Matterhorn

MATTERHORN, EX CHAMONIX

Day

 

0

Arrive Chamonix, hotel night.

1

Meet with your guide for an equipment check and briefing before taking La Flégère and l'Index lifts to 2,385m.Traverse the peaks of Aiguille de l’Index and return via La Flégère lift.  Hotel night.

2

To Midi lift and acclimatise on the traverse of Pointe Lachenal (3,613m), AD. Return via the Arête des Cosmiques and the Midi lift.
Overnight at Cosmiques Hut.

3

Walk across the Valle Blanche and enjoy a traverse of the Entréves.

Take the Panoramic lift back across and descend to Chamonix. Hotel night.

4

Drive to Täsch in Switzerland, take the train into Zermatt itself.
Take lift to Schwarzsee and walk to Hörnli Hut (2hrs).

5

Summit Day - 3.00am start
Descend back to Hörnli, and continue down to Schwarzsee hotel.

6

Descend to Zermatt and return to Chamonix with a bit of rock climbing en route.  This is also a contingency day in case of bad weather.
Hotel night.

7

Depart Chamonix after breakfast. Trip Ends.

DETAILS

Your guide will meet the morning after your arrival in Chamonix, France, for an equipment check and briefing about the upcoming program and anticipated weather conditions. You will then start the training by taking a lift to a high mountain region close to Chamonix where you will make ascents of appropriate training routes on the Aiguille de I’Index. This is the time where you get to practice climbing skills and start to acclimatise for the ascent of the Eiger in the final days of the program.

The following day you will ascend to the Aiguille du Midi to climb the Arête des Cosmiques (AD, 3,800m) which is a very enjoyable climb on mixed snow and rock. In addition to being a really good day out in the mountains, this will help to consolidate your acclimatisation and to get some good climbing under your belt to get you well prepared for the upcoming ascents. Once training has been completed you will travel with your guide to Switzerland and ascend to the Hörnli Hut on the lower part of the Matterhorn’s Hörnli Ridge to prepare for the ascent the following morning.

First and foremost, weather and conditions have to be favourable for a safe ascent of this serious peak. Although success cannot be guaranteed, we have developed our approach to give you a serious chance of attaining an ascent of this classic route.

The ascent is based entirely on a 1:1 guiding ratio. While some operators will clump you together with large groups during the early acclimatisation phase we feel there is much to be gained on warm-up routes that get you prepared for the upcoming rigours and technical challenges that you will face. 

We program the trip over 6 days / 7 nights to include the necessary period of acclimatisation before making an ascent at this altitude.  We consider it vital that you work closely with your guide throughout the week to develop the appropriate level of communication and trust to collectively make the ascent as a partnership of two people on a rope. Extra days can be added to the programme for additional acclimatisation and preparation days by signing up for our 2 day Europe Pre-Course and Acclimatisation Programme.

MATTERHORN, EX ZERMATT

Day

 

0

Arrive Zermatt. Meet guide in evening for a briefing. Note: Due to guide commitments, in some instances, the guide will meet you the morning of Day 1. Hotel night.

1

Travel up the Gornergrat Railway for some technical rock training on the Rifflehorn 2,927m. Hotel night.

2

Cable Car to Klein Matterhorn. Climb Pollux by Southwest Ridge (4,092m). Stay Val d'Ayas Guides Hut.

3

Climb East Ridge of Breithorn (4,164m). Descend by normal route to Klein Matterhorn and cable car to Zermatt. Hotel night.

4

Cable Car to Schwarzsee and walk to Hörnli Hut.

5

Summit Day. Descend back to Hörnli Hut and continue down to the Schwarzsee hotel.

6

Depart Schwarzsee and descend to Zermatt. Possible rock climbing in the afternoon. Overnight in Zermatt Hotel.

7

Depart Zermatt after breakfast.

DETAILS

Your guide will meet with you on the evening of your arrival in Zermatt (Switzerland) for an equipment check and a briefing about the upcoming program and anticipated weather conditions. You will start the training the following morning and take a lift to a high mountain region close to Zermatt where you will make ascents of interesting and challenging training routes. This is the time where you get to practice climbing skills and become acclimatised for the ascent of the Matterhorn in the final days of the program.

We have purposely included some classic ascents in your training program, not only to help you focus on the skills for the climb ahead but also to enable you to get some other fantastic routes under your belt as well!

We ascend to the Hörnli hut on the lower part of the Matterhorn’s Hörnli ridge to prepare for the ascent the following morning.

First and foremost, weather and conditions have to be favourable for a safe ascent of this serious peak. Although success cannot be guaranteed, we have developed our approach to give you a serious chance of attaining an ascent of this classic route.

The ascent is based entirely on a 1:1 guiding ratio. While some operators will clump you together with large groups during the early acclimatisation phase we feel there is much to be gained on warm-up routes that get you prepared for the upcoming rigours and technical challenges that you will face. 

We program the trip over 6 days / 7 nights to include the necessary period of acclimatisation before making an ascent at this altitude.  We consider it vital that you work closely with your guide throughout the week to develop the appropriate level of communication and trust to collectively make the ascent as a partnership of two people on a rope. Extra days can be added to the programme for additional acclimatisation and preparation days by signing up for our 2 Day Europe Pre-Course & Acclimatisation Programme.

ABOUT THE CLIMB

An ascent of the Matterhorn is a superb summit demanding fitness, determination and a level of competence on both rock and ice.

The summit day will start well before dawn, around 4am, and you will be encouraged by your guide to move consistently to ensure you reach the summit in a reasonable timeframe. Depending on conditions the ascent will take between 4-6 hours and an equal length of time to descend.

Whilst much of the rock on the Hörnli Ridge is good, the first part of the route follows the East face, slightly to the left of the ridge and here the rock is slabby and loose. 

Though it looks narrow from a distance, the Hörnli Ridge is broad and featured when climbing. There are many scrambling sections as well as some steep climbing pitches. The last 200 meters need crampons and axe.  At 1040m of climbing it is a long and tiring day and will take at least as long to descend as to climb.

Stopping on the descent at the Hörnli hut for a tea break, we continue down to the more comfortable hotel at Schwarzsee.

If you arrive well prepared you will really enjoy this climb for its intensity without encountering extreme terrain.

 

 

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