Summer in Chamonix
CHAMONIX IN SUMMER
It’s mostly all about Mont-Blanc in Chamonix in summer, as from June to September is the busiest period for making a full ascent of the highest peak in Western Europe, altitude 4810m. But aside from mountaineering and alpinism, there is great rock climbing, for beginners as well as experts, and high altitude hikes that all the family can manage, such as Lac Blanc from the Flégère cable car.
There is also golf, tennis and fishing in Chamonix, with wind-surfing, stand-up paddle-boarding and diving in Lac de Passy, 20 minutes drive down valley. The lake at Passy has the closest beach to Chamonix and used to be known as Mont-Blanc Plage.
For the more adventurous there is canyoning and white water rafting, archery, Via Ferata and zip lining, glacier hikes to train for mountaineering up Mont-Blanc – or just the thrill of walking on a glacier in crampons. The famous Tour du Mont-Blanc is a long trail around the mountain passing though Chamonix, Switzerland and Italy – it is usually walked during the summer, but for the last decade trail-runners race around it in the Ultra Trail du Mont-Blanc at the end of every August.
Aside from all these activities, Chamonix has a fabulous café society in summer and is a mountain town of sophisticated festivals, such as André Manoukian’s CosmoJazz Festival and the Chamonix Adventure Festival celebrating film and photography.
The golf course in the Chamonix Valley stretches from Les Praz to Les Tines and has a full 18 holes. The course was designed by renowned golf course architect Robert Trent-Jones and is largely flat, as it is set on the valley floor.
The many challenging bunkers and water obstacles mean that the course hosts several international competitions over the summer. The clubhouse is fashioned in a charming log cabin style, with the fabulous restaurant La Cabane next door. Éhvoé can help book a tee time and green fee for all golfers wishing to play this stunning course.
The fantastic high altitude hiking of the Chamonix Valley can be easily accessed by using the lift systems that run during the summer season. A famous hike that is at up high on the Grand Balcon Sud, yet suitable for all the family, is from the Flégère cable car to Lac Blanc, altitude 2352m.
The views across the valley from Lac Blanc to Mont-Blanc and the Mer de Glace are breath-taking. Other hikes are more technical, involving cables, ladders and steep ascents, while some follow the old start routes for ascending Mont-Blanc, such as La Jonction. Éhvoé can advise on hikes, book walking guides and reserve the relevant lift passes for delivery the evening before your hike.
You don’t have to be an expert mountaineer to enjoy climbing in Chamonix. There is rock climbing from easy to very difficult at natural climbing walls at Les Gaillands, Servoz and Vallorcine, with several bolted routes above the hiking trails of the Grand and Petit Balcons Sud, such as the Aiguillette d’Argentière.
The are numerous climbing instructors available to teach everything from rock climbing and glacier hiking to mountaineering, as well as an indoor climbing wall for when the weather is wet. Éhvoé can book climbing guides and instructors, as well as the correct lift tickets, including those for the Montenvers rack-rail train and the Tramway du Mont-Blanc.
The cycling opportunities in Chamonix are varied and lengthy. The downhill all terrain bike tracks at La Flégère, Le Tour and Les Houches are fast and steep, while there are are ramps, tricks and jumps to enjoy on all three mountains.
For road bikers the Col des Montets to Vallorcine by the Swiss border and the Col de Forclaz over the border are legendary and worthy of inclusion on the Tour de France. While for tourers, there are great cycle tracks along the Arve river from Chamonix to Lake Geneva. Éhvoé can arrange the hire of mountain, road and touring bikes for all clients.