The philosophy of the mountains

Andrea B.

On the way back from Pointe Léchaud, dead tired but still smiling, soaked after our “alternative” descent, sliding down with our bottoms in the snow, we begin running into those of the second M4810 group. They had done a long circuit of the valley below.

We thought we’d have more to share, given the way we chose to reach the valley… but we soon discovered they had much more to recount than we expected!


“Did you hear?” is the first question is the question on everyone’s lips as we begin exchanging words with the other group.

What did we miss?

It turns out that their challenge was no less adventurous than ours. The abundant late snowfall of that strange June, that made us change our destination of the Petit Mont Blanc, crossed their path various times in the form of steep snowfields to cross. They crossed them with the support of the guides, that stretched safety ropes from one end to another, not getting discouraged and facing the discomfort on ice that many of them have. All is fine once, twice, three times… and then something happens.

Andrea B.

On a particularly steep glacier, something suddenly stands out in the tidy yellow and blue dotted line that distinguishes our outings: it’s Andrea B. He slips and loses grip on the rope, sliding down on the fresh snow. 

In the following few seconds – that seem like hours – while the guides try helping him and the rest of the group watches anxiously, Andrea doesn’t panic. He turns on his side, and with the sureness of a well-trained mountaineer, uses his trekking pole to break and waits for help. The hoorays and excited whispering that follow speak for themselves: he is officially one of the heroes of this narrative.

I was curious and wanted to speak to him when, having returned to Courmayeur, I find him sitting at the bar, smiling at me with his calm gaze as a he sips on a beer.

“The fall? Yeah, that was an adventure…” he responds easily as I bombard him with questions. “No, I was scared, come on. I was able to turn around immediately, I didn’t catch speed. Nothing to worry about!”

Sure, what kind of hero would he be if he let it get to his head?

It’s clear that Andrea is someone who has other things going on up there. It’s as easy as reading his short autobiography on the Protagonists page of the M4810 project website: “We don’t want to reach a peak without first learning to recognise where it is. We want to learn to take measures, to calculate distances, and to move together in the uncertainty of the predictions and calculations that come before the journey.

Of course, he’s a philosopher!

A philosopher that operates in programming and change management consulting, to be precise.

“I wear several hats… and that’s the beauty of it. It’s the amazing thing that Methodos lets you do, allowing you to find your dimension, to reconcile your artistic side with your analytical side, the humanistic approach and the scientific one, because it’s this duality that incarnates the company itself. This is the contest of an organization that helps others change and grow.”

And he doesn’t lose his multifaceted soul in the mountains either. The further he goes, the more the ponders the climb and what he is doing. 

Andrea B.

He’s been a mountain man his whole life, his mom being born in a small town at the foot of the Mont Blanc, and these mountains left an impression on him. But his approach, until now, is not about the alpine thrill or performance. 

“Every time we’re out there, I experience various moments. There’s the calm start, then the big push, followed by the moment when I think I can’t do it, and then suddenly the prospective changes, on the landscape and on myself… and so on I find this in M4810 as a project, but also in life and in work.

Maybe this is exactly what this expedition gives me. As consultants, this project impacts on the understanding of self-management, when you’re in front of a client as much as when you’re slipping on the snow, out of control. You understand the various moments, and you know how to manage them, instead of letting them manage you. This journey also improves resilience and the ability to share it with others. At work, it allows us to take on projects together, trading in the old client-supplier dynamic for a real partnership.”

It’s clear to me that the most interesting part of this challenge for him is mental, not physical. It’s studying, with the eyes of a philosopher, how this change impacts the human soul and the organisation that he belongs to, to then make it available to others. He participates directly and actively, following the evolution, without necessarily challenging himself to reaching the peak.

“I like the idea of having arrived this far for now. It’s been a constant, joyous discovery.  There are many ways to reflect on M4810 that aren’t just about challenge and performance. Actually, I’ve always seen it more as an educational project than an athletic one, one that is valuable in our context for its practical impact.

Andrea B.

It makes the Methodos work and life philosophy real. It’s an example of the social character of the most evolved organisations, of the integration of business and social life of the people that belong to them.

It’s not a coincidence that all the “giants” are heading in this direction

It makes the Methodos work and life philosophy real. It’s an example of the social character of the most evolved organisations, of the integration of business and social life of the people that belong to them.

It’s not a coincidence that all the “giants” are heading in this direction.

It makes the Methodos work and life philosophy real. It’s an example of the social character of the most evolved organisations, of the integration of business and social life of the people that belong to them.

It’s not a coincidence that all the “giants” are heading in this direction. Google with its intangible benefits, tech companies with smart and remote work… M4810 is a step in the same direction, aiming to give Methodos’ stakeholders something more. It’s those valuable components that expand the capital of an organization: not just economic, but also social, human, intellectual. That’s it, the project condenses all of these topics in a very interesting way.

