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Classic Haute Route hiking traverse

Classic Haute Route hiking traverse
La-Haute-Route-Chamonix-Zermatt-hike-6
Classic Haute Route hiking traverse
Classic Haute Route hiking traverse

La Haute Route, one of the best treks in the world, from Mont Blanc (Chamonix) to Matterhorn (Zermatt), guided by Emma, UIMLA mountain leader.

Alps

11 Days

Jun - Sep

High

Intermediate


Description

Join me on the most famous hiking route in the Alps: the Haute Route from Chamonix to Zermatt. This multi-day trekking journey begins at the foot of Mont Blanc in the Chamonix Valley.

During the lower sections of the trek, we’ll hike through beautiful alpine valleys and meadows covered by flowers. Then, in the higher sections, we’ll cross high passes and enjoy spectacular views of some of the highest peaks and glaciers in the Alps.

The Alps’ Haute Route covers 180 km, following good paths and tracks. Eleven days after the start of our trip in Chamonix, we’ll get to Zermatt in Switzerland, just beneath the Matterhorn, one of the most iconic mountains in the world.

You’ll sleep in good quality hotels, with the exception of 2 nights in mountain huts. We’ll spend one of these nights at the Cabane de Louvie, perched above a stunning mountain lake. We’ll also have luggage support, making for a very comfortable trip.

How difficult is the Classic Haute Route? It is slightly harder than the Tour du Mont Blanc but it is still a non-technical trek suitable for regular hikers. It is not a program for first-timers, though, so I recommend to try your hand at something slightly easier if this is your first time. Apart from some small sections where it is important to be careful, walking is generally quite straightforward.

Sounds like a good plan? Then contact me now and reserve your dates. I’ll be happy to be your guide during this amazing hike along the most beautiful sections in the Alps.

Price includes

- Accommodation included

- Guiding fee

- Breakfast

- Dinner

- Transport during the trip

- Luggage transfer

- Mountain guide expenses

Price details

The price does not include the guide´s expenses (accommodation, meals, lift tickets, etc).


Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Chamonix

Our trip begins in the famous mountain town of Chamonix, at the foot of Mont Blanc. We meet the group at 6pm for a trip briefing followed by our evening meal. – Accommodation: 3* hotel, dinner included – Luggage access

Day 2: Montroc to Col de la Forclaz via the Aiguillette de Posettes

Firstly, we start with a beautiful train journey on the famous Mont Blanc Express. Afterwards, we start our trek in the hamlet of Montroc, and begin climbing up the stunning Aiguillette de Posettes. Most other treks then head for the Col de Balme. However, we take a quiet and beautiful variant through the meadows of Les Tseppes and into Switzerland as it offers fantastic views. – Accommodation: Hotel, dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: approx 7-8 hrs – Distance: 14 km – Altitude gain / loss: +1100m / -1100m

Day 3: Trek from the Col de la Forclaz to Champex via the Fenêtre d'Arpette

Today we start with an easy stroll along the bisse (Swiss irrigation system) to the Chalet des Glaciers, a small café next to the impressive Trient glacier. Here we begin a long and sometimes steep ascent through spectacular scenery up the high pass known as the Fenêtre d’Arpette, from which we have wonderful views of the Trient Plateau. Finally, we have a steep descent through the Val d’Arpette to our accommodation in Champex. – Accommodation : Family-run hotel, dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: Approx 7 hrs – Distance: 16 km – Altitude gain / loss: + 1411m / -1200m

Day 4: Champex to the Cabane de Louvie

We leave the picturesque village of Champex to meander through summer meadows in the Val de Bagnes, to reach the village of Sembrancher. Here we take a short taxi ride to Fionnay. We have chosen to deviate from the standard Haute Route and head for the Cabane de Louvie as it offers a truly remote setting next to a high alpine lake, and our route steers clear of the ski lifts of Verbier. We finish our day with a steep ascent to the Louvie hut: it’s tiring, but we are rewarded with fantastic views of the Grand Combin and the Mont Blanc Massif. – Accommodation: Mountain refuge, dinner included – No luggage access – Walking: Approx 8 hours – Distance: 20 km – Altitude gain / loss: +1350m / -1300m

Day 5: Trek from the Cabane de Louvie to the Cabane de de Prafleuri

This is one of the most spectacular days of the trek, crossing 2 cols with dramatic views throughout. After climbing the Col de Louvie, we make a steep descent at the edge of the Grand Désert glacier. Afterwards we traverse the aptly-named Grand Désert and make our way up to the Col de Prafleuri (2987m) then descend to the Cabane de Prafleuri (2642m) for the evening. – Accommodation: Mountain refuge, dinner included – No luggage access – Walking: Approx 8 hrs – Distance: 18 km – Altitude gain / loss: +820m / -550m

