La Trace des Grands - a new event for all ski touring and off-piste enthusiasts!
Grands Montets, 19th and 20th March 2022
For all lovers of ski touring and epic descents!
The Grands Montets domain is synonymous with great skiing! It is an unparalleled freeride spot and the starting point for many off-piste and ski touring routes, including the famous Haute Route which links Chamonix to Zermatt.
Culminating at 3295m, with its magnificent glaciers and breathtaking 360° views, it is not surprising that “Les Grands” has always attracted the world’s best skiers.
What could be more natural than to create an event which unites lovers of ski- mountaineering and epic off-piste descents? After all, this is Chamonix Mont-Blanc, land of endurance and world capital of skiing and alpinism.
The first edition of La Trace des Grands, imagined and organized by the association Outdoor Legacy, will take place on March 19 and 20, 2022. On the agenda of this festive weekend are three different races, offering the expression of all forms ski touring.
Participants will experience a unique and secure immersion into the heart of the Mont-Blanc massif and its glaciers. The superb itinerary upwards into the Argentière basin, with views of the ice-fall and seracs, will leave no one indifferent!
The course has been thoughtfully designed so that spectators may gather at various strategic points, thus ensuring a festive atmosphere..
“This is the Grands Montets spirit… fun, emotion and thrills!”
Ski mountaineering with the TDG 65 (V+ 2000m)
This is the flagship event - a unique format in the domain of mountain races, with a positive elevation of 2000m. Departing 8am on Sunday March 20 from Plan Joran station (1252m) the itinerary takes in Lognan, Argentière basin and the Point de Vue, a passage along the Rachasses ridge (skis on back), the summit of the Aiguille des Grands Montets (3296m), and a magnificent freeride descent back down to Lognan. The entire race is timed.
A leisure hike or the stopwatch, La TDG Vertical (V+ 720m)
A vertical race (chrono) for the competitive athlete, but also an untimed discovery outing for 16- to 99-year-olds. An opportunity to share memorable moments with family or friends on a secure track amidst the pine trees and beneath a moonlit sky. Departure at 6.15pm on Saturday 19 March from Plan Joran base station (1252m).
Freerando or skitouring with the TDG 110 (V+ 1300m)
A course open to all winter ski touring enthusiasts: ski, split, Telemark, monosplit. An invtitation to share the TDG experience at one’s own pace (chrono ascent time given as an indication), to live and breathe the beauty of these mountains. For the serious contenders, the descent down the Grands Montets face will be officially timed. Race starts at 9.30am on Sunday March 20 from the Lognan plateau (1972m)
Exhibitors and entertainment
Throughout the weekend, the sports village on the Grands Montets domain will welcome a large number of partners and exhibitors, as well as the biggest ski test of the winter: Mont Blanc Natural Resort, La Chamoniarde, POW (Protect Our Winters), Suunto, Blizzard, Technica, Dynastar, Volkl, Salomon, Zag, Pomoca, Black crows, Ogso, Scott and other surprise exhibitors.
During these two days, there will be prevention and safety workshops with La Chamoniarde and a Saturday evening screening at the VOX cinema of two films produced using soft mobility: Conscience by POW and le Diamant des Alpes by Sébastien Montaz-Rosset with the participation of Vivian Bruchez and Mathieu Navillod. The profits will be donated to the POW association.
Good to know
The day pass is offered to competitors on Sunday, March 20. They, and the person of their choice, will also benefit from a 50% reduction on ski passes (1 to 3 days) if they wish to enjoy a long weekend in the Chamonix valley.
The number of participants in the two races on Sunday is limited to 600 people. No limitation for the Vertical TDG. For the podiums, the prize money ranges from €100 to €500, plus partner prizes and a draw open to all participants. Online registration: www.latracedesgrands.com
A word from the organizers
The project for this new event emerged when Pascal Croz, Damien Sablon and Bénédicte Leclercq put their heads together.
Pascal Croz, director of the Grands Montets slopes and a great lover of his domain, wanted to revive the "top" of the Grands Montets (following the 2018 fire), and revitalize the site through a major event.
Damien Sablon, a mountaineering and ski touring enthusiast, questioned the absence of a broadscale ski touring event in Chamonix, given the exceptional playground it represents in the heart of the Mont Blanc massif.
Bénédicte Leclercq, event's manager at the Compagnie du Mont-Blanc facilitated the interview between these two key players and brought along the valuable support of the lift company. Following on from this meeting they created the association Outdoor Legacy. Its name is a tribute to past generations and to the sporting history of the Chamonix valley.
"The name of the event was evident from the start, firstly due to the location, but also because of Chamonix’s heritage - land of great ascents, land of great alpinists and skiers – it is a tribute to the big names of the valley as we humbly follow their tracks… La Trace des Grands”.
“In the genesis of the project, we attached great importance to the development of three axes, the athlete’s experience with the quality of the course, prevention and safety with the support of the Chamoniarde, the environment and soft mobility with POW".
Damien Sablon, race director