Day 1 & 2 ski touring around Matterhorn and Monte Rosa

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Period: 08-11 May 2017

Participants: Gareth Hughes, Jack Doyle, Daniel Catalin.

Day 1: Zermatt – Kl. Matterhorn – Breithorn (4164 m) – Guide D’Ayas Hut

Day 2: Guide D’Ayas Hut – Mezzalama Hut – Passo del Naso (4100 m)- Gnifetti Hut

Day 3: Gnifetti Hut – Zumstein Sp (4563 m) – Margherita (4554 m) – Monte Rosa Hut

Day 4: Monte Rosa Hut – Stockhornpass (3387 m) – Findelgletscher – Zermatt

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Day 1: Zermatt – Kl. Matterhorn – Breithorn (4164 m) – Guide D’Ayas Hut

Gareth came with the idea and the plan of a ski touring trip (4 or 5 days) around Matterhorn and Monte Rosa carrying our own food and sleeping in huts. It was the chance to go into a new area and summit some 4000 m peaks, so I was keen.

First day we were 4 lads, as Rob Powell was part of the initial plan. Unfortunately his ski binding broke, so he had to return back home after skinning with us up to Breithorn.

Started the trip with rain in Zermatt, but as we got up high the weather turned from thick clouds into blue sky.

Summiting Breithorn (4164 m) was fun, the sharp ridge together with the fog and the wind made the atmosphere for some interesting photos.

As you look on the map, you see that Breithorn is located at the border between Switzerland and Italy.

We skied down in the Italian side and got at the Guide D’Ayas Hut (3420 m) around 16:30. Very pleased to see how cozy the winter room of the hut is, as there was no guardian there in this period of time. Had to melt snow to make water to drink & cook. Jack showed us skills as a chef, cooking a delicious meal.

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Day 2: Guide D’Ayas Hut – Mezzalama Hut – Passo del Naso (4100 m)- Gnifetti Hut

This was a long day that required a complex navigation through glaciers with lots of crevasses and seracs. We have started at 8:00 with a tricky 400 m ski descend towards Mezzalama Hut (3036 m). When skiing down from D’Ayas Hut, make sure you go in the skiers far right and not directly down as there is a vertical drop!!

Skinning up towards the Col of Perrazispetz (3850 m) on Petit Glacier de Verax was possible only using our ski crampons.

From there, a short ski descend of almost 200 m and then a long skinning up towards Passo del Naso (4100 m).

Skiing down from Passo del Naso was not that easy in the actual conditions, as it was a little bit icy.

Castor (4223 m) didn’t look safe to climb (icy), so, next time!

Good weather and hot all day. Lots of peaks everywhere as well as crevasses and seracs made it feel like Himalayas.

At 17:30 we got at the Gnifetti Hut (3647 m), the guardian still there as it was a group of 5 clients with a guide skiing for few days in the area. We were aloud to sleep for free in the winter room (only 4 places!). Had to melt snow to make water to drink & cook. It’s a huge hut, 176 places!

Day 3 & 4: here

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