My move From Grindelwald to Chamonix Mont Blanc was smooth. It was actually a nice drive. My sat nav even decided to take me on a short cut on some really twisty narrow mountain road. It must have known that I was enjoying it. Even better was that I didn’t have to pay the Swiss road tax. You are meant to purchase it for about 28 Francs on entering. Ignorance is bliss, it works for me. Anyway they can drive for free on U.K roads so why should we have to pay!
My first day in Chamonix has been a fact finding on, in terms of how to get to Les Houches and when, and how to reccie the Mont Blanc route from there. I have a free bus pass to Les Houches as part of the camping cost (amazing for 10,20 / night) so I will use that to get there tomorrow then get the first cable car to Bellevue 1,780m where I hope to ascend to about 3,400m. The tram to point Aigle doesn’t start until Tuesday. If I feel I need to look at the high part of the route again I will use it to get me to a start point of 2,380m. For a look at the route higher up towards the Gouter hut.
After visiting the Tourist Information in Chamonix, I walked to Les Houches on the TMB route to get a sense of what it is like. It is odd being in Chamonix without the TMB being on and having my own car here. As I have only ever run through it on the TMB I thought it prudent to familiarise myself with the area. I found the cable car and walked up the route that I will look at on Monday i.e. the first part of the ascent out of Les Houches. I did a bit of shopping then queued for the bus for 40 minutes on the wrong side of the road, a young lad drove into a stationary me on his bike; slowly thank god; we were both o.k. I then saw the bus going the other way, so chased it, laden with shopping, and just got it before it pulled away. It has been a more adventurous day than I had planned. Now I will have and early night and prepare my kit ready for an early start tomorrow.
The picture top left is the view from my tent, not bad for 10.40 euros a night( I was going to stay at a campsite costing 25 euro a night, but it was too small for my large tent. I am really glad about that now.) It is the popular cable car point of Le Brevent, a place I have run to on several occasions.