Rob Elliott and Doron Kalir, Gran Paradiso and Mont Blanc • June 15 - 19, 2015

Rob and Doron had done the Chamonix to Zermatt Haute Route Glacier Trek with Kathy in 2014. For a follow-up, they came over once again to attempt Mont Blanc and the Gran Paradiso.

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All packed up and ready to head to the Chabod hut.


On our way to Gran Paradiso we headed up the brand new lift to Point Helbronner, and ticked off our first summit, the Petit Flambeau, in fog and light snow. Rob Elliott photo.

It was a rainy, gloomy walk and continued rainy and gloomy through the night, so not many photos of the hut or approach march. The moist fog thinned tantalizingly as we gained altitude the next morning, but never cleared entirely. Peering into the void as we thread among crevasses.


Near the summit, it's still snowing lightly. An improvement over the rain!


On the top! A rare moment of solitude on this normally busy summit, the weather discouraged most comers.


Rob and Kathy continued on to Mont Blanc, Doron having seriouis back pain that required rest and medical attention. Again, foggy conditions prevailed as we waited for the cog rail train at Bellevue.


We all anticipate breaking out above the clouds as we climb on the train.


At the terminus, our wish has not yet been granted...


But at last we do pop out into the sunshine as we approach the Gouter ridge.


Beautiful early season conditions in the Grand Couloir (below Rob in this photo) made for relatively safe passage.


Nearing the Gouter hut, the Bionassay Ridge behind.


A rare moment of tranquility in the new Gouter hut.


A privileged perch above the valley clouds.


The next day comes quite early as always, starting the climb well before dawn.


By the time we top out over the Dome du Gouter, the light is up and the day looks beautiful.


Cold and windy, but that is normal up on the roof of Western Europe.


We meet the first of the fastest parties heading down again.


And at last it's our turn to stand on the summit!


Along the descent.


A last look back at the scene of triumph, Rob now has the Chamonix Marathon to look forward to! Thanks for joining me on the climbs, Rob and Doron both.

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