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Best Time to Hike the Tour du Mont Blanc

Is the Tour du Mont Blanc on your bucket list? If you're dreaming of ticking off this beautiful multi-day alpine trek with us here at Active Adventures, then all that's left to decide is when. The best time to hike the Tour du Mont Blanc is in the summer months: June, July, and August. The days are the longest and warmest, with the least rainfall, and the trails are buzzing with life. Most hikers are looking to complete the famous circuit, rather than attempting any serious mountaineering, and summer is definitely the best time for it. For that reason our 'Tour du Mont Blanc' trip only runs during the summer months. Our 12 day adventure is a great opportunity to tick off another alpine trek from your bucket list, and do so without sacrificing the creature comforts you love to have when you travel. Beautiful, challenging hikes, delicious local food, and an authentic experience with a local guide, is how we'd describe our 'Tour du Mont Blanc' adventure. Below we've detailed what you can expect from a hike on the famous trail in each month.

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Here's a neat infographic we've put together that gives you a good idea of when is best to hike the Tour du Mont Blanc:

Best Time to Hike the Tour du Mont Blanc Infographic


Summer Months

June

June is a great month to hike the Tour du Mont Blanc. You'll find much quieter trails during much of June, as the school holidays for France and Italy don't start until early July. You can also expect comfortable temperatures: 11 - 24C (52 - 75F). The average rainfall for the month of June is fairly low, only around 70mm (2.75ins), but we'd still recommend you take rain gear, as the weather on the route is notoriously unpredictable. In June we'd recommend making reservations for accommodation to avoid disappointment, although it's less crucial than in the high season months of July and August. When you travel with us you can relax knowing we've got all of these details covered for you.

July

 If you like to travel at the hottest time of year, then July is the month for you. Average temperatures are between 13 - 26C (55 - 79F), and the average rainfall is only around 60mm (2.4ins). July is one of the peak months for hikers on the Tour du Mont Blanc, and seeing as it's also school holidays for all three countries on the route (France, Italy, Switzerland), you can expect the trail to be buzzing with people enjoying the high temperatures on the famous route. July is definitely a month you'll need to make reservations for, to avoid disappointment after tough days on the trail.

August

Much like July, August is a peak month for people visiting the region to hike the Tour du Mont Blanc. Temperatures are nice and warm, and you can comfortably hike in shorts and t-shirt - 12 - 26C (53 - 79F). Rainfall numbers are similar to June, around 70mm (2.75ins) for the month, on average. If you enjoy hiking in warm weather, and don't mind sharing the trail with lots of other happy hikers, then August is a great month to get out there and do it!

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best time to hike the tour du mont blanc hikers rest with a drink overlooking mont de la saxe balcony region

 


Autumn Months

September

September is a good time to hike the Tour du Mont Blanc, as long as you're happy to hike in cooler, but not chilly weather. The average temperature range for September is 9 - 21C (48 - 70F). By September school holidays will be over for most, so the trail will be noticeably quieter, and rainfall figures for the month are fairly typical, an average of around 60mm (2.4ins). The fact that the majority of the mountain huts on Mont Blanc are open from June until around mid-September gives a good idea of when is best to hike the famous route. Our final trip of the season usually starts in the last third of the month of September, and overlaps into early October.

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October

October is when autumn really becomes noticeable in the Mont Blanc region. Our trips aren't on the trail beyond the first week of the month, as daylight hours become short, temperatures drop, and mountain huts are closed for the season. In October you can expect temperatures of between 5 - 17C (41 - 62F), and rainfall of around 75mm (3ins).

November

November is the final month of autumn, and temperatures start to drop to levels that make hiking uncomfortable without serious alpine gear. The region will begin to look even more beautiful as the cold weather brings snow lower and lower in the foothills, but hiking the Tour du Mont Blanc route in November could prove physically and logistically challenging with very few accommodations open, and weather conditions dangerously unpredictable. Average temperatures for November are 0 - 10C (32 - 50F), with expected rainfall of around 80mm (3.1ins).

best time to hike the tour du mont blanc hikers on the trail

 


Winter Months

December

The winter months can be unforgiving in the Mont Blanc region, and as temperatures drop further, the rain turns to snow, and the trail becomes more difficult and can require technical ability in some places. The winter months are a great time to try snowshoeing, but we'd always recommend going with a guide who knows the area. Average temperatures for December are -3 - 6C (27 - 43F), and precipitation, which generally falls as snow, of around 90mm (3.5ins).

