After a few weeks of ski touring it feels like spring has arrived in Chamonix and the season is winding down. Well sort of..!
The weather has been a bit unsettled in the last week giving some interesting climbing conditions. On Tuesday, despite ever increasing winds from the north Alison and I managed to get a lift up to the Aiguille du Midi.
We had hoped that the Gabarrou-Albinoni would be sheltered from the wind.
Despite a tricky descent of the snow arete we eventually found reasonable shelter but decided to quit the route shortly below the top as the wind increased. Huge down draughts kept punishing us over the top of Mont Blanc du Tacul, and it wasn't making for a pleasant experience.
On Wednesday the wind delayed the opening of the Aiguille du Midi again, forcing Ulrika and I to change our plans for climbing to Thursday. But as usual a flexible approach paid dividends and we enjoyed a quiet and wind free ascent of the Cosmiques Arete.
As I write this it's -17 degrees at the top of the Midi and it's been sleeting in the valley once again. Maybe winter isn't quite over yet...?