/ Guides for Mont Blanc

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gnospellius - on 28 Apr 2013
Hi
This is my first post on here and I was wondering if anyone can give me some advice re. Mountain guides. I'm planning to try Mont Blanc at the end of July beginning of August and was wondering whether its essential to book a guide before I go. Is there any chance we'd be able to book a guide once we arrive in Cham? We've done a few years of Lake District and Scottish winter and one previous trip to the alps.
Cheers
Mark
Ghastly Rubberfeet on 28 Apr 2013
In reply to gnospellius:

Have a chat to Simon Abrahams,

http://www.simonabrahams.com/
paul walters - on 28 Apr 2013
In reply to Ghastly Rubberfeet:

I'll be using these guys:-

http://www.icicle-mountaineering.ltd.uk/mont%2Bblanc%2Bguide%2Bcourse.html

Just my opinion, but using a guide offers the best chance of getting to the summit.

gnospellius - on 28 Apr 2013
In reply to gnospellius: thanks for links
cp - on 28 Apr 2013
In reply to gnospellius: https://mountaintracks.co.uk are worth a look to. Had a great trip with them this winter
Pero - on 28 Apr 2013
In reply to gnospellius: You could wander into the guides offices in Chamonix or Argentiere when you get there. And only hire a guide if the weather is looking good. THere's always the chance that you may miss out, but there are a lot of guides hanging about the Chamonix area.

So, yes, you could wait until you get there.
gnospellius - on 29 Apr 2013
In reply to Pero: thanks for that pero.
knthrak1982 on 29 Apr 2013
In reply to paul walters:
> (In reply to Ghastly Rubberfeet)
>
> I'll be using these guys:-
>
> http://www.icicle-mountaineering.ltd.uk/mont%2Bblanc%2Bguide%2Bcourse.html
>
> Just my opinion, but using a guide offers the best chance of getting to the summit.

Second for Icicle. Used them for MB back in 2010.
JhbGerry - on 05 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius:

Been quite impressed with Mont Blanc Guides who concentrate solely on Mont Blanc.
jon on 05 May 2013
In reply to JhbGerry:
> (In reply to gnospellius)
>
> Been quite impressed with Mont Blanc Guides who concentrate solely on Mont Blanc.

With a name like that...
altirando - on 05 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius: Sorry, but I do find it a bit odd for people who consider themselves to be climbers, as per the forum, needing a guide to climb MtBlanc. Don't think I would find much satisfaction in being dragged up by a guide. Rather try a lower peak if I had any doubts about my own ability. Or is it me who is the odd one out?
IainRUK - on 06 May 2013
In reply to altirando: Well yeah.

Time poor cash rich people. Short time away, want a good time, could find a random partner but high risk the partner is inexperienced, unfit or just overly risk taking for that partners needs.

I've had people book me for a weekend or day running purely as they are in the area and want a good run.. they could ask around, try something new, but they just have a short time in the area and want to get something done.

A guide won't or shouldn't just drag someone up.

For some people guides are basically expensive climbing partners, OK there is always the element of responsibility, but they are essentially just looking to hire a competent partner to make a safe attempt at the route they want to do.
JhbGerry - on 06 May 2013
In reply to jon:

Absolutely Jon - very surprising indeed!
JhbGerry - on 06 May 2013
In reply to altirando:

I am not sure that engaging the services of a guide equates to being dragged up the mountain.

The Guiding Companies offer an all-in-one solution to the logistical hassles of a climb, and particularly Mont Blanc, where the huts are fully booked, months in advance.

It is also quite helpful to know the route up a particular mountain that you have never been to before.
GridNorth - on 06 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius: If you are fit and competent you will not be "dragged" up Mont Blanc although the phrase I have heard the most in that area and uttered exclusively by French guides is " Allez Vite" followed by violent tugs of the rope. :-)
chamdog - on 06 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius:

Hi - will PM you recs of a couple of guides that I rate very highly who will ensure you get the most out of your time & the massif and will help you improve your technique along the way (if that appeals).
gnospellius - on 06 May 2013
In reply to chamdog: Excellent Chamdog. Thanks muchly :-)
Mark / Alps - on 06 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius:
As said, you can turn up and get a guide at local office after checking forecast. Of course you don't know how good that guide may be.
You can book a UK / British guide in advance, they are more likely to teach you so you can feel comfortable climbing independent of a guide in the future if you wish. If weather is not good for Mt Blanc they will be able to teach you so you can climb it at a future date independently.
Sometimes a course linked to an ascent of Mt Blanc can be a great way to go.
Don't know what alpine stuff you've done before but you could consider climbing Mt Blanc with like minded friends / a climbing club / another more experienced alpine climber.
blurty - on 06 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius:

Rob Jarvis, Highmountainguides

excellent
gnospellius - on 06 May 2013
In reply to Mark / Alps
> Don't know what alpine stuff you've done before but you could consider climbing Mt Blanc with like minded friends / a climbing club / another more experienced alpine climber.

I am climbing with a friend. We did a trip a couple of years ago and have climbed the Traverse of the Crochues, pointe Lachenal and walked on the glacier. Plus lots of bits in the Lakes and some in Scotland.
ads.ukclimbing.com
Mark / Alps - on 08 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius:
Was it the Lachenal Traverse you did? Have you practised crevasse rescue?
From your profile and what you have done I would suggest you are perfectly capable of doing Mt Blanc without a guide.
I suggest you undertake a planned progression of routes, all fun in themselves, and then go for it when you feel confident with your knowledge / skills / fitness and the weather forecast.
A possible and traditional build up could include:

Day 1: To Albert Premier Hut am and practice snow / ice /crevasse skills in the afternoon on the nearby glacier
Day 2: A choice of routes on peaks such as the Aiguille de Tour, Tete Blanche and Petite Fourche. At around 3,500 metres good for acclimatisation. Could spend a couple of days in this area.

After a rest aim for a 4,000 metre peak. Mt Blanc de Tacul normal route is usually straightforward and gives a good view of your objective. There are other nice routes in the area or you could do soe of the routesaround the Torino hut.

You are likely to be ready for Mt Blanc. Choose your route and go for it. Always remember to check the forecast and mountain conditions at the OHM or online - especially avalanche conditions. Get as fit as you can before you go.

Have fun
nickcutter85 - on 09 May 2013
In my opinion a lot of guides that we use and recommend in chamonix not only provide a guide service but also an information service and improved local knowledge. It's great to be on a summit and have someone who knows what your looking at information on it. A guide is definitely not there just to tow you up a mountain!

Let me know how your search goes and if you need any help give me a pm.

Nick
Andy Perkins - on 10 May 2013
In reply to gnospellius:

Hi Mark. I'm an IFMGA guide based in Chamonix but this is NOT a pitch for the work. I'm fully booked at the end of July.
I'd strongly suggest you book in advance for 2 reasons:
1. If you wait until you get out there then most guides will already be booked, especially the British ones.
2. If you make an arrangement in advance, you can get to know your guide in advance and vice versa. Communication early on will help both parties to have the best time, make the most of weather and conditions and so on.
Good luck.
ANDY P

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