Mont-Blanc: a new base camp at Tête Rousse


Considering the overcrowding situation in the Mont-Blanc massif during summertime, a new base camp became necessary.

The new base camp, which consists of six tents located near the Tête Rousse refuge, has been open for two weeks.

Colourful tents at high altitude

Situated at the foot of the Goûter corridor (3 170 m or 10 400 ft altitude), the new Tête Rousse base camp has been open for 14 days.

It offers 40 places, which complete the 72 of the Tête Rousse shelter. The new base camp offers 10 extra seats in case of emergencies.

The six tents are large and colourful, each one of them providing wooden garden lounges.

The new Tête Rousse base camp, photo source
The new Tête Rousse base camp, photo source
The new base camp is situated close to Tete Rousse Hut (3,167m). Photo source:

The new base camp at Tête Rousse was a necessity

The new base camp was inaugurated with the purpose of both preserving the environment and protecting the visitors during the summer rush.

"People were coming in and pitching their tent. There were no quotas. There could be up to 60 tents", said Haute-Savoie prefect Pierre Lambert, who visited the site on Thursday.

Indeed, the mountain has been overcrowded in recent years.

Allowing visitors to set up their tents wherever they want leads to the overpopulation of Mont-Blanc that is bad for both mountain and man. People had no access to garbage cans, so the trash began piling up in the Mont-Blanc massif. And reckless mountaineers risked setting up their camp in areas exposed to falling rocks.

"Today, there are good conditions of hygiene, cleanliness and safety. Even if this cannot replace information, education and good citizenship, we protect both the site and mountaineers", says Pierre Lambert.

Sanitary facilities have been installed nearby and the occupants of the tents can go to the refuge to eat.

For the Mayor of Saint-Gervais, Jean-Marc Peillex: "The goal is that the mountain remains accessible while preserving it".

The numbers

The new Tête Rousse base camp cost 150,000 euros. The camp was funded by the French Federation of Alpine and Mountain Clubs, which also manages the camp.

To this sum, it is necessary to add 50,000 € helicopter rotations to route the materials on-site, at nearly 3,200 meters above sea level.

The new camp is monitored 24/7

A guard from the French Federation of Alpine and Mountain Clubs will be monitoring the new Tête Rousse camp all the time.

The guard will control the whereabouts and identify risky behaviour, but not only. 

"It's also a lot of advice", says guard Edgar Nectoux. "The human contact allows to put them in confidence before starting the ascent".

The new Tête Rousse base camp will be open until fall. 

After that, the tents will be dismantled and the terraces will spend the winter under the snow.

When it comes to the refuges in the Mont-Blanc area, reservations are mandatory. Book your seat on

Le Dauphine

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