Vallée Blanche

Vallée Blanche

I had read somewhere that the Vallée Blanche Traverse is the most spectacular day hike in the Chamonix area or indeed anywhere in the world. And spectacular it is. The trek starts at the summit of the Aiguille du Midi at 3,842m. From there it descends to the glaciated valley at the foot of the Mont Blanc du Tacul and the Gros Rognon at about 3,180m. The route continues to climb up to Punta Helbronner on the Italian side of the Vallée Blanche at 3,460m. From Punta Helbronner a cable car leads back to Aiguille du Midi offering stunning views of the Mont Blanc range and the Glacier de Géant. I didn't quite know what to expect and sometimes that's the best preparation.

Stunning view from the Aiguille du Midi
The trek starts early in the morning. I took this photo upon return to Aiguille du Midi when the light was better.
Depending on the direction you hike you have to either descend, like I did, or climb this exposed ridge
Aiguille du Midi
Looking back up to the Aiguille du Midi
Vallée Blanche
The Vallée Blanche
Vallée Blanche
I wonder why it's called Vallée Blanche
Vallée Blanche
Vallée Blanche
Vallée Blanche
It was above zero all day at an elevation of 3,000m (!) and the snow was melting
Vallée Blanche
Vallée Blanche
Vallée Blanche
Vallée Blanche
This is why it's called Vallée Blanche