Climb Monte Rosa (4554m)

Summit the second-highest mountain in Western Europe for sweeping alpine vistas across Italy and Switzerland

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Trip Ref #10550

Climb Monte Rosa (4554m)

Summit the second-highest mountain in Western Europe for sweeping alpine vistas across Italy and Switzerland

DURATION

4 nights

LOCATION

France, Italy

ANNUAL LEAVE

3 days off work

SEASON

Jul-Aug

GROUP SIZE

Up to 4 people

MEETING POINT

Hotel in Chamonix

ACCOMMODATION

Classic

Hotel · Mountain hut

OVERALL RATING

0.0

This trip is brand new
DIFFICULTY

Tough

Summiting any of Monte Rosa's peaks is a serious challenge and not to be underestimated. Pack your determination (you’ll need it).

Top out on Punta Gnifetti (4554m), one of the Monte Rosa massif's major peaks, and bag a bonus summit on the Vincent Pyramid (4215m)

Bunk down in cosy mountain huts and celebrate post-summit at Margherita Hut, the highest mountaineering refuge in Europe

Climb in a group of just four people and learn mountaineering skills from expert climbing guides in the build up to summit day

Day 1

Chamonix

Arrive at the hotel in Chamonix at any time and settle in. Meet your host and fellow summit-addicts in the early evening for a chat through the adventure ahead, then head out in search of dinner.

Day 2

Training for the challenge ahead

Driving

3hrs

Hiking

5-6hrs · 4km · 493m up · 174m down

Sort out any last-minute kit rentals in Chamonix and then drive 2.5hrs over to the Italian side of the Alps, reaching Staffal where you start your adventure. Take the cable car to Punta Indren and hike up the glacier of the same name, surrounded by classic alpine scenery. Here, your guides will run you through a mountaineering training session to prepare you for the challenge ahead. Hike on to reach the Mantova mountain refuge - your base camp for the next two nights.

Day 3

Summit Monte Rosa's Punta Gnifetti (4554m)

Hiking

8-9hrs · 11km · 1056m up · 1056m down

Today's the big one – summiting one of Monte Rosa's main peaks, Punta Gnifetti (4554m). From the Mantova Hut, head up the Garstelet Glacier towards the Lys Glacier along the base of the Vincent Pyramid. After the rocky islet of Balmerhorn, you'll reach the Col du Lys at 4248m. Continue along the seracs of the north-facing base of the Parrotspitze. Climb north, crossing the top of the Grenz Glacier before reaching Col Gnifetti at 4454m. One last push will see you climb the final steep section to arrive at Pointe Gnifetti (4554m), your efforts rewarded with that feeling of standing on one of the highest points in Western Europe. Descend down to the highest mountain hut in Europe for a well-deserved celebratory drink, then back to Mantova Hut for dinner.

Day 4

Climb the Vincent Pyramid (4215m)

Hiking

5-6hrs · 8km · 570m up · 1250m down

You're not quite finished with your summiting exploits – there's still time to bag one more, as you climb the Vincent Pyramid at 4215m. Leave the hut at dawn and walk up the Lys Glacier directly to the summit. Depending on the group’s abilities, your guide might suggest continuing the climb to the Col du Lys (4250m), where there are stunning panoramic views over the Monte Rosa massif. Descend via the same route and return to Chamonix mid-afternoon for warm showers back at your hotel. Head out for dinner to toast an epic achievement.

Day 5

The adventure ends

Chow down on one last breakfast before checking out and bidding your host and fellow adventurers farewell.

Included

Guides

Expert, qualified mountaineering guides

Accommodation

2 nights in a mountain hut, 2 nights in a hotel in Chamonix

Meals

4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners

Transfers

Transfers between Chamonix and Staffal

Not Included

Flights to and from the meeting point

Travel insurance

Personal expenses

Some meals as described

Some equipment

Visas where required

Day 1

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2 – Day 3

Mountain hut · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 4

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 5

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

The food in the mountain huts is basic but tasty. Breakfasts have all the usual suspects – bread and jams, pastries, coffee and juices. Lunches will be packed lunch for days out on the mountain with a selection of sandwiches, snacks and fruit. You'll have a 3-course meal there in the evenings with soup, bread, meat and veggie options and a variety of desserts. You can also buy tea, coffee, wine, beer, soft drinks, chocolate bars and snacks in the hut. Breakfasts at the hotels in Chamonix are buffet style with plenty of freshly made hot and cold options.

Vegetarians can be catered for, but please let your host know in advance. Vegan and other dietary requirements can also be catered for, but the food provided will be basic and we recommend that you bring snacks to bulk out the meals. Whilst in Chamonix, breakfasts can cater for vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free diets.

What is the accommodation like?

Chamonix

You'll stay in 4-star hotel in central Chamonix, in a twin-share, en suite room. This will either be at the Alpina Eclectic Hotel & Spa or the Chalet Hotel Le Prieuré, depending on availability. These are both great hotels in Chamonix with super comfortable rooms, lively restaurants and spas - ideal for soaking in after your summit exploits.

