Things to know before you embark on the Tour Du Mont Blanc

The Alps have proven themselves to have some of the most scenic and best landscapes to hike, with the promise of beautiful sights and wonderful experiences. But there’s a flip side to the grandeur of the soothing, rugged and magnificent mountain lands.

Sometimes, while a great level of fitness is key to walk up and down the Alps, from experience, I have come to understand that a brave heart and great body state doesn’t cut it. If you want to trek the Alps through the summit beauties on a Tour Du Mont Blanc, there are things to put at the back of your mind before you hit the trails.

First and foremost

Get to plan your travel thoroughly as the Alps could be the toughest challenge you have embarked on yet. A guide or planning agency with great knowledge of the Alps will come in handy. During my tour, I used the brains behind tourdumontblanc.holiday, Salamander Adventures. The knowledge and planning from them really smoothed the trip.

Weather

Unless you want to ski, you might consider leaving your trekking adventure until summer time. Beautiful as they are, the rugged mountain range can be daunting to walk through during the winter season. Even during summer, the climate is often fickle, so it’ll be wise to be in the know about weather conditions before you embark on your trip.

Clothing

Just like I’ve mentioned, the weather is fickle. Snow and storm often break out on the brightest of summer days without the weatherman’s warning. So you’d want to pack a bag that covers your need, especially in the clothing department. Remember, it’s not your regular summer vacation where you get to soak in the sun with reckless abandon.

Be careful, the sun

Now, about that Alpine summer sun. The Alps are wonderfully bright in some occasions, but at high altitudes, that brightness could be a bummer. The higher you get, the higher your exposure to UVs, to avert a damaged or burnt skin, consider ditching the summer hiking apparel when the sun is pouring its glory on the Alps.

Watch out for animals

Expect to see some lovely creatures, beautiful as they are, some are quite mischievous and dangerous. The Alps are as wild as they are scenic and that’s the beauty of adventure! You might get to stumble on the beautiful sight of ibexes (especially walking through the Swiss Alps), deers in their herds (watch out!), and on the rare occasion, you might get to see foxes, bears, wolves, lizards and more. So be expectant and try not to lose your cool.

Navigation is important

If you are not very good with maps, attach yourself to a guide. Even if you’re as good as a cartographer, the Alps aren’t your regular type landscapes where points in a compass or coordinates are easily deciphered. You might stumble upon different happenstances like fogs and lower clouds (you are surrounded by mountains after all) that could leave you knocked down. Make sure you have a whistle on hand in case you get lost or in cases where the fog happens suddenly on you, you can wait it out.

So there you have it. I wasn’t so lucky on my first Alpine date, but I’m glad I had help. You might want to keep these tips at the back of your mind and be assured that the Mont Blanc is more beautiful than has ever been spoken about!

Melissa Thompson writes about a wide range of topics, revealing interesting things we didn't know before. She is a freelance USA Today producer, and a Technorati contributor.