Classic Haute Route

Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn the ultimate Alpine mountain holiday

14

days

Trek

Climb

From $3,220 Land only

Book this holiday

Holiday Overview

Highlights

  • Trek from Chamonix to Zermatt, the complete Haute Route traverse
  • Climb the Pigne d`Arola and the Tete Blanche
  • Overnight in atmospheric high mountain huts
  • Learn the ropes with experienced IFMGA guides

This is the ultimate high Alpine trekking adventure following the Haute Route from Chamonix to Zermatt. Taking a dramatic and uncompromising line, the Classic Haute Route traverses the heart of the European Alps, linking Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn by a series of high cols and impressive glaciers. Expert guidance is essential on this challenging walking route and during the course of the traverse, there is plenty of opportunity to hone mountaineering skills. From the start point at our comfortable chalet base in the Chamonix Valley of the French Alps, to the end point in the famously picturesque ski-town of Zermatt in the Swiss Alps, we will have walked 120km and accumulated more than 10,000 metres of ascent and descent. Offering the most breathtaking scenery in the Alps and overnight stops at some of the very best Alpine refuges, the Classic Haute Route from Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn, ranks among the world's greatest mountain walking adventures.

Is this holiday for you?

This is real mountain travel, following good trails to the snowline and also involving sections of scrambling, snowslope climbing and glacier travel, where ropes, crampons and an ice-axe will be used. We average 6 to 8 hours walking each day, with some longer days and tough climbs. En route, we will stay in mountain huts which are inaccessible by vehicle and this means that group members will carry all of their personal equipment throughout the trip. With careful planning, and given the fact that sleeping bags and camping mats are not carried, the total weight of your rucksack can be pared down to around 8 kilograms. Previous experience of walking in crampons is essential for this holiday. The group will be led by an IFMGA guideat a ratio of 1:6.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group's chalet in Argentiere in the Chamonix Valley.
  • Cable car from Le Tour. Short walk to the Albert Premier Hut (2702m). Skills practice.
  • Trek Col Superior du Tour (3289m) to Cabane d'Orny (2831m).
  • Trek through the Vallon d'Arpette de Saleina and Val Ferret to La Fouly (1350m).
  • Trek across the Col du Neve de la Rousse (2752m). Descend to Bourg St. Pierre (1825m).
  • Trek across the Col de La Vuardette (2440m). Climb Mont Rogneux (3083m) a to the Cabane Brunet (2103m).
  • Trek to the Pannassiere Hut (2645m).
  • Trek over Col des Otannes (2846m). Descend to Lac de Mauvoisin (1960m) and up to Chanrion Hut (2462m).
  • Trek across four cols to the Cabane des Dix (2928m).
  • Trek to the high point of our route, the Pigne d'Arolla (3796m). Descend to the Vignettes Hut (3160m).
  • Trek across the Col de L'Eveque (3386m) and Col de Bertol (3268m) to the Cabane de Bertol (3311m).
  • Optional ascent of the Tete Blanche (3724m). Descend Stockji Glacier to the Schonbiel Hut (2694m).
  • Descend beneath the Matterhorn North Face to the famous Swiss mountain town of Zermatt (1608m).
  • Departure day
2016
Sun 26 Jun - Sat 09 Jul Code CHR /01/16/
CHR
Adult$3,220 Status Limited Availability Book now
More information
  • Classic Haute Route - CHR
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHR /01/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 26 Jun and departs on Sat 09 Jul
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 24 Jul - Sat 06 Aug Code CHR /02/16/
CHR
Adult$3,220 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Classic Haute Route - CHR
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHR /02/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 24 Jul and departs on Sat 06 Aug
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 07 Aug - Sat 20 Aug Code CHR /03/16/
CHR
Adult$3,220 Status Guaranteed Book now
More information
  • Classic Haute Route - CHR
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHR /03/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 07 Aug and departs on Sat 20 Aug
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis and recommend that you book your flights to Geneva Airport which is approximately an hour's drive from Chamonix and three hours by train from Zermatt. Please refer to the 'Joining arrangements and transfers' section of the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

If flying from the UK there are a number of low cost airlines offering flights to Geneva. These include Easyjet who have flights from London, Manchester, Liverpool & Glasgow and Jet 2 who have flights from Manchester, Leeds Bradford & Belfast. Other airports may be available. Click on the 'Flight information' link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively if you would prefer to book a 'flight inclusive package' using scheduled airlines from the UK please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive you will benefit from full financial protection.


BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

We have undertaken to guarantee that all of our Land Only prices will not change once you have booked your holiday. Unlike some of our competitors we have decided never to surcharge, whether you are booking for this year or the next.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • trip direction
  • trek
  • transfer

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group's chalet in Argentiere in the Chamonix Valley.

    Meet at our chalet in Argentiere, which is just a few kilometres from Chamonix town centre. Situated beneath the stunning north face of Mont Blanc, the views are awesome from the start! Here you will be welcomed and made to feel at home. At 7.00pm we will be joined by our guide and have an informal chat about the trip. KE Land Only package services begin with an excellent 3-course dinner.

    • Accommodation Chalet

    • Meals d

  • Cable car from Le Tour. Short walk to the Albert Premier Hut (2702m). Skills practice.

    In the morning, there is the chance for the guide to check out your clothing and gear and to decide if you will need to pick up any further items of equipment, before setting off. The first stage of our trek takes us from Argentiere to the Albert Premier Hut (2702m) and includes the opportunity for us to practice our snow and ice skills. We start out by way of a short cable car ride from Le Tour to the Col du Balme. From here, it's a comfortable 2-hour walk to the Albert Premier Hut, which we aim to reach by mid afternoon. The nearby Glacier du Tour is a great place to practice snow and ice skills. There are great views of Mont Blanc and the Aiguille du Chardonnet on the walk to the hut.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 600m

    • Distance 4km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 80m

    • Time 2 hours walking

  • Trek Col Superior du Tour (3289m) to Cabane d'Orny (2831m).

    An early start from the hut allows us to make use of the best snow conditions underfoot, whilst the snow is still frozen. Today we cross over into Switzerland, by way of the Col Superior du Tour (3289m). If conditions and weather allow we will make an ascent of the Tete Blanche (3421m) which provides us with fantastic views of the Mont Blanc range on one side and of the peaks of Switzerland to the other. After this we cross the Trient Plateau, a flat glacial area and then descend the Orny Glacier to our overnight stop at the Cabane d’Orny (2831m).

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 760m

    • Distance 9km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 640m

    • Time 5 - 6 hours walking

  • Trek through the Vallon d'Arpette de Saleina and Val Ferret to La Fouly (1350m).

    If we are up early enough, we can expect a good sunrise view from the hut. After breakfast, we are faced with a big descent on a pleasant path which zig-zags down into the Vallon d'Arpette de Saleina. At about 1350 metres elevation, we leave this valley and make a gentle traverse on the west side of Val Ferret to La Fouly, where we overnight in dormitory accommodation at a hotel. There is a small supermarket to stock up on lunch supplies and an outdoor equipment store. 6 hours walking.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 750m

    • Distance 14km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 640m

    • Time 6 - 7 hours walking

  • Trek across the Col du Neve de la Rousse (2752m). Descend to Bourg St. Pierre (1825m).

    From the hotel, we start out easily on a road which peters out into a track. Higher, this becomes a steep zig-zag trail which leads up the Col du Neve de la Rousse (2752m). This is not a well-travelled route and there are great opportunities for spotting alpine wildlife, including marmots, chamois and bouquetins (ibex). From our high point there are great views of the Mont Blanc range and towards the Grand Combin. We then make a long, gentle descent passing a snow filled lake, le Gouille du Draggon, to Bourg St. Pierre, where we overnight in a Gite. Here, there is the opportunity to buy basic snacks and this is also the last chance for a hot shower. We will briefly have access to our trek bags late in the afternoon and this will allow us to get a change of clothing and to offload any superfluous items of gear.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1350m

    • Distance 16km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1140m

    • Time 7 - 8 hours walking

  • Trek across the Col de La Vuardette (2440m). Climb Mont Rogneux (3083m) a to the Cabane Brunet (2103m).

