|Mont Blanc massif from Lac de Chesrys|
|Col du Bonhomme, mid June|
We are well into the summer Alpine season of trekking. It's been a hot, sunny and dry one, a bit like back home here in The Highlands I guess. Before mid June there had been some unsettled weather after a long, snowy winter in most of the Alpine regions. This, of course, leads to a lot of big lying snow patches above 1800m.
My season began on 15th June and the first of three Tour du Mont Blanc treks I am guiding this year. My first two TMB's were guiding for Mont Blanc Treks, a brilliant small and friendly company based out in The Chamonix Valley and my third season guiding for them.
|Descending from the Col de la Seigne into Italy|
My first group in 2018 was a lovely family from Singapore. They had ever hiked in snow. Going with a guide is very beneficial when much of the higher paths are snow covered and navigation may be tricky in poor weather. For the Chang family they were lucky. It was blue skies virtually all week on their 'highlights' version of the TMB.
Despite the excellent weather conditions, getting folk up and down on steeper snow slopes with summer boots does have it's moments. Because of the high temperatures the snow was always soft and so much easier getting folk through.
|Monte Bianco & Aiguille Noire|
|Marmotts emerging out of their burrow|
|A Globeflower filled meadow at Col de Balme looking down the Chamonix Valley|
|Mont Maudit from the Chamonix Valley|
|Les Drus from the Grand Balcon Nord|
|Mer de Glace|
|Les Drus and Mer de Glace|
|Snow up to the Brevent, Day 1|
|Col des Fours, one of the higher, snowier cols on the TMB|
|Late afternoon, looking back up toward the Col des Fours|
|Everyone loves a Marmott|
|Monte Bianco, Grandes Jorasses & Val Veny|
|Monte Bianco from Monte de la Saxe|
|Grandes Jorasses from Monte de la Saxe|
|Grandes Jorasses from Tete de la Trenche summit|
|Sunrise on Mont Blanc from Bonatti|
|Grandes Jorasses from Bonatti Refuge|
|Mont Blanc, Grandes Jorasses and Val Ferret|
|Ever changing outline of the Grandes Jorasses as you head toward the Swiss border|
|Switzerland and the Grand Col Ferret|
|Mont Blanc, Aiguille Rouge and Chamonix Valley|
|The Ladders , Aiguille Rouge|
|Ibex, female and her young|
|Time for a swim, Lac de Chesrys|
|Aiguille Vert from Lac de Chesrys|
So I had a few days with my wife at the end of this first stint of work. Plenty of day trips out of Chamonix. One of the main tourist attractions in the valley is the cable car ride up to the Aiguille du Midi. One of the modern wonders of the world, they say. Who could not disagree with that statement! A modern feat of engineering to a spectacular view point (or view points). The world of high mountains, glaciers and mountain climbers is reached effortlessly by day trippers in all kind of attire to marvel at a world of ice and rock.
|Grandes Jorasses across the Vallee Blanche|
|Climbers on the Cosmiques Arete, Mont Blanc in the background|
|Looking across the Vallee Blanche to the Aigulle de Chamonix|
|Sunset on the Aiguille du Midi|
|Swimming Lac Combal|
|Aiguillete de Argentiere|
|Grandes Jorasses and Aig. de Chamoz|