Mountaineering first summits: Five beginner climbing peaks in the Alps

Mar 11, 2014 BY Paul McWilliams

There are few better sensations in life than reaching the summit of a mountain. The metaphorical, physical and visual reasons really speak for themselves. But, of course, there are different kinds, sizes and types of mountains to climb. However, even as a complete beginner you might be surprised at what you can achieve. The following five beginner climbing peaks in the Alps are by no means easy but they are achievable with a guide.

Beginner climbing peaks in the Alps image by Undiscovered Alps

If you are reasonably fit, you don’t necessarily need to have years of mountain climbing experience to summit some of Europe’s highest peaks. While some, such as the Eiger, are really not recommended for beginners, others can be scaled after just a few weeks or even days training and acclimatizing. So, how do the following five beginner climbing peaks in the Alps grab you?

Dome des Ecrins

One of the hidden gems in the Alps, this mountain sits in its own national park and has a summit at over 4,000 metres. Just imagine taking that on after only a few days training. Yet it can be done if you’re fit enough and with an expert guide. Specialist climbing trips with Undiscovered Mountains aim to build confidence and skill levels to get you to the summit.

Beginner climbing peaks in the Alps image by Undiscovered Alps

Start your learning process on the smaller glaciers, learning crampon techniques and other skills. You will then take on the Pic du Glacier d’Arsine, an easier climb, learning other core skills from expert instructors before taking on the Dome des Ecrins itself. When you’re standing at 4,015 you might not quite believe what you have achieved in such a small space of time. To book this trip visit: or call: +44 (0) 345 009 8401.

Mont Blanc

As far as mountaineering first summits go, taking on the biggest in Western Europe is not a bad effort. Around the Chamonix region there are a number of other smaller peaks on which to practice, including crampon and crevasse work on glaciers. The Aiguille Rouge Rock traverse and ascent of Aiguille du Tour are also great preparation for the main event. And reaching 4,810 metres really is a main event in any book.

Mont Blanc Summit 2014 with Dream Guides

Dream Guides offer a one week Mont Blanc climbing course for beginners to mountaineering. They have a 80-90% summit reaching success rate, partly due to allocating 3 days to to do the climb instead of the normal 2, which allows for bad weather. During the first half of the week you will summit 2 quality peaks in glacial terrain, acclimatise to the altitude, and learn mountaineering skills required to reach the summit of Mont Blanc.

To take on this challenge you need to have a good level of endurance fitness, a thirst for adventure, some hill walking experience and plenty of determination. You can find out more by visiting:, calling: 0845 5645219 or emailing: [email protected].

The Matterhorn

One of the most iconic mountains in the world, this perfect pyramidal peak is another great feather in your beginner’s cap. One of the birthplaces of modern mountaineering, this climb harks back to a purist tradition of climbing. With a good success rate for beginners it’s an iconic mountain to learn the ropes on and reach the summit with a guide.

Beginner climbing peaks in the Alps Wikimedia image by Zacharie Grossen

Monte Rosa

Second only to Mont Blanc in terms of height, this majestic peak rises high above the charming Swiss alpine village of Zermatt and Italian villages of Gressoney-la-Trinité and Alagna Valsesia. The Italian side offers a great chance for guided beginner adventures, where will you will spend some time acclimatising and learning the basics on some of the other smaller peaks and glaciers in the region. There are also ten 4,000 metre peaks in the range, making this a great base for more beginner climbing peaks in the Alps.

Gran Paradiso

Another 4,000+ metre climb with a level suitable for beginners, this mountain will really give you a clue as to why climbing mountains is so popular, with unbelievable views from the top. It may be one of the easier peaks but that makes it perfect for inexperienced climbers to learn new skills, and the last section of the climb does involve putting some of your new technical skills into practice.

These five beginner climbing peaks in the Alps for are all possible as mountaineering first summits with a guide. But you need to be fit, undertake some training, have decent conditions and understand that not every climb is a success.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Related Articles


Wellness Adventures: The Rise of Health and Fitness Holidays

Wellness adventures and health and fitness holidays are defined by the Global Wellness Institute as getaways ‘made by tourists who seek to improve or maintain...

Activities: Cycling Fitness Kayaking +
Destinations: Africa Asia Caribbean +
Read Article

Pro Skier Review of ULLR D 3 Fingers Gloves by Helly Hansen

Welcoming pro skier Elsa Powell-Dooley to the AWE365 gear review team. She is testing out a whole host of kit for us this winter. First up, is this review of ULLR D...

Destinations: N/A
Read Article

Review of Aphex Sunglasses and Customisable MTB Goggles

If you are into action sports and outdoor activities then the right eyewear ensures the best view and protects your eyes. In this review of Aphex sunglasses and...

Destinations: N/A
Read Article

Newsletter sign up