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2023-08-27 TMB-002 Tour du Mont Blanc
|Event Location:||Tour du Mont Blanc (TMB)|
|Date(s) & Time:||Sun, Aug 27 2023 5:00 pm >> Sat, Sep 9 2023 10:00 am|
|Registration Opens:||Sun, Jan 1 2023 7:00 pm|
|Registration Cut Off:||Sun, Jan 8 2023 7:00 pm|
|Event Duration:||14 Days|
|Difficulty Rating:||D6: Advanced|
|Trip Leader(s):||Bill Wey|
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|Member Cost:||$25.00/Person (See Detailed Cost Info Below)|
|Who's Invited:||Members Only, 21 And Older Only|
|Maximum Group Size:||1|
|Minimum Group Size:||1|
|Number Registered So Far:||1 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)|
|Are Dogs Permitted:||No|
<<< Summary >>>
Come join the like-minded adventurers for a fortnight tour with some of the finest scenery in the world. This classic alpine route, the famous ‘TMB’ or ‘Le Tour du Mont Blanc’, circumnavigates Western Europe’s highest mountain over passes and through the valleys of three contrasting countries. This is a circuit with spectacular ranges of granite spires and glacier peaks. We will savor the culture and cuisine of France, Italy, and Switzerland and enjoy the majestic beauty of their legendary alpine scenery.
We will complete our TMB in 14 days and 13 nights. It is designed for members with positive, adaptive, and flexible spirits. Great physical fitness and endurance are also vitally important. I’ve spent a lot of time evaluating details over a dozen outfitter itineraries; and this final version is a well balance between cost and comfort. It also covers the entire TMB’s 107 miles in 9 trekking days and 3 rest/ exploring days to provide a good balance of challenge and enjoyment.
Outfitter will transfer our luggage in the morning to our next lodging. This will allow us only carry a daypack on the trail.
TMB-002 is set to start at the end of the annual UTMB, Ultra-Trail du TMB. The weather is a bit cooler in late August and September; and the chance of precipitation is a bit lower too on average. I’m extremely motivated to ride on the spirits of those ultra-runners. In this prestigious world-wide event, thousands of participants will be pre-qualified by rigorous criteria, and then only be selected by the final lottery system to enter. They'll be required to finish the entire TMB in less than 48 hours. I wish each of them the best of luck. I like their spirits, but much more prefer the choice of a 2 weeks’ time window. Can’t wait to go back and do it again next year.
Day 1: 2023-08-27 Sunday.
Arrive hotel in Les Houches before 5 pm. We will have a trip meeting at 6:30 pm details TBD.
Day 2: Les Houches to Les Contamines 19 km /11.8 miles, 7 h
Day 3: Les Contamines to Les Chapieux 20 km /12.8 miles, 8-9 h
Day 4: Les Chapieux to La Palud 30 km /18.6 milies, 9 h
Day 5: Rest day to explore La Palud
Day 6: La Palud to La Fouly 28 km /17.3 miles, 7 h
Day 7: La Fouly to Champex 13.5 km /8.3 miles, 4.5 h
Day 8: Rest day to explore Champex
Day 9: Champex to Trient 15 km/9.3 miles, 5.5 h
Day 10: Trient to Argentiere 20 km /12.8 miles, 6 h
Day 11: Argentiere to Chamonix 12 km /7.5 miles, 5 h
Day 12: Rest day to explore Chamonix
Day 13: Chamonix to Les Houches 14 km /8.6 miles, 6 h
Day 14: The fortnight group TMB trip ends after breakfast
<<< Difficulty Level >>>
Our event will be at the AOC D6 difficulty level. There are at least two D6 days by the definition of D6, but feels like many more. The “average” daily elevation change is about 3,300 feet ups and downs. The ascent and descent on TMB are much more condense and unwavering than any other day hiking trail which makes it feels much more difficult than the “average” number can convey. The continuous nature of daily hiking also adds additional challenge to our fitness and endurance.
There is no vertigo-inducing section on the entire TMB when we stick to the itinerary; and avoid the ‘variations’. Some of the sections can be shortened if desired by the use of cable cars, train, or a local bus service.
<<< How to prepare >>>
The better we prepare, the more we achieve.
We all have to be physically prepared and trained well before taking on such an epic trip. Best physical conditions enable us to take in everything surrounding us and fully enjoy the amazing natural beauty rather than being out of breath and feeling tired every time going uphill. We must do fitness training a couple of times a week for a minimum 6 to 9 months, and also hiking the steepest mountain hills available to us. My favorite is Kennesaw Mt. which is local, beautiful, and very convenient.
Following guide books are excellent resources for the preparation of TMB tour.
