Chamonix Hut to Hut hiking short trips, French Alps


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Dates to sign in:
  • 2nd – 4th of August 2019
  • 9th – 11th of August 2019
Dates for privat tours: June – September
  • 3-Day trips

“Rustic hut charm with incredible views!” 

This two short trips are perfect for hikers that like to enjoy stunning views over the Mont Blanc mountain chain, sleep in two mountain huts and spot some ibex and wildflowers along the way. Your local guide makes sure that you will get to the huts just in time to enjoy a delicious mountain dish and that you don’t have to worry about anything but taking the nicest pictures of the famous mountain scenery.

On the first option you will sleep in dormitories, and on the second option you’ll enjoy the comfort of a double room if available.

Chamonix Hiking – Itineraries
1: Lac Blanc and Aiguilles Rouges
Arrival day 

19.00: Information and meeting with the guide at the Hotel.
Night in a Hotel in Chamonix

Day 1: Refuge Bellachat, 2152m

We hike from Chamonix up to the Refuge Bellachat (2152m). The Refuge offers one of the nicest views over the Mont Blanc mountain chain. You might want to enjoy a drink on the terrace that overlooks the whole Mont Blanc valley and wait until the sunset puts the mountains in a pink coat. The family style dinners will soon be served in the cosy mountain hut.

Day 2: Lac Blanc – Refuge Lac Blanc, 2352m

An early breakfast at the mountain hut with the fantastic views towards Mont Blanc. Our trail brings us up to Brevent summit for an even more breathtaking view. We reach Col du Cornu via the Col du Brévent and traverse to the Lac de Cornu (at 2276m), which is situated in of the most beautiful environments in the valley. After a picknick lunch we continue the descent through the Combe de la Glieres and hike up to the mountain hut Lac Blanc (2353m). The Lac Blanc mountain lake is the perfect location to take some stunning pictures of a perfect mountain scenery with the Mont Blanc in the back.

Day 3: Aiguilles Rouges

We eat a good breakfast overlooking the Aguilles Rouges mountain before leaving this beautiful spot. Our way down to Argentière will take us to the Lac Cheserys and either Argentière or the Col du Montets. Those that want to hike a bit longer can join the guide on the Petit Balcon Sud all the way back to Chamonix. Lunch will be served at local restaurant in the famous ski resort of Argentière.

  • 3-5 hrs
Map with the Chamonix hiking route in red:

chamonix hut to hut hiking route

Costs per Person
  • 455€ with a minimum of 6 guests (340€ without the first night at Hotel)
  • 525€ with a minimum of 3 guests (420€ without the first night at Hotel)

Included in the price: Organisation, privat UIMLA-mountainleader for 3 days, 2 nights in dorms at mountain refuges with half board, 1.night at Hotel in Chamonix with breakfast, 2 pack lunches, one lunch at Restaurant, hiking map copy
Not included: personal insurance, drinks

2. Miage Mountain range
Day 1: Refuge de Miage, 1559m
Meet your guide at 9.00 in the morning in Chamonix and take the local bus to Les Houches. Prarion cable car brings you to a starting location with an exceptional view, right across the Mont-Blanc mountain range. You will walk down to Col de Voza (1653m), cross an impressive suspension bridge over a glacial stream and hike up to your next pass, Col de Tricot (2120m). You will eat picknick along the way and have time to enjoy the wild flowers and views over glaciers and peaks.
A steep trail down brings you to your beautiful final location of the day, the Refuge de Miage.
Overnight at one of the wonderful Chalets at Miage Alpage.
Night and dinner at Refuge de Miage
  • (8km, -700m, +500m)
Day 2: Refuge de Miage – Refuge Tré – la Tête (1970m)
You will walk up to Chalet du Truc (1800m), a lookout where local farmers produce their cheese and sausages and start walking down trough a lush forest to the Valley of Les Contamines. Now your way starts climbing up little by little to finally arrive at the Tré – la – Tête Refuge at the foot of the Domes du Miage on the West side of Mont Blanc. You might want to enjoy the homemade Blueberry pie on the sunny terrace overlooking the mountains and valleys.
Night and dinner at Refuge Tré-la-Tête
  • (9km, – 300m, + 850m)
Day 3: Refuge Tré – la – Tête – Les Contamines
You stroll down to the Gorge Bon-Nant and can decide if you want to take a longer hike to Jovet Lake or just a loop in the Gorge and back down to Les Conatmines.
Take the local bus back down to St.Gervais les Bains and continue back to Chamonix by train. 
You will be back in Chamonix around 5-6pm.
  • (14km, -1400m, + 800m included Lac Jovet, can be much less up and down)
Map with the hike and the huts:
chamonix-hut-to-hut-hiking
Costs per Person
  • 850.- € per person with 2 guests
Included in the price: Organisation, privat UIMLA mountain leader guide for 3 days, guides expenses, 2 huts in privat rooms with half board, 3 picknick lunches, Prarion cable car, Bus Chamonix – Les Houches, Taxi Les Contamines – St.Gervais les Bains, Train St.Gervais les Bains – Chamonix, hiking map copy
Guide:

