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An update following the recent unsettled weather. The lower temperatures have resulted in better re-freezing and so reduced the risk of stonefall.  However, take care, the mountains remain dry and it is still warm during the day.   

Tour Sector

- Col du Midi des Grands is dry but still no bergschrund.

- Table Ridge (integral) OK but the approach is complicated, (crevasses)

- Normal route on the Aiguille du Tour: a good track, but more crevasses appearing and increasingly icy at Col Supérieur du Tour, bergschrund OK.

- Tête Blanche: normal route OK, NE ridge still feasible.  

- Petite Fourche:  a lot of ice at the summit slope but still feasible.

- S ridge of the Purtscheller : OK

Argentière Sector

- Petite Verte is still very dry, not for beginners.

- Care needed at the Col des Grands Montets bergschrund, (stonefall risk on the left-hand side, 25m vertical abseil on the right).

- Care needed with the crevasses on the Rognon glacier

Charpoua

Weak network reception at the hut, reserve by SMS on 06.31.17.74.03. The water supply has nearly dried out, (there is some bottled water.) Bring your own if possible.  The hut closes on the 31st August.

- The Drus traverse is being done regularly, in good condition, take a high line on the glacier and make a 50m abseil to reach the starting ledges, Glacier OK on the descent, (as for the approach to the Contamine on the Grand Dru)

- No remarks for the rock routes.

Couvercle 

- Normal route, S Ridge and E face rock routes on the Moine: snow approach and bergschrund OK.

- Nonne-Évêque traverse OK

- the Moine Ridge on the Aiguille Verte is still being done

- it is over this summer for the Droites normal route

- Normal route on the Courtes is feasible, though very dry, bergschrund OK. Still some snow in the upper part.  The traverse is possible but the descent from the Col des Cristaux is totally dry, (delicate).

Leschaux

- Petites Jorasses : Still snow on the approach glacier, best to take the true left side as there is a dodgy snow bridge on the (true) right.

- Aiguille de Leschaux and the other rock routes are OK.

- Today there were parties on the Walker, (Cassin route).

 

Envers des Aiguilles/ Requin

- no change with République bergschrund and the Nantillons glacier descent, (awkward but possible, though for how long?)

- Requin hut approach: follow the green and yellow marks on the moraine.

- rock routes on the Pierre à Alain and Dent du Requin in very good condition, (snow approach.) 

- Parties are still going up the Valley Blanche.  There are a lot of crevasses to circumvent.

Secteur Aiguille du Midi

3cms of snow fell at the Cosmiques hut on Monday/Tuesday, 30cms at Mont Maudit.

- Midi descent ridge is still in a reasonable state.  Take care with the bergschrund and crevasses.  

- Midi-Plan ridge is re-tracked but still very dry, for good mountaineers only, (e.g. those doing the complete Aiguilles traverse.)

- Valley Blanche traverse tortuous but nonetheless popular.  Care needed.

- Gervasutti Pillar bergschrund still passable. Frequent stonefall reported.

- Pointes Lachenal traverse is in dry condition, (risk of stone fall at the abseil and in the chimney.)

- Cosmiques Arete is popular every day.

- The way across the bergschrund for the Contamine on the S face of the Midi has collapsed.  Possible to approach from the start of the Rébuffat.

- Some parties on the Triangle, no further info. An early start is essential to minimize the stonefall risk.  

- Generally good conditions for the 3 Monts, still a bit of ice at the Col du Mont Maudit (2 axes recommended.) and on the traverse to Col de la Brenva (take the lower track, beneath the bergschrund.)

Grands Mulets

No longer a warden at the hut.) The Jonction goes both high up and low down.  Some fresh snow on the N Ridge of the Dôme du Goûter but the ice is not far away!

Mont Blanc by the Goûter

The conditions have returned to “normal”.  The bye law restricting access now remains in force until 17th September.  See here.

Dômes de Miage / Aiguille de Bionnassay

- More and more crevasses appearing on the Tré-la-Tête glacier, check soundness of the snow bridges.  

- Dômes de Miage traverse is no longer really feasible, (too dry.)

- There and back to the Central and East Dômes OK, passage of mixed between the col and the Central Dôme.  

- Aiguille de la Bérangère there and back : OK.  It is best to keep to the rock ridge on the left when descending. 

- Aiguille de Bionnassay traverse remains popular, ice on the summit slope and before the Piton des Italiens

Mont Blanc by the Aiguilles Grises

The route is still in condition, good track on the glacier, (care needed as there are a lot of snow bridges to cross.)  The recent snow has improved (albeit temporarily) conditions for the ridge after the Col des Aiguilles Grises.

Monzino

- The glacier approach to the Eccles is still OK.

- Still some parties going for the Innominata ridge, even though it is very dry.  The end is near! 

Freney Pillar is still being done despite the very dry approach, (be aware of stonefall when descending from the Eccles col.)

- The traverse of the Freney glacier from the Col de l'Innominata is becoming more awkward but remains possible: The Ratti-Vitale (Aiguille Noire de Peuterey) and the Picco Gugliermina are no longer really feasible, (mainly because the return route is very complicated.)  The Aiguille Blanche by the Schneider ledges, finishing up Mont Blanc by Peuterey Ridge, remains feasible. 

- Parties on the Peuterey Intergral : no further info.   

Helbronner Sector

- Still some parties doing the Küffner even the approach is very difficult; the bergschrund is getting bigger and the wall above steeper.  The snow in the gully ends with 60m of broken, loose terrain below the ridge.  The ridge is generally dry, the traverse under the Androsace OK, the slope under the Maudit is on snow.   The descent direct to the Maudit col is OK.

- same as above for the Aiguilles du Diable traverse.  

- Approaches to the satellites generally OK but be aware of the crevasses.

- For the way up to the Salle à Manger, the glacier and bergschrund are OK. It is still possible to climb up the small gully, (but for how long?). It is better to descend by the rocks on the true right.  The rest is dry.

- Dent du Géant : OK but very crowded.

- Rochefort Arete: good track, ridge mostly on snow, though some ice beginning to appear.

- Jorasses traverse and descent by the normal route still OK, (some ice descending the Whymper and below the spur which comes down from the Walker.)

- Hirondelles ridge done on 11/08, no further info.

 

Aiguilles Rouges

- the Col de la Glière is free of snow but there is a snowfield to cross towards the Cornu col, perhaps hard in the morning.

- Crampons no longer needed to reach the rock routes, (Pouce included).