MOUNTAIN CONDITIONS 07/10/2020
Some brief information for this autumnal start to October.
Since the last update, already some time ago, winter has established itself early at altitude. The various weather fronts have deposited snow, sometimes below 2000m. There have even been snowflakes down to the valley floor. All the mountain huts are now closed, (including the Plan d’Aiguille, Cosmiques, Torino which normally would still be open.) Weather permitting, the Aiguille du Midi lift will stay open until 1st November (re-opening foreseen for 12/12). Likewise, for the Skyway, (closes 02/11 reopens 25/11). The Montenvers train also remains open this Autumn, (N.B. the ice cave and cable car are shut until the half term holidays.) The Flégère will also be open at half term,(17/10 to 1/11).
The high mountain activity is virtually zero given the amount of snow and lack of weather windows. The rocks appear to be out of condition and there is no information for the mixed routes. One needs to wait until the weather improves . The routes from the Aig du Midi could be feasible during the weather window foreseen in the next few days, (perhaps strong winds at altitude.) Snowshoes could be useful. Hiking is limited due the early arrival of winter at altitude. For the same reason, some of the signposts are in the process of being removed; take a map!
In general, hiking is best below 2000m, for example: Chalets de Chailloux, Prarion via Charousse and the Col de la Forclaz, Chalet du Cerro, Alpage de Blaitière, Montenvers, Buvette du Chapeau, Chalet de la Floria, Grand Balcon Sud, Pierre à Bérard hut, Loriaz hut, the Cascades du Dards and Bérard.
Experienced hikers (with walking poles and good footwear) could venture higher, though the paths might not always visible; for example : Aiguillette des Houches, Grand Balcon Nord, Aiguillette des Posettes, Chéserys Lakes. The more alpine trails are not recommended, for example : Nid Aigle, Jonction, Cornu lake, Albert 1er and Buet.