Les Droites : Normal route

Les Droites : Normal route

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Associated waypoints

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Map

  • Swisstopo - 46 - Val de Bagnes
  • Swisstopo - 292 - Courmayeur
  • IGN - 3630OT - Chamonix - Massif du Mont Blanc

Licence

General

activities:
durations: 1 day(s)
rock_types: granit
configuration: face

quality: medium

Rating

AD+     III 

heights

elevation min/max : 2700 m / 4001 m

height_diff_up: 1450 m

height_diff_difficulties: 600 m

slope: 50°

gear

glacier_gear: glacier_safety_gear

orientations

E W S N

description

A 4000m peak with couloirs, mixed ground, rocks, snow slopes and finally, an exposed summit.

Approach

From the Couvercle hut, go onto the Talèfre glacier by a descending traverse path then a short moraine, fixed ropes. Go due N before turning to the right at about 3000m in the direction of the E buttress of the Droites.

Route

Reach the foot of the right slanting couloir at side of the buttress. Climb it (200m, 45° approx.), to come out onto the SE face.
Continue going obliquely to the right to reach some rock terraces at the foot of a barrier of more difficult mixed and rocky terrain.
Go, more or less, obliquely to the left to overcome this barrier of about 100m. You can see a large, reddish rock tower which you keep on your left. Lots of variations are possible.
By a snow slope above, (45/50°,) reach the snow ridge which leads to the foot of a rocky tower. Turn it on the right, and in one pitch go up an easy, mixed corner to reach the summit block.

Descent

Get back to the rocky tower by an abseil of 25m below the summit, (or down climb.) to the left looking down there is a gully of snow/mixed. Go down it in a series of abseils, mainly on the true left bank. The abseils are from rock spikes, (old) pegs, slings, cord etc. Bring plenty of spare slings and metal rings to replace as necessary, and perhaps also some pegs.) There will be about seven abseils of 40m. (At the rock band near the middle the abseil point is on the right.)
The abseils bring you to the lower part of the SE face. A horizontal to the left looking down brings to under the Col des Droites which you descend (40°) to below the Jardin de Talèfre. (You need to loop around to the right, looking down, to regain the glacier.)

remarks

  • The descent faces SE, so do not linger. The abseil descent of the gully is particular exposed to snow sloughs, as well as ice and stone falls.
  • You can escape to the abseil gully from below the rock/mixed barrier.

Sensitive areas
There are sensitive areas on this route. Please refer to the map.

gear

  • 1 or 2 ice screws, a small set of nuts and friends, (e.g. No. 0.5 to 2.5 Wild Country). Two ice axes, (Bergshrund and slopes at 45/50°). Lots of slings.
  • For the abseils: cord/slings, metal rings, (« maillons rapides »), 2 or 3 pegs.

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