Haute Route is a classic high alpine skitour from Chamonix or Verbier to Zermatt. We started from Verbier and had planned to do the trip in 5 days. Bad weather greeted us un Verbier and after trying to get on the way in the white out and storm, we decided to go around the storm and start the trip from Arolla. Mountains require flexibility and our gamble paid off. We go back on track through Arolla and got well on the way. Easy day took us to the Cabane de Dix where we stayed a night and enjoyed a nice sunset. The next day was a summit day of Pigne d’Arolla with beautiful views over Swiss Alps. The day started nice and sweet but then of course it turned into full-on white-out and snowstorm when we were closing the summit. Nice beautiful skitour turned into a nice storm and a bit tricky navigation. Luckily the storm cleared off enough at the col to ski down with reasonable light and the descent to Vignette hut was nice and sweet.
The day from Vignette hut to Bertol hut was beautiful. Sunny and nice all day with some of the most spectacular views over Valais alps. The way up the first part was nice and flat with only 600 meters of vertical and few kilometres of distance. The skiing on the other side was long, nice and smooth with lots of room for fresh tracks. A good, fun run. The day was still far from over because we still needed to 800 meters of vertical to the hut and the temperatures were high. It was a sweaty afternoon but it made the cold beer taste even better when we reached the hut. The hut is in a quite spectacular spot high up on a ridge and the sunsets are mind-blowing. We got lucky.
The last day of the Haute Route is the one. It’s long, beautiful and can be complex if the weather is not good or the glacier is tricky. We woke up to a beautiful morning, sun rising, no wind, a little bit cold, perfect. The way up was easy but beautiful. A little lunch at the col watching the Matterhorn Dent d’Herens and we started our descent towards Zermatt. First in powder, then in perfect spring snow. The skiing is good, terrain fun and interesting and you can choose from a few little variations. It’s a long, fine descent passing through some very impressive mountain terrain. Highly recommended! The end of the run is quite adventurous and of course we ended up doing a little bushwhack but finally managed to ski all the way down to the village of Zermatt and well deserved pizza.
Thanks Adventure Partners, Make and Teija, Henkka, Kari, Jatta and Kirsi! Good times!