Local, certified UIMLA – mountain leader


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Trekking tour around Mont Blanc, TMB

Dates: Mid June to late September

  • 10 – day program, 9 hiking days

The Tour du Mont Blanc, a complete circuit of the Mont Blanc, is the ultimate long distance mountain walk in the Alps, and has some of the most stunning scenery.

The TMB is a 120km route that passes through France, Italy and Switzerland. The track offers cultural delights, picture book Alpine villages, the vibrant towns of Chamonix and Courmayeur, and mountain huts with majestic views.  Almost each night we stay in a different location. Accommodation varies from small family run village hotels and hand picked mountain guest houses.

Our Video:

Detailed Program:

Arriving day:
We pick you up at Geneva airport or you travel independent to Les Houches in the Chamonix Valley. Check-in at the Hotel and get to know your hiking guide that tells you all about the tour.
Dinner and night at the Hotel in Les Houches

Day 2: Les Houches (1007m) to Les Contamines (1167m)
Cable car ride up to Bellevue and ascent to Col de Tricot. A great lunch waits for us after a steep descent to the alpine village Chalets du Miage. We pass the Refuge de Truc where we buy some fresh cheese and sausages and finish the day in Les Contamines.
Night and dinner at Hotel in Les Contamines
• ascent 639m, descent 1200m
• distance 14km

Day 3: Les Contamines (1167m) to Les Chapieux (1554m).
We reach Col de Bonhomme (2329m) 0ver an old Roman bridge and trough alpine cow pastures.  After a picknick lunch we traverse the hillside to the slightly higher Col de Croix de Bonhomme before a descent to the hamlet of Les Chapieux.
Night and dinner at les Chapieux or village du Glacier
• ascent 1270 m, descent 906m
• distance 15 km

Getting into Italy

Day 4: Village du Glacier (1554m) to Courmayeur
We follow the well marked route up to Col de la Seigne (2516m) where we cross the border into Italy. We enjoy views to the impressive Mont Blanc from it south side while stepping over the border line. From the Col we descend slightly down to Val Veny and take a bus to the alpine city of Courmayeur.
Night at Hotel Courmayeur, no organized dinner
• ascent 734 m, descent 741m
• distance 15 km

Day 5: Courmayeur (1226m) – Rest day.

Today you have a rest day in Courmayeur. There are great shops, cafes and bars. We also suggest a trip up the new cable car to punta Helbronner. Fantastic views of Mont Blanc and the glaciers of the Valle Blanche.
Night in Hotel in Courmayeur, no organized dinner

Day 6: Courmayeur (1226m) to Refugio Ferret. 

We head up to Bertone Refuge for a coffee. Then along the ridge with some of the finest views of the Mont Blanc range, to the guesthouse Chalet Ferret(2025m). A peaceful mountain guest house next to a mountain stream.
Night and dinner at Chalet Ferret
• ascent 1080m, descent 522m
• distance 18km

Getting into Switzerland

Day 7: Chalet Ferret (2025m) to La Fouly (1610m).
A gentle traverse of the mountainside to the Rifugio Elena for a morning coffee followed by a climb up to the Grand Col Ferret (2537m) where we cross the border into Switzerland. Down through the flower meadows to the small village of La Fouly.
Night and dinner in a Hotel in La Fouly.
• ascent 760m, descent 746m
• distance 14km

