Gervasutti Couloir, Tacul

Aiguille du Midi

Chamonix

Skyway Monte Bianco

One of Chamonix's most famous and sought after steep descents; sustained and an immaculate ski line.

Ski Touring Extreme

Distance
4.2 km
Ascent
629 m
Descent
1.1 km
Duration
2-3 hrs
Low Point
3.2 km
High Point
4.2 km
Gradient
51˚
VIEW ON MAP
Gervasutti Couloir, Tacul Map

Description

A ground breaking descent for its time, and another important part of Sylvain Saudan's legacy as the original extreme skiing pioneer. Don't be fooled by the fact it was skied in 1968, it is a top end extreme run which is very sustained. Many of today's top riders have dreamed of making fast GS style turns down this couloir, however it's notoriously difficult to get in consistent powder conditions.

Although the large serac overhanging the line has become more benign in recent years, it is still best not to climb the line. Instead, approach via skinning up the North Face of Mont Blanc du Tacul. If there is too great an avalanche risk on the Tacul North Face, it is also possible to climb just to climber's left side of the Tacul Triangle on ice up to 60 degrees. After locating the entrance to the top of the Gervassutti Couloir, be sure to test out the snow before committing, the top can sometimes be very icy. Ski down and traverse out right before skiing the fall line. Skin back to the Midi or continue down the classic 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

May, June

Features

  • Cliffs

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Skins
  • Crampons

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area