Day 6: Trek from the Cabane de Prafleuri to Arolla

A short, steep climb greets us this morning as we quickly summit the Col de Roux, overlooking the milky waters of the Lac de Dix. A gentle descent then takes us to the shore of the lake. Next we make a steep ascent to the base of the Col de Riedmatten, where we have the option of either climbing the col or taking the Pas de Chèvres ladders to a nearby col. The leader will decide which route we take, based on the weather and the group. – Accommodation: Hotel, dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: approx 6-7 hrs – Distance: 16 km – Altitude gain / loss: +735m / -1360m

Day 7: Arolla to La Sage

We are now approaching the halfway point of the trek and today is something of a recuperation day, involving a leisurely walk through woodland (although there are 1 or 2 chains!) to the Lac Bleu, a favourite local beauty spot. From here, there is an easy descent through a beautiful gorge to Les Haudères where we have lunch. At least, a short climb complete this stage at the small farming hamlet of La Sage. – Accommodation: 3* hotel, dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: approx 4-5 hrs – Distance: 11 km – Altitude gain / loss: +215m / -550m

Day 8: La Sage to Zinal

The first ascent to the higher of the two passes, the Col de Torrent (2912m), is long, but not too difficult, and the path is in good condition. We then descend to the turquoise Lac de Moiry, a great lunch spot. Ahead we can see some of the giant peaks of the Pennine Alps. Of more concern will be the imposing Col de Sorebois, a climb which is shorter but steeper than the ascent of the Torrent, but again presents no real problems. From here, we have spectacular views of the Weisshorn, the Dent Blanche and the Zinal Rothorn. It’s a steep downhill from here, and the hotel at Zinal is a welcome sight after the hardest day of the trip so far. – Accommodation: Hotel dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: approx 8-9 hrs – Distance: 21 km – Altitude gain / loss: +2000m / -1850m

Day 9: Zinal to Gruben

We start with a steep but pleasant ascent through larch forest, before a rising traverse takes us through alpine pastures with excellent views across the Val d’Anniviers. We have a choice of 2 passes today, the Forcletta (2874m) or the Meidpass (2790m), but we normally take the Forcletta as it offers a more direct route, and slightly better views. From here we can see into the Turtmanntal, and we enter the German-speaking part of Switzerland. We often see the rare edelweiss on our descent of this col, if we can manage to take our eyes away from the incredible vista of 4000m peaks on offer. Tonight we stay in the tiny hamlet of Gruben. – Accommodation: Hotel, dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: Approx 7 hrs – Distance: 19 km – Altitude gain / loss: +1200m / -1165m

Day 10: Gruben to Saint Niklaus across the Augstbordpass

A really superb trek today as we start out through open woodland, then across high pastures followed by an alpine rocky wilderness. The trek soon opens up to some of the most spectacular views in the Swiss Alps. Our final pass is the Augstbordpass (2894m), beyond which we descend steeply to the wonderful viewpoint known as the Twära – and here is your first view into the Matterhtal.. A steep descent takes us to the hamlet of Jungu, perched on the side of the mountain. And from here there is a steeper descent of a couple of hours to take us down to Saint Niklaus. – Accommodation: Hotel, dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: Approx 7-8 hrs – Distance: 16 km – Altitude gain / loss: +1070m / -1765m

Day 11: Saint Niklaus to Zermatt

Today we make our way easily along tte valley into Zermatt to experience our first close-up views of the Matterhorn. We have chosen not to do the Europaweg section of the Haute Route as the path is becoming increasingly hazardous, with regular rockfalls wiping out sections of path along with entire bridges. Therefore we have chosen instead to include 2 nights in Zermatt, so that tomorrow we can offer one of the most spectacular walks in the world. – Accommodation: Hotel, dinner included – Luggage access – Walking: Approx 4-5 hrs – Distance: 13 km – Altitude gain / loss: +450m / -0m

Day 12: The Höhenweg and the Matterhorn!

We have included this extra day in Zermatt firstly to maximise our chances of seeing the Matterhorn, but more importantly as it is one of the most spectacular walks in the world! First of all, we climb from the centre of Zermatt up through a gorge, to Trift. Later, we climb on higher towards the Matterhorn, along a breathtaking balcony path, with views of the Monte Rosa and the glaciers which lie above Zermatt, round a corner and the majestic Matterhorn reveals herself. For the rest of the day you will not be able to put your camera down – a true finale to your Walker’s Haute Route.

 

Details

More info

I offer the Haute Route in 4 other different options: -Highlights of the Haute Route -Self-guided Walker's Haute Route -Glacier Haute Route -Skier's Haute Route

Meeting point


FAQs

What is the Haute Route, and where does it start?

