"I've just returned from a quick hit to the Mont Blanc Range. 6 days round trip, 2 of those spent travelling and 3 climbing on one route so this isn't a comprehensive report on conditions, but could be a useful snapshot.
From what I saw there's still plenty of winter-style conditions to be had if you look in the right places. By all accounts the Argentierre Basin is in good nick with the likes of the North Face of the Droites looking good (visiting American Colin Haley soloed the Ginat recently describing the mixed crux as currently quite easy). While on the neighbouring Grandes Rocheuse the Robert Jasper testpiece "Too late to say I'm sorry" formed a complete ribbon of ice over previously difficult mixed climbing.
This last week Nick Bullock, Andy Houseman and I climbed the link up of Russian Roulette and the top part of the Gabrrou-Silvy on the Aiguille Sans Nom finding plenty of ice if a little hard and brittle. However the good weather broke shortly after our descent on Wednesday evening, and the last few days have seen snowfall in the hills which should once again see a change of conditions."
- Watch a video of Ian's recent ascent on his blog
You can keep up to date with Alpine conditions in the UKC Expedition and Alpine Forum