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Chamonix Alpine Skyrunning 2017
Course overview

What is skyrunning? It's trail running in higher altitudes, on rougher ground (and snow), and in more remote mountain areas. Following the boom of trail running in the Alps, skyrunning is the next step, for those who want to escape the crowds that bit more.
Our week long Alpine skyrunning weeks are based in Chamonix, at the foot of Mont Blanc, as there are hundreds of kilometers of trails and skyruns to choose from. We offer a great balance of running, coaching, and trail running advice, preparation and top tips.
For these courses we suggest that you will enjoy them most if you are happy running up to a half marathon (road), and you are used to mountain walking. If you are in any doubt as to if they will suit, then get in touch to get advice from one of the coaches.
As well as enjoying a great week of skyrunning of c. 15 - 20km a day, we aim to teach you the key safety skills for route planning and Alpine running, with a focus put on the selection of equipment and how to develop your training plans for trail running.
Don't worry if you have never run in the Alps before, as you will pick up the skills quickly with expert coaching and guidance. All you need is to be fit for regular running, to have a sense of humour, and to love the outdoors. We can teach the rest, and you are guaranteed a great holiday that you won't forget for a long time.

You are led & coached by a Personal Trainer, who is also an International Mountain Leader. Most importantly they will be a passionate trail runner who has competed in plenty of Alpine ultra running races, including the legendary Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc. You are led by a genuine expert in ultra-trail running.
Dates: these are listed in the column on the right, and they show the live availability from our secure online booking system. When you book online, you receive immediate confirmation, your Alpine Information Booklet, course specific kit list and invoice.

Brief Course Itinerary
There are hundreds of kilometers of trails and skyruns over all types of terrain, so the itinerary can be flexed on any day to take account of weather conditions, to ensure that you sample the best on offer. The itinerary below is to provide you with a taster of what you could achieve, and isn't fixed in stone. After each day in the itinerary is an outline of the key teaching focus points for every day, so you get a real idea of what you can learn about. As far as the distances run each day, we advertise c. 15 - 20km each day, though try and select routes to cater for people to opt out of sections if they would like an easier day. We aren't expecting you to be mountain running machines, just a great spirit of loving the mountains, and wanting to give it a go. Speed is nothing. Enjoyment is everything! Many clients come back year after year, as they need never repeat a trail they have run before.
Sunday
Travel to Chamonix to arrive for the 17:00 check-in followed by and course safety and itinerary briefings. There is time for kit checks or rental of equipment (see inclusions below for what you are provided as part of the course price). Briefings are over by 18:00 and the Chamonix hosts accompany the group to pre-dinner drinks. Some clients opt to travel out a day or two early to get their hill legs back and to explore the town. Night in Chamonix.
Monday
A classic warm up skyrun in Chamonix, such as running the first part of the 80km du Mont Blanc, that is part of the Skyrunning World Championships, up to Brevent, then via Col du Brevent, and back down via Planpraz and the single tracks to the valley. Night in Chamonix.
Equipment and clothing choice and its selection - footwear, poles, bags, compression kit.
Highlight - running over snow whilst overlooking the whole Chamonix valley.
Tuesday
Today a popular choice of skyrunning might be to run up to the Mer de Glace, and on the ridge above the glacier, before following the balcony perched far above the valley, before taking the single track via the Bossons glacier down to the valley floor again. Night in Chamonix.
Techniques for the use of poles for walking and running - traversing, ascent, descent.
Highlight - gaining autonomy skills skyrunning in unspoiled stunning scenery.
Wednesday
We take the picturesque Mont Blanc express train from Chamonix to Vallorcine, and run into Switzerland via the Emosson dam, and on the skyrunning track across to Loriaz. This trail is famed for having several sections of chains and rocky steps to negotiate. Night in Chamonix.
Decent techniques for different trail types and conditions - grass, rock, scree, forest.
Highlight - skyrunning in two counties in the day, with Mont Blanc ahead of you.
Thursday
A day skyrunning in Italy or Switzerland. Popular choices are running the Mont de la Saxe skyline trail over Testa Bernada 2534m far above Courmayeur, or over the Col Chavanne near La Thuile. Over in Switzerland running Mont Fourchon is a big objective. Night in Chamonix.
Session on how to plan mountain trail running routes - tactics, equipment, food, training.
Highlight - experience running on a section of the legendary UTMB trail race route!
Friday
A longer trail run, up to a half marathon in length, to really put all the elements together that you have learnt over the week. A tough objective might be to run Mont Buet 3099m, and to cross the Col du Salenton. Stunning views reward you from the summit. Night in Chamonix!
Nutritional and hydration advice, whilst in the mountains - quantity, effects, sources.
Highlight - completing a half marathon across the mountains on rough Alpine trails.
Saturday
Breakfast then the accommodation check out is by 10:00. Most arrange their airport transfers to leave around this time, to catch a flight from Geneva about midday. Depart for home.