    Today starts out with a long and initially easy-angled ascent, following the way of the Tour des Combins. Shortly after crossing the col of La Vuardette 2440m we take a traverse to Point 2493m, where there is a small lake. From here we ascend a less worn trail into a valley named La Chaudiere. This leads us onto Mont Rogneux’s west ridge, where some easy scrambling brings us to the summit cross (3083m). Descent is by way of the east ridge, passing a lake and the grassy ridge of Les Capucins. At Pindin (2397m) we meet the 4x4 track leading us easily down to Cabane Brunet and a well earned beer.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1600m

    • Distance 14km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1100m

    • Time 8 hours walking

  • Trek to the Pannassiere Hut (2645m).

    Today we can have a relaxed and leisurely breakfast before setting off. From right outside Cabane Brunet a pleasant path traverses the hillside, crossing the first steam by a small suspension bridge. The route continues to contour, passing some old bergeries at La Maya. We continue until a short climb leads us to the new suspension bridge, crossing the outflow of the Corbassiere glacier. This gives us access to Plan Gali and our final ascent up to Cabane Pannossiere (2669m), where we may arrive in time for a hot lunch. Here there is a free open air shower, complete with views or some new indoor showers for an additional charge. The afternoon can be spent relaxing on the terrace, with the stunning view of the Grand Combin (4314m).

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 880m

    • Distance 8km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 340m

    • Time 3 - 4 hours walking

  • Trek over Col des Otannes (2846m). Descend to Lac de Mauvoisin (1960m) and up to Chanrion Hut (2462m).

    A slightly earlier start today. We begin the day by climbing up to the Col des Otannes, where weather permitting, we have fantastic views southwards across heavily glaciated terrain (the upper part of the Corbassiere Glacier) to the lofty summit of the Grand Combin. We then descend to the Mauvoisin dam where we can take a short break for coffee and cake before heading across the top of the dam to pick up a long, gently ascending trail on the eastern side of the lake to the Col du Tsofeiret. From here a short steep descent takes us to the Cabane de Chanrion located on summer pastures and with views of the Grand Combin from a different direction than the previous hut. There are also plenty of mountain tarns if you fancy a swim!

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1760m

    • Distance 18km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1880m

    • Time 7 - 8 hours walking

  • Trek across four cols to the Cabane des Dix (2928m).

    We have 4 cols to cross today and we leave behind the greenery of the lower Alps to ascend to the rock and ice of the high glaciated environment. From the hut we first climb back up to the Col de Tsofeiret and we soon find ourselves amongst more rugged mountain scenery, with the spectacular Brenay Glacier stretching away from us. On the climb up to the second col, the Col de Lire Rose (3115m), we leave the footpaths behind. Here, edelweiss can commonly be seen and it is also usual to see groups of ibex on the slopes. We take a break at the col to have a bite to eat. From here we descend steeply and then cross the glacier, which is completely covered in boulders and scree, before climbing to the next col, the Col de Mont Rouge (3325m). We sometimes need to put on our crampons here, as there is a steep snow slope to be negotiated. Beyond this pass, we cross the upper part of the Gietro Glacier to reach the Col de Cheilon. A short glacial descent then takes us to our overnight stop at the Cabane des Dix (2928m), a hut with a deserved reputation for good food. There is also a basic 'panoramic' shower at this hut. If we make good time we may arrive in time for a hot lunch.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1170m

    • Distance 10km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 760m

    • Time 5 - 6 hours walking

  • Trek to the high point of our route, the Pigne d'Arolla (3796m). Descend to the Vignettes Hut (3160m).

