Sunday, November 16, 2014

Tour du Mont Blanc #3 Courmayeur – Elena, Italy (European Alps)

As my first European photo project, I hiked with my camera gear on the 110-mile Tour du Mont Blanc trail in July 2014. The first 3 days were done in drenching rain while I trekked the mountain pass. After crossing the French – Italian border, the weather slowly improved. After days of frustration, I finally was able to capture some of the spectacular landscapes in the Alps. Continuing from my last posting, I made it to the Italian side of Mont Blanc to the town of Courmayeur. 
After a few days break at Courmayeur, I headed back on the journey. It had been already a week since I began hiking on the Tour du Mont Blanc trail. Leaving the outskirts of town, the trail slowly climbed up through the woods. Then, the trail got steeper as I left civilization behind… The town of Courmayeur was already down below!

The dense forest opened up with a wildflower meadow.  I’m impressed with the abundance of colorful wildflowers in the Alps. 

As I climbed up higher, the south side of the Mont Blanc range showed up again with the majestic Grand Jorasses rock wall with glaciers. The long awaited sunshine brought bright blue sky above the mountains and the trail.

Under the sunlight, the vegetation was bright green and the colors of the flowers brightened up as the glacier and snow-capped peaks shined against the blue sky. Many times I stopped and set up my camera until I finally arrived at the mountain refuge for the night…

At the late afternoon, the clouds on the peaks slowly cleared out and the entire Mont Blanc appeared from its long absence! The Italian side, the south face of the Mont Blanc summit was different from the French side (North face).

Mont Blanc was still out the next morning.  Alpenglow painted the summit at dawn.

Grandes Jorasses (4,208 m; 13,806 ft) at sunrise.

Grandes Jorasses and Frebouze Glacier.

Another beautiful day in the Alps… More flowers along the way. Looking down Ferret Valley (Val Ferret) below…

This story will be continue on the next blog with new images, please check back.