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About Chamonix

Mountain Sports

Chamonix is a popular winter sports resort in France. The 1924 Winter Olympics were held here. As the highest European mountain west of Russia, Mont Blanc holds a special allure for mountain climbers, and Jon Krakauer, in an essay in his collection Eiger Dreams, described the town as "the death-sport capital of the world" because Chamonix serves as an ideal playground for almost all types of outdoor activity, especially in their more extreme variants, such as ice climbing, rock climbing, extreme skiing, paragliding, rafting, canyoning.

Chamonix is famous for its spectacular cable car up to the Aiguille du Midi (3842m). Constructed in 1955 it was then the highest cable car in the world. Together with a cable car system going up to the Point Helbronner (3462m) from Entréves in the Aosta Valley (Italy) it is possible to cross the entire Mont Blanc Massif by cable car.

In the summer months Chamonix is a mecca for alpine mountaineers, drawn to the area by challenges like the north face of the Dru, the Frendo Spur on the Aiguille du Midi, traversing the Alps on the legendary GR 5 footpath or more accessible challenges like summitting Mont Blanc (by a number of possible routes).

Apart from high-mountain summer sports, Chamonix is also a destination for the hardcore mountain biker. As well as the obvious lift-assisted areas for Freeriders there are hundreds of kilometres of challenging hidden singletrack trails - often only found with the help of guides.

Chamonix is also a haven for advanced skiing and snowboarding. The Vallée Blanche glacier runs down from below Mont Blanc du Tacul and the Aiguille du Midi to the valley. This spectacular route can be skied or snowboarded, though care should be exercised due to crevasses. Aside from that, the valley has about six separate ski areas, including Le Brévent (a short but steep walk from the town centre), La Flégère (at Les Praz), Les Planards (ski area for beginners and early intermediates), Les Grands Montets (at Argentière) and Domaine de Balme (at Le Tours). Many of these provide challenging terrain, especially off-piste, with runs down to Switzerland.

There is also a ski resort at Les Houches.

Information thanks to Wikkipedia

 

 

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