I didn’t start this project thinking ‘I’ll never climb the Mont Blanc,’ in fact, I was open to where my body and this experience would take me. Then, slowly, I had to face those limits that I didn’t want to overcome, for both objective and subjective reasons… but I’ll keep climbing, changing, and passionately following this project that is giving us so much.”


The journey




Mont Fallère

Methodos - M4810 - Mont Fallère

It is the first peak over 3.000m of our project

Mont Fallère is found in the Grand Combin Alps in the Aosta Valley.

Found between the Gran San Bernardo Valley and the Valdigne, it’s a great introduction to the magical world of the 3000s. Mont Fallère, situated in the heart of the Aosta valley, proposes a 360° panorama of all the Aosta valley peaks. Its layout is not the be underestimated, but overall it doesn’t present great difficulties, even if we need to be really careful in the final part of the ridge.

We go up in two stages: the first day up to the Fallère Hut; the second day we arrive at the summit and then we go down to the valley.

Read the story :)




Pointe Lechaud

Our first alpinistic climb to a summit

Pointe Léchaud (3.128m) is located along the borderline between Italy (Valle d'Aosta) and France (Savoy).

It is located south of the Col de la Seigne (2.512m) between the Veny Valley and the Savoy Valley of the Glaciers.

We climb in two stages: on the first day we walk from La Visaille to the Elisabetta Soldini Hut (2.195m); on the second day up to the top and back to La Visaille.

From the hut we go up to the Col Chavannes (2.603m); from the hill we have to leave the marked path that begins to descend into the Chavannes valley, following a path on the right that crosses the very steep eastern slope of Mount Lechaud. The trail continues on the right, again not far from the crest of Mount Lechaud and crosses a small valley of stones or snow, reaching the wide basin where the Chavannes Glacier is located. Once we have put on crampons, we set foot on the glacier going diagonally to the left. From this point we gradually turn to the right pointing directly to the top, which can be reached by overcoming some easy rocky steps. What we see is a vast and spectacular panorama on the Italian side of Mont Blanc.




Vallée Blanche

Methodos - M4810 - Vallée Blanche

Crossing the Gigante glacier towards the Aiguille du Midi

Although it may seems like a "scenic walk", the Vallée Blanche should not be underestimated, as it is an itinerary that involves crossing the Gigante glacier. It is always necessary to be accompanied by an Alpine Guide who knows the itinerary very well and knows how to avoid the dangers.

We go up by cable car to Punta Helbronner (3.462m), we wear harnesses and crampons and we tie ourselves together.

The first section makes us lose altitude and then we start to climb towards the Aiguille du Midi. The last section includes the ascent of the snow-covered ridge of the Aiguille du Midi, reaching 3.842m.

The return is with the panoramic cable car which takes us back to Punta Helbronner.




Monte Rosa

Methodos - M4810 - Monte Rosa

2 full-immersion days of technical alpine skill training on Monte Rosa

The Monte Rosa is a mountain range that is found in the Pennine Alps, along the watershed line between Italy (on the border of the Aosta valley and Piedmont) and Switzerland. It gives name to the Monte Rosa Alps supergroup, which in turn is composed of various important groups and subgroups, east of the Cervino and south-east of the Mischabel range. It is the most extended range in the Alps, and second in height after the Mont Blanc. It is the highest mountain in Switzerland and the second in Italy, and has the highest average height, containing 9 of the 20 highest peaks of the chain.




Gran Paradiso

Methodos - M4810 - Gran Paradiso

The Gran Paradiso is the only mountain over 4000m that is fully on Italian territory

The Gran Paradiso is the only mountain over 4000m that is fully on Italian territory. A classic and fascinating climb: after a first part on ice, to be able to reach the peak marked by a statue of the Virgin Mary, you must pass some simple rocky crossings.




Monte Bianco

Methodos - M4810 - Monte Bianco

Mont Blanc (Monte Bianco in Italian) is a mountain situated in the North-occidental Alps, in the Graian Alp range, on the watershed line between the Aosta valley (val Veny and val Ferret in Italy), and Haute-Savoie (the Arve valley in France), in the territories of Courmayeur and Chamonix, which give name to the Mont Blanc Massif, belonging to the subsection of the Mont Blanc Alps.

It’s 4808,72m (the last official measure was taken September 13, 2017) make it the highest mountain in the Alps, in Italy, in France, and in general in Europe if we exclude the Caucuses. This is why it’s called the King of the Alps. It shared a spot on the list of the highest Seven Summits with Mount Elbrus in the Caucuses.

Primarily granite full of peaks and crests, cut by deep glacial valleys, it is internationally renowned for its climbing and, from a historical point of view, the birth of mountaineering coincides with its first ascent: August 8, 1786.