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Less energetic summer activities in Chamonix ?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Mrs sev112, me and miss nowateenagermisssev112 booked to go to Chamonix this summer .
Unfortunately since booking, I’ve been diagnosed with a condition which is going to stop me doing anything much more than easy walks at most. So rafting, via ferrata, poss even going to the top of MtBlanc are probably off limits for me now.

So locals and experts, what can I / we be looking out to do ? My wife and daughter might well go and do some things without me, but if we can find some things we can do as a family, suggestions would be welcomed Smile

Lots of books sat in mountain restaurants might not be the worst thing
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@sev112, how unfortunate. Do you trust your vet or go against their orders?

How were you going to get up Mont Blanc?

Top of Brevent is not as high as Aiguille du Midi. There’s a reasonable restaurant.

The Skyway from Courmayeur apparently magnif.

Pony trekking?

57 course lunch at Maison Filippo?
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Parc Merlet for some alpine animal photography?

New and apparently fine restaurant on the Mer de Glace?

Ebiking rental from Zero-G?

Day out in Geneva and/or Annecy old Towns?

Medieval reconstruction Yvoire?
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It’s more what I can handle, rather than specific advice, I’m just permanently knackered all the time.

Electric bikes sound a really good idea - thanks for that Smile

I think we’ll buy a family lift pass and go up, and then see if I’m up to asking back down from Brévent / Flegere and Les Houches,
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Walking back down to the valley from any of the ski areas can be a knee punishing slog. Can be a long way if you're fatigued.
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Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
Walking back down to the valley from any of the ski areas can be a knee punishing slog. Can be a long way if you're fatigued.


Thanks Smile I don’t mind downloading if we can have a range of easy to medium walks
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Look for walks around the grand and petit balcons
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Lac de passy in the valley is a great day out - warm, clear water, great swimming, beaches etc.
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Is there still luge en ete available at Planards?

My go to suggestion, if you don’t mind the drive, is Martigny - the Fondation Gianadda is generally worth a visit, there’s Roman stuff and Switzerland is always worth a visit on 1 August (National Day festivities).

Do the vertical tour du Mont Blanc (over by cable car, back by bus) and spend a wee while mooching around Courmayeur.

The lake at les Houches was quite pretty last time we were there (bit dragon/damsel flies - I’m not clever enough to tell the difference), climbing to watch if you’re not up to taking part
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Yellow Pyranha wrote:
Is there still luge en ete available at Planards?

My go to suggestion, if you don’t mind the drive, is Martigny - the Fondation Gianadda is generally worth a visit, there’s Roman stuff and Switzerland is always worth a visit on 1 August (National Day festivities).

Do the vertical tour du Mont Blanc (over by cable car, back by bus) and spend a wee while mooching around Courmayeur.

The lake at les Houches was quite pretty last time we were there (bit dragon/damsel flies - I’m not clever enough to tell the difference), climbing to watch if you’re not up to taking part


Vertical Tour du Mont Blanc Not possible this year, sorry the panoramic is broken
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As@under a new name, said the Skyway (Punta Helbronner from Courmayeur) is magnificent, the view is as good as the Midi but the place is 2 generations better.

Courmayeur itself is worth a good few hours, the city of Aosta more than a day unless you hate old stuff.

A relax at the spa at Pre st Didier - go midweek, go for opening not later in the day.

If gentle exercise is ok, go up the lifts at St Gervais and roll down the blue run they have for MTB on a good (full suspension, hydraulic brakes) bike.

For a first uphill hike I would recommend chalet Floria, others in similar vain are Chalet Chapeau and Chalet de Cerro. If that level is ok, the next stage would be Montonvers to Aiguille du Midi mid station. And a visit to Rifugio Bonatti in Val Ferret for Lunch.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
There’s a good book by Hilary Sharp with all grades of walks in the Chamonix area. There’s lots of valley bottom walks. Refuges Loriaz and Buet are reasonably easy walks and very special.
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Thanks all Smile
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@sev112, have a lovely time snowHead
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Summertime visitors to Cham are now more interested in shopping and restauranting than hardcore sports.

The glaciers are largely gone, the snow up top is fading, and crazy temps over 30c in the town are becoming ever more common.

Take a tram to halfway up the hill. Hike down for a few hours. See the goats, eat some picnic, etc.

Take it steady when hiking. A lot of old folk slip and die there on surprisingly easy trails. Two in Cham in the past few weeks alone.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Quote:

Summertime visitors to Cham are now more interested in shopping and restauranting than hardcore sports.

Which is why of course they've had to lay on a special 'MTB bus' because the regular service was getting so no hikers could get on it, & probably why they've had to create 'activity slots' off Brevent to prevent the wingsuiters from hitting the para gliders.
Quote:

The glaciers are largely gone, the snow up top is fading, and crazy temps over 30c in the town are becoming ever more common.

Not sure about 'largely' but unfortunately can't argue with the overall point.
Quote:

Take a tram to halfway up the hill. Hike down for a few hours. See the goats, eat some picnic, etc.

As someone else stated above, the constant downhill from some of the mid-stations to the valley can really hammer the knees, better to walk the valley bottom or do some of the classic hillside traverses imo.
Quote:

Take it steady when hiking. A lot of old folk slip and die there on surprisingly easy trails. Two in Cham in the past few weeks alone.

