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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    15

    Col Du Belvedere – Chamonix / Flegere

    When – We made the ascent and descent on the 5th March, although this tour can come into condition very early in the season as the route does not enter glaciated terrain

    Grade – A definite beginners tour, the slopes rarely exceed 30 degrees, and in good visibility the route is fairly clear

    Avalanche – Possibility of wind slabs in some areas, in general these are avoidable if you read the terrain

    Equipment – Day pack and a camera, the views over the Mont Blanc Massif are phenomenal

    The Route:

    If you are feeling particularly fit or are one of those ethical ski tourers then start from the valley bottom near Les Praz – Chamonix. Most mortals will ride the flegere lift system up to the top of the Floria drag lift

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    Map of the ski tour, the solid red line is the ascent route with the yellow line highlighting the final descent down to the Flegere ski lifts.

    From the top of the Flori lift system identify the crochues comb which is easily identifiable as the red Crochues piste descends this.

    You have two options:

    The safest option is to descend the Crochues piste to below the Tete Aubuy and then join up with the IGN marked blue ski tour route
    If the snow conditions are stable and you don’t fall you can save a bit of a skin by a long traverse starting immediately from the Floria lift around the Crochues comb to the top of the Tete Aubuy
    Whichever route you take you will then need to cross the Lac Blanc, in the depths of winter this is straightforward as it is frozen

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Looking up to the Col Du Belvedere 2780 m

    Once safely across the lake follow the comb up to the Col Du Belvedere, the snow in here transforms rapidly and don’t hesitate to come here immediately after a snow fall or give it several days to consolidate otherwise you WILL find crust

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    The final slog up to the col with the Mont Blanc Massif giants in the background – Grandes Montets ski area is hidden in the clouds.

    The ascent is in the region of 800 m and is best completed after the first lifts open in the Flegere ski area.

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    On the Col Du Belvedere with the resident alpine choughs

    The descent is not steep and relatively easy to follow if the sun is out!

    firstly retrace your ascent steps to the lac blanc, from here go down the many rolls and as you do so keep heading slightly right to ensure you meet the Telesiege De La Trappe.

    If you find your self entering woods that is a definite sign to start traversing hard right!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    SLC
    Posts
    4,445
    Looks awesome!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    943
    Dropping off the backside and skiing to Le Buet is a great addition to this tour. Gotta rap in though.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    west tetons
    Posts
    1,319
    Here's a shot of Panchosdad rapping into the backside. There's a nice little bar at Le Buet to have a beer and wait for the train.Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    29,762
    Quote Originally Posted by homemadesalsa View Post
    There's a nice little bar at Le Buet
    That place is great.

    Thanks for the summer relief
    Quote Originally Posted by Downbound Train View Post
    And there will come a day when our ancestors look back...........

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    15
    yes the route over the back of the col has always tempted me, but you could (i have in the past) leave the rope at home and go via Pointe Alphonse Favre? SP, the map makes it appear that you get a better descent that way

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    On the field
    Posts
    620
    Quote Originally Posted by homemadesalsa View Post
    Here's a shot of Panchosdad rapping into the backside. There's a nice little bar at Le Buet to have a beer and wait for the train.Click image for larger version. 

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    That place is a Gem. What a great place to end up

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    5,970
    Anyone care to explain that rappelling set up to me? Is that a fixed rope? How do you pass the knot [/wanna be ski mountaineer]

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    west tetons
    Posts
    1,319
    There's an anchor extended from the rock with some kind of link on it, if I recall correctly. Then we have two 30m 8mil randonee cords tied together with a flemish bend. No knot passing necessary. I extended the bight so that the knot wouldn't get caught on anything, then pulled the dark blue one. Make sense? It's pretty simple. The trickery came at the next anchor, which was buried under the snow, unfindable by us. We ended up downclimbing, kicking steps with whippets in hand (not so firm that we needed crampons), until we felt comfortable putting skis on. We used one of these guidebooks to figure out routes: https://play.google.com/store/books/...UGkg&gclsrc=ds

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    whitefish
    Posts
    1,078
    The backside

    DSC01012 by Kevin Oberholser, on Flickr

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Sweden
    Posts
    325
    With good snow the top part doesn't require a rappell, be aware though that dropping to the backside means skiing on a glacier. Not a big one but I have been surprised by a fairly large crevasse coming over the middle part, stay away from the obvious bulge and right side of the slope in low snow conditions.
    If you're being rad and nobody's around to see it, are you really being rad?

    www.simonblide.blogspot.com

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    9
    Unreal, I frigging love Chamonix

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    6
    Depending on the conditions, a rapp may not be necessary. Skied this on the first of March without needing the rope. Nice to have it with you though, just in case.

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