A stunning journey up a really impressive glacier to a remote, modern hut









FATMAP difficulty grade



Due to the large vertical interval with no lifts this side of Mont Blanc is far quieter than the French side.

It is certainly more effort on the summit day, but the approach to the Gonella Hut is no longer than the approach to the highest hut on the French side.

The summit day is certainly longer though, so this should be a route for the fit only.

Head up the Val Veni as far as possible and park just below a barrier in the road, at about 1700m.

Walk up the road towards the Lac de Combal, until you see the hut signposted off to your right.

There are various paths that all lead up onto the lateral moraine of the Miage Glacier, which is rubble strewn in its lower section.

It is really common to see herds of ibex here, which adds to the wild and remote feel.

Descend easily onto the glacier and follow a vaguely marked trail through the boulders, roughly in the middle of the glacier, continuing to head NW at about 2420m, where there are various different glacial junctions.

At some point the glacier will become snow covered- make sure you have a rope on before this point as it is heavily crevassed.

You are looking for the path off the glacier on the N side, which may be vague, soon becoming more obvious once you leave the glacier.

From here to the up is now non glaciated and the path rises steeply above the bank of the glacier, before traversing more gently R on a vague bench.

The final section to the hut is easier, though has the odd scramble with rungs.