Aiguille du Midi 

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The Aiguille du Midi cable car leaves from the centre of Chamonix. It is a journey of two stages. The first brings visitors to the Plan de l'Aiguille (2300m). The second stage traverses Les Pelerins glacier before rising up the North Face. Often in summer time it is possible to spot climbers on their way up this face towards the summit of the Aiguille. From the top station (3842m) the view of the Alps is incredible.







The top station has several terraces where visitors can take in the spectacular views of the Swiss, French and Italian Alps. On a clear day it is possible to see the Matterhorn, Mont Rosa and the Grand Combin. An elevator inside the rock rises the final 42m to the top terrace at 3842m. This is the closest you can get to the Mont Blanc without climbing!





The Aiguille du Midi cable car was first thought of by two Swiss engineers in 1905. Their plan was to link the hamlet of Les Pelerins with the summit of l'Aiguille du Midi. 






The project met technical problems and was abandoned. Four years later a French company, Funicular Railways, made a new attempt and the first section Les Pelerins - La Para was opened in 1924.






The second section La Para - Les Glaciers was completed three years later. It was then the highest cable car in the world. With the outbreak of the WWII and the opening of the Planpraz to Brevent cable car, the popularity of the Aiguille du Midi diminished and it closed it was closed in 1951. 






An Italian engineer Count Dino Lora Totino was called in to rebuild and extend the cable car. Four years and a lot of hard work later, the new Aiguille du Midi cable car was finally completed. It was entirely renovated in 1991.









First section

In 10 minutes you will go from 1030 metres to 2317 metres, travelling over the forest. To the right, you will be able to admire the Mont-Blanc massif and the summit of Mont-Blanc (4810 metres) and, lower down, the glacier des Bossons. To the left, at the back, the Aiguille verte, Les Drus, the Aiguilles de Chamonix. When you arrive at the Plan de l'Aiguille, you will change cabins.





Cabin speed : 10 m/s
3 pylons in line
2500 m between stations
75 passengers per cabin
A 40 mm diameter haulage cable.



Second section

In 10 minutes, you will reach an altitude of 3777 metres. To your right, the old Col du Midi cable-car line. Facing you, the seracs and terminal spur of the Glacier des Pèlerins, the suspended glaciers and the north face of the Aiguille du Midi.


Single span between the two stations which are 2867 m apart.
65 passengers per cabin
A 46 mm diameter haulage cable.



The epic history of the Aiguille du Midi cable car

1905 : two Swiss engineers, Feldmann and Srub, devise a plan to connect the hamlet of Les Pèlerins to the summit of the Aiguille du Midi, thanks to a combination of a funicular railway and cable lifts.





1909 : the Compagnie Française des Funiculaires takes up and modifies the plan.


1924 : the first section - Les Pèlerins-La Para – is opened, and in 1927 the second section - La Para - Les Glaciers – is inaugurated. At the time, this funicular railway was the highest in the world.

1951 : the war and the opening of the Planpraz-Brévent cable-car got the better of the funicular railway which is closed to the public. An Italian engineer, Count Monte Dino Lora Totino, is asked to devise a new plan.


1954 : the first section of the current route is inaugurated. The second section, with a difference in level of 1500 m without any pylons, is an unprecedented achievement. 30 mountain guides from Aosta and Chamonix will take two days to hoist a cable 1700 m long and weighing over a tonne to the summit of the Aiguille du Midi.

1955 : the cable-car is completed and the work on the "Panoramic" ca
ble-car begins. It will be put into service in 1958.





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