Unforgettable Ski Touring on the Haute Route

August 11, 2008 by  
Filed under features

Many skiing enthusiasts are always looking for a new challenge and new skiing adventures. One of the most famous skiing tours, which offers skiers beautiful slopes, testing terrain and major satisfaction on completion, is the Haute Route. Skiers can select a skiing route that will suit them, and then tackle the slopes from France to Switzerland on a skiing tour that lasts approximately seven days. Preparation is key when taking on the Haute Route, as many skiers only complete fifty percent of the route and have to come back again to try to make it to the end.

The Haute Route was first mapped out by hikers from an Alpine Club in the year 1861 and named the High Route. Its name was later translated in French when it was skied for the first time in 1911. Walking the hundred and eighty kilometers from Chamonix in France to Zermatt in Switzerland takes approximately twelve days, while skiing the route cuts the time by almost five days. Although skiing might be faster, it does not make the route any easier or shorter. Even though high peaks, glaciers and long exhausting days await the eager skier, the magnificent beauty of the slopes and surrounding area and additional ascent choices to the peaks along the route makes the Haute Route worth every kilometer.

There are variations on the route so that skiers are not forced to take the original route. There is the Verbier Variation, Backward Haute Route, the Grand-Lui variation and the Classic Route. The Verbier Variation is the most popular of all the routes as it has the best skiing line in comparison to the other routes. It is a seven day route with stops in the different huts along the way, such as the Trient Hut, Mont Fort, Prafleuri, Dix and Vignette Hut. Skiers will need six days to complete the Backward Haute Route, which starts in Zermatt and ends in Chamonix. The Grand-Lui is a very technical route that is approximately eight days of skiing and begins in Argentiere Village in France. Skiers will need to be confident in their skiing skills to navigate the long ascents and steep descents along the way. The Classic Route will take skiers on a adventure that follows the footsteps of the first climbers and skiers, and skiers can prepare themselves for difficult climbs and mountaineering, therefore mountain climbing experience and the knowledge of using crampons and ices axes is essential.

For skiing tours that will excite, thrill and challenge, the variations available on the Haute Route are everything skiers could wish for. From breathtaking views to spectacular slopes and glaciers, skiers will leave the Haute Route with unforgettable memories and the drive to return.