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/ NEWS: Mont Blanc Quota Plan Announced for 2019

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UKC News - on 04 Sep 2018
The mayor of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains, Jean-Marc Peillex has announced that various mountaineering and governing bodies - including local officials, guides and mountain police - have come to a consensus regarding the introduction of a quota system to regulate ascents of Mont Blanc in 2019. The measures will only concern access to the summit via Saint-Gervais, namely via the Goûter Route/Normal Route.

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henwardian - on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Sounds like all they need is a wee tunnel under the Gouter Couloir to obviate the objective danger and a fence round the mountain (or possibly a wall?) with some turnstiles you pay to get through. Take the money from the access charges and build 3 or 4 more huts up where the Gouter is and it's problem solved. Actually, I should probably go over there and explain this in person, it's only a couple hours drive....

Post edited at 13:03
Misha - on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to henwardian:

Or nuke the summit to take 300m or so off it so it’s no longer the highest. That would halve the traffic and provider a boost to local photographers due to a new skyline. 

henwardian - on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to Misha:

Conventional explosives only please. My flat is probably within the fallout zone if the wind was going the wrong way.

HarrisonConnie1996 - on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to Misha:

> nuke the summit 

Russian's and their nukes! :P 

 

L DonnyDave - on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Easier travel and mass tourism is obviously the reason for such numbers wanting to do the summit, but people going into the mountains ill equipped is nothing knew.  When i did it in the early 80's i think there were only maybe 15/20 other parties, but even then there were some that were dressed as if still in the valley. A Japanese party had just jeans on and wearing trainers. No rope, no kind of axes at all, yet no one attempted to stop them continuing.  LOL, i bet lots go up there these days and see their selfie sticks as the most essential kit.  

Post edited at 15:14
tistimetogo on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to UKC News:

"Climbers required a booking at the hut in advance before ascending"

Does this mean you aren't allowed to bivi at the Tete Rouse then blast up and down in one day?

Seems mental that they didn't include the Mayor in any of this. 

The more I climb the less I like guiding.

In reply to tistimetogo:

From speaking to people locally it sounds like the gendarmes were using common sense in looking at how well-equipped people were and asking them about their plans to determine who should be able to pass without a hut reservation if they were up and down in a day. From the initial news report about the extension:

 

'The restrictions were initially proposed to be in place for a week, but will now be enforced until August 1st, according to a French news report. During this period, access to the summit of Mont Blanc via this route, beyond the Tête-Rousse Glacier, is only granted to those who can provide evidence of a reservation at the Goûter refuge. Details of the restriction is provided in French on the Goûter refuge website (PDF at top).'

Not sure about bivvying. 

simes303 - on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to tistimetogo:

...Or bivvy near the Gouter hut which is what we did.

atthedropofahat on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to UKC

Oh well I'll stick with the Italian side, better food, prices, people and pretty much anything else. Much more relaxed than sham'o'shit, no one cares if you bivi, hut or not.

Misha - on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to HarrisonConnie1996:

I’m sure my mate Vladimir will oblige. 

pec on 05 Sep 2018
In reply to atthedropofahat:

> In reply to UKC

> Oh well I'll stick with the Italian side, better food, prices, people and pretty much anything else. Much more relaxed than sham'o'shit, no one cares if you bivi, hut or not.


Indeed, the Pope route could get quite popular, especially if the masses switch to the Trois Monts and Chamonix is forced to introduce a similar restriction.

Pity about the Brenva Spur being a no go area these days.

simes303 - on 06 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

> ...Or bivvy near the Gouter hut which is what we did.

How does that deserve two Dislikes? I'm only stating what we did. Me and my brother just couldn't afford to stay in huts. In fact we've had six trips to Chamonix. Two of those were for six weeks and one was for eleven weeks but neither of us have ever stayed in a hut. Every route we've done was on foot from, and back to, Chamonix, bivvying out wherever necessary, apart from when we once splashed out and got a car to the Midi to do the Tacul / Maudit / Mont Blanc route.

Good times.

