Every summer when running our walking holidays in the Alps most guests ask us “would you like to climb Mont Blanc?”
At 4,810m it’s not your average hill walk, we have been told by friends who have climbed it that’s it not technically challenging, and anyone who is a competent winter walker with good rope skills could manage the climb.
Chalet Shiraz is the base we use for walking holidays in the Alps and the views of Mont Blanc from the garden are magnificent, and although I class myself as a competent winter walker it looks daunting.
Ascending and descending has to be timed perfectly according to the climate and temperature. Mountaineers usually climb Mont Blanc during the summer months, between June and September.
In mid-July, the mountain huts and the resort of Chamonix become very crowded. Normally, walkers and climbers start their ascent early in the morning. If you hire a mountain guide, groups will be divided in 2-3 people per guide.
Fitness is a very important factor and going to the gym can be a good start for mountaineering training. Fast walking is not required; instead, stamina for long walks is essential. Building up your stamina through regular workouts, long walks and hikes is an ideal way to start preparation. You should also combine your fitness regime with a healthy diet
There is no fixed training regime for mountaineering. Walking marathons, biking and jogging long distances are a few of the activities which might help you to get in shape for a challenging climb to the summit. Following a routine pattern of fast walking with a backpack can be a simple way to stay fit.