Day 8: Champex Lac (1466m) to Trient (1279m).
We take a bus up to Champex Lac and  walk along the Bovine trail up to the Bovinette alpage where you can enjoy a delicious apple pie or a home made soup. Enjoy stunning views down to the Roman town of Martigny and the Rhone valley as you walk to Trient for the night.
Night and dinner in a Guesthouse in Trient
• ascent 750m, descent 705m
• distance 14 km

Back to France

Day 9: Trient (1279m) to Argentière (1252m).
The last Col of the tour… The hike over the Col de Balme brings you back into the Chamonix valley and down to Argentière. The view from the pass over Mont Blanc and the surrounding mountains are just incredible. We stop for a delicious homemade Quiche at a mountain guest house before heading down to Argentiére.

Night at Hotel in Argentière, no organized dinner
• ascent 1100m, descent 500m
• distance 13km

Day 10: Argentière (1252m) to Chamonix (1000m).
From the Col des Montets  you walk through the Aiguilles Rouges Nature Reserve  to the famous Lac Blanc which provides a magnificent view of the Mont Blanc Massif. Your last walk down of the tour to La Flégere (1875m) and than a  cable car down back to Chamonix.
Last night in a Hotel in Chamonix and farewell dinner
• ascent 1100m, decent 500m
• distance 12km

Map:

map of the tour du Mont Blanc

Difficulty

This is a challenging route with an accumulated height gain and loss of over 9,000meters. The route crosses from valley to valley via  mountain passes, with long and some steep ascents and descents. This tour is ideal for regular walkers that are physically fit. The terrain on this trail is diverse with country lanes, forest trails, rocky mountain paths, and high mountain meadows. In early season you might have to walk over a few snow patches.

 We can arrange a luggage transfer between accommodations to make the tour easier for you.

Rates
  • from 3915.00€ per hiker / single room supplement 410.00€

Included in the price:
Organization, certified UIMLA-hiking guide for the whole tour, 10 nights in privat rooms with ensuite bathroom in typical village hotels and mountain guest houses, breakfasts, 7 dinners, cable cars, pick up and drop off at Geneva airport, transport to hiking starts 

Not included in the price: lunches, 3 dinners,luggage transfer (we are happy to organize that for you, the cost is  35.00€ per day per luggage of 15kg), meals that are not listed above, personal insurance (accident, travel, annulation etc.), drinks

a picknick along our tour du Mont Blanc Trekking
Lunches

We didn’t include lunches because often hikers have different kind of appetite and food wishes along the trail. There are a view mountain guesthouses where we can stop for delicious lunches and the guides are more than happy to organize a buffet style picknick during the hike. Once in Les Houches the guide will ask you what your food preferences are.

 


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9 Reasons why you should hike the Tour du Mont Blanc

There is a never-ending battle over which city or region is truly the best “mountain town,” “trail city” or “outdoor heaven.” East versus West, mountain access versus desert singletrack, dense forest versus world-class crags, even the local craft-brew scene comes into the debate. Europe doesn’t have this problem—there’s a clear winner.
Chamonix, France is nestled at around 3,000 feet at the base of the picturesque Mont Blanc Massif and is about as close to a true outdoor heaven as a town can possibly be.
Chamonix’s crowning attraction for adventure-seekers, though, is its location along the Tour du Mont Blanc, a 170 kilometer (105-mile) circuit that observes the massif from all sides through three countries. More of a shrine to the Alps than a simple walk in the mountains, the TMB is the definition of a Bucket List Hike.

So, why should you stick the TMB on top of your list? Here are a few good reasons.
1. The Difficulty

The trail acts as a rite of passage for those addicted to serene alpine environments, climbing to 2,500 meters five times and totaling somewhere around 30,000 feet of total elevation gain. Each section of trail is comprised of a major uphill slog, usually followed by an almost equally brutal descent. It’s certainly no walk in the park, but the rewards are well worth the effort.

2. The Scenery

This one is a no-brainer. With hardly any forest cover, the mountain views are panoramic and never-ending. From almost any point along the trail there are million-dollar views of the massif’s glaciers and of Mont Blanc itself. You’ll want to keep your camera handy!

3. The Food

The TMB gives hikers the option to forego the “just add water” meals and incessant food daydreams that usually characterize a lengthy backpacking trip. Villages with stores and bakeries can be found almost daily, and more than 50 trail refuges offer semi-reasonable prices for hot food. Don’t worry, the physical demands of the hike will erase any guilt you might have about culinary indulgences. When in Europe, right?

