OEX: EXPLORE MORE, EXPECT MORE

CHAMONIX

After catching the Aiguille du Midi lift from the centre of town we climbed to over 3800m. Just before we came in to dock, climbers could be seen making their way between the arêtes, much to the amazement of many onlooking tourists.

The top of the lift acts as a stepping stone for many alpinists setting their sights on the summit of Mt. Blanc. Nothing inspires an adventure much like watching figures making their way up the slopes.

Fresh from her “gnarly” mountain bike crash in Morzine, Abi and I set the climbing gear aside and headed for the hills for a night in nature, torn shoulder ACL and all.

Lac Bleu is a short walk from the Plan de l’Aiguille mid-station and provides a refreshing spot for a bit of shoulder icing.

Done swimming in glacial melt water? Time for a brew.

The Planpraz lift takes you up above 2000m (and the snow line) and from here we began the hike to our chosen location for the night.

Along the way we made a few friends...

Alpine Ibex (Capra Ibex). Now common in the hills around Chamonix, all individuals living today originally descend from the stock in Gran Paradiso National Park in Aosta Valley. This national park was created to help the ibex to thrive. An excellent climber, its preferred habitat is the rocky region along the snow line above alpine forests, where it occupies steep, rough terrain at elevations of 1,800 to 3,300 metres.

...and so we set up camp overlooking Lac Cornu. Our Cougar EV providing the shelter from the cool breeze at 2400m.

Sunrise brought with it one hell of a view.

As the sun rose over Mt. Blanc we had the luxury of our bivvy bags and a Tacana stove to keep us warm.

Until next time, Chamonix...

Shanti

“And at the end of the day, your feet should be dirty, your hair messy and your eyes sparkling."

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