Mantova Hut

Mantova Hut is your base for two nights in the Monte Rosa massif. You'll stay in a mixed dorm with bunk beds, where you can expect a good atmosphere and a stunning view. Blankets or duvets are provided, so sleeping bags are not needed, but we do recommend that you bring a thin sleeping bag liner. There is a large dining room with amazing views of Monte Rosa, plus a changing and equipment room. The hut has running water and three hot showers for guest use.

Upgrades

For solo travellers looking for their own space, an optional private room can be booked for the two nights in the hotel in Chamonix for an extra charge, see Optional Extras for the price. Please request this at the time of booking (this is subject to availability). It is not possible to have private accommodation in the mountain hut.

The Area

map

Logistics

Starts

Hotel in Chamonix

Any time on Day 1

Ends

Chamonix

Any time on Day 5

Transfers

You'll make your own way to the hotel in Chamonix at any time on Day 1 to meet up with your host and fellow climbers. There will be a group meeting in the early evening for a chat about the adventure to come, before you head out for dinner. You are free to head off at any time on Day 5 after waking up in Chamonix. Your host is able to arrange extra nights of accommodation in Chamonix before and after the trip, as well as private airport transfers between Chamonix and Geneva: see Optional Extras for details.

Travel options

You can fly into Geneva Airport (GVA) which is approximately one hour from Chamonix. Alternatively, you can fly into Milan Airport (LIN) or Zurich Airport (ZRH) and travel on to Chamonix from there.

For those who wish to avoid flying, Chamonix is also accessible by train via the St. Gervais-les-Bains (Le Fayet) station at the base of the valley which connects to Chamonix-Mont Blanc train station. For example, you could take the Eurostar from London to Paris and then connect to a number of direct lines or an overnight sleeper train from Paris to St. Gervais-les-Bains, then on to Chamonix-Mont Blanc station.

You can also travel to Geneva by various train routes from other parts of Europe and travel on to Chamonix from there by bus. Geneva bus station is a 5 minute walk or short taxi ride from the central train station. There are various bus services from Geneva bus station to Chamonix, the quickest option taking 1 hour and 8 minutes.

Your return leg at the end of the trip can begin at Chamonix Mont Blanc train station for various onward train travel routes throughout Europe, or you can take the bus from Chamonix to Geneva and travel on by train from Geneva train station.

Enjoy 12.5% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 12.5% discount to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock and Runner's Need.

What's available to hire?

  • Ice axes, hard hats, harnesses and crampons are available to hire locally. See Optional Extras for prices.

What do I need to bring?

EQUIPMENT

  • Ice axe for general mountaineering (between 50 and 70cm, depending on your height)
  • Standard, steel mountaineering crampons
  • Helmet – standard, hard plastic climbing helmet
  • Climbing harness (adjustable so that it is comfortable over all your layers) with 2 screw gate carabiners
  • Trekking poles – foldable
  • Rucksack – mountaineering specific, 30-50L. It must have an ice axe strap to stash your ice axe when you are not using it, and a rain-proof cover.

CLOTHING

  • Mountaineering B2 or B3 Boots and gaiters (if you're not sure whether your boots are crampon compatible, check out this handy guide)
  • 3 sets of socks and thermal tops
  • Lightweight hardshell hooded top and bottoms
  • Warm hat and 2 pairs of gloves. One pair should be thick mountaineering gloves and the second a thinner pair suitable for mid-mountain conditions.
  • Insulating layers. We suggest a thin lightweight fleece and a synthetic or down jacket.
  • Mountaineering trousers
  • Shorts, hiking shoes and trainers - nice to wear around town and on the approach to climbing days

OTHER

  • Earplugs
  • Water bottles up to 2L
  • Sun protection including: sunglasses (category 4), goggles, sun hat, Factor 30-50 High Mountain sunscreen, lip salve/block.
  • Head torch and spare batteries
  • Sleeping bag silk liner (you don’t need the sleeping bag itself as blankets/duvets are provided in the huts)
  • Personal first aid – blister kit, aspirin, or paracetamol
  • Cash for extra drinks/snacks in huts
  • ID

All items

Payable Before Departure

All items

Per Person

Climbing Harness

Payable Before Departure

Climbing Harness

Per Person

Crampons

Payable Before Departure

Crampons

Per Person

Hard Hat

Payable Before Departure

Hard Hat

Per Person

Ice Axe

Payable Before Departure

Ice Axe

Per Person

Single room

Payable Before Departure

Single room

Per Night

Twin/double room

Payable Before Departure

Twin/double room

Per Night

Optional Private Room Upgrade in Chamonix

Payable Before Departure

Optional Private Room Upgrade in Chamonix

This trip is brand new

We’re still waiting to collect any reviews from other travellers on this trip. However, all our hosts go through an extensive vetting process to ensure that your adventure is awesome.

We've crunched the numbers to work out the total carbon footprint of this trip, and plant enough trees to suck 2x as much back out the atmosphere.

What's the number?
It works out on average at 95kg of CO2 emissions per person, including all local transport, accommodation, food, activities, guides, staff and office operations.

