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Canada experts warn of mountain pencils in the Alps

21:40  28 july  2022
21:40  28 july  2022 Source:   travelbook.de

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The ongoing heat wave in Europe not only leads to a record dürre and numerous forest fires in many regions, but also increases the snow on the highest European mountain peaks. The glaciers shrink dramatically and ascents are becoming increasingly dangerous.

gletscher schmelzen bergtour © Getty Images Glacier melting mountain tour

glacier breakdowns, stone strikes, meltwater, ice cream without protective snow cover, so -called blank ice, as well as softener and thus unstable snow, in which crampons grip significantly: the alpine dangers are increasing significantly with the progressive climate change. Mountain guides and experts are currently warning about climbing the Matterhorn, the Zugspitze and the Mont Blanc on the normal route. Travelbook spoke to the German Alpine Club on the effects of the heat wave on the alpine glaciers and mountain sports.

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glacier melts too quickly

"The heat wave brings conditions on the high -lying glaciers, the experienced mountaineers and local mountain guides have never been seen before," reports the mountain magazine " Alpin ".

Stefan Winter, Head of Sport Development Deutscher Alpenverein e.V., told Travelbook: "The higher and longer the zero degree limit, the more negative this affects the permafrost in the high mountains and the glaciers." Due to the heat wave, the glaciers literally melt away. "This increasingly threatens rockfall and ice breakers," continues Winter.

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high tours dangerous to impossible

The increased risk of stone strikes, glacier drops, cheating (Surface earth masses that get in motion due to water exposure, including through meltwater), unstable snow or even bare ice affect mountain sports. Classic high tours not only have to be committed earlier a year and during shorter time windows, but are already far more dangerous than usual. Some climbs are currently impossible. "High huts, paths and mountain sports routes are also increasingly threatened by the consequences of the climate heating in their inventory," reports Stefan Winter.

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Zugspitze

The snow height on the Zugspitze has been more low since the start of the records in 1901. “In 1965, a whopping 6.7 meters protected the glacier underneath. At the moment, on the other hand, the snow gorgeer is completely exposed to the sun, ”says the“ Alpin ”website. The Höllentalferner in the west of the Wetterstein Mountains also melts away. Therefore, climbing the Zugspitze over the Höllentalroute is only possible with crampons and for experienced mountaineers. There is more about the precarious circumstances on the pages of the German Alpine Association in Munich and Oberland .

Matterhorn

also recommend mountain guides and experts from the climb on the Matterhorn. Because of the high temperatures, the landmark of Zermatt is currently absolutely snow -free and therefore very dangerous. "A zero-degree temperature limit over 4000 meters is poison for the cohesion of rock and ice in the high mountains," explains Stefan Winter. The mountain magazine "Alpin" reports that there are no more guided tours on the Matterhorn from the Italian side, since the dangers of rockfall or rock fall have become too big. Swiss mountain guides are also increasingly warning and canceling tours.

Mont Blanc

at the highest mountain in the Alps is also much more dangerous for alpinists due to the heat wave in this summer. Especially because of the risk of rockfall, the Prefecture of Haute-Savoie recommends to avoid climbing along the normal ascent route. The mountain guide associations of Saint-Gervais-Les-Bains and Chamonix-Mont-Blanc have also decided to temporarily suspend the ascent over the normal route.

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