Perrons Traverse – Early Autumn Conditions

Whilst it felt like summer and there were teams rock climbing in t-shirts on the South side of the Perrons today, it was pretty chilly & autumnal on the north side with a bit of snow and ice still in evidence.  It was a lot cooler and icier still up the Aiguille du Midi for the Chère Couloir!

Summer on the south face – autumn on the north face – but stunning views all round…
Nice sticky early autumn ice for Nosung heading up the the start of the couloir. Photo Kev Avery

Although there was no old snow on our Traverse of the Perrons today, there was verglass ice on the approach, frozen turf lower down and plenty of recent snow and ice hanging about on the steep and shady spots which are fortunately few and far between on this mainly ridge based sunny traverse.

Slabby pitch approaching the Vouilloux – 2nd summit of the traverse – after the Breche Perrons and with a bit of snow on some of the footholds.

It was great to have the whole route to ourselves and savour the magnificent views across to the big north faces of the Chamonix Valley – which are starting to look pretty snowy!

The North Faces of the Argentiére basin – from R-L, Drus, Verte, Droites, Courtes, Triolet and then the Chardonnet further L. Looking pretty snowy for the last day of September

The slightly snowy conditions in places + numerous short picnics on each summit to enjoy the views slowed us down a bit and we took 8hrs café to café for the full traverse.  Very enjoyable and good Matterhorn training for James.

Approaching the base of the crux pitch on Pt. Ifalia. But the crux of the route is really it’s length and managing the abseils and sustained good exposed scrambling. Some snow and ice on the steep north faces today.

We are heading in to that wonderful time of year when not only the are the Chamonix & Arve Valleys treated to the remarkable colour displays of the autumn forests lining the lower hills sides, but you can enjoy both sunny rock climbing in the valley and icy mixed climbing in the mountains.  Nosung came from S. Korea to do that and was not disappointed today with good sticky ice conditions on the Triangle du Tacul.

The crux of many days up the mid – the return to the station – nice cool & quiet early autumn conditions.
Kev and Nosung at the base of the Chère Couloir, Chamonix

We now only have a 1 space left on our last ‘summer’ alpine mountaineering group course of the season.

Most dates for these courses in summer 2022 are now in place so check out those courses pages for dates next year and start training this autumn for those ascents.  We also have places available on group courses and for private guiding for our UK Mont Blanc & Matterhorn training weekends.

Plus we have started taking bookings for winter ski touring & off piste courses based in Chamonix and our popular Chamonix off piste & touring skills course dates are up and taking bookings for Jan 2022 through to April 2022.  We hope to climb – train – ski with you this coming autumn and winter season.

James on the final summit of the E-W traverse of the Perrons with a fine autumn ambiance.