150 Years
  First Ascent

Matterhorn 2015

The First Ascent of the Matterhorn from Zermatt on July 14th 1865 was not exactly carefully planned. It was a chain of chance events that led to those seven climbers reaching the summit, then four perishing on the mountain and leaving Edward Whymper and Peter Taugwalder the subjects of intense speculation ever since.

Matterhorn 2015 takes the opportunity of its 150th Jubilee to re-live that epic event in mountaineering history. Follow Whymper on the journey across the Alps that culminated in the First Ascent of the Matterhorn and, along the way, work out what really led to the deaths of Michel Croz, Lord Francis Douglas, Charles Hudson and Douglas Hadow.

Read and experience the entire story via a Videobook, especially designed for tablets. A free App is available for download and enables you access to the history of the Matterhorn’s first ascent in any place and at any time.

Week by Week: A weekly Newsletter reports on the adventures of Summer 1865 ... as told by a contemporary of Edward Whymper. You can follow events “online” or pick up a printed version in Zermatt.

Day by day – Each afternoon an update on our website will be your gateway to the alpine exploits of that day 150 years ago.

As the action unwinds, we will keep you ud-todate either via our Live-Ticker or Twitter.

Become a Facebook friend of Edward Whymper, and hear what he has to say about the path towards the summit.

Exchange thoughts about the climb on our “Matterhorn 2015” Facebook community of adventure and nature lovers. Here you will also learn interesting fun-facts about Edward Whymper as well as his fellows, and reawaken your enthusiasm for wild adventures!




Michel Croz



Born in 1830 near Chamonix, Michel made a living as a shoe-maker. For many years, he was a porter, but guiding work started to come his way in 1859, when he was employed for an ascent of Mont Blanc by William Matthews. So impressed was Matthews that he engaged Croz for the whole of the next season. Soon after this, Michel was the guide of choice of some of the most daring climbers of the day. His bravery and determination, his skill and prodigious strength, were legendary. He guided some significant first ascents, including Monte Viso, the Barre des Ecrins and the Aiguille d’Argentière. First traverses of challenging passes included the Brèche de la Miege, and the Col de la Pilatte.

Croz’ home life seems to have mattered far less to him than his climbing. Whymper wrote in his journal how, as they passed one afternoon through Croz’ village of Le Tour, he asked where his house was, was he not going in? Although the house was close by, Croz simply shrugged and said no. As they passed the women of the village doing washing around the fountain, there were hoots and calls, berating Michel for avoiding his domestic ties.

  • Michel Croz