Glacier Haute Route ⇑

Running the Chamonix to Zermatt Glacier Haute Route

Glacier Haute Route: The Chamonix to Zermatt Classic!

Not just for skiers or hikers   

→ 88km   

↑ 6000m

Δ 3710M 

♦ Hard

Θ Point-to-Point

Why we ran the Glacier Haute route...

It wasn't until after we were off the glaciers and fine, that I let go of the "What are we doing? Should we be out here?" I couldn't decide if my apprehension was justified or not. Was it just me? Did it seem riskier to me than to the guys? They didn't hide their concerns either though, and we each found ourselves questioning. When we finished though, it felt not just like surviving something, but also like overcoming a weakness in my thinking and proof to myself that I had the nerve to face the situation cooly. Of course, there is certainly the possibility that things could have gone differently, and then this story would be a cautionary tale instead. 

For the whole story, visit ALPSinsight's Running the Glacier Haute Route.

Start : Chamonix (Le Tour)  ||  Finish : Zermatt
The tour in 4 stages
  1.  Chamonix : Champex   23km / 2127m+ 2156m-
  2.  Mauvoisin : Chanrion   13km / 872m+ 255m- (ideally combined with stage 1 after a shuttle between Champex and Mauvoisin)
  3.  Chanrion : Bertol   26km / 1955m+ 1127m-
  4.  Bertol : Zermatt   26km / 1033m+ 2645m-

Learn more about the skills necessary to run Way Ups with ALPSinsight's Education pages for Mountain Running, Glacier Travel, and Mountain Sport Fitness.

Start: 46.003673, 6.946832
Town:  Le Tour
Canton:  Haute-Savoie
Country:  France

  • We don't recommend to strike out to run the Glacier Haute Route without previous experience on this particular route, knowledge of glacier travel, solid companions, and stable conditions. Know options and be flexible.

  • What we carried: Typical trail kit- tights, warm layers, head torch, silk sleeping liner, toiletries, gloves, cap, water, and snacks in a 15-20 liter pack, with the addition of crampons, ice axe, ice screw, harness, Petzl RAD System for glacier safety.



Leaving Le Tour on day 1.


Buffed singletrack was far more relaxing than crevassed glaciers. On the way to the Chanrion Hut.


Leaving the Chanrion Hut behind and headed for the Glacier d'Otemma.


Life on the glacier.


Heading up the Glacier d'Otemma.


Pascal and Kim entering a crevassed zone on the Col de l'Evéque.


Back on dirt en route to the Cabane de Bertol.


Kim heading to the Bertol, barely visible directly above her head.


Pascal and Kim on the Glacier du Mont Mine after leaving the Cabane de Bertol.


Taking in the views from the summit of the Téte Blanche.


From the Tête Blanche begins a very long descent to Zermatt.


With the glaciers finished, stress levels drop and the trails lead to Zermatt.


Kim leaving the alpine world behind.

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