The Haute Route is the most famous hiking route in the Alps, spanning from Chamonix to Zermatt. This multi-day trek begins at the foot of Mont Blanc in the Chamonix Valley.

What can I expect to see along the route?

During the lower sections of the trek, you'll hike through alpine valleys and meadows. As you ascend to higher elevations, you'll cross imposing mountain passes and be treated to exclusive views of some of the highest peaks and glaciers in the Alps.

How long is the Haute Route, and where does it end?

The Haute Route covers 180 km and typically takes eleven days to complete. The journey culminates in Zermatt, Switzerland.

What's included in the price?

The price covers:

  • Accommodation
  • Guiding fee
  • Breakfast and dinner
  • Transportation throughout the trip

-Luggage transfer

What is not included in the price?

NOT included in the price: the guide's expenses, such as accommodation, meals, lift tickets, and other related costs.

What are the accommodation arrangements during the Haute Route hike?

Participants will stay in high-quality hotels for the majority of the trek, with the exception of two nights spent in mountain huts. One of these nights will be at the Cabane de Louvie.

How difficult is the Classic Haute Route?

The Classic Haute Route is slightly more challenging than the Tour du Mont Blanc but remains a non-technical trek suitable for regular hikers. While it is not recommended for first-timers, the route generally consists of straightforward walking with some sections requiring caution.

What is the best time of the year to take on the Haute Route?

The best time to hike through the Haute Route is during the months of June through September.

What are some alternative options you offer for experiencing the Haute Route besides the traditional trek?

I offer the Haute Route in 4 other different options: -Highlights of the Haute Route -Self-guided Walker's Haute Route -Glacier Haute Route -Skier's Haute Route

What are some recommended accommodations near our adventure location?

We understand that finding the perfect place to stay is an essential part of your adventure experience. To help you with this, we’ve curated a list of three highly recommended hotels that offer comfort, convenience, and a touch of local charm. These accommodations are well-suited for adventurers looking to relax and rejuvenate after an exciting day of exploration
Au Coeur du Village
See rooms
La Clusaz
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France
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Hotel Christiania
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La Clusaz
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France
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Hotel Beauregard
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La Clusaz
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France
See rooms

About the guide

Guide profile image

-Emma & Guides' team

4.60

(9)

Mountain Leader

I'm a qualified International Mountain Leader (IML) and I have been leading expeditions for the last 15 years. I have led the Tour du Mont Blanc over 40 times, the Everest Base Camp trek 27 times, Kilimanjaro 10 times, and I have also led trips in Nepal, Peru, Cuba, India, Bhutan, Cambodia, Thailand, the Alps, the Pyrenees, Russia, Uzbekistan and Madagascar, amongst others. I work together with qualified mountain leaders like me, If I'm not available to guide you, one of my colleagues will take care of you.

I'm a passionate skier, in 2009 I made the first ski descent of Manaslu, the 8th highest mountain in the world (8156m).

Fluent in French, Russian and Spanish, I also work as an interpreter and love to chat.

Languages

Russian | French | English

Certificates

UIMLA

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What people are saying about -Emma & Guides' team

5.00

Emma was a very sweet and knowledgeable guide. She was adaptive to the different personalities and skill level of our group. Easygoing, talkative, friendly and pleasant to be around! Couldn't be happier with our guide!

Paul

5.00

Emma was very easy to communicate with (once we we able e in the same time zone, of course!). Our guide Phil was fabulous. Thanks to all.

jeanne

4.00

We were Very pleased With Emma guiding us through the hikes. We really enjoyed the entire trip:) As we were just our family we would have loved a little more flexibility hiking in our own pace - felt we were rushed a bit too much. We should have informed Emma about this but we were too compliant:) The explore-share platform was a bit rigid/ formel - it was not clear that exploreshare hired another firm to do the job. Also quite a High fee to explore share We were first told to have an (expensive) extended travel insurance (with mountain rescue) up to departure / after we had plaid. We should have been told this before signing up. Another mistake were that explore share had told us last payment were due closer to departure - so in a rush we had to pay up 60 days before as this is cloud9advenures policy. This made us uncertain if it was fraud. But it wasn’t:) overall pleased with our trip

Fausto

4.00

Bruno our guide was very helpful and profesional

Jill

5.00

AMAZING! This was a last minute decision and my first multi day trekking tour and it far exceeded my expectations. The communication and preparation was comprehensive and accurate. Our guide (Lindsay) was phenomenal. The route was the perfect mix of challenge and comfort. I will definitely be booking my next hiking trek thru Emma.


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