Capucin Couloir

Chamonix

A steep and technical couloir that gives way to big open slopes in a magnificent setting.

Ski Touring Extreme

Distance
3.3 km
Ascent
318 m
Descent
1.3 km
Duration
1-2 hrs
Low Point
2.1 km
High Point
3.3 km
Gradient
65˚
Capucin Couloir Map

Follow the description initially for the Vallee Blanche and then Col du Tacul, ie tarting from the Aiguille du Midi cable car, exit the lift station and walk down the arête. Ski down the Vallée Blanche, crossing over to the Italian side. Continue skiing down the skier's right side of the Géant Icefall until just above the Salle à Manger. Transition here to skinning. Be aware of the La Noire serac now overhead which is sometimes active and has been known on occasion to reach the Salle à Manger, so this is no place to stop for a picnic. Skin up the Périades Glacier towards the Col du Tacul until you reach the steeper slopes below the Col du Tacul. Climb up a 200 meter, 45 degree couloir that takes you up onto the Col du Tacul itself. From here make one or two 30 meter abseils depending on the conditions. The start is briefly 50 degrees before quickly lessening to 45 and then 40. Trend slightly skier's left from where you can start skiing and continue down the couloir. After the couloir follow the more open and less steep slopes down onto the Leschaux Glacier. Be aware that in very lean conditions the exit onto the Leschaux could be blank rock slabs. Continue down the flat lower section of the Leschaux Glacier, quickly reaching the Mer de Glace and continue down the Vallée Blanche.

Difficulty

Extreme

Extreme skiing terrain above 45 degrees. These routes are reserved for experienced experts.

High Exposure (E3)

3 out of 4

In case of a fall, death is highly likely.

Remoteness

4 out of 4

In the high mountains or remote conditions, all individuals must be completely autonomous in every situation.

Best time to visit

January, February, March, April

Features

  • Cliffs

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Skins
  • Crampons

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area