Italian High Level Route July 2009
Directly after finishing our Tour des Combin we we went round to Zermatt and met up with British Mountain Guides Kathy Murphy and Cube to do some high level glacier treking & Hutting with a bit of easy 4000m peak bagging too. Our group was Roger, Patrick, Jane, Jon, Martin and another Phil.
Day 1: Gandegg Hut (3029m)
Took a cable car from Zermatt to the Gandegg Hut (3029m) and did an afternoon of skills training.
Walk Stats: Ascent 130m; Descent 115m.
Day 2: Breithorn (4164m) & Rifugio d’ Ayas (3420m)
We took another cable car to the top of the Klein Matterhorn. Crossed the the Breithorn Plateau, up the Breithorn (4164m) and descended to the Rifugio d’ Ayas (3420m).
Walk Stats: Ascent 490m; Descent 1070m.
Day 3: Rifugio Guglielmina (2880m)
Down and back up to the Passo Superiore di Bettolina (3100m), then a big descent to the Val di Gressoney where we took a cable car up to the Passo dei Salati (2963m). Overnighted at the excellent Rifugio Guglielmina (2880m) which was more of a basic hotel than a mountain hut. Fantastic food and atmosphere.
Walk Stats: Ascent 800m; Descent 2400m.
Day 4: Rifugio Gnifetti (3647m)
A shorter day on the ridge between the Gressoney and Alagna valleys. We crossed the Glacier di Indren and ascended the Glacier di Garstelet to the Rifugio Gnifetti (3647m).
Walk Stats: Ascent 820m; Descent 160m; Time 4 hours.
Day 5: Zumsteinspitze (4563m)
A spectacular day, climbing four 4000 metre peaks – Pyramid Vincent (4215m), a small rock called the Balmhorn (4167m), the Zumsteinspitze (4563m) and the Signalkuppe (4556m) topped off with the highest tea shop in europe – the Margarita Hut (4556m). Finally we descended to the Monte Rosa Hut (2795m). More photos and detail here...
Walk Stats: Ascent 1450m; Descent 2270m.
Day 6: Back down to Zermatt
Descended to the Gornerglacier and crossed it to reach the Gornergrat Railway. Then we took the Gornergrat train down to Zermatt.
Walk Stats: Ascent 390m; Descent 390m.
Day 7: Hörnli Hut (3200m) from Zermatt
As a bit of a rest day we nipped up to the Hörnli Hut (3200m) on the Matterhorn for lunch.
Walk Stats: Ascent- 730m; Descent 730m.
Author: Phil Newby