/ Dent du Geant end of May?

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MuzzaSA - on 13 Apr 2019

On average, has the standard route on the Dent thawed out enough by last week of May to offer a decent rubber soled rock climb? Or are the cracks n crevices still a bit icy then... needing single front points and some mixed trickery to pass?

Guess one can pull on fixed lines to overcome any slippy bits but would rather it be a clean ride... 

thx in advance!

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McHeath - on 14 Apr 2019
In reply to MuzzaSA:

Don't think the average would help much this far in advance, the conditions you meet could still be anything between warm ice-free rock to covered in verglas; maybe ask around when you get to Chamonix?

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pec on 14 Apr 2019
In reply to MuzzaSA:

I couldn't comment on average conditions in late May as I've only been up there in Aug and Sept, other than to say it could vary enormously. However I would say that the face with the fixed ropes is in shade until midday ish and can be very cold indeed before that, even in August, so probably even more so in May.

If you're wanting to do a bare hands and rock shoe ascent I'd pick a day when there's next to no chance of an afternoon storm and head up lateish with the aim of not getting on the face before the sun.

You could do this from the the first cable car (check operating times in May) but would probably miss the last one down.

Going in May should make the approach and descent slopes rather more pleasant than they are in August, snow instead of rubble.

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George.D - on 18 Apr 2019
In reply to MuzzaSA:

It was being climbed a fair bit in Feb this year during the hot spell and also last month when I skinned by there were parties heading up there from Torino - as long as there haven't been any significant storms for a few days, it should be feasible, and as noted the approach would be much nicer than the loose scramble encountered in the height of summer. It has the potential to be very cold indeed though at this time of year so be prepared for that.

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