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As of 11 May, the SAC huts will be allowed to open and section tours will be possible again - however, some restrictions will remain in force.

Disclaimer

Hiking or climbing on routes in alpine terrain requires good physical health, meticulous preparation and technical skills in mountain sports. The routes presented here are undertaken at one’s own risk. If you want to safely practice mountain sports, taking training courses run by experts is highly recommended by the SAC. All the contents of the SAC Route Portal are put together with utmost diligence. However, the Swiss Alpine Club and the authors cannot guarantee that the information provided here is up-do-date, correct and complete. Therefore, the SAC and the authors cannot be held liable for possible errors.

From Refuge d'Argentière via the Glacier du Milieu (WSW-Flank) (Normal route) Aiguille d'Argentière 3898 m

  • Difficulty
    PD+
  • Ascent
    4–5 h, 1143 m
  • Descent
    26 m

Though not a four-thousander, the Aiguille d'Argentière is a large and impressive peak. The north side of the mountain has lost so much of its firn/glacier covering that the classic north face route has unfortunately lost its beauty and will not be described. On its south side however, you will find many good classic tours, one of which, the Arête du Jardin, will be described here. Scattered along the southern flanks of the Arête du Jardin, in the vicinity of the Refuge d'Argentière, there are also a high number of modern sport climbing routes in excellent rock. The normal route, shown here, is an enjoyable glacier and ice tour. From the Refuge you basically follow the narrow Glacier du Milieu all the way to the summit.

Route description

Refuge d'Argentière - Glacier du Milieu

From Refuge d'Argentière (2771 m) follow the path heading NNW, which leads under the SW ridge to Glacier du Milieu.

Glacier du Milieu - Aiguille d'Argentière

Climb up through the ablation zone onto main body of the Glacier du Milieu. Follow the glacier uphill, bearing leftwards (north) initially to pass close by a distinctive gendarme (La Vierge, P. 3306), 2 hours. Near the foot of the gendarme, you must navigate a kind of bergschrund, before climbing up over the initially flat, then ever steepening firn flank to the col. From here a snow ridge leads southwards to the highest point (3897 m), 4 hrs total.

Descent

Follow the route of ascent.

Additional information

Departure point
History

Lionel Dècle and Y.A. Hutchinson with Mountain Guides Abraham Imseng and Laurent Lanier, 14. August 1880 (in descent).

Author

Bernhard Rudolf Banzhaf

Bernhard Rudolf Banzhaf has climbed countless peaks at home and abroad, including all 4000ers of the Valais Alps. He has been organizing trekking trips in the Himalayas and in Europe since the early 1980s. He was a member of the SAC's central committee between 1995 and 2003.

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