II, 155m, 3 hours. The classic of the Triangle and one of the busiest routes in Chamonix, this route deserves its good reputation but can be tricky to find quiet. A night in the comfortable Refuge des Cosmiques may be worth the money to ensure some peace! The route varies greatly from month to month but should climbable just about every day of the year, weather permitting. The route is easily visible from the Refuge des Cosmiques and the top half is visible from the campsites in Les Bossons! The pitches described here can be split by intermediate belays. Begin by climbing the lower snow slopes (45 degrees, possible serac danger) to reach a belay on the left.
1) 35m. The snow slope continues and then steepens slightly to 50 degrees leading to a bolt belay on the right.
2) 3, 50m. Step left and climb the gully above. This has sections of 70 degree ice and can be mixed in thin conditions. It leads to the foot of the crux pitch and a belay on a comfortable ledge on the right.
3) 4, 40m. The crux of the route - the ice kicks up to 85 degrees here. The pitch is often stepped out due to the amount of traffic it sees and it is well protected by ice screws and the occasional peg on the right wall.
4) 3+, 30m. Slightly less steep, at around 75 degrees, this short step of ice marks the end of the difficulties.
Descent - Either abseil down the route (be aware of people underneath you when abseiling) or continue up moderate snowy mixed ground to a junction with the Contamine-Mazeaud and then onto the summit of the Triangle. © Rockfax
UKC Logbook Description
Couloir ice climb. Approach from Midi Station or Abri Simond Bivouac Hut in less than one hour. Cross bergshrund and then climb about 11 pitches to the top. Can descend from the normal route leading up Mt. Blanc du Tacul or if not too busy in the couloir, rappel the route to it's start (Most people abseil off after 5 pitches - fixed belays).
R. Chere and J. Tranchant 18/Aug/1973.
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