    A 5 a.m. start today, as we ascend to the highest point of our route. We start the day with a short descent from the hut onto the Glacier de Cheilon, which is initially bare of snow. Before beginning our ascent of the Pigne d’Arolla (3796m), we rope up and put on crampons. The start of the route crosses dramatically crevassed glacial terrain, leading up to the Col de la Serpentine, where we will take a short rest to admire the stunning view of the Matterhorn and the Dent d’Herons. From here, we ascend a short, but steep, ice slope. This is the crux of the route, giving us access to the easier upper slopes of the Pigne d’Arolla. This is an excellent 360 degree viewpoint. A short glacial descent takes us to the impressively situated Vignettes Hut (3160m), which we usually reach in time for lunch.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1140m

    • Distance 8km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 900m

    • Time 6 - 7 hours walking

  • Trek across the Col de L'Eveque (3386m) and Col de Bertol (3268m) to the Cabane de Bertol (3311m).

    Today we cross beneath the north face of the Petit Mont Collon on glaciated terrain to reach the Col de L’Eveque (3386m). This takes 3 to 4 hours. From here, we descend onto the Haute Glacier d’Arolla, traversing snow slopes and then bare glacier. At the snout of the glacier, we pick up a trail leading towards a bergerie Plan de Bertol on the eastern slopes of the valley. Now we have a sting in the tail of the day with a 600 metre ascent to the Col de Bertol (3268m). Our overnight halt is at the Cabane de Bertol, which is spectacularly located at the col. Access to the hut is via an exciting series of ladders - a thrilling way to end a spectacular day! There are good views eastwards to the Matterhorn and the Dent Blanche.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1230m

    • Distance 14km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1070m

    • Time 8 - 9 hours walking

  • Optional ascent of the Tete Blanche (3724m). Descend Stockji Glacier to the Schonbiel Hut (2694m).

    This is our crux day and involves another early start. (Note: we do need good weather to climb the Tete Blanche and then make the descent down the heavily crevassed Stockji Glacier). We begin by descending the ladders from the hut. We then rope up and start the long, gentle ascent of the Mont Mine Glacier, heading for the easy snow peak of the Tete Blanche (3724m). This takes 3 to 4 hours and as a reward for the ascent we are treated to even more impressive views of the Matterhorn. We descend by way of the complex and heavily crevassed Stockji Glacier to our exit point at the Stockji (a rocky island in the middle of this glaciated terrain). Here, we pick up a narrow trail which traverses steep slopes, leading to an improving alpine path on a moraine on the north side of the valley. Finally, we cross the huge rock-covered glacier below the Smutt Ridge of the Matterhorn and pick our way up to the Schonbiel Hut, a welcoming hut in green meadows, with a mountain shower at your disposal. We take lunch at the hut and have the afternoon on the sunny terrace, spotting climbers on the Matterhorn.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 890m

    • Distance 13km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1440m

    • Time 6 - 7 hours walking

  • Descend beneath the Matterhorn North Face to the famous Swiss mountain town of Zermatt (1608m).

    Today, we make the easy 4-hour walk down to Zermatt. From the rugged high mountain scenery, we soon find ourselves amongst pleasant woodland and pretty hamlets. This is a splendid walk, with the towering north face of the Matterhorn in full view and gives us time to reflect on the journey just undertaken. Arriving in Zermatt in time for lunch, we can pause to reflect on the trek that we have just completed, whilst enjoying a drink and the impressive sight of the majestic Matterhorn. After booking into our hotel in Zermatt there is time to look around or relax before dinner.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 150m

    • Distance 7km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals b

    • Descent 790m

  • Departure day

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • Professional guide or guides on a 1:6 ratio
  • All accommodation as described
  • Meals as detailed in the Meal Plan
  • All cable car fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Airport transfers
  • Some meals as detailed in the Meal Plan
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.

Breakfasts and all dinners (with the exception of the last night in Zermatt) are included in the trip price. Packed lunches and some snack items can be purchased along the way and in the mountain huts. Hot lunches, if you prefer, can usually be purchased on arrival at the hut.

