Chamonix to Zermatt summer Haute Route • July 17 - 23, 2016

Kathy was joined by a stellar crew on this year's first Chamonix to Zermatt Haute Route.

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From left to right: Jerome Poncet, Dave Hancock, Rob Elliott, Claire Cologne and Tom Hoehn.


Our first day dawned clear and gorgeous. Approaching the Albert Premier hut above the banks of the Tour glacier.


Leaving the hut in our rear view mirror, we continue up the glacier as the afternoon heat sets in.


We've just popped over the Col Supérieure du Tour here, and are now already in Switzerland.


Dawn on Day 2, we prepare to leave the Orny hut.


Saddled up and ready to go!


Descending the moraine below the Orny hut.


The scenic balcony trail to La Breya.


After our morning taxi transfer to the Mauvoisin dam, we're walking again.


We visit a herd of fighting cows above the Mauvoisin lake (notice the two engaging in desultory faux combat, just sparring?).


The Col de Tsofeiret, feet getting hot now!


A nice late lunch in the sunshine at the Chanrion hut.


Dinner time at the Chanrion hut!


The next morning, the early sun caught us already nearing the Col de Lire Rose.


The high meadow covered ridge is too scenic for words.


A bit of steep snow getting up to the Col du Mont Rouge.


Taking a bit of rest at the Col de Cheilon, our last of three on this day.


Reward? You bet! On the sunny terrace of the Dix hut, Mont Blanc de Cheilon in the background.


The next morning is a pre-dawn start from the Dix hut.


High on the glacier of Tsena Refien.


Approaching the Serpentine.


And it's the summit of the Pigne d'Arolla!


We took a little amusing detour on a nearby "mystery ridge".


The peaks above Zermatt and Saas Fee are in our faces as we descend from the Pigne.


Another fine lunchtime reward at teh Vignettes hut!


The Pigne d'Arolla seen from the backyard of the Vignettes hut.


Heading out early the next morning...


We scampered over the Col de l'Evêque, running from a pulse of rain that was forecast for mid morning.


It looks pretty threatening behind, but in the end didn't amount to much at all.


Leaving the Haut Glacier d'Arolla behind.


In the land of plants for a brief while!


Then it's up again to the Bertol hut.


And up...


And up!


Cozy, and not too crowded in the early afternoon...


The next day we were to go to the Schönbiel hut, but storms arriving earlier than forecast and proving quite violent in the end, chased us back down the trail to Arolla.


As often happens when we arrive in Zermatt with a day to spare and iffy weather, we took advantage of the fantastic Gorge Adventure terrain!


Somebody had a wicked imagination when they designed this route!


slippy logs...


More slippy logs....


Chutes and ladders...


And a very narrow slot.


A fun way to end a trip in the best of company. Thank you all, and may our paths cross again!

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