Photoset: The Haute Route
I'm eight days and nine passes into the Haute Route, a twelve to fourteen day walk from Chamonix, France to Zermatt, Switzerland. In some ways this is the toughest hike I've done this year. Some days you're hiking up over 5,000 feet to the pass and then coming most of the way back down to the valley to sleep. The trails are often quite steep and rocky, not the nicely graded ones I got used to on the John Muir Trail. Add to this a couple days of hot humid weather, followed by three rainy, cold days and you have a recipe for a challenging, though rewarding, adventure. I've been very fortunate to have my friend Dan make a last-minute decision to join me for the first week of the trip (You may remember Dan from my Camino de Santiago posts).
Despite, or sometimes because of, the above challenges we've had a very memorable trip. We've camped to save money when possible and also stayed in a few very cool mountain huts. We've met some truly great people. We've seen gorgeous peaks and charming little villages. We've found some very tasty food (of course). We've been hot and tired. We've been cold, wet, and tired. And we've been tired, full, and very, very happy.