Mont Blanc Ascent

8 days
Walking & Trekking
Suitable for:
Age 18+
Activity level:
Activity Rating - Tough/Tough+
Trip code: 
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Walking & Trekking
Group size:
Min age:

Climb Western Europe's highest peak

In the Mont Blanc massif, there is one giant which stands alone amongst a myriad of snow-capped peaks. Looming over the climbing mecca of Chamonix, the majesty of Mont Blanc has captivated climbers for centuries and calls all would-be explorers to join them a top of Western Europe’s highest peak. Attempted over two days, our itinerary is designed to give you the very best chance of reaching the summit. During the expedition, the rewarding peak of Tête Blanche will also usually be climbed, teaching snow and ice techniques, building your confidence and helping with acclimatisation.

Mont Blanc permits: It is mandatory for climbers to hold a permit on this trip. While the climbing permit is included in the package, the number of permits released is limited and they are only released on certain dates each year. Therefore your booking won’t be confirmed until we obtain your permit. Permits are expected to be released on three different dates in 2020 and they are highly sought after. We strongly recommend booking at least 6-8 months in advance to avoid disappointment.


  • Crampon and ice axe tuition
  • Two day summit attempt increases chances of success
  • Comfortable hotel accommodation in Le Fayet

Key information

  • 3 days training/high-level trekking, 2 days summit attempt
  • 3 nights 2-star hotel, 4 nights mountain huts
  • Group normally 4 to 6, plus UIAGM mountain guide/s as appropriate. 
  • Altitude maximum 4810m, average 2900m
  • Optional single supplement for the hotel nights only
  • Countries visited: France

What's included

  • All breakfasts and 4 dinners
  • All accommodation (see accommodation section)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Arrival & departure transfers

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request - 3 hotel nights in Le Fayet)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3943
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.


Days of Walking & Trekking

Challenging: 5-6km/3-4miles an hour 


High altitude; including steep, rocky terrain

Day by day breakdown
Day 1 0.5km/0.3miles
Day 2 18.0km/11.3miles
Day 3 6.0km/3.8miles
Day 4 13.0km/8.1miles
Day 5 3.0km/1.9miles
Day 6 8.0km/5.0miles
Day 7 6.0km/3.8miles

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Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 


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Le Fayet
Le Fayet
  • Day 1

    Transfer to Plan de l’aiguille (2207m); equipment hire.

    We drop our main luggage at our hotel, where we will stay the following night. Those not flying with the group will rendezvous with us at the airport or join the group at La Fayet.

    We will have the chance to change and pack our climbing gear and day rucksack followed by a transfer to the Cable car aiguille du midi. On the way there will be possibility to stop at Saint Gervais for hiring technical equipment as necessary. Then we will walk down to the hut plan de l’aiguille. If time allows, our time will check the equipment and show us a few climbing techniques.

    NB: You can leave any items that you don’t need for the expedition in a bag/case in the hotel as we return here on day 2.


    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Acclimatisation and training day. Practice of scrambling techniques and off-track walking.

    After a hearty breakfast the guide will show us some scrambling techniques and off-track walking. The purpose of the day is to practise as much as possible and familiarise ourselves with technical hiking terrain in altitude, to acclimatise and train for the Gouter hut climb.

    At the end of the day we will take the cable car down to the valley of Chamonix and transfer to Le Fayet. La Fayet is the perfect base location for our trip, it is just beside the train station to Nid d’Aigle for the Mont Blanc ascent and a 20 mins walk to the Thermal bath of Saint Gervais which you may want to use during your stay here. 


    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Transfer and cable car to Albert Premier refuge. Afternoon snow and ice skills training.

    In the morning we transfer (public or private transport) to the cable car of la Balme, where take the chair lift or the cable car up to 2200m and walk up to the Albert Premier hut. In the afternoon we will have the option, depending on weather conditions, to practise ice technique on the glacier – roped up – or practise rock climbing with rope on any of the numerous boulders above the hut.


    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 4

    Glacier technique training; classic climb to Tete Blanche (3429m).

    Today we will practise some glacier technique and familiarise ourselves with our crampon. Starting from the hut, depending on weather conditions, we steadily climb either Tete Blanche (3429m). Then we will walk back and transfer to Le Fayet for a good night sleep before 2 days of tough climbing.

    NB: The itinerary for the next three days will depend on the weather on Mont Blanc. This decision is made by our local partners. If for any reason Mont Blanc is deemed unsafe then an alternative climb will hopefully be arranged (usually Gran Paradiso in Italy).


    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Train to Nid d’Aigle (2372m); walk to the Tete Rousse hut (3167m).

    We will start late morning from Le Fayet by taking the train to Nid d’Aigle (2372 m). From there we will walk up to the Tete Rousse hut (3167m). Today will be guided by the lead mountain guide and additional(s) mountain guide(s) for Mont Blanc climb will join us for dinner. For Mont Blanc Ascent, there will be one guide with 2 clients so one or two more guides will be with the group in the next following days, depending on the group size.


    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 6

    Climb to the Gouter hut and then the Mont Blanc (4810m).

