Saturday, August 18
Today we left Refuge de Miage heading to Refuge de la Balm. Once again we took the high route. Totally unnecessary and 10 times harder, UGH! We did pass through Les Contamines, which is a lovely little town and a beautiful recreation park. If you can, plan to stay a night here.
We had been having thunderstorms in the late afternoon so while in Les Contamines we purchased a poncho and a hat with a full brim. The poncho was only 25 euro very light, packable and it became extremely useful.
Leaving refuge de Balm we ascended, descended and then walked flat for a few miles then ascended for quite some time. The weather went from cold 35- 40 degrees to 80-90 degrees. I was glad to be prepared for both, however Hiking uphill in the heat was by far my least favorite.
We arrived around 2:00 and couldn’t shower until 4:00, they didn’t have a laundry facility so as a typical hiker I washed my underwear in the shower and hung it to dry, only to have a huge thunderstorm pour down rain like crazy. At Refuge de la Balm the host was rude and the food was awful. It seemed like a frozen Costco meal. I paid for a picnic lunch which consisted of canned quinoa sweet tea and processed food. I took out an apple and a granola bar and gave the lunch away.
We seem to be following a pattern from our original height of 3000m to up 3000m higher then down 1500m to 2500m and back up again.
The views are rewarding.
7 hours 7.2 miles is what I tracked.
Pictures from today