A group of hikers climbing Mont Blanc had a very close call earlier this week, when they narrowly avoided a huge rockslide that sent boulders crashing down the mountain.
As winter sports site Snow Brains reports, the incident happened on Monday on the Arête des Cosmiques, one of the most popular routes on the Mont Blanc massif.
Climber Lewis Muir, who was a safe distance away, captured the moment on his phone and shared it on Instagram. In the video, which you can watch below (and which contains some bad language), a group of around eight people can be seen fleeing as the rocks crash down.
A photo posted by on
Professional mountain guides are currently refusing to lead hikers up many classic routes in the Alps, including Mont Blanc, due to unstable conditions caused by extreme heat this summer. The unusually hot weather has accelerated glacier melt and caused thawing of permafrost, increasing the likelihood of rockslides and landslips.
Last month, the mayor of Saint-Gervais (a town at the foot of Mont Blanc where many climbers start their journey) suggested that anyone attempting to tackle the mountain should pay a deposit of €15,000 (about $15,300 / £12,700) to cover the cost of rescuing or even burying them if their adventure went wrong.
“Sometimes silly people only respond to silly ideas,” mayor Jean-Marc Peillex said. "It’s like these people think they are going to Disneyland or on the London Eye.
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Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.