All breakfasts and 12 dinners are included in the trip price. Packed lunches or hill-food can be bought in the huts. On most days there will also be the possibility of having a hot lunch either at a hut encountered on route or a late lunch taken at our overnight halt. Depending on your choice you should allow (€10 - 20 or CHF15 - 30) per lunch. Dinner on the last evening in Zermatt is also not included in the holiday price in order to give the widest possible range of options to the group for this meal.
The group will rendezvous at the Yeti Lodge in Argentiere on the evening of day 1 of the trip itinerary. For clients arriving by air, the easiest way to get to Argentiere is to fly to Geneva Airport and make use of an airport transfer service. We recommend mountaindropoffs.com. KE clients can get transfers from €27 each way by entering the promo code YETI. Please note that transfers are subject to availability and your flight details are required a minimum of 72 hours before your arrival in Geneva. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.

Returning from Zermatt
This trek ends in Zermatt. KE services end after breakfast on Day 14 of the trip. The most convenient way of returning from Zermatt to Geneva is by train. Tickets can be purchased at the railway station in Zermatt or online at http://www.sbb.ch/en/index.htm. If buying your ticket online use Zermatt Bahnhoff at the selected station. There is a station in Geneva Airport and there are several connections throughout the day. The journey takes approximately 3.5 hours from Zermatt and costs approximately CHF 95. If you are returning to Chamonix at the end of the trip please contact the KE office.
During this trip the group will spend 1 night in a group hotel in Chamonix Valley and 1 night in a hotel in Zermatt. Whilst in the mountains, there are 11 nights spent in mountain huts or similar accommodation (gites). Accommodation throughout the trip is on a non-segregated, dormitory-style basis. In the high mountain huts washing facilities are limited. Single rooms are not available.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

After breakfast at our overnight accommodation, we try to get a reasonably early start. Alpine conditions are always best before the mid-day heat has affected the snow conditions. Where we are faced with a long day, when climbing the Tete Blanche, for instance, we will have a very early start. For food during the day, we carry snacks and you should bring something from home energy wise, that you know works for you. Lunches tend to be eaten on the move, as we are normally under pressure to complete the day’s walk whilst the snow conditions are good and firm. The afternoons are often free for relaxing in the sun on the terrace of our overnight refuge. A set, 3-course evening meal is provided at each of the mountain huts.

The group will be led by an IFMGA guide. Guiding is at a ratio of 1:6 during the trip.

The package price includes valley transport, cable cars and mountain railway tickets, all accommodation, all meals except lunches, and guiding. You should make an allowance for drinks, including bottled water. Note: bottled water, if bought in the huts, is very expensive. Beer, wine and soft drinks are available every night. €50 plus 350-400 Swiss Francs should be sufficient to cover all personal expenses including lunches. Please note that almost all of the route is in Switzerland and you should take most of your money in the form of Swiss Francs. You will need some Euros for the time that you spend in France. There are cash point facilities in Argentiere and in Zermatt. If you are intending to hire or purchase items of equipment, you should budget accordingly.

Group members will carry all of their personal equipment during the trek and it is vitally important to keep the overall weight of your equipment to a minimum. Since you will not be required to carry either a sleeping bag or a camping mattress it should be possible to keep the weight of your pack to under 10 kg. At the start of the Haute Route you will leave your main trek bag and travel clothes in the group’s hotel/chalet in Argentiere. You will have brief access to your main bag on day 4 and again on day 8 to allow a change of clothes and offload any unneccessary items. Your bag will be transported to your final hotel in Zermatt.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to moderately high altitude. During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 2500 metres. Most people will have no difficulty with this level of altitude but before coming on the holiday, we recommend you read the advice on trekking at altitude on our website which can be viewed via the link below. You can also talk to one of our trekking experts if you have any concerns about altitude. www.keadventure.com/page/altitude.html

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your pack to a minimum.

You must bring the following items:

  • Mountain Boots (see notes below)

  • Crampons – MUST be fitted with anti-balling plates*

  • Crampon bag

  • Ice Axe*

  • Mountaineering harness*

  • Screw gate karabiner x 1*

  • Trekking poles x 2 (with baskets)

  • Gaiters

  • Socks – walking socks are best (2/3 pairs)

  • Trekking Trousers (i.e. not cotton)

  • Waterproof trousers

  • Underwear

  • Thermal Base Layer x 2 (one long sleeved for glacier travel)

  • Fleece jacket or pullover

  • Waterproof jacket (with hood)

  • Extra warm layer – (primaloft or lightweight down)

  • Sunhat

  • Warm hat

  • Sunglasses – category 3 or 4.

