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Friday, August 19, 2011

Montenvers Mer de Glace - Hiking Trail

Just the night before we went to sleep, we wondered if the sky would pour in the next morning, for the weather forecast said the possibility of raining was above 60%. If it did rain, then we will need to cancel off the long hiking trip for the next day.

Well, the sky wasn't look very good when we woke up, but not a sight of raining though. However husband was not feeling too well, he got terrible sore throat since Day 1. We were thinking to cancel the hiking trip at first, but then we thought it would be a regret for not going again. Just last year, we had cancelled off this trip because William was not well at that time.

Husband said he could make it even though he didn't feel too good. After all, we don't think we will come back for the 3rd time next year. So, we decided to go on as plan.

In order to avoid the crowds, we departed very early.

By the time we reached mid section, Plan de I'Aiguille, the time was only 8.30 am. We were almost the 1st who arrived.

Husband said he was feeling much better after taking 2 highly effective pills. I felt relieved to hear that.

The scenery of the surrounding look quite different compared to the scenary we get to see in a sunny day. But, still as gorgeous as ever.

This time, we would take the trail that lead us to Montenvers Mer de Glace. It said the walking time is around 2 hr 15 min, but we think we just gonna need 4 hours instead.

Yo, let's go...

Like said, the mountain looks different in dome weather, looks very mysterious instead. Also, I prayed that rain won't pour on us that fast...

Our starting point.

We were the only hikers at that early morning. The feelings was great, for we could take some sweet time and walk on our pace.

Vincent who asked me to walk faster...

told Vincent I could catch up with them fast, I mean it.

The super giant rock that had attracted the boy's attention.

We have no idea what is it all about?

Still a very long way to go.

Although a long journey this would be, it's good to have the great views along the path to keep us company.

For quite a long time, we couldn't see anyone on the trail but us. Husband and I start wondering if we have followed the right path? But at that point of time, I guessed we just have to follow our intuition.

Anyway, I was not too worried yet, still stopping and admiring the spectacular scenery around.

Have been walking for around 30 min by then.

When sons saw that small ice field, they wanted to play on it. But it seems not very safe, so we had to say NO to them.

"Yes, I'm coming..."

Looking back to where we came from.

We continued the walk, with no stopping so far.

William and I had to descent in this way, the other 2 just jumped down.

I found myself singing this inside : rain rain go away, come again another day....

The walking sticks that they have found on the day before, had given them a lot of fun throughout the whole journey. Kids.

When I looked back from here, I could still see our starting point. Gosh, it looks like we didn't walk that far as I thought we have.

Anyway, we remained cool and continued our way...

Yeah, still a very long way to go...

Looking for a diamond?

The mountain ranges behind us. One of them is Aiguille du Midi.

Vincent always feel curious when he get to see this kind of rocks stacked up by someone.

The little one feels the same too.

We walked a bit further and finally saw the streams which the hotel people had told us before. He said the water is very pure and clean for drinking.

The hotel people also told us that the famous bottled water - Evian, had taken their water from here.

We could just drink the water from its original source. So cool...

Before we left, we put some water into our container. It's became precious drops to us.

He is, like our guardian angel, watching us from high.

Time to go again.

Some other streams along the way...

The last we saw.

Mountains at the opposite side, Chamonix valley at the bottom.

Couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the beginning points from here. I really thought we have walked very far away from it.

Well, life goes on, we need to go on...

Walked to a higher point and got to see things in 360 degree.

From here, we could see the hiking trail that we have walked on (Day 2) very clearly. The loop seems very small, but not at all.

Chamonix Valley.

I have gradually lost track of the time, guess we have been walking more than 1.5 hr by then.

We took a short break resting on this big rock.

The sun has show up a bit, but still quite cold.

They just love playing the rocks dearly.

Ok, let's go.

Up-and down a little bit, but not some hard one.

Just that, this is quite a long stretch to walk to its end.

...still haven't walked to its end.

Compare to the hiking trails on the opposite mountain, I felt this one is easier to carry.

But both offers spectacular views to the hikers.

Husband said these 2 trails have been ranked no.1 & 2 most popular trails in Chamonix. I'm so glad we have walked on both of them now.

I looked back, to see the way we have been going through...And I really feel how tiny we are in this land of nature.

When things didn't go my way, those hiking-in-the-wild's experiences have reminded me to see the setback in a macro perspective, and to take things less personally. This method works well for me so far.

We really enjoyed everything we get to see and play along the path. That's the fun of it.

How many years does it take to get eroded and formed these layers?

I think we have been walking more than 2 hours by then.

Only until this point, we have confirmed we were on the right track to our destination. It's quite a relief.