Agree on the taking it steady, biggest summer killer in the hills is the heart. I actually think that a lot of the trails in Chx are trickier and more exposed than you'ld think reading the guides, I don't know where the surprisingly easy ones are. When my daughter was really wee I spent half of our walks with my heart in my mouth (she gave me a proper scare just last summer, having a wobble near a drop onto the MdG, and she was 11 by then).
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@sev112, Catch Aguille cable car to the top, mooch around for 10 mins avoiding all the tourists camera's (most dangerous activity of the day) and have a few ooh's and aah's, lift back to mid station, walk balcon Sud to glacier. Go into Glacier, more ooh's and aah's, walk back up to old restaurant, catch train down to town and drink beers.
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@Markymark29, you can try that, but I reckon the Grand Balcon Nord would be a much more direct route between those two points wink
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will you have a car?
Annecy is a great day out.
Dependent on when you are there try and catch a leg of the tour, should be less than an hours drive.
The spa in St Gervais has just reopened after 8 month renovation & now run by L'Oréal so should be special.
Tramway de Mont Blanc railway is over 100 years old & a special day out.
Again depamdant on when but large horse showjumping event being held in Megeve.
the traveling circus's are usually not bad.
My boys also like the banger racing in Passy but granted wife & teenage daughter may not be into that.
If none of that fits the bill, sit back in shade with a chilled beer & enjoy the view.
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midgetbiker wrote:

Agree on the taking it steady, biggest summer killer in the hills is the heart. I actually think that a lot of the trails in Chx are trickier and more exposed than you'ld think reading the guides, I don't know where the surprisingly easy ones are. When my daughter was really wee I spent half of our walks with my heart in my mouth (she gave me a proper scare just last summer, having a wobble near a drop onto the MdG, and she was 11 by then).


I think that's probably overstating the risk a bit really. The incidence of heart attacks and subsequent cardiac arrest isn't significantly different for people in the mountains compared to being at home. For non-cardiac deaths, the most common scenario is an unarrested fall most commonly caused by being off the marked and secured trail. In simple terms, getting lost and falling down the hill.

I wouldn't buy that trails in Chamonix are any harder or easier in general than anywhere else in the Alps. They're more frequented though without a doubt. Alpine trails are often harder than some in the UK but that's by no means always true, in the Alps trails are graded which they're not in the UK which is considered helpful. It's been proposed recently that UK trails receive grades for this reason.
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ise wrote:
midgetbiker wrote:

Agree on the taking it steady, biggest summer killer in the hills is the heart. I actually think that a lot of the trails in Chx are trickier and more exposed than you'ld think reading the guides, I don't know where the surprisingly easy ones are. When my daughter was really wee I spent half of our walks with my heart in my mouth (she gave me a proper scare just last summer, having a wobble near a drop onto the MdG, and she was 11 by then).


I think that's probably overstating the risk a bit really. The incidence of heart attacks and subsequent cardiac arrest isn't significantly different for people in the mountains compared to being at home. For non-cardiac deaths, the most common scenario is an unarrested fall most commonly caused by being off the marked and secured trail. In simple terms, getting lost and falling down the hill.

I wouldn't buy that trails in Chamonix are any harder or easier in general than anywhere else in the Alps. They're more frequented though without a doubt. Alpine trails are often harder than some in the UK but that's by no means always true, in the Alps trails are graded which they're not in the UK which is considered helpful. It's been proposed recently that UK trails receive grades for this reason.


Yes, most hiking deaths are old people with no muscles or balance, bouncing off the rocks to the bottom of the valley.
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Whitegold wrote:

Yes, most hiking deaths are old people with no muscles or balance, bouncing off the rocks to the bottom of the valley.


No, they aren't.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
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@midgetbiker, ha yes 😂
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@sev112,

This website is very good. May be a bit young for your daughter but have a look.
Its got lots of stuff to do that we weren't aware of despite going to Chx for a long time with kids.

https://montblancfamilyfun.com/
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good website, noted.
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Quote:

@midgetbiker, ha yes 😂


As an aside, and just out of interest, does anyone know why the Balcons are named the opposite to actual sides of the valley they're on? (i.e. Balcon Nord, Montenvers-Plan d'Aiguille, is actually on the southern side of the valley and vice versa..)
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Quote:

If gentle exercise is ok, go up the lifts at St Gervais and roll down the blue run they have for MTB on a good (full suspension, hydraulic brakes) bike.


Good idea. You can hire good bikes at the mid station at Bettex "Penz Sports" then take the bubble to the top. We did that with a friend who was suffering with asthma and they coped fine.
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@jma, because it’s facing north, and vice versa.

Perfectly sensible.
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Agree on the Tramway from St Gervias. How about going up the Montenvers railway and onto the glacier? Another vote for Annecy and Yvoire and Aosta day trips. Drive round Lac Leman is good as well. Eco lake at Combloux is a tip top favourite for us. You need to book though as they limit numbers. https://summer.combloux.com/equipment/1/202175-ecological-lake.html - a trip to Turin is also pretty quick from Chamonix, motorway all the way. The old town is lovely with a great Egyptian museum.
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