January

Whilst January is a popular month for snowshoeing, hiking on the Tour du Mont Blanc route isn't advised. With that in mind, the area can be quite busy with tourists over the christmas period, but once the crowds have gone home, January is a good time for exploring in snowshoes as long as you don't mind the cold or the snow! Average temperatures for January -3 - 6C (27 - 43F), and expect around 100mm of snow (4ins).

February

Still winter in the northern hemisphere, February means a snow-covered Tour du Mont Blanc trail. It's a time of year that requires technical ability and knowledgeable local guides to explore the area, and we'd recommend waiting until a warmer time of year to get out there on an adventure. Average temperatures for February are -2 - 8C (28 - 46F), and you can expect around 70mm of snow (2.8ins).

best time to hike the tour du mont blanc aguille du midi cold

 


Spring Months

March

 March sees the first signs of warmer weather, but with spring comes the risk of avalanches. Average temperatures in March are 2 - 12C (35 - 54F), and this increase means snow is melting, rivers are rising, and the risk of rockfalls and avalanches are significantly higher. However March is a popular month for downhill skiing in the region, and on a blue sky day there are few places in the world more spectacular. We'd suggest avoiding the hiking trails this early in spring, and always have a guide if you're hiking in the off-season. Average rainfall is around 60mm (2.4ins).

April

April sees the end of the wintery showers, and rainfall levels drop to only around 50mm (2ins) for the month. Spring skiing is still in full swing though, and well worth checking out. In April in the Mont Blanc region you can expect to see new life, of both flora and fauna, green pastures shedding their white winter coats, and slowly warming temperatures 3 - 15C (37 - 59F). The risk of avalanche and rockfalls is still prominant though, which is why we'll avoid hiking the trails until summer really kicks in.

May

May is the warmest of the spring months, and typically a little wetter than April. The combination of more rainfall and warmer temperatures means that river levels and avalanche risk can still be very high. Spring skiing is virtually over and visitors will trade their ski boots for their hiking boots in preparation for much warmer conditions and beautiful flowering landscapes. May sees a nice jump in temperature to between 9 - 21C (48 - 70C), and rainfall is around 70mm (2.8ins).

best time to hike the tour du mont blanc picnic on the trail

 

Wonderful Trip!

“This was my first time on an Active Adventures tour, but I'll be back! Every aspect of the tour was outstanding - the guides, the organization, the accommodations and meals, and of course the other guests who shared the adventure. The route offered a good balance of challenge and enjoyment, and accommodated a range of hiking abilities and fitness, with some kayaking and mountain biking thrown in for variety. Jean-Marc has to be the best guide ever - you could not have picked anyone better.”
Colorado, United States
Tour du Mont Blanc, August 2017
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Trip Reviews

  4.73 out of 5 (from 87 reviews)

IT’S THE GUIDES

Mt Blanc is a giant rock. And this trip is essentially you walking around it. Doesn’t sound too FIVE star does it? Well, as rocks go it’s pretty spectacular. And you get to go through three countries where they speak a bunch of non-English languages that I’m sure I was supposed to learn in high school and use TWO currencies … (Really Switzerland? With the Franc … Get over yourself). Although there are other trips and other providers that will guide you around this rock, the Active trip is better because the people that work for Active are awesome at what they do. We worked with Lynette in NZ to book the trip and although we never met, we are pretty much best friends now. I can think of no better indication of a good business than return customers. Of the twelve people in our group, ALL of them were return Active customers. Why? The Guides.

