4th July Mont Blanc Reccie : Les Houches to Bellevue

Earlier today I reccied the first section of the route. This is from the valley at Les Houches, to where I got the Cable car to yesterday at Bellevue. I then descended a bit to Col De voza and ran the reverse of the TMB route back to Chamonix. Altogether, including a few navigational errors it was about 3 hour day. I ascended the 850 meters to Bellevue in 1 hour 15 minutes, albeit with a lighter pack. But still it gave me a little encouragement. I estimate that I could, if I didn’t suffer fatigue, get from Les Houches to the Gouter hut in about 5 hours. My plan would be to set off at 3am and get to the summit by about 10:30 am. The problem is that I have no idea how long it would take me in the snow from the Gouter hut to the summit, or how the high altitude would effect me. The estimated time would include 2 and  a half hours for those last 1,000 meters.
All the time whilst running I was trying to decide whether to forget the idea altogether. It is a daunting prospect on my own. With someone else I wouldn’t hesitate. But on my own I know the safety margins are much tighter. I am  not experienced at high altitude mountain tops which are snow covered, and although I know my ability on normal ground is good, I am not so sure how good I will be on snow for that long.
At best I will wait for perfect weather set off at 3am and see how far I can get, with no clear plan to summit. Just to get to the Gouter hut and reassess. I will make my mind up after a chat with mark.

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