4. The Accessibility

Many people shy away from backcountry trips that take longer than 2-3 days, the standard time/distance threshold where the risk goes up and the ability to bail goes way down. One of the most appealing characteristics of the Tour du Mont Blanc is how accessible and well marked the trail is. The path winds around some of the most sought-after terrain in Europe, so people are always nearby and help is readily available if needed. There are plenty of points to get on or off the trail, giving hikers the flexibility to create their own itineraries.

5. The Prestige

The trail is famous for its beauty, but this fame extends far beyond some pretty pictures in a magazine. For over a decade now, Chamonix and the TMB have hosted thousands of trail runners each August for the Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB), which has developed into one of the most prestigious and influential ultra races in the world. Hundreds of the fastest mountain athletes flock to Chamonix weeks before the event to train for what may be their biggest race of the year. The UTMB follows the TMB counterclockwise starting and ending in Chamonix, and the fastest runners finish in under 24 hours.

6. The People

One of the best aspects of any popular hiking destination is the people that you meet on the trail. The fact that the Tour du Mont Blanc is such a global attraction elevates this to a whole new level. On any thru-hike it would not be unusual to hear ten different languages being spoken and to see an incredible age range of people using the trail. The trail is also open to mountain bikes, so it’s common to see cyclists resting on the trail’s high-elevation cols before an exhilarating descent. Swapping trail stories is even more fun when your campfire pals are from all over the world.

7. The History

Most high mountain areas have a history of adventure, and the Mont Blanc Massif is no different. The first ascent of Mont Blanc was in the late 1700’s, not too long after the first circumnavigation of the massif itself roughly along the Tour du Mont Blanc’s path. Some of the trails that comprise today’s TMB route are even older than this, though, because they follow old trade and transportation routes used for many centuries between mountain villages—some dating as far back to the days of the Roman Empire.

8. The Culture

In international travel, getting from Point A to B efficiently can sometimes restrict cultural immersion. Hiking is the perfect way to reverse that. As the trail wanders through quaint and historic hamlets in France, Italy, and Switzerland, hikers are able to gain an intimate look into local life and culture at their own pace without the distractions of modern transportation.

9. The Distance

Hiking over mountainous terrain is tough, especially for the first few days. When a hiker is able to continue working through the soreness and discomfort on a longer trek, a new world of empowered enjoyment can be found. A thru-hike of the TMB takes 9-12 days for most hikers, giving anyone plenty of time to adapt to the terrain and to thrive in the mountains. This is the perfect distance for an international trip that calls for a full-scale adventure in a compact timeline.

 


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Hiking in Cornwall & Lake District, England


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Dates: May – September

What to expect
Cornwall

In Cornwall we will discover  landscapes where the sea turns turquoise in the sun, the sand is white and the natural light is sometimes blindingly bright, the land is adorned with a legacy of Bronze age standing stones. Huge granite burial chambers, Celtic crosses and holy wells. We will walk trough beautiful flower fields along the South Western Coast Path and might spot some seals on the way.

Lake District

Walking on the Fells in the Lake District National Park is something every walker should experience. 500 million years of geological processes have produced a tightly packed landscape of sparkling waters and superb rugged peaks of dramatic beauty. Within an area only 30 miles across, England’s highest mountains tower over its deepest and longest lakes, with picturesque stone-built villages, farms and country inns crowding into the valleys.

Highlights
  • Discover the Cornish coast walks
    Reach the highest fells in the North
    Sleep in an old castle and luxury Hotels
    Cruise on an old steamboat
  • Luggage transport – Hike only with a daypack
Hiking Itinerary

Day 1: Mullion Cove
Transfer from Newquay Airport to Mullion Cove Hotel
You will stay at the magnificently sited Mullion Cove Hotel for the next two nights. The hotel is situated on the Lizard Peninsula in South Cornwall. The hotel stands on the cliff top overlooking the harbour and fishing cove with uninterrupted sea views.
There will be time for a short walk before dinner.
Dinner  be at hotel.

