Mont Oreb, North Couloir

After making it to the Midi at 8am on a windy day we only made it as far as the mid station before they informed us the top was closed for the day and we had to think of another plan. Luckily Jesper and Mikko had a Plan B, the North Couloir of Mont Oreb. After ditching the glacier gear and 60m ropes we originally planned on using we got into the car and headed to Buet for the 1500m climb to the summit of Oreb.

As we were nearing the top of Buet we turned off the skin track and headed along the traverse to the top of Oreb to find the entrance of the Couloir. Ross and Tom skied this line a month or so ago and had difficulties entering the corniced couloir. After we were convinced we found the right line Jesper went in on a rope to test the snow. After he was convinced it was a ‘go’, he quickly took off the rope and skirted away from the looming cornice just meters above his head. Making the first turns above the large cliff you then traverse in to the main couloir.

Once we were in the couloir we were welcomed with cold fresh snow and a fun and fast 700m of descent. With some pockets of unstable snow we went one by one and played it safe in the flat light enjoying every turn.

A quick ski down the river back to Le Buet and we had a round trip time of 6 hours. A fun day and a great line given the conditions!

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Aiguille du Tour, Table Couloir

When Tim is coming along with his camera I can save weight and leave mine at home. A great photographer and a great ski partner. Cheers Tim

Tim Oliver Alpinist

Following another dump of fresh snow, some sunny high pressure has rolled into Chamonix and with it some excellent conditions for ski touring. After chatting over a couple of ideas with Joel, we ultimately decided to head over to the Aiguille du Tour to check out its Table Couloir. The couloir is a classic of the Mont Blanc massif that neither Joel nor I had done before, so we were both psyched to check out something new and hopefully ski some good snow too.

Aiguille du Tour, Table Couloir (2 of 16)Aiguille du Tour, Table Couloir (3 of 16)The tour starts in the Argentière basin with a climb up to the col du Passon. As always, the views in the basin were amazing. Conditions for both climbing and skiing are still looking a bit dry on the north side, but a lot better than they were a few weeks ago.

Aiguille du Tour, Table Couloir (4 of 16)

Joel bootpacking up to the col du Passon.

Aiguille du Tour, Table Couloir (5 of 16)Aiguille du Tour, Table Couloir (6 of 16)Aiguille du Tour, Table Couloir (7 of 16)

After a 600m ascent to the Col du Passon and a traverse across the Le Tour glacier…

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