Another fun thing we were playing at that time was to look for crystal rocks everywhere along the path.

The boys constantly showed us the small rocks that they suspected are crystals, and we, like expert, to judge which they are or they aren't.

Judging from the distance, I think we have reached the White Lake should we were at the opposite mountain.

The sun has came out, no sight of raining, and the view around this area has become increasingly clear & astonishing as well. I could feel the energy flowing into me, from head to toes.

William saw the moon was still hanging in the sky, and he asked me why the sun & moon can appear at the same time? Told him I got to check it out from the internet later on.

I think the 3 of them looks quite the same, just the size is different.

Another short break.

A wild blue berry we plugged from where we sat.

Need to go up some more....

We were doing so far so good.

Personally, I like to go hiking with small children, because they will bring more fun and they don't have the idea to quit in the middle. This will make the adults more determine to complete the whole journey.

These 2 boys have given us so much strength in our life. Without them, life would be rather boring.

Greeted by some beautiful wild flowers.

From here, we have 2 options, both will lead us to the end point. One is by taking the path at higher elevation, and the other one is at the lower elevation.

The former option is more difficult but highly recommended by some hikers because it gives better view. We choose the difficult path.

Started to feel a bit difficult to walk up the steepness.

From other hiker's information, this difficult part shouldn't last very long, maybe a few hundreds meter.

Yet, this part is quite steep that we need to break several times to catch breathe. Husband told us that the end point shouldn't be too far away after we get over this difficult part.

During the break time, I took some pictures of the surrounding.

Aiguille du Midi at our back.

This mountain is at our back too.

The path behind us.

After 5 minutes, we continued.

I need to catch up with them fast....

They were waiting for me here.

The sun was bright that it's a perfect condition to take beautiful pictures.

just beautiful...

and I didn't want to waste the beautiful sun shine...

Picking up a small rock which he suspected is a crystal.

I like this picture.

Vincent had spotted a huge ants' colony at the side. Oh dear, those are red ants, should hurt miserably if we got bitten.

Stopping to look for crystal rocks again...Speaking of influences, the boys had successfully made their parents to start looking for the crystal too.

I was day-dreaming that we could find a super-rare crystals that will bring us incredible handsome fortune. See how the boys had added funs to the long hiking trip.

Yo, let's move faster...

Haha...look who had got real obsessed.

Another pile-up of rock. I started to speculate this was done by the adult-hikers who have no children in the group.

As we walked further, the more rocks we saw. They are everywhere now.

One day, you will cherish of all those beautiful pictures that mommy had taken for you.

The boys wanted to stand up there if we didn't stop them. To us, we saw danger. To them, they saw a hell lot of fun ! That's the kind of conflict we would had sometimes.

To be real honest, this place is so cool...

If all these rocks roll down, they will probably buried & ruined the whole township. So, I think stability is utmost important here.

When I get to see this scene in front, I was thrilled.

This is so like the scenes we can only get to see in a surreal movie, awesome!

Absolutely fantastic !!

I would like to describe this - an avenue of rocks.

The time was 11 am. We have walked 2.5 hr already.

This place is so beautiful that we have spent considerable amount of time at here.

Standing at Le Signal (alt. 2204 m).

Can hardly see those hikers if they were not moving.

We truly enjoyed these 360 degree views, with no blocking.

The world famous Montenvers Mer de Glace.

Met some other hikers who came from the place where we were about to go.

A very nice one, very artistic.

Think it said one can climb up to the peak by following the dotted-line route.

Snack time.

After 30 min or so, we started to walk down to our end point.

Then only, I saw the avenue which we have walked on just now has a well defined edge, like they have been cut by a sharp knife. I have no idea if this is God's act or human's act?

After 10 minutes walking down, we would see our end point from here...

Grand Hotel-Restaurant du Montenvers, our end point.

My battery pack had started to run flat at this time, so I got to be more selective in taking the pictures. I hate it.

We could see the whole Montenvers glacier from here, absolutely stunning.

Finally, I couldn't squeeze any energy out of the battery anymore. So, the pictures look discontinued abruptly from here. For this, I really regret for not buying a new battery before departure. So now, I lost my back up .

We have completed this one way trip in 3 hr 45 min, a little bit faster than our estimation. Feeling very exhausted, we rested in a restaurant for quite a long time, before taking the mountain train to go back to Chamonix Town.

As soon as we reached the hotel room, both husband and I went straight to sleep, left the amazing kids playing hide-and-seeks outside the room. We slept until 4 pm, then we woke up and brought the kids to their paradise for kayaking again.

That's Day 4, another very fulfilling day.


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