Day 2: Kynance Cove and Lizard Point
Today we’ll take our first long hike along the Cornish coast, directly from the hotel on the South West Coast Path. We’ll visit the dramatic Kynance Cove and Lizard Point, before proceeding to the pretty village of Cadgwith for a welcome pint!
10 miles, 2000 feet of ascent and descent.
Dinner at hotel.

The very westerly point of England

Day 3:  St Michael’s Mount and Land’s End
Today we’ll start very early to fit in a visit to iconic St Michael’s Mount and its 17th Century Castle, with access by its cobbled tidal causeway. If the tide is high, transfer is by small boat.
After that we can transfer to the little village of Porthcurno and hike along the South West Coast Path to Land’s End admiring the views from the most westerly point of the English mainland.
6 miles, 2000 feet of ascent and descent.
Dinner at Hotel

Day 4: St.Ives
Today you will hike from Lelant to Zennor. Again we follow the South West Coast Path through wonderful coastal scenery through areas of wild orchids, with views down to rocky inlets where the seals will be resting. An option today is to finish the walk in St.Ives to allow more time to shop and sightsee there. Otherwise the hike finishes in Zennor.
Using the train, allows the choice of length of stay in St.Ives and the journey takes just 10 minutes.
Leland to Zennor, 11 miles, 2700 feet in ascent and descent
Lelant to St.Ives, 3,5 miles

Lake District discovery

Day 5:  Transfer to the Lake District & The Swan Hotel
Today you will transfer by private minibus to Newquay airport and again transfer to the Lake District by private minibus from Manchester airport.
Depending on flight times, we should have time for a little hike up Hampsfell and a visit to the picture postcard village of Cartmel, famous for its races, sticky toffee pudding and its priory, before reaching our hotel, The Swan at Newby Bridge.
Dinner will be at the Hotel

Day 6: Scafell Pike, the highest point in England
Today, we’ll attempt an iconic British hike, to the top of England’s highest fell, Sca Fell Pike. The hike starts in Brotherilked, we go up past the waterfalls of Scale Gill and the River Esk, to magnificent Great Moss. From there we make a final ascent of Sca Fell Pike via Micklesore, and then descend steeply down the path by Lingmell Gill enjoying views over Wastwater. A short hop by minibus brings us to the Wastwater Hotel with its famous hikers bar. A long, but very rewarding day.
8 miles, 3100 feet in ascent and descent on rocky and uneven Lakeland paths with some steep sections.
Dinner will be at the hotel.

To the northern Lake District area

Day 7: Rydal Water and Grasmere
Today’s we’ll enjoy a shorter hike as we transfer to the North Lake District. Starting in Rydal Water on the coffin route, we’ll ascend little Loughrigg Fell high above pretty Rydal Water. We’ll then descend to Loughrigg Terrace where the bluebells will greet us before crossing over to White Moss and Wordsworth’s house. It is possible to have a guided tour of Wordsworth’s house, a fascinating insight into 18th century domestic life, as well as the great poet.
Grasmere village itself is a picture postcard of pretty slate houses, shops and pubs.
4 miles, 1300 feet in ascent and descent
Your hotel tonight is Armathwaite Hall and Spa, where you will have dinner.

Day 8: The Newlands Round, Keswick and Derwentwater
Today we will drive into the heart of the Newlands Valley to Little Town, the starting poing of one of the Lake District’s most famous hikes, The Newlands Round. First we will ascend the spectacular wide ridge of Hindscarth to reach Dale Head and one of the best views in the Lake District over Buttermere and Crummock Water. From here we will descend over Maiden Moor down to beautiful Derwentwater and the jetty at Brandlehow. You will then catch the Victorian steam launch across the lake to the market town of Keswick, where there are plenty of shops and cafes, before catching your private minibus home, via the ancient stone circle of Castle Rigg.
9 miles, 2900 feet in ascent, 2400 feet in ascent, on rocky and uneven Lakeland paths. Some steep sections.
Your dinner tonight will be at Armathwaite Hall.

A cruise and a train ride back to London

Day 9: Ullswater and transfer to London
Today you will transfer to Pooley Bridge to catch another Victorian steamer and enjoy a trip down the deepest lake in England, Ullswater. You will enjoy a gentle walk along the shores to the pub in Patterdale. There a private minbus will transfer you to Penrith station for your First Class train journey back to London.
5.7 miles, 1100 feet in ascent and descent.

