The Summer Haute Route Glacier Trek

I have just returned from one of the finest summer Haute Route’s I have ever done. Thanks to Meteo Suisse’s pessimistic forecast and our Friday departure from Chamonix, we found ourselves virtually alone the whole way. Conditions remain excellent, with snow still covering the glaciers on the steep, higher sections. Climbing the last 200 meters to Berthol was a dream without crampons to the ladders. There is still have space available for the last Haute Route of the season, in a week. (September 9- 15) Please send me a note if you would like to join.

The last few weeks have seen perfect weather almost every day. 0 degrees was above 4000 meters, so it was hot, and the sky showed an intense, bright blue above these alpine peaks. Visiting the less popular peaks and valleys with wonderful people, who appreciated the solitude, was enlightening. These past seven days with the Kamendys, who seemed to recognize every detail along the way, gave me an appreciation for people who are not out to climb the most popular routes, but rather the less frequented areas in these Alps. The week before with Ton, climbing the Arete de la Gouille on the Mont Velan, was another one of those very special climbs, alone, slowly, appreciating every move and whisper of change.

Autumn is in the air. It’s cool in the shade and dark at 6. What weather is in store for us, as we look forward to winter? I’m happy to enjoy these next snow free months, perhaps another 2 of pure rock and sailing. Then a bit of ice and some early skinning above Verbier. Enjoy!

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About Hans Solmssen

I am a professional mountain guide living in Verbier, Switzerland. I grew up on the Big Island of Hawaii after my father moved to Hawaii to teach at Hawaii Preparatory Academy. He created a horse program at this high school, located in the middle of the largest, privately owned cattle ranch in the US. Horses were a major part of my life, even playing polo for a few years. I moved to northern Vermont to go to school, and discovered skiing. Little did I know, this would become my life's passion: guiding friends and clients over the mountains around the world on skis and foot. I moved to Verbier, Switzerland in 1982, and entered the Swiss guide's program in '88. I received my UIAGM "pin" 3 years later in 1991. I have two kids, Anya and Kevin.

4 thoughts on “The Summer Haute Route Glacier Trek

  1. Marian Kamendy

    Hans, thank you again for the fantastic trip. It was a dream come true with fine weather, beautiful views and your great company. We take lots of memories with us, the summits of Aguille du Tour, Tete Blanche and the finest lasagna ever made at Berthol being just a few of them 🙂 Hope to see you in spring for the winter Haute Route again! 🙂

  2. Mike F

    Thanks for the pics Hans, they brought back some memories. I trekked from Cham to Zermatt back in 1984. It is the ultimate backpacking trip.

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