Monday, September 2, 2013

Mont Blanc

On Saturday morning, we got up early and drove to Mont Blanc. It is the highest point in Western Europe and it's just 1.5 hours from the house! We passed through Switzerland on our way so we went through the border control. Only no one is ever there working. It's so funny to go from America, where we are very strict with border control, to here, where you don't even need a passport to go to the next country. I'm not complaining, though!

You start at the base of the mountain and take a cable car up to the first peak at about 1000 meters. Your ears start to pop on the way. Here, you can eat lunch, get acclimated to the altitude, and walk around in a relatively warm temperature. There are also a lot of trails you can take. You can walk back to the base of the mountain, you can walk to Lac Bleu (Blue Lake), find a spot for a picnic, or just walk through the mountain. We walked to the lake, which was a stunning shade of blue and had the coolest reflections.

Then you take another cable car to the top. Your ears will pop even more and you can feel the change in oxygen. It is absolutely freezing at the top! A winter coat is so necessary. Earmuffs and gloves recommended. But man. The views are incredible! There are many things you can do up on the top: eat (if your body is used to the altitude...otherwise it's not a good idea), take an elevator to a higher point, look at the mountains from different terraces, and even take another cable car into Italy. We did all of the above, except for the eating. The cable car to Italy is about one hour. You don't get out unless you are there to climb the mountains, so it is essentially just a round trip to see gorgeous views. I was surprised at how many people were hiking, camping, and rock climbing.

This place was very cool for someone from Georgia, who has only ridden a cable car to the top of Stone Mountain. There were people from all over the world! I heard so many languages in the cable car. Such an experience!

And I had to wear a UGA sweatshirt because it was Georgia's first game of the season! I actually woke up in the middle of the night to get score updates from my brother. Sadly, we lost. But I was cheering them on from France!

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