This training course to rock climbing has been created to enable you to acquire enough experience to become one day the safe leader of your roped party on easy routes, through all the different techniques that you will discover during this training course:
- Ascent of faces (slabs, dihedral, chimneys)
- Ascent of ridges
- Nuts and belays
Therefore, the number of participants to this training course has been fixed to two climbers, in order to allow a fast and safe progress. During the ascents, you are thus always roped on directly with your guide. This training course should not be regarded as a rock-climbing school in mountains. Each ascent carried out brings you the experience and the techniques of a climber, in the heart of the wild environment of the Aiguilles Rouges and Aravis groups, facing the Mont-Blanc, first stage before the ascents of more difficult rock faces in the Mont Blanc group.
Day 1: Meeting at Argentière train station, in Chamonix valley, by 08:30 a.m. Short transfer to Montets pass. From the path, a one hour ascent on Chéserys footpath will lead us to the rock-climbing schools of Chéserys and Aiguillette d'Argentière. Rock-climbing school to discover how to rope on, how to place your body on the rock when climbing, the safety techniques and the abseiling techniques. By the end of the afternoon, ascent up to Lac Blanc hut (7716 feet). Night by the hut.
Day 2: At dawn, we leave the hut in the direction of the East face of Crochues peaks, a very nice ascent of 350 vertical feet where to apply the techniques discovered yesterday. After this first ascent we follow the Crochues ridges, where we have good chances to see ibexes. Picnic on the third peak of Crochues (9317 feet) and then ascent of the chimney and of the easy route leading to Belvédère peak (9728 feet) highest peak of the Aiguilles Rouges group, a fantastic viewpoint on all the Mont-Blanc group summits. Easy way down back to Lac Blanc hut. Night by the hut.
Day 3: Ascent of Persévérance peak, 9,518 feet, by its South ridge, a 800 vertical feet ascent leading to the dizzy Persévérance summit, from which it seems to be very difficult to go down. But your guide knows the way down: a first abseil, a short ridge with de-escalation, a second abseil, and the roped party reaches the gully between Persévérance and Chamois peaks, leading back to the footpath. Way down back to Montets pass by the "old mountain pastures" footpath. Transfer to Chamonix. Night in a lodge in Chamonix.
Day 4: Morning rest in Chamonix. By 12:00 a.m., you will take the typical mountain train going down to Le Fayet - Saint-Gervais (12 miles journey). Your guide will pick you there for a transfer to the Ânes pass, in the Aravis group. Footpath up to Gramusset hut (7100 feet). Rock-climbing school close to the hut. Night by the hut.
Day 5: Ascent of Pointe Percée, 9022 feet by the Doigt ridge, a ascent which offers a extraordinary view on all the peaks of the Northern Alps. Descent by the normal route to Gramusset hut, and to the Ânes pass. Transfer to Le Fayet - Saint-Gervais, separation in Le Fayet by mid-afternoon (from there, trains each hour to Chamonix, 12 miles journey).
- Duration: 5 days, one IFMGA French Mountain Guide, speaking fluently English, for two participants.
- Meeting Place: Argentière train station, in Chamonix valley, by 08:30 a.m. on Day 1.
- End of the course: Le Fayet Saint-Gervais train station, by mid-afternoon on Day 5. From there, trains each hour to Chamonix (12 miles journey).
- Your mountain guide will do everything possible to make a success of this course. But, in altitude, exceptional risks may exist: storms, rainfall, and your guide, responsible for your life, may change the program of this training course for your safety.
- Your level:
* You are a complete beginner in rock climbing, or you have a small experience in indoor or outdoor climbing, and you wish to discover the pleasure and the techniques of rock climbing in mountains.
* Fitness level two stars: you practice twice a week either running, biking or swimming. During the two months before this course, you must either run 30 minutes 3 times a week, bike 2 hours 2 times a week, or swim 2 hours each week.
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