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~ Tuesday 31st May 2011

 An excellent Chamonix based weekend - it's impressive what can be achieved in a 2 day trip to the Alps. We started off on Sunday using the Midi lift, which is quite pleasant in low season - no queue and only a dozen people on the lift.

Recent snow has settled fast and we found perfect conditions on the Pointe Lachenal traverse, plus blue skies and no wind, all very enjoyable.

Pointe Lachenal

With time and enthusiasm to spare we crossed over to the Col du Midi and climbed the arete up to the Cosmiques hut. In snowy conditions this is great fun, good mixed climbing with hot chocolate waiting at the top! As usual, the haul back to the lift station was longer and steeper and hotter than expected....

The Tacul normal route is looking unpleasant -  the hut guardian described it as "sporting". Look centre of picture where the track disappears for 300m into the crevasse/serac - the wall above is a good 40m high. 

For a change on Monday we drove over to Solalex in Switzerland and headed up to the Miroire d'Argentine. Usually still too snowy at this time of year, it's currently dry and snow-free. Planning to do the normal route we arrived just behind 4 teams so diverted up the excellent and sustained Direct route.