Rated as one of the premier long-distance hikes in Europe, the Tour du Mont Blanc (aka TMB) had become a must on our hiking wish list. The trek encircles magnificent Mont Blanc as it travels through three countries, France, Italy and Switzerland. The 12 day trek covers 105 miles with a total, accumulated altitude gain of approximately 32,800 feet. During an earlier visit to Chamonix (in France, on the TMB), I had decided that this was a trail we did not want to miss! After the actual hike, we now look back on the scenery, the trail comradery and the refuges, which together made for a wonderful experience that still ranks this trek as one of our favorites!
The Cicerone guidebook that I used to plan and hike with was by Kev Reynolds, Tour du Mont Blanc. It is an excellent day by day guide, full of information including detailed trail data, suggested accommodations and points of interest.
Arrival in Chamonix
Day 1 – Les Houches to Les Contamines-Montjoie
Day 2 – Les Contamines to Refuge Des Mottets
Day 3 – Refuge Des Mottets to Rifugio Elisabetta
Day 4 – Rifugio Elisabetta to Rifugio Maison Vieille
Day 5 – Rifugio Maison Vieille to Rifugio Bonatti
Day 6 – Rifugio Bonatti to La Fouly
Day 7 – La Fouly to Champex
Day 8 – Auberge Bon Abri to Trient
Day 9 – Trient to Tré-le-Champ
Day 10 – Tré-le-Champ to Refuge du Lac Blanc
Day 11 – La Blanc to Refuge de La Bellachat
Day 12 – Refuge de La Bellachat to Les Houches