The European Alps offer some of the finest and most accessible ski mountaineering in the world. A combination of magnificent and varied terrain, an enviable snow record, excellent public transport, unrivalled hut system and a long ski season make them a focus for mountaineers and skiers throughout the world. The Classic Haute Route, the traverse between Chamonix and Zermatt described in this guide, is without doubt the most sought after ski tour in the world but it is simply one of many high level routes the Alps has to offer. This guidebook (Vol 1 - West) brings together a selection of the finest high level ski tours in the Western Alps in areas as diverse as the Ã‰crins, Vanoise, Haute Maurienne, Grand Paradiso, Mt Blanc, Valais and Urner Alps. The routes described will provide a lifetimes ski mountaineering for the average ski mountaineer and ensures challenges and rewards for all levels of ability.