Col du Tacul – traverse

Aiguille du Tacul

Capucin Couloir, traverse of Col du Tacul S>>N
D, 5.1, E2 / sect. 55°


The Capucin couloir seen from Col des Cristaux. Photo by Colin Campbell

It is spring in Chamonix and finding good skiing becomes a bit difficult. The last snowfall came with strong wind, and everything that faces the sun for at least a couple of hours is sliding off.
The only chance to find good snow during the last days was to follow these rules: North sector, wind protected, steep and above 2500m. There is not much to do in a single day when you want to stay on less extreme terrain. We thought the Capucin Couloir on Aiguille du Tacul might be a good choise and so did two other groups 😉

But the technical skills were quite high, I’d say normal for Chamonix: A group of 4 guides had already prepared the rappel, while we (two) and a group of another three guys went up the southern slope of the Col du Capucin.
Fast rappels, facing backwards, with skis on. Always two people skiing and two on the rope worked perfectly. From the Col we all reached Leschaux Glacier in less than one hour. The couloir itself was sluffed off, the lower half skied really well, while to top section was quite a struggle with the own mind.

We all met in town later the day: Using their ropes in exchange for some cold beers is a square deal.

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