ITINERARY NOTES: Where possible we follow itineraries. Mountain adventures are weather and conditions dependant, so occasionaly we are forced to alter the plans. If this is the case, suitable alternatives are offered. Please use this outline itinerary as a guide to the types of route / activity that you will attempt.
Course Prices
Standard course
5 full days UIMLA guiding, 1:6 max ratio
7 days holiday in total, Sunday-Saturday
£699
Live availability
Click on the planner logo to the right to
see the real time live course availability
Latest Availability
Secure online booking system
Inclusions: 1) UIMLA guide for five days, 2) Chamonix course hosts for logistics & briefings, 3) Pre course information booklet, 4) Equipment discount voucher for UK shops, 5) Six nights B&B accommodation in Chamonix (inc. bedding & towels), 6) Free 36 page technical Course Instruction Booklet, 7) Road / train transport in Chamonix valley, 8) Logistics support and several optional evening instruction sessions.
Exclusions: 1) Travel to and from Chamonix, 2) Personal laundry, telephone calls, lunches, evening meals, & any purchases in mountain huts / hotels / restaurants, 3) Cable cars and mountain uplift, 4) Road transport outside the Chamonix valley (not usually required), 5) Activities insurance, & excess baggage charges.
Current course availability

Course Dates
Alpine Skyrunning
  • [ 0 ] 23 - 29 Jul 2017
  • [ 3 ] 13 - 19 Aug 2017
  • [ 0 ] 27 Aug - 2 Sep 2017
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Price: £699 Book online

Alternative courses
Alps summer trail running
Alps winter trail running

UK fell running weekend
Personal training sessions

Client feedback

Thank you so much for organising this as a bespoke course for our group. We had a brilliant week

Ali C , Skyrunning

I heard about your guys from a friend who had run with you. They sang your praises, and I am joining your fan club. It was a perfect week

Helen McG , Skyrunning

Your i ntimate knowledge of the trails was superb, and really made the week of skyrunning even better

William T , Skyrunning
Testimonials
Press & media
Films & videos
Photo gallery
'Running the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc'
a personal experience of one of our trail
running guides, a two time UTMB finisher
Location data for this trip
The majority of our trail runs are based in the Chamonix valley in the French Alps. It is also easy to access the Valais region of Switzerland or the Aosta Valley region of Italy, as these involve less than an hours drive. There is a great choice of trail running venues in all these regions.
Time Difference
GMT +1hr
Local Currency
€ Euros
Travel from UK
1hr flight
Free resources


FREE Podcast
Getting into trail running...

Trail running is a fastgrowing sport, and this podcast explains what it involves, how to get into it, and also goes through all of the equipment that is required
.
Download podcast (3.76 MB)
See all the Icicle podcasts


FREE Resource
Alps trail running kit list...
If you are planning on attending one of our trail running courses, you can see a kit check list of the clothing and equipment that we recommend you take.
Trail running kit advice page
Download the kit list here
Trip photo gallery
Suggested reading and kit
Why choose our trips?
The photo above sums it up. All of these finisher jackets of the UTMB race series belong to our head running leader. We genuinely think that there is no other operator out there who is more credible!
There are several other operators who also offer trail running camps, and we aren't afraid to advertise that fact. Please look at their itineraries to see how they differ from ours.
We don't offer talks from 'celebrity' runners, or go in for the chardonnay in a hot tub 'lifestyle', or quasi-scientific courses. Ours are run by people who do it, not talk the talk.
The effect on our prices is that we can offer you great value. We genuinely believe that you'll spend more time actually running and in the mountains on our courses, than with anyone else.
Anyone who is leading you will be a finisher of one of the iconic trail races, such as the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc, Tor du Geants or Leadville or WS100.
 
Author signed!
'Trail Running Chamonix and
the Mont Blanc region' link
...or the NEW book...
'Trail and Fell Running in the
Lake District'
buy a copy
by Kingsley Jones. Cicerone Press

£14.95 each
Each book has 40 trail running
routes, each with height profiles,
and full colour mapping

Features how to adapt your
running in the mountains, and
an index of where to stay

Includes famous races in each
region, e.g. UTMB, Langdale
Horseshoe and Chamonix VKM

To purchase a copy, click here
 

 
 
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