Prices
  • 3557.00€ / hiker, with a group of 5 hikers
  • 3150.00€ / hiker with a group of 8 hikers

Excluded: Flights, London hotels, Meals other than those stated, lunches, drinks


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Dolomites hiking traverse, Italy


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Dates: June – September

The Dolomites might just be the world’s most beautiful construction, on this both architect Le Corbusier and alpinist Reinhold Messner can agree. See and experience true South Tyrolean beauty whilst pondering the towers of Three Peaks (Drei Zinnen) or basking in the last rays of evening light that redden the mountains around Pederü mountain guest house. Hike along the Dolomites High Mountain trail and enjoy the very tasty, local food in this UNESCO World Heritage site. Our hiking traverse brings us from Cortina d’Ampezzo to Val Gardena and the impressive Sella mountain range and ends at the foot of the impressive Rosengarten towers at Karer pass.

There are great differences between the Himalayas, the Rocky Mountains and the Alps. It is yet not easy to tell them apart, by just giving a quick glance at a picture of the ranges. Generally speaking, mountains have common features, such as rocky summits, trees growing on hillsides, snow remaining in shady couloirs… 

The Dolomites however show very specific characteristics and are impossible to mistake for other massifs. Not only were they made from coral, but their history, flora and fauna make them truly unique. Mountain lovers find the views offered by these spectacular landscapes striking. 

We will discover the pretty mountain villages, 3 different natural parks and 5 mountain Dolomite mountain ranges. We will stay in beautiful Hotels with one night in a traditional mountain Guesthouse.

Picture credit: Keith Wagner, Canada

The Dolomites: “Born as coral reefs 250 million years ago, today they soar skywards proud and confident as white towers of rock.”

Dolomites hiking Itinerary

Day 1: Cortina d’Ampezzo

We all meet at the Hotel in Cortina at 7pm to get to know your hiking guide, and talk about the itinerary for the week. We enjoy a delicious dinner together.
Night and dinner at Hotel in Cortina 

Day 2: Tre Cime di Lavaredo

10.5km, 4 – 5hrs, + 378m – 378m // 6.5 miles, 1240ft elevation gain, 1240ft loss 
After a short drive past beautiful Misurina lake we start with a gentle hike at the foot of the famous vertical rock needles Tre Cime di Lavaredo. 
Night at Hotel in Cortina, no organized dinner (many options in Cortina)

Day 3: Around Croda di Lago

13,4km, 6hrs,  + 864m – 327m // 8.3 miles, 2834ft gain, 1073ft loss
A short drive brings us to the south side of the Cortina valley from where we hike to the beautiful mountain lake Mondeva located at the foot of the imposing Croda da Lago. Here we stop for a drink at the mountain hut and can later admire the Mondeval alpine pastures from the Forcella Ambrizola Pass. We continue to Forcella Giau and meet our minivan at Passo Giau.
Night at Hotel in Cortina, organized dinner

Into the mountains we go…

Day 4: Malga Ra Stua – Rifugio Seekofel – Pederü 

15 km, 5hrs, + 730m, – 840m // 9.3 miles, 2395ft gain, 2756ft loss
We hike through the Fannes-Sennes nature park today on the Alta Via, a high trail that crosses the Dolomites, and visit the Seekofel hut, one of the oldest mountain huts in the Dolomites. Over green pastures we reach Fodara Vedla to test the best Apfelstrudel in the area. Down a steep military road and we are in Pederü.
Night and dinner at Mountain Guesthouse Pederü

Day 5: Pederü, Lavarella hut, Fanes Alm, Capana Alpina

14,3km, 5hrs, + 635m, – 575m // 8.8 miles, 2083ft gain, 1886 loss
A trail through beautiful alpine pastures in the heart of the Fannes – Sennes Nature park and a sea of rocky limestone formations decorate our way up to Fanes Alm. A short way down a steep valley and we’re in the Alta Badia valley.
Night and dinner at our Mountain Explorers Hotel in the beautiful small town of San Cassiano, Spa

Day 6: San Cassiano – Kolfschung – Crespeina alta via – Wolkenstein (Val Gardena) 

7.4km, 5hrs, + 545m, – 339m // 4.6 miles, 1788ft gain, 1112ft loss
From Kolfschung we take a small cable car up to our hiking start. We hike a panoramic high trail today and finish the hike in the beautiful small town of Wolkenstein in the famous Val Gardena.
Night and dinner at Hotel in Wolkenstein, Spa

