The long walk in to the Cabane Mountets (2886m) is more than compensated for with stunning views of the upper Zinal Valley and arriving in the magnificent high mountain glacial arena where the hut is situated.
It took us around 4 hours to walk in to the hut and another short outing up in to the impressive valley beneath the West Faces of Besso and Blanc de Moming gave us a useful recce for the approach in the dark for the next morning…and the red paint dots along the way helped quite a lot too!
The traverse of the SW Ridge of Besso (3667m) and Blanc du Moming (3657m) gives an excellent sustained AD+ outing and long 10hrs plus round trip from the brilliant base camp at the Mountets Hut.
There is plenty of good sustained scrambling and big boot rock pitches up to around III-IV on the SW Ridge of Besso with some fine pitches steepening up on the summit tower.
The fixed gear is very limited with just the occasional bolt and we used all the 6 cams we had taken from little blue to yellow 2. The climbing is never too hard but there is plenty of it!
It took us just under 5 hours from the hut to the summit and there are wonderful views of the surrounding peaks as well as back down the Zinal Valley – straight down to the car park!
The traverse over to the Blanc de Moming starts with an easy scramble a little down on the East Face, but the ridge is quickly re-gained and then followed pretty diligently down to the col, along the sustained solid central section and then up to the Moming summit.
The modern topo mentions a 20m delicate and fragile section of flakes just below the summit of Moming where the snow has receded exposing some raw rocky flakes. These are slightly disconcerting to climb and protect on the lead but actually still provide good climbing and were thoroughly enjoyed by Richard seconding!
The walk over the little glacier cap to the lower summit on Moming provided a welcome & easy break from the rocky ridge horse riding sections and a great opportunity to soak up the remarkable views with a Himalayan air to the high mountain grandeur.
Lots of teams had also been climbing on the Zinalrothorn, including all of the big 3 ridges on that plus both the Arbengrat and North Face of the Obergabelhorn. Activity also on the Trifthorn and Dent Blanche. We set off down the relatively rambling descent of the SW ridge of Moming Dome which is rapid and easy compared to the route on Besso and traverse ridge, with just one little pitched section protected by an in-situ bolt as the only real difficulty just above the La Forcle saddle with Mamouth. It was great to relax and take in the wonderful high mountain ambiance with a second night at the hut rather than do the walk out after an 11hr day on the hill.
After a leisurely 0700 breakfast the next morning we enjoyed the 4 hour round trip of the nearby Mamouth 3219m, starting just 300m down the path to the hut and featuring more fine solid rocky ridge action with the occasional bolt but well worth taking plenty of cams as per the Besso Moming traverse.
There is some fine rock & fun climbing both the on SW ridge and the traverse of the main crest and this gives an enjoyable shorter outing and good option for either the hut walk in or walk out day.
Back in Chamonix, well done to Robin on summitting Mont Blanc yesterday. A great effort and fine conditions and just reward for putting the time in on our Snowdonia alpine training courses.
Our Chamonix alpine intro mountaineering team have been training and mountaineering on the Mer de Glace, Skyway Monte Bianco and are on the Gran Paradiso today. We’ve also had teams on the Matterhorn and heading for Mont Blanc tomorrow, so stay tuned for conditions updates on those.
We still have a few spaces left on late summer alpine mountaineering courses plus an early autumn opportunity to climb Gran Paradiso and Mont Blanc in early October…
- 2 Places available on our 2 day Chamonix Mont Blanc Training course, 6-7th Sept
- Places available on our Mont Blanc training weekend in Snowdonia 11-12th Sept
- Numerous places on Climb Mont Blanc courses & Gran Paradiso courses in September 2021
- Places available on either just our Climb Gran Paradiso course in early October or the great combination of Paradiso and Mont Blanc.
For group courses – there is a regularly evolving situation with both regular bookings and cancellations – please check the details on our main mountaineering courses page and get in touch if you would like to join one of teams training and climbing in the Alps.
Likewise in Snowdonia and Scottish Highlands for our late summer and autumn Mont Blanc and Matterhorn training programmes please check for details here or get in touch for private guiding & training.