Akbar Khan, Mont Blanc and more • July 12 - 17, 2018


Akbar hopped over the pond from Minneapolis to join Mark for 5 days of climbing. Our main goal was Mont Blanc. Initially, we had our doubts, as the weather forecast looked at best, variable.

But as luck would have it, we enjoyed one of the best Mont Blanc summit days Mark can recall.


Other Trips with Akbar

Chamonix climbing - July 2017
Chamonix climbing - August 2015

Return to all recent trips


Our original plan included the Mönch and Jungfrau. But the poor forecast suggested we stay closer to home to keep more options open.

On day one, we climbed the North Ridge of the Petit Flambeau. The sun even came out for much of the day.


That night, as we slept in the Torino hut, some 20 centimeters of snow fell. We delayed our departure from the hut as long as we reasonably could, in hopes of encountering a forecast mid-day easing off.

We continued up to the Aiguilles Marbrées. Our clearing never came, but we had a good climb all the same. In this photo, Akbar is just getting off the glacier and onto the rock of the South Ridge. Guide Steve Hartland is right behind.


Moving along the fun South Ridge.


The new snow made the climbing interesting.


Akbar on the summit of the Aiguilles Marbrées.


After a days rest we began our 3-day climb of Mont Blanc. Because the Les Houches cable car was still closed, along with the Tramway du Mont Blanc, we had to find an alternate approach. The photo was taken at the parking lot Le Crozat, near the hamlet of Bionnassay. We are about to jump into a 4-wheel drive taxi to take us up to Bellevue, where our walk begins in earnest.


The taxi dropped us at Bellevue.


A family of ibex on the hike up to the Tête Rousse hut.


A beautiful sunset from the Tête Rousse hut.


After dinner lots of folks out behind the hut, texting, or simply enjoying the view.


The dining area of the Tête Rousse hut.


The Aiguille de Bionnassay.


And another sunset photo.


A very late party descending from the Gouter hut.


We took the 4 am breakfast and were roping up at around 4:45.


Arriving at the site of the old Gouter hut. We take a quick bite to eat and drink.


The ridge just above the Gouter hut.


Moving along well, we take another pause at the shoulder of the Dôme du Gouter.


The last hour or so of climbing.


Amazingly, we had the summit all to ourselves.


The selfie. Looks like Mark would benefit from a selfie stick. (not)


Heading down just after noon.


That evening, at the Gouter hut, we were again treated to a beautiful sunset.


The sun sinks into a sea of cloud.


Another leisurely start the next day, we are out the door just before 8 am.


Fellow guide Grisha Kravtchenko, descending down the ridge below the Gouter hut.


Looking up the other direction. A busy place this fine morning.


A new friend follows us almost all the way down to the Nid d'Aigle hut.


With the tramway open only with very limited hours from Mont Lachat, and a car in Bionnassay, we decide to hike all the way down to our car at 1400 meters. That's a descent of 2400 meters, almost 8000 feet.


Looking back up at Mont Blanc from almost to the parking. Thanks Akbar!

Your Comments - more info
comments powered by Disqus