Day 7: Wolkenstein – Sassolungo loop (Langkofel / Plattkofel) – Sellajoch 

13km, 5hrs, + / – 540m // 8.1 miles, 1300 gain, 1772ft loss         
This hike leads us around one of the mightiest of the Dolomite mountains. Thanks to this loop path, you can circumnavigate the whole Langkofel / Sassolungo mountain range and enjoy continuously different sceneries and panoramas, always spectacular, while you proceed. We start and finish our hike with cable cars.
Night and dinner at Chalet Hotel in Fassa valley, Spa

Day 8: Rosengarten explorer – Refugio Vajolon  

11km, 6hrs, + 538m, – 290m // 6.8 miles, 1765ft gain, 951ft loss
The Rosengarten towers are very unique and our loop brings us to the Vajolon mountain cabin which is situated right underneath the steep rocky faces of the Rosengarten towers. We might spot some rock climbers on our way back towards the cable car.
Night at Hotel in Fassa valley, organized dinner

Day 9: Panoramic high trail Campiedi – Paolina hut – Fronza hut

10km, 4hrs, + 615m, – 200m // 6.2 miles 2018ft gain, 656ft loss
This relaxing walk is perfect to enjoy the views over the Fassa valley and up to the beautiful Rosengarten towers. A great hike up to a relaxed meal at Paolina hut with lots of time to enjoy the beauty that surrounds us. A chair lift brings us back down to our beautiful Hotel at Karer pass.
Night and farewell dinner at our beautiful Hotel at Karer pass, Spa

Day 10: Departure day 

Bye – Bye hikers Breakfast at the Hotel before your onward journey or your travel back home.
From Karer pass it’s only about a 1.5hr drive to Bolzano.

Map for the Dolomites hiking traverse:

Dolomites hiking tour

Fees  Dolomites hiking traverse:
  • 4982.00 USD per person with 6 guests, single supplement $270.00
    Minimum of 4 persons needed to conduct the tour (ask for prices); tour will be cancelled if less than 4
    Ask for discounts for bigger groups.

Included in the price: 
Accommodation and meal reservations and organization of the trip, UIMLA hiking guide, 9 nights in nice Hotels in private double rooms, 1 night in a cozy mountain guesthouse in private double rooms, private transportation to the hikes and back to the hotels, luggage transfer to all hotels, 8 dinners (as noted), park entries, cable car fees.

Not included in the price: 
1 dinner, lunches and snacks, beverages, personal insurances (accident, travel, cancelation etc.), transport to Cortina and back from Karer pass.

Changes to the itinerary: 
Note: All itineraries are subject to change due to circumstances beyond our control including, weather, road or trail conditions and flight schedules.

Hiking Level for Dolomites hiking traverse:
  • This is a moderate trek 
    8 hiking days with 4 to 7 hours of hiking daily, with 1900ft of average vertical gain each day. Hiking will generally be on well-maintained mountain trails, sometimes including easy off-trail sections. This trip is for active people who don’t mind training to prepare for the hike, or a great multi- day hike for people with trekking experience. 

Accommodation: 
3 nights at Hotel in Cortina d’Ampezzo
1 night at the mountain guest house in Fanes Natural Park 
1 night at Hotel in San Cassiano
1 night at Hotel in Wolkenstein
2 nights in Fassa valley
1 Nights at Karer pass

Lunches: 
We didn’t include the lunches because we have had big differences in eating preferences in the past. Some people only want to eat an energy bar, others like more a buffet style picnic or to stop at one of the many great mountain restaurants. Once in Cortina you can let me know your preferences and I can organize a picnic style buffet each day or box lunches for you. Also often there are many great mountain restaurants along the way where we can stop for lunch.

Dinners: 
1 dinner in Cortina d’Ampezzo is not included. The guide will help you find the perfect dinner place for you.

Insurances: 
Travel insurance is not included in your tour.
We strongly recommend that you purchase insurance to cover cancellation, medical expenses, personal accident, personal baggage, money and public liability. 

Climate: 
Alpine weather can change suddenly, involving wide temperature variations. Temperatures also drop with altitude, and snow falls in summer are not rare. You should be prepared for cold and  hot weather, while minimizing items you need to pack. 