Post edited at 21:36
Misha - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

I was one of the dislikers. The reason is that you aren’t supposed to camp or bivvy near the Gouter. It’s a classic case of “what’s ok for one person to do is a nightmare if everyone does it so no one should do it”. 

simes303 - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to Misha:

I see, I didn't know that although it was in the mid 90's and there were several other parties sleeping near the hut too so maybe it was okay back then? Bivvying at the Col Du Midi was forbidden I think but when I was last there it was like a small village. Either way, we were young and we certainly weren't going to follow silly rules about where we could or couldn't sleep.

simes303 - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

> I see, I didn't know that although it was in the mid 90's and there were several other parties sleeping near the hut too so maybe it was okay back then? Bivvying at the Col Du Midi was forbidden I think but when I was last there it was like a small village. Either way, we were young and we certainly weren't going to follow silly rules about where we could or couldn't sleep.

More Dislikes for this reply? What the? Some of you need to chill out a bit.

MG - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

I suspect its the "silly rules" bit. They aren't, really. Also breaking the rules can have expensive consequences so best not recommend it 

Robert Durran - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

> Either way, we were young and we certainly weren't going to follow silly rules about where we could or couldn't sleep.

Not to mention all those other silly rules about where you could camp in the valley (and being meant to actually pay to do so!). They even expected you to pay to stay in huts but then complained if you, quite reasonably, chose to doss outside - ridiculous!

madasten - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Times have changed.  Climbing in the 90's was all about ignoring/circumvating the "silly rules", especially when it did no harm to anyone else and simply saved you some cash!  Nowadays you are frowned upon by other climbers (and it's hard to argue against their case) for doing the same thing.

ScraggyGoat on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to madasten:

But 90's climbers were far 'better' behaved than the 80's generation that went before...............

 

Robert Durran - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

> But 90's climbers were far 'better' behaved than the 80's generation that went before...............

Yes, in the 80's there were even silly rules about paying for food in the supermarket.

Misha - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

Times have changed perhaps. More climbers is part of the issue probably. More stringent H&S and environmental rules are also a consideration (burden on hut facilities / pooing in the snow).

summo on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

A single tent on it's own is Ok, 20 is an unofficial camp site with people pooing all over the place and often bizarrely burying rubbish as though this is some how Ok. 

If you are in a tent, you aren't bivying, you are camping. 

Post edited at 13:56
simes303 - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to MG:

> I suspect its the "silly rules" bit. They aren't, really. Also breaking the rules can have expensive consequences so best not recommend it 

When I was young I thought a lot of rules were silly and ignored them. I certainly wasn't alone.

I didn't recommend anything. I was just saying that we bivvied near the hut because like a lot of others we wanted to climb Mont Blanc, but unlike a lot of others we were skint. Unlike the cable car and hut brigade, we did actually climb the mountain properly, Cham to the top and down again to Cham (apart from the one time we got a cable car to the Midi to take the Tacul/Maudit route, but that was our first ever alpine route and we thought it was fair). To say only people staying in huts (and hence people with money) can climb a mountain is very unfair.

simes303 - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Yes, in the 80's there were even silly rules about paying for food in the supermarket.

That was one of the silly rules I didn't break. Bivvying out hurts nobody, theft is unacceptable.

simes303 - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to Misha:

> More stringent H&S...

Health and safety? This is mountaineering, not working in a supermarket.

nutme - on 07 Sep 2018

Was checking out face routes on Mt. Whitney last week and discovered Americans put a limit of 100 passes per day for the area. With a lottery. Which you need to enter previous year. Land of freedom my ass.

Lucky for me October is not to popular with hikers (yes, everyone shares same pool of passes), so was able to get passes for mid week.

Saying that not to surprised Mt.Blanc will get a limit as well.

Misha - on 07 Sep 2018
In reply to simes303:

I mean hut H&S. I imagine they have limits on the number of people who can be in a hut at any one time (fire safety etc) and hoards of people bivvying outside + a full hut = a hut bursting to the rafters as people will pop in for drinks and loos. Also the extra load on the loos and unpleasant 'Alpine specials' in the snow outside the hut...

There's a designated camping area outside the Tete Rousse though.

Post edited at 20:03
simes303 - on 08 Sep 2018
In reply to Misha:

Fair enough, can't argue with that. Si.


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