A mountaineering trip off the beaten track. Climb three big alpine summits in the Ecrins National Park away from the honeypot mountains. Real mountaineering how it used to be!
Location: The Valgaudemar Valley and Ecrins National Park, Southern French Alps
Months available: June, July, August, September
If you are a passionate walker or climber and love the mountains, you will find it difficult to resist the lure of the big Alpine peaks and will love this mountaineering week off the beaten track!
This is a mountaineering trip for walkers or climbers who want to climb in the high mountains away from the honeypot mountains! The trip is based in the Ecrins - one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the Alps. It is much less busy than the Mont Blanc massif with the added bonus of the best sun record in the Alps!
It is a progressive week of mountaineering and alpinism taking in three spectacular peaks of the Southern French Alps including L'Obiou 2789m or Piolit 2464m (Grade: facile / easy), Les Rouies 3589m (Grade: facile / easy) and either the Sirac 3444m (Grade: peu difficile / bit more difficult) or L'Olan 3564m (Grade: peu difficile / bit more difficult).
Two of the summits involve glacier crossings and scrambling / climbing in high mountain conditions and all the peaks have exposed sections!
Over the course of the week, you will learn and practice essential rope and safety techniques for moving together and climbing in the high mountains and across glaciers with opportunities to learn more advanced techniques.
If you have never climbed in the high mountains before or had glacier experience, this is an ideal week to discover walking and climbing in crampons and climbing in big boots! You will also learn how to pace yourself at altitude.
The area we use for this mountaineering trip is away from the main tourist areas so you won't be sharing your experiences with 100ds of other mountaineers and should get a real taste of the magic of mountaineering in the Alps!
The area is rich in flora and fauna with golden eagles, wild boar, chamois, ibex, marmots and there are wolves in the vicinity. For flower enthusiasts, look out for the orange lily, the 60 plus species of orchids including the lady's slipper and countless others.
A real taste of classic mountaineering and alpinism off the tourist track!
Have a look at our mountaineering kit list for adivce on what to pack.
We recommend travelling by train. The nearest train station is Gap and from here there are local bus routes to La Chapelle in Valgaudemar. We provide transport from here.
We also offer a transfer service from Gap to your accommodation. Please just ask.