Cabane des Dix
August 14: It was sunny when we awoke at Cabane de Profleuri, but by the time we started hiking, it was overcast. We immediately had to climb to Col des Roux, a quick climb on a good trail. At the top, we had great views of Lac des Dix and the surrounding green valley with steep sides. We spent a several hours hiking above and around the lake which was opaque green because its water was full of suspended glacial silt. The reservoir was beautiful with mottle shadows from the clouds. The surrounding meadows were full of wildflowers of various species and colors. We passed a refuge building with a cow barn and later a herd of cows. From the south end of the lake, we climbed into another basin with the Glacier de Cheilon above us. We had been following good trails all day and soon hiked up a glacial moraine with nice view all around. Next, we climbed over a high ridge to a high point called Tete Noir where we had a tremendous view of the glacier and of Monte Blanc de Cheilon, a high peak above us. Below us in a beautiful glacial basin we saw Cabane des Dix. I had never before see such an amazingly situated building.
When we entered the hut, we were greeted by several young Swiss people who were dancing in the kitchen to American rock-n-roll while they worked. This hut is run by the Swiss Alpine Club, and the crew unexpectedly offered us a discount because we were with the Colorado Mountain Club. Unfortunately, their only shower was a canvas cubicle, outdoors, with cold water. So after cleaning up the best I could without a shower, I asked the crew for a beer and they handed me a beer menu. Nearly everywhere else we stayed in huts and villages, there was one Swiss brand of beer available. Here, they had all the best Swiss, Belgian, and German beers available, each with its own glass labeled for the particular brand. This in a place that only got supplies by helicopter. They served us a nice dinner, and we enjoyed the accommodations and friendliness of the crew. I liked the fact that even with the tight quarters typical of mountain huts, there were plenty of spaces to store gear.