The Haute Route is famous for its length, level of danger, and altitude. Normally the grueling 108 km ski traverse takes upwards of 7 days to complete with nights spent in refuges between the starting point of Chamonix and destination of Zermatt. However, two Frenchmen ditched the overnights and instead set a new record on March 21– one that is likely to stick around for a long time.
16 hours and 35 minutes!
That almost unbelievable time is how long it took ski instructors, Bastien Fleury and Olivier Meynet to complete the famed traverse in what has become a new record. Starting at 00:20 from the church in central Chamonix, the two skiers navigated 108 km and gained 27,395 feet before arriving at the church in Zermatt at 4:55 on the same day!
New Record Crossing Chamonix – Zermatt! 16h 35! A beautiful day shared with Olivier Meynet! – Bastien Fleury
Needless to say, the accomplishment is massive and should stay in the record books for some time. That is unless Kilian Jornet decides to try his hand at the classic route.
Thanks to Michel, Alicia, Christophe, Julien and Mika for assistance and ravito. Thanks to Nico for technical advice and to Jules-Henri for the news. – Bastien Fleury
The prior record was set by Lionel Claudepierre in 2013. He completed the route in 18 hours and 35 minutes. The new record holders beat that time by two hours full hours.