July 17-22, 2022
This is an amazing trail every second of every day. The entire loop is ~105 miles with 32,500′ elevation gain. I ended up taking one day off as a mental/physical rest day and we cut short some of the trails from Flegere to Les Houches so ended up doing ~63 miles and 20,300′ elevation gain. Worked with Vagabond Trails who organized the lodging, guide and luggage transfers between hotels/refuges and did the hike with Sergio Cisneros (guide) and Adam Pelletier.
We got pretty dirty every day! Wildflowers were just beautiful, tons of waterfalls, amazing views, big uphills (although not technical like in NH) and some long, steep downhills.
I wrote a whole book on the experience and will just put a few pics here.
DAY 1: Les Houches to Refuge Nant Borrant (past Les Contamines), 11 miles, 3000′, 6:53 h
DAY 2: Refuge Nant Borrant to Le Chapieux 9.5 mi, 3320′, 6:28h
Went over the great Col du Bonhomme and stayed at Les Chambres du Soleil in Le Chapieux (a town only open in the summer).
DAY 3: Les Chapieux over Col de la Seigne to Courmayeur in Italy!
16.2 miles, 4957′, 8:15h
DAY 4: 20.8 miles, 6350′, 11:11h, Courmayeur to La Fouly in Switzerland up and over Grand Col Ferret
DAY 5: Laura spent a rest day in Chamonix (traveled there with a baggage courier from La Fouly!) while the men went on.
DAY 6: The team is reunited at Planet Montroc train station. 4.9 miles, 2690′ 3:46 then took a gondola down from Les Praz de Chamonix and bus to Chamonix.
Amazing. Introspective. Challenging. Have to go Back!