How to get to Cortina d’Ampezzo:
Venice has the closest airport and is a great location to start the tour. We recommend spending a day or two in this beautiful town prior or after the trip.

Private transportation from Venice airport:
If you like I can organize a private shuttle from the Venice airport to Cortina and back for those who would like to go back to Venice on the last day.  

By train:
If you prefer traveling by train, the main railway line is Venezia S.Lucia – Calalzo di Cadore, then transfer to Cortina by a connected bus service. The next railway station is at Calalzo di Cadore, 21.7 miles away.

By bus:
There is a 2-hours direct bus service from Venice to Cortina called the Cortina Express. It operates daily: http://www.cortinaexpress.it/en/index.htm 

How far is Cortina from … / miles:
100 from Venice
268 from Milan
430 from Rome 
102 from Innsbruck 
820 from Calais
  27 from the Austrian border  
  45 from A27-Belluno motorway   

How to get back from Karer Pass at the end of the tour
I’m happy to arrange a Taxi for you or you can take the public bus to Bozen/Bolzano and than a train to Venice or where ever you like. From Bozen there are trains in all different directions.

Packing list for this Dolomites hiking tour:
Recommended clothing:
(We’re fans of Merino wool clothing for hiking, they dry fast and don’t smell)
  • 1 pair of hiking boots or shoes (high or low is up to you, I always recommend higher ones but the trails are in very good shape)
  • functional underwear
  • hiking socks
  • 1 long sleeve shirt
  • 2-3 T-shirts
  • 1 fleece or soft-shell jacket
  • 1-2 pair synthetic hiking pants or shorts
  • 1 pair long pants
  • 2 – 3 pair hiking socks – wool or wool blend
  • 1 pair shoes for wearing after the hiking in the towns
  • 1 sun hat, 1 warm hat
  • thin Gloves
  • 1 set Gore-tex rain gear
  • 1 thin down jacket
  • Casual outfit for dinners
  • Gaters (for tours in early spring) 
Optional clothing:
  • Swimsuit (many Hotels have a Spa)
Gear:
  • 1 day backpack
  • 1-2 water bottles, thermos bottle
  • Sunglasses
  • Personal toiletries
  • Wollte or similar for hand washing clothes at Hotels
  • 1 pair trekking poles
  • Camera
  • Blister tape
  • Pocket knife
  • Personal medicaments

Read more about our last Dolomites hiking traverse from our friend and travel writer Laura Gosset

Please press on the “make a booking” button to send us an e-mail with your questions!

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Skitouring the Patagonian Volcanos

Dates: 05th – 18th of October 2019 (Please ask us for other dates)

Ski Chile and Argentina with us!

7-14 days programs available. Tailor maid for you.

When the days start to get shorter in the northern hemisphere, spring is slowly waking up in Patagonia. For the ski touring fans this means corn and sometimes powder snow skiing under the south american sun. Some experts speak about the best spring skiing in the world.

All our ski touring goals between Bariloche and Temuco are between 2000 and 3000 meters high and no long acclimatization is necessary.

Our skiing adventure starts in Bariloche Argentina or in Temuco Chile airport and ends in either of both, depending on the itinerary you choose. We can offer a round trip or also a point to point trip. Bariloche is situated in the northern part of Argentina’s Patagonia in the Nahuel Huapi National Park. There are great ski touring options around the so called “Switzerland of south America” in the Patagonian Lake District. The incredible views down to the huge lakes and rainforests are stunning.

After the amazing volcano-skiing in Chiles “small south” where we ski volcanos like Casablanca, Osorno and Villarica we cross the boarder into Argentinas lake basin.

We choose those volcanos and mountains with the best conditions at the moment we are there. (There are about 10 volcanos to choose from).

Relax included

To relax between the tours, we take you to some of the worlds best hot springs in hidden valleys and eat great seafood as well as Argentine beef. Come join us on this exotic skiing adventure!

At a glance:
  • 14 days / 13 nights in Chile & Argentina
  • 8 volcanos
  • 3 hot springs

 

Day to day itinerary, a program option that we like:

Day 1: Meet at Temuco airport – drive to Malalcahuello
Your mountain guide picks you up at the airport and drives you to the foot of the volcano