    Today is D-day! After a very early start (can be 1 am, 4 am or 7 am depending on weather conditions) we will climb to the Gouter hut and then the Mont Blanc (4810m) then after the summit we will stay in the Tete Rousse or Gouter hut for the night.


    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 7

    Second chance to climb the summit; descend to Le Fayet.

    Today we will have a second chance to climb Mont Blanc for those who did not have the time or the energy to do it the day before, or in case of bad weather. Then we descend to Le Fayet for our well deserved break, where we spend the night.


    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    End Le Fayet.

    End at the hotel in Le Fayet in the morning.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info




There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts and 4 evening meals included.

Please also note that no refund will be given for meals not taken or taken other than where designated. Beer, wine, coffee or tea, bottled water and other drinks are not included. Vegetarians: In France, hotels and restaurants are not geared up to provide separate vegetarian menus, especially smaller establishments in the mountains. Vegetarians will usually find that there is little difficulty as long as they are prepared to be reasonably flexible. 


The main climbing season is from June to September. Our trips run during this time; when finding a window of suitable weather is most likely. Mont Blanc always attracts variable weather conditions and although we have built a degree of flexibility into this itinerary there may be disruptions. The possibility of the climb being abandoned or the route changed in case of unsuitable conditions must be accepted. In the overall interests of safety, the guides' decision will be final. Expect warm temperatures (15 to 25ºC) in the valleys, cool (5 to 15ºC) on the passes (though it will feel colder if wet and windy) and very cold (-20ºC) on the summit of Mont Blanc. Strong winds are very likely on the summit; in this case, it can feel even colder. It can and does rain and especially on the high passes it can be surprisingly cold at times.

Is this trip for you?

This trip is grade 8 - Tough/Tough +
We have planned this itinerary to include a three-day climbing / trekking section with four nights staying high in mountain huts. Much of this route is spent on glaciers and there is plenty of time for training in snow and ice climbing (ice-axe and crampon skills, ropework etc, which you do not need to be familiar with prior to the trip). We spend much of the time at around 3,000m which is essential for helping acclimatisation. The climax of the week is the summit attempt which usually takes two days.

The training is undertaken by a professional High Mountain Guide, with a ratio of one guide to six clients. Additional guides will join us for the attempt on Mont Blanc summit; here the ratio will be 1 guide to every 2 clients. In good weather, the ascent is not particularly technical but it is extremely arduous. To have a reasonable chance of success a high degree of fitness and stamina and some previous experience of altitude is highly recommended. Please note that you cannot achieve the required level of fitness during the week - you must arrive fit.

Please note that although the itinerary presented here is the one we intend to follow there is a high chance that variations may be necessary. Many factors can affect climbing in high mountains. Individual member's abilities vary, as does their ability to learn the technical skills needed. Adverse weather during the week may curtail training or even make the climb impossible, while previous weather conditions may have left the mountain in a difficult or dangerous condition. Any such factor may mean we have to re-arrange or curtail the programme.

Essential Information

During the early part of the week, the guides will assess your progress and skill levels. Even in good weather conditions, you will not be allowed to start the ascent unless the guides feel you have a reasonable chance of success and this will depend on local conditions, fitness and having grasped the necessary skills. There can be no guarantee that guides will be available to organise and run an alternative climb for anyone not able to undertake the ascent of Mont Blanc. This will depend entirely on the size and make up of the group. The guide's main aim will be to ensure your safety and the maximum chances of success on the summit attempt for those fit and able enough to do it. Additional private guides may be available but the cost of this is not included in the price.

What are the chances of reaching the summit?
Obviously, you need to be confident of your fitness level in order to attempt this trip, but the main reason for failure is usually weather conditions. Thankfully the Alps enjoy long periods of stable weather in the summer, with regular thunderstorms in the afternoons that our guides are careful to avoid. However, due to its high altitude, any poor weather or strong winds on Mont Blanc can make a summit attempt too dangerous. In most cases, this can be forecasted and we will attempt to offer an alternative climb in the region (often Gran Paradiso 4061m in neighbouring Italy). As a guide we would expect about 30% of our trips each summer to be affected by bad weather, making reaching the summit Mont Blanc impossible. Even with a client to guide ratio of 2:1 a situation can develop where both clients will have to turn back if the guides consider that one of the clients should not continue.

Walking and ascent conditions
During the training and the climb, you will carry your own personal equipment, water and packed lunches, plus communal equipment (first aid kit, safety items etc.) will be distributed among the group members. On the training days and ascent, most of the time you will be walking on moraine, glaciers and snowfields. None of the ascents are extremely steep (approximate average would be around a maximum of 30 - 35º) but there is some exposure and you will encounter short steeper sections involving some rock scrambling, crevasses, bergschrunds and areas of snow instability and possible rock fall.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3943
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.


Hotels & Mountain Huts/Refuges

You will spend 3 nights in Hotel la Chaumiere or similar, in Le Fayet.  4 nights will be spent in mountain huts and refuges, with mixed, shared dormitory style accommodation. Single rooms for the hotel nights may be available for a supplement (contact our Sales team for details).

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3943
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.


Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3943
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Have you been on this adventure? Tell others what it’s like by writing a review.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.


What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros  Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.


2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros  Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.


3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros  Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.


 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 


Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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