Tour du Mont Blanc: Real IGN Maps 1:25,000 - no need to carry separate maps (The Great Treks of the Alps). If you only buy one book for TMB, then this is the one.
The Tour of Mont Blanc: Complete two-way trekking guide (Cicerone Trekking Guides). The small map booklet is well worth the price.
Tour du Mont Blanc: Includes 50 Large-Scale Walking Maps & Guides to 12 Towns and Villages - Planning, Places to Stay, Places to Eat (Trailblazer)
<<< How to get there >>>
Take flight to Geneva and arrive in the morning or early afternoon local time. The flight is most likely scheduled the day before our “Day 1” because of the time difference and trans-Atlantic flight. Take a 60 miles (1 hr 40 min) bus ride from Geneva airport to Chamonix Sud Bus Station, France. Bus ticket can be reserved in advance. Walk 7 minutes from Chamonix Sud Bus Station to train station Aiguille du Midi, then take a 15-min train ride (5 stops) to Les Houches. Walk about 10 minutes to our hotel in Les Houches.
Alternative travel plans to Milan or Paris are also possible from there to go to Les Houches. Some more information is listed below.
<<< How to sign up >>>
This web page is designed so that you can only put yourself on the waiting list. Once you’re verified to be suitable for this trip, you will be moved to the participant list.
A very good self-test is you can comfortably finish 3x Kennesaw 10 hikes, each in 4 hours, in 3 consecutive days. They must be back-to-back in 3 days
Solid AOC D5+ records are required.
The payment of $25 only covers AOC Service Fee. All costs (transportation, lodging, meals & drinks, and etc.) are paid by members on their own. All costs are non-refundable.
Itinerary is subject to change at the discretion of the trip leader.
Expenses of 1 person are listed below.
$25 non-refundable AOC Service Fee
GBP 1,580 pay to the outfitter (= $2,054 assuming 1.30 currency exchange rate from GBP to USD)
This payment to the outfitter includes:
* 13 nights lodging (11 nights in 2, 3 and 4-star hotels, 1 night guesthouse, 1 night auberge) for twin shared hotel room, i.e. 2 twin beds shared by 2 persons.
* Luggage transfer (except day 3) - maximum weight 15 kg (33 lbs)
* 13 breakfasts and 4 dinners
* Information pack
* Emergency hotline
Payment to the outfitter is non-refundable:
* Non-refundable down payment GBP 150 at the time of registratoin.
* The balance payment is due 70 days before the trip starting date, and it is partially refundable.
* If anyone cancels 31 to 70 days before the starting date, the penalty is 50%, and 50% will be refunded.
* If anyone cancels 30 to 0 days before the starting date, the penalty is 100%, and there is no refund.
Following items are not included in the payment to the outfitter:
* All lunches & beverages
* 9 dinners
* 2 bus fares between Geneva airport and Chamonix Sud Bus Station
* Airline ticket
* Cable cars or (in Italy) a local bus service to shorten some sections
* Travel insurance
* Other personal expenses not mentioned
Alternative travel plan via Milan:
Delta has non-stop flights from Atlanta to Milan, Italy. Lower fare tickets may be offered by other airlines. Trains between Milan and Les Houches are about 6 hours one way depending on the connections. There is no direct route for the rail travel; there are at least 2 changes.
Alternative travel plan via Paris:
This route makes sense if you want to include visiting Paris as part of your trip.
Summer daytime temperatures on the TMB range from 60 to 75F. Evening temperatures generally drop into the 50s. Weather in the Alps can change quickly, so we must be prepared for variable weather conditions including sunny and rainy days, and even an occasional light snow.
Important information for paid events in which payment is managed through the AOC:
- Payment must be received by the payment due date and prior to participation in the event.
- Some paid events require a minimum number of registered participants. If that number is not met, the event will be canceled and refunds will be issued to those who have already paid.
- Third-party vendors often require damage deposits. Each registrant agrees to be liable for and required to reimburse the Atlanta Outdoor Club for any withheld deposits due to the actions of or damages caused by that registrant.
- No partial payments. All registrants must pay the posted Member Cost regardless of any agreement you may have with any party involved in the event.
- Read the event description carefully for additional information, and contact the trip leader(s) with any questions.
* We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines while participating in AOC events.
|Cost & Payment:|
A non-refundable AOC Service Fee $25 required by AOC.
|Payment Cut Off:||Payment must be received by the AOC on Sun, Jan 8 2023.|
|Make a Payment:||Click here for the details. PLEASE PAY AFTER YOU HAVE SIGNED UP BELOW.|
Cancellation/Partial Attendance: Please review the AOC cancellation policy.
There is no refund for cancellation.