Mont Blanc Ascent with Gran Paradiso
France, Climbing, 8 days - from £1,845 (land only) - from €2,305 (land only) - from $3,230 (land only)
Day 1: Rendezvous at the group's chalet accommodation in Argentiere in the Chamonix Valley. KE group packages services begin with dinner and overnight at the chalet.
Day 2: Today we will drive through the Mont Blanc Tunnel. A 2 - 3 hour walk through forests and over moorland takes us to the Vittorio Emanuele hut (2735m) situated at the foot of the Gran Paradiso. At the hut the guides will run through the technical skills required for the climb.
Day 3: An early start for the classic easy snow climb and rocky scramble to the summit of the Gran Paradiso (4061m). After the climb we will descend to the valley and drive back through the Mont Blanc tunnel to Chamonix where we check into our chalet in Argentiere.
Day 4: Depending on local conditions, we take the lift up to the Aiguille du Midi (3,842m) to traverse the Vallee Blanche. This will further assist our acclimatisation and snow skills practice. On reaching Helbronner on the Italian side, we return to the Aiguille du Midi on the panoramic Gondola and from there to Chamonix by cable car. Overnight at the group chalet.
Day 5: A cable car and then a train takes us up to the Nid d'Aigle (2372m). From here, we follow a rocky trail for approximately 2 hours to the Tete Rousse Hut (3167m) or for a further 2 hours to reach the Gouter Refuge (3817m). Overnight in the hut.
Day 6: It will take approximately 4 - 6 hours of climbing to reach the summit of Mont Blanc from the Gouter hut and 5 - 7 hours from theTete Rousse Hut. The majority of the ascent is on reasonable angled snow slopes but the final summit ridge is steeper and more exposed. We return by the same route and spend a second night at the hut.
Day 7: This is a contingency day in case of bad weather. If the weather on the previous day was not good enough for a summit attempt, the group will begin their summit attempt today. After the climb, we descend all the way to Chamonix. If the contingency day is not needed we have a relaxed descent to Chamonix with time to enjoy the town before a celebratory evening at the group's chalet.
Day 8: KE group packages services end with breakfast at the hotel.
This holiday involves going to high altitude. During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 3500 metres. This is not something that you should worry about; the human body is quite capable of adapting to a very wide range of altitudes, but it is important that we follow some simple rules in order to acclimatise successfully. Before coming on this holiday you should read the advice on trekking at high altitude.