For this trip, we had three French guides from Companie des guides de Chamonix and one Kiwi from Active. The French guides were enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and fun. I would recommend all of them without hesitation, especially Jean-Marie our driver (see below). But Kiwi Nick from Active was the Difference Maker. He is so incredibly nice that you know he has a wonderful girlfriend back in New Zealand. And they do all these wonderful couple activities that are super cool. Like paddle boarding. And you can’t wait to hang out with them because they’re awesome. And they booze, of course, because couples that DON’T booze should not be trusted #lifelesson. And you may say, ‘Well Neil that’s not appropriate saying that about a guide’s personal life’ ... but whatever. Lynette is not going to take it out of this review because we are best friends. Nick handles all his guide responsibilities extremely well but it feels like he is a part of the group. He’s experiencing and sharing this trip along with you rather than just showing you Mt Blanc. Rarely will a guided trip like this go EXACTLY to plan. Weather, injuries, construction, conflicting personalities among the group, etc. are just some of the problems the guides need to be prepared to deal with quickly. Thankfully we had few of these issues, but Nick was always attentive to our enjoyment. I’m still not sure how he put up with me. I know how horrible I am. I live me every day.

Beyond the guides, the trip is strong.
ACTIVITIES: Although you are hiking in a relatively compact area the hikes are varied and challenging enough to make that post-hike beer taste awful nice. The kayaking day was beautiful but marred by our decision to use a double kayak. Or as they should be known, “Murder Boats”, because after about 5 minutes in a double kayak you want to bludgeon each other to death. Get the single. The last day we did the rafting option because the rope course was rained out. Not only did we not die, we ended up having a lot of fun cruising on glacial water through downtown Chamonix. On the free day in Courmayeur, I did the via ferrates up Mont Chetif, which was fun. The hike to the top was the toughest hiking of the trip. I would recommend planning your off day before the trip rather than on the fly. The via ferrates does sell out.

MEALS: There was cheese LITERALLY everywhere. If you don’t like cheese like me, just keep quiet about it. Those French obsess over cheese like there is alcohol in it. The lunch spots were transcendent. That’s when you could feel truly present in the Alps. Whatever crap you had waiting back home, like say … Ellen in HR who is pretty much just the worst (don’t worry, she’ll never read this. I bet she drowns kittens on vacation. She. Is. The. Worst.), all that stuff melts away. The dinners were local and delightful.

HOTELS: The accommodations are essentially ski lodges. We had hot showers, warm beds and beers. A few places had pools & hot tubs. They were all close to our hikes which cut down on van time, which I’m sure disappointed my trip mates because they probably enjoyed my daily dissertations on the importance of hair metal in American culture #Cinderella.

Overall, these Active folks know what they are doing and you will have fun on this trip. Maybe I’ll get to meet you on one of their other trips I’m sure we’ll be signing up for in the future … Patagonia hmmm? I’ll be the one talking about David Lee Roth.

Best,
Neil C
~~~
Jean-Marie (Driver): I think they based the “Most Interesting Man in the World” ad campaign on this guy. If he is a part of your group, sit next to him during meals and buy him wine. Get him to talk, his life is amazing. We had a guy on our trip that did 28 marathons, 33 triathlons, was a licensed pilot, spoke French, played hockey … ON ICE and that dude wanted to hear more from Jean-Marie. I shouldn’t even be allowed to read his biography (and there was a rumor he was going to write one)! He’s THAT interesting. One of the day off options should be, “Go drinking with Jean Marie”. I’d do the trip all over again if they added that. It was an injustice that he carried my bags. At least my bag was light #manpacking
Neil Crossan Review Image
– California, United States
Tour du Mont Blanc, October 2016
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Why travel with Active Adventures?

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Above all, we aim to be amazing hosts. We're proud of our kiwi roots, and our professional, warm and relaxed style of running trips around the world is unforgettable.

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Whether you’re new to adventure travel, or you’ve never travelled in a group before, you’ll find yourself arriving home positively different from when you left.

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With our small groups (no more than 14), you'll get to know our team, your fellow travellers, and have the flexibility and freedom to do as much (or as little!) as you like.

Diverse Experiences

It's all about getting there under your own steam – on foot, in a sea kayak, or by bike. What better way is there to experience mind blowing scenery? If it's your first time, no worries – our expert guides have got you covered.

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