About the Aiguille d’ArgentièreThe Aiguille d’Argentière is a 3902-meters high peak in the Mont Blanc massif near Chamonix. The peak is located near the village of Argentière at the end of the Chamonix valley in the Haute Savoie, France. It was first ascended by Edward Whymper, A. Reilly, M. Croz, M. Payot and H. Charlet on July 15th, 1864. Nowadays, the glacier milieu is regarded as the easiest route to the summit of Aiguille d’Argentière. For this reason it’s a popular ski mountaineering route. Only the last 200 meters to the summit are a bittechnical. Climbs often start from the Grand Montets Hut or the Argentière Hut.
Accommodations around the Aiguille d’ArgentièreThe valley of Chamonix is one of the hotspots in the French Alps. The Mont Blanc massif is home to several hiking trails, offering splendid views to day hikers and diehards. If you are looking for fine hotel, these are worth checking out: Boutique Hotel Le Morgane, combines the refinement of a 4-star hotel with the lively air of Chamonix. The style and idea of the Morgane emerge from the customary Alpine inns. Hôtel de L'Arve lies in a stunning setting amidst Brévent, Mont Blanc and the Aiguilles de Chamonix in the heart of town. Peace and quiet guaranteed as the hotel stands at the end of a cul-de-sac near the Arve River by footpaths for relaxing strolls or more challenging steep hikes up to the mountain peaks. Hôtel Mont-Blanc is the must address to visit in the valley of Chamonix. Every morning, the hotel offers the pleasure of waking up facing the most beautiful peak, the Mont Blanc. After the exhilaration of the summits, you can dive into the outdoor heated pool all year long. Unless if you prefer to relax in the 250m2 spa by Clarins’. Round off the day with a gourmet break at Matafan, where every dish on the seasonal menu invites you to partake in a moment of sharing and conviviality.
ArgentièreWhile most people spend their holiday in sometimes over-crowded Chamonix, Argentière some 10 kilometers further is the closest village to the Aiguille d’Argentière. This small village may not have the same reputation as Chamonix, but it still is a popular ski resort in winter and a great base for hikers in the summer season. It is located close to the Swiss border and the cable cars leading to the nearby mountain ranges facilitate access to more difficult trails. There are some nice hotels in Chamonix as well as a campsite with views of Mont Blanc.
Argentière HutThe Argentière Refuge is located at an impressive altitude of 2771 meters. It offers views of the full Mont Blanc range, including its highest peak. It accommodates 91 people, and rooms cost 30 euros per night or 65 euros (half board). The refuge is often used for long distance hiking and the skitouring trails between Argentière and Zermatt, also known as the Haute Route. The refuge is open in the summer and from February to May, the latter period offering beds toskitouring visitors.
Albert Premier RefugeThe slightly larger Albert Premier Refuge (140 beds) is situated besides the Le Tour glacier. It is a great goal for a short day hike, or a nice stopover to the glacier or the neighbouring peaks of Aiguille du Tour, Aiguille d’Argentière, Les Drus and the Aiguilles Rouges. The refuge is only manned in the summer season but is open year-round. It is owned by the CAF, the Club Alpin France. Getting to the hut is easy by taking the Charamillon gondola from Le Tour and the Col de Balme chairlift. This helps you gain a lot of altitude in a short amount of time and reduces the hiking time to 1h30minutes. Those who want to go on a longer hike, can follow the trails to Col de Balme underneath the cable car as (strenuous, add 3 hours).
Col de Balme refugeThe Col de Balme refuge (2191m) is a mountain hut located on the border between France and Switzerland. Due to its location on the col, you will be granted views of France as well as Switzerland. Col de Balme is a popular stop for hikers attempting the Tour de Mont Blanc or Walkers Haute Route, and provides refreshments to day hikers as well. Getting there is easy with the aid of the Charamillon gondola and the Col de Balme chairlift (5 minutes) or with a strenuous uphill hike (3 hours).
Hiking around the Aiguille d’ArgentièreThe Chamonix valley has lured tourists and active travelers ever since Mont Blanc was ascended and the mountaineering sport was born. There are numerous of trails in the region just waiting to be explored. All of them are rewarding and challenging at times, but no matter what, hiking in the Mont Blanc region is an experience to treasure.
Tour de Mont BlancThe Tour de Mont Blanc is a 10-day trek around the Mont Blanc massif crossing three countries: France, Switzerland and Italy. Since it’s regarded as the most beautiful trek in Europe, the number of hikers can get high during the peak season. While most people start their hike in neighbouring Chamonix, the village of Argentière is an often-used stop.
Walkers Haute RouteThe Walkers Haute Route is a contestant for the best hike in the Alps. This two-week trek from Chamonix to Zermatt leads you along the most impressive peaks from the Mont Blanc massif to the notorious Matterhorn along 4000 meter peaks such as Grand Combin, Weisshorn and the Dom. This trail originates from the Haute Route skitouring route and is often done in April. Despite the fact that the official start is in Chamonix, a lot of hikers skip the prelude to Argentière and start their adventure on the latter one.
Aiguilles des PosettesThis short 5.8-kilometer hike has great rewards. From the Tre le Champs carpark, you can follow your way up to “Aiguilette via la crète”. It is rough and strenuous trail gaining 750m of ascent, but there is a real summit as a goal. Besides having reached an alpine summit, the views over the Chamonix valley are breathtaking. On clear days it’s possible to get a panoramic view all the way to the Jungfrau region. You have the option to hike the same way down or use the Vallorcine gondola; however, this option will require a car shuttle.
Grand Balcon Sud
Grand Balcon Sud, Photo by Michael WahlinThis 13.6-kilometer trail leads you through the Reserve Naturelle des Aiguille Rouges. Despite the strenuous start of the trail, the hike is relatively easy and flat. You will get views over the entire valley and have plenty of opportunities to spot an ibex. To enlarge your chances, head off early in the morning! Descending back to the valley floor can be done by taking the Flegere lift down.
Glacier d’Argentière, Photo by Snowbird1972The nearby glacier d’Argentière is an impressive sight. This trail starting from the car park in Argentière is not an easy one as it leads all the way up to the glacier, locating a little over 2700 meters. The route starts by following the trail to Refuge de Lognan, where refreshments are available. If the hike is a bit too challenging, there are plenty of viewpoints more easily reachable as well that offer spectactular views of the seracs of the glacier.