  • Thin gloves – leather or thermal

  • Warm and waterproof gloves or mittens

  • Sleeping bag liner/sheet sleeping bag (silk is lightest)

  • Rucksack (30 - 40 litres should be sufficient)

  • Headtorch and spare batteries

  • Sun Protection (high factor for skin)

  • Lip salve – with sunscreen

  • Water bottle 1 litre

  • Small, lightweight wash kit and pack towel

  • Plastic Bag to keep essentials dry

  • Small hand sanitizer gel

  • Basic First Aid Kit including: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters, blister treatment (zinc oxide tape and ‘Compeed’), insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).

The following items are optional:

  • Change of shirt and trousers

  • Thermal baselayer - leggings

  • Shorts (for non-glacial travel)

  • Rain cover for Rucksack

  • Earplugs (particularly if you are not the one snoring!)

  • Repair kit – (eg. Pocket knife, needle, thread, duct tape etc.)

  • Camera

  • Travel Clothes (can be left at your hotel)

  • Travel Shoes (can be left at your hotel)

  • Small Padlock (for trek bag)

Notes

Mountaineering Boots - Recommended boots for this trip are comfortable, warm and sufficiently stiff to take a crampon securely (a sturdy B1 or a ‘worn in’ B2 boot is ideal). Rigid B3 boots are NOT suitable for this trek.

Crampons: Modern strap on crampons are perfectly acceptable for this trek and will fit any boot. All crampons MUST be fitted with anti-balling plates. Grivel Crampons - G10 or G12 with a strap system are excellent and they come fitted with anti-balling plates. We do not recommend semi-automatic crampons for use with softer boots since with this system, the pull on the heel can lead to blisters.

Equipment hire: Equipment marked *can be hired from KE. This can be reserved either when you book your trip or closer to your departure but we advise booking hire equipment as soon as possible to ensure availability. We do not hire mountaineering boots, but there are several shops in Chamonix renting boots that are suitable for this trip.

Sleeping bags are NOT required as bedding and hut shoes/slippers are provided at mountain refuges. However, you should bring a sheet sleeping bag.

Needle Sports (specialist mountaineering equipment shop)

Needle Sports is the English Lake District's foremost specialist climbing shop supplying mountaineering, rock, ice, alpine and expedition equipment worldwide. Internationally recognised as among the very best of the UK's top technical climbing gear retailers. They have a good range of equipment appropriate for this trip and offer knowledgeable advice both on their website and in store. View >>http://www.needlesports.com/

 

 

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

Visa Europe

UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa.

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations. UK residents should obtain a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance which is still vital when travelling overseas.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking or climbing trip getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. Regular walks in hill country is the best way to build up stamina and fitness, but if this is not easily possible than you should start a programme of regular excercise designed to raise your heart and breathing rate for an extended period and gradually build up the time spent excercising as you get nearer to departure day.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

The temperatures that we can expect to encounter during the day will be reasonably warm, ranging from 10°C to 25°C. It can be cool in the evenings at our highest overnight stopping places, falling close to freezing point at night. The weather is usually stable during July and August, but mountainous areas do generate their own weather systems and occasional rain and even stormy weather cannot be ruled out. You should be prepared for all eventualities!

  • The Haute Route, Chamonix – Zermatt. Peter Cliff.

Swiss Topo 1:50,000 Special Edition Hiking Maps

Swiss survey maps are highly regarded for their superb use of graphic relief and hill shading, presenting an almost 3-D picture of Switzerland's mountainous terrain. These are 'special edition' maps from the Switzerland Topographic Survey at 1:50,000 have the same excellent cartography as the general network which covers the entire country in 78 sheets, but are specifically designed for hikers and are centered on particular tourist regions. They also cover a larger area than the normal sheets. For this holiday you will need the following sheets: 5027T. Grand St-Bernard - Combins - Arolla and 5028T - Monterosa-Matterhorn 1:50 000

Recent Reviews & Blog Posts