Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Going for Snow this Summer

These pictures reveal July's summer destination for me and my husband: Monte Rosa (4633 mt), second highest peak in Europe after Mount Blanc.

We decided to take up a unique offer to join another couple and splurge on the instruction of glacier mountain know-how with a professional mountaineer guida alpina scheduled for the end of July. We will be sleeping at above 3000 mt for 6 days and will be more worried about frost-bite than sun-poisoning, despite the traditionally sea-faring date. After the course, we should be able to save each other from crevices, learn how to use an ice axe properly and be experts at toughing out pretty extreme cold.

I am curious how our state of mind will be during the week. Everything is more difficult at those high altitudes and sleeping may not be easy at the lodge for the same reason. I remember my strange nightmares from last year's overnight on top of the Dolomite's Civetta. The lodge where we are staying this time, Rifugio Città di Mantova (3498 mt), is almost twice as high as last year's Rifugio Torrani (2132 mt). I am in very good physical condition this year, after working out well over the winter but this adventure will surely be a challenge, nonetheless.

At our age, either this will be the first or the last time we can do something like this on such a massive mountain while under the safe tutelage of a mountain expert.

I can't wait to see sunrise over that mountain!

Now it's time to start running an extra few miles a week and start buying gear.

I'll keep you posted on how the training and preparation are proceeding.


  1. Irene,

    I pulled up your blog sigte today and have added it to my Favorites List so I can check it out a couple of times a week when I am bouncing arount to various websites at the office. My next on-line adventure today will be Google Monte Rosa, your hicking destinatioin in July. Should be an interesting week for you for the people you will meet not just the physical climbing that you will experience...I will follow your comments with interest. Tell us a lttle more about the couple who you will be hiking with.

    Today is Tuesday after the memorial Day weekend which was hot and humid - in the 80's - and ended with a thuderstorm yesterday afternoon just as I was getting ready to to Campus which opened this weekend. I did get a swin in on both Saturday and Sunday but not yesterday. Today it has been rainy and cool all day...we really have had a wet spring this year.

    Hard to believe that Reunion is just a couple of weeks away. Hope to get up to see Aunt Greta this weekend.



  2. I'm glad to see you are following. We have yet to meet the other couple but have a phone number contact as of last Thursday.

    Enjoy your swims.