The only thing it doesn’t include right now is flights and travel to the destination. We do make an overall estimate across all our customers separately, but as we don’t book flights, have customers from all corners of the world, and no way of reliably knowing their travel plans, we simply can’t include an individual number in the figure on display here. We’ve got a goal for 2022 to fix that, so that when you book, there is a way to measure and mitigate the carbon emitted by your flight too.

But what does the number mean?
Yep, hard to picture eh? To give you an idea:

  • Driving 1000miles/1609km would be approx. 281kg of CO2 in an average car (or 140.5kg per person if there was 2 of you in it).
  • A return economy class flight London - New York would be approx. 1,619kg (1.66 tonnes) per person.
  • 10 trees in a temperate forest are estimated to remove approx. 250kg of CO2 from the air in a period of 5-10 years.

What are we doing about it?
Our trips are relatively low-carbon by design, and we're working with all our hosts to develop long term carbon reduction plans. For every person booked with us since 2016 we’re planting enough trees to suck at least 2x more carbon out the atmosphere than is emitted by their trips. All native trees, as part of amazing projects that are re-foresting degraded land, tackling the biodiversity crisis and supporting local communities at the same time. We go further than that too, also funding re-wilding projects worldwide to help protect important keystone species from extinction. See the reforestation and re-wilding schemes we support. See our carbon action plan.

Want to know more?
Amazingly, no international travel company has ever publicly published their carbon measurements before, as far as we know. We believe that must change, quickly. So we’re openly sharing the method we used in the hope that other companies will be able to more easily follow suit and build on what we've done so far. You'll find it all here.

No previous mountaineering experience is required as full skills and training will be provided. However, you do need a good level of cardiovascular endurance, fitness, a can-do attitude and plenty of determination. You need to be able to hike comfortably with a heavy pack - carrying your technical gear plus food, water, and extra clothing - for up to 10 hours at a moderate pace, a good head for heights and good overall balance and awareness. Your host will teach you the skills you need on Day 2 of the trip - such as walking with crampons whilst attached to your guide with a rope.

The climber to guide ratio for this trip is 4:1 (climber:guide).

In short, no. Whilst the host will always strive to get you to the summit safely, sometimes the weather or the conditions of the mountain don’t play ball. When there is precipitation, high winds and low visibility for example, they cannot guarantee reaching the summit and will sometimes recommend an alternative. We fully trust and back the trip leader to make these final decisions based on their years of experience on the mountain, with safety as a top priority. However, the vast majority of people reach the summit successfully.

Sometimes the conditions on the Monte Rosa massif are too dangerous to attempt a summit. If the weather or conditions on the mountain on the day of your summit mean that your guides need to make this call, the group will move to a different mountain range nearby to tackle a substitute ascent.

When you trek in the mountains, there's always the risk of getting altitude sickness, regardless of how old, young, fit or unfit you are. We would expect most trekkers to feel some mild symptoms of altitude sickness (headache, sleeplessness, heavy breathing) when over 3000m. The guides are trained to identify the symptoms of altitude sickness so if any more serious symptoms are noted, there is a strict procedure regarding extra care or a rapid descent if needed. All of our trips have been designed with altitude best practice in mind so acclimatisation days have been built in and our experienced guides follow advice to ‘walk high and sleep low’.

Sure can! Over 50% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

All of the guides are friendly, hand-picked and highly experienced, with many years in the guiding industry. They are of various nationalities but all speak a good level of English and are very attentive. Their primary role is to get you to the summit and back safely, but they also provide a high level of customer service and are very interesting people to spend time with. They like to share their knowledge of the mountains and their experiences, so don’t hesitate to ask questions and pick their brains. Lastly, they know the Monte Rosa massif like the back of their hands and this is the most important thing when it comes to making key decisions in the mountains and providing the safest possible experience.

In short, alpine and prone to change, so you'll need to prepare for all weathers and dress in layers. The climbing season runs from mid-June to late September and between those dates there is no better or worse time to attempt the climb. The beginning and end of the season can be snowy/ cold, and the middle months can be busier and the hotter temperatures can cause afternoon storms. Summit success varies from season to season, but remains consistent throughout the months. If the weather shuts you down, your host will endeavour to find the closest mountain in the area with better weather and thanks to their base location they are generally able to find an equally beautiful alternative within driving distance in France, Italy or Switzerland.

Yes there will be a place to leave excess luggage at the hotel in Chamonix.

You'll need to hike with your main pack on Day 2 from the cable car to Mantova Hut, which is around 2 hours. From there you can leave your main pack in the hut, and take a day pack for the summit day. This will need to be fairly large, around 40L, to carry your technical gear when not in use, plus food, water and extra layers.

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory on all of our adventures. Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure.

Your insurance policy should also include specific Covid-19 cover, including cancellation and curtailment cover if you, your travel companion or a close relative are diagnosed with Covid-19.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

You're in good company. Our adventures are typically made up of a mix of solo travellers and small groups of two or three friends who simply love adventure, pushing themselves and meeting awesome like-minded people. See here for more info about our lovely bunch of Much Better Adventurers.

Want to book a private trip? Just tap ‘Private Group’ in the dates and prices tab.

Your trip is led by carefully curated local hosts and expert guides. See here for more info about the guides we work with.

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