Ascent of Montagne de Cordeil on 2021-09-13

Climber: Jörn Fiege

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Monday, September 13, 2021
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Montagne de Cordeil
    Elevation:6936 ft / 2114 m

Ascent Trip Report

It should have made me suspicious that there had not been any ascents posted at Peakbagger despite Montagne de Cordeil‘s height and rather significant prominence. Yet, it all started so well.

Having had chosen the small village of Argens as the obvious starting point I managed to get one of the few parking spots. Following a gravely forest road in NE direction was not exactly exciting but brought me within less than one hour to the col separating the „Montagne“ from its little sibling „Petit Cordeil“ (1‘780m high, prominence a little more than 70m).

Here I turned right (East) up a hill only to lose the elevation gained right again on the other side. No more trail here but at least the occasional cairn. According to my GPS the trail would traverse below Montagne de Cordeil to win its back further East, only to switch back from there to the summit. However, there was no more the faintest idea of a trail and I had run out of cairns, too. So I opted for an uphill slog directly to the mountain back.

This was anything but fun, however, it got me to the summit soon enough; pretty much 2:00 hours from my car. About 40m or so additional elevation gain.

Views from the top are nice, yet the surrounding mountains are all of similar shape with no distinctive or even defining element. So just a short break at the summit cairn and back down.

Not wishing to navigate the steep hillside down I followed the wide mountain‘s back in a SE direction. Unfortunately, no sign of a trail anywhere. Hence, I simply headed pretty much straight into the direction of Argens. In hindsight, it probably would have been better to follow the back of the mountain a little longer and only then to head for Argens.

Anyway, my choice got me once again into steep terrain, the only difference being that further down the mountain this was all bushes and trees, requiring frequent climbs back up whenever I appeared to be stuck. Probably 100m or so of reascent albeit this is hard to tell in such terrain.

Eventually, I got off the mountain and followed along pastures towards the village of Argens. Overall, 10% pleasant hiking, 25% boring forest road hike and the remainder a bushwack in open country. To put it short: not very appealing. I suppose there are smarter ways to climb this mountain though…
Click on photo for original larger-size version.
The bulky summit of Montagne de Cordeil as seen from the col to Petit Cordeil (2021-09-13). Photo by Jörn Fiege.
Click here for larger-size photo.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2933 ft / 893 m
    Total Elevation Loss:459 ft / 138 m
    Round-Trip Distance:7.8 mi / 12.5 km
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Open Country, Bushwhack
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2605 ft / 794 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 2474 ft / 754 m; Extra: 131 ft / 39m
    Loss on way in:131 ft / 39 m
    Distance:4.7 mi / 7.5 km
    Route:via col to Petit Cordeil
    Start Trailhead:Argens  4462 ft / 1360 m
    Time:2 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:328 ft / 99 m
    Gain on way out:328 ft / 99 m
    Distance:3.1 mi / 5 km
    Route:via back of mountain and direct descent to Argens
    End Trailhead:Argens  
    Time:2 Hours 

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