ADVENTURERS: HEAVY COMPANY
Summiting Montcalm, which exceeds 3000m, of the Pyrenees range.
Sunny with some clouds in altitude (between 1500 and 2200m approximately)
Mystery Ranch, Airsoft Couture and Fjallraven
Clément Guerin – co founder of Hydra Heads Design and Configeer 006
Arcteryx Leaf Alpha LT Jacket Gen 2
Mystery Ranch Daypack Lid (with Pack Config patch, Configeer patch and Hydra Heads Design Patch)
IFAK with Dimatex Kapisa 2 and ITS Tactical Fatboy
ITS Tactical Cap with HHD patch
Fjallraven Barent Pro Pant
Triple Aught Design Shagmaster with Dominatus Patch
Mystery Ranch/Camelbak MANTICORE backpack
Katadyn VARIO water filter
Jetboil ZIP Stove
Hill People Gear Recon kit bag
Icebreaker OASIS long sleeve merino
Klean Kanteen TAD edition bottle
DD Hammock tarp 3mx3m
Box of food with DPX Hest Folder and Ghost TI edition prototype by Hydra Heads Design
Carinthia Defense 4
Salomon Quest GTX 4D
Hydrapak Trek kit 3L
Guillaume Batard – co founder of Hydra Heads Design and Configeer 001
ITIWIT dry bag for spare clothes
SNUGPAK merlin 3
Box for medic kit, toilet paper etc
Terra hiker Camping Tarp
Jetboil Flash Stove
Box of food
Mystery Ranch Overload Backpack
Triple Aught Design Raptor hardshell
Arc’teryx Leaf Atom lt Hoody
Arc’teryx Leaf cold WX gloves
2 Nalgene with Source adaptor
Thermarest Neo Air XLITE
Sea to Summit Thermolite Reactor Extreme
DD Hammock superlight tent
Black Dimaond Hiking poles
Nicolas Lecourbe – Nico L
Mora Robust V2
Goal Zero Nomad 7
Jamet Oural Tent
Snugpak Aquacover 45
Poncho Helikon Tex
Tarpfox 2.9 x 2.9
Duvet Columbus (to cold for this hike, but Clément gave me a wool blanket)
Bivy bag Quechua polyester
SFS Akéron / T.Lopes fixed blade
Hamac Ticket to the Moon + paracord
Black Diamond trail poles
Ifak kit, etc
Water Filter Mini Sayer
Water kit CamelBack 1.5L
pouch daka Magpul with Petzl Nao
Anthony Durand – Configeer 018
Hilleberg Soulo tent (advanced materials)
Nice frame compatible backpack made by Airsoft couture
Thermarest Neo-Trekker floor mat
eVent rain jacket made by Karrimor with reinforcements on shoulders and hips to carry
Mountaineering Lynx MF sleeping bag (very light and very hot)
a gas stove SOTO OD-1NP because the gas stove freezes in the mountains when it is too cold
2 battery pack for electrical equipment (lamp, GPS)
without compromise a Petzl Myo XP headlamp (big autonomy and high power)
A stanley flask to warm up at night 😉
Outdoor Research Crocodile gaiters
Solid gloves to tinker without getting hurt
Trekking pole Black Diamond
Box of food
Nicolas Vaysse – Nico V
Fjallraven Kadja Backpack
Carinthia Defence 4
Husky Flame 2 people Tent
Berghaus Goretex Activ Jacket
Toilet paper and trash bag
Black Diamond goretex gaiter
Rain cover Fjallraven
Nalgene + Human Gear cap
Inox bottle 2L Klean Kanteen
Toilet pouch sea to summit
Folding saw Falco 600
Mora Buschcraft knife
Titanium fork Light my fire
Folding glass Sea to summit
Headlight Petzl Tikka
map + compass
buff merino cap
Mountain Hardwear gloves
DAY 1 – 0900h – Start – 1000m
Clément: We were all ready at the start of the hiking trail, everyone, along with their bags, are ready. All are confident. For my part, I am confident but rather stressed by this departure. I had done long hikes with a heavy load before but not at this level. I hoped everything was going to go well.
