Ascent of Chamechaude on 2014-08-28
|Others in Party:||Twm Stone -- Trip Report or GPS Track|
|Date:||Thursday, August 28, 2014|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
| Motorized Transport to Trailhead:||Car|
| Elevation:||6831 ft / 2082 m|
Ascent Trip ReportA beautiful and mighty mountain despite being only just over 2,000 metres in elevation. An Ultra, the highest point in the Chartreuse Massif and fourth most prominent peak the whole of Metropolitan France.
It is said that the finest way to ascend is by Le Tour de Chamechaude which corkscrews clockwise up and around the mountain via Le Jardin and La Brèche Arnaud, however, given limited time and unsure of how exposed and difficult the rock climb up the Brèche might be we opted for the "voie normale" up the western side. Another interesting route up the north end of Chamechaude and indeed other hikes in the Chartreuse are described on the braemoor.co.uk website but I only discovered this later.
Taking time out from a cycling holiday in the Vercors we drove north, got somewhat lost in the back streets of Grenoble and eventually arrived at the large parking area at the ski centre at Col de Porte. From there it's a straightforward, mostly signposted and very clear trail zig-zagging up to the top. The path is nicely graded with tree shade for half the way. Very sociable and popular with a wide range of family and other groups. Getting onto the summit block requires an easy and not too exposed scramble of ten metres or so diagonally up with a fixed plastic-covered cable that one can use for assistance and/or security if you feel it necessary (being older and with more social responsibilities I made use of it, but my teenage sons did not). The summit is adorned by a large wooden cross and has simply stupendous views in all directions particularly to Mont Blanc and the cliffs of Dent de Crolles and the Grand Som in the NE, to the Vanoise and Ecrins in the E, and the Vercors in the S. We spent a happy half-hour on top sun-bathing, soaking up the views and watching paragliders circling below.
A stunning mountain which shouldn't be missed if you're in the region!
The summit of Chamechaude looking north towards Mont Blanc (2014-08-28). Photo by Peter Stone.
Click here for larger-size photo.
|Summary Total Data|
| Total Elevation Gain:||2481 ft / 756 m|
| Trailhead:||Col de Porte 4350 ft / 1325 m|
| Quality:||7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)|
| Route Conditions:||Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Scramble|
| Weather:||Hot, Calm, Partly Cloudy|
| Time:||1 Hours 45 Minutes|
| Time:||1 Hours 15 Minutes|
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