So we started the climb of Montcalm. We set off in the forest until about 1500m, so far everyone was fine.
DAY 1 – 1300h – lunch break – Refuge du Pinet ~ 2100m
After a long morning of easy walking for most members of the group, though it was rather difficult for me (I was often breathless because of the altitude), we decided to have a meal break at the refuge du pinet.
After leaving the forest in the morning, we came through a lower vegetation area and the weather did not settle. We finished our morning literally in the clouds with a visibility of 20m at most.
We took the opportunity to drop our bags and sit around a good hiking meal. On the menu – sausage and cheese, only the good things! Now our morale was good! We also took this opportunity to share our backpacking experience each other, our friends didn’t know of Mystery Ranch, let alone the NICE Frame!
DAY 1 – 1400h – end of break – Refuge du Pinet ~ 2100m
We were satisfied. The objective of the afternoon was to establish our base for the night at Lake Montcalm. We had about 400m of vertical drop. We started, everyone had recovered their strength and this second part of the day went pretty well, although as with late in the morning I had trouble with my breath.
On the second part, we were confronted with a “névé”, a roughly 50m wide block of snow that had not melted yet. We crossed the pile of snow (a rather scary passage, thinking about it).
DAY 1 – 1800h – end of the day – Montcalm Lake ~ 2500m
We finally arrived at the point of the fall! After a long difficult day with 8 hours of walking and about 1500m of altitude, we arrived at the place where we will spend the night!
It was 10°C and the weather varied between mist and sun. We dropped our bags and we all smile, glad that we’ve finally arrived! We enjoyed the beautiful mountain lake and took some time to observe the nature around us. The panorama that was offered to us was well worth the efforts and pains we had suffered.
But we couldn’t rest too quickly, we had the camp to climb. We decided quickly on a locations for the tents and attacked the assembly. The two Nico’s slept in the tent of Nico V, Anthony slept in his tent, Hilleberg and Guillaume and I slept in his tent.
With the camp ready all that was left to do was to eat! So we put ourselves at the table, hot meal on the menu for Nico L and I, for the others it was about the same as the afternoon.
We had a great evening telling funny stories (Anthony is a joker!) and chatting. We were the only 5 in the middle of the mountain, but I thought that was exactly what made the evening great. It was in those moments that we really enjoyed the life and the nature around.
At 8:30pm we went to bed to rest our bodies and our spirits. The next day was the final climb to the top and it looked good!
DAY 2 – 0630h – Sunrise – Montcalm Lake ~ 2500m
It was 6:30am when we woke up, the night was cool but not too much (no negative temperature despite it being forecast). Everyone slowly emerged from their cocoon, we had recovered pretty well.
We packed up our equipment, ate a little to gain strength – here we go again! The mountain does not wait. We departed around 9.00am. The sun rose as we approach the summit, it’s really beautiful! We could not have hoped for better.
DAY 2 – 1130h – Montcalm Peak – 3070m
After some hard physical effort, we were finally at the top! The goal of the hike was fulfilled, to reach the summit together. And it was well worth a photo, the view was a beautiful 360° – we were on an island in the middle of a sea of clouds, it was breathtaking. The whole team had a smile, glad to have arrived together!
We put down our bags, take lots of photos for the memories and then finally rest. We take a break for an hour and eat to get some strength, we will need it for the descent!
DAY 2 – 1300h – Montcalm Peak – 3070m
It was time to come back down. We really enjoyed it and I found this last session was the least tiring. By the time we started our descent towards camp, we were better prepared and acclimatised than before. This first part went well for everyone except me. In the end I really hurt my legs and knees – my muscles just weren’t used to the movements.
We arrived at our refuge around 1500h, where we had a 30 minute rest, ate and hope the hardest part was over. The second part of the descent was really painful for me, the others were ahead of me a lot. We ended up arriving at the car park around 2000h, we changed, used the facilities and then decided to celebrate our success with a good pizza from a the restaurant!
Review of the hike:
It was really a great adventure, it was beautiful. This experience also allowed me to know where my limits were and also, thanks to the support of our team, to surpass myself and push my limits. It was a really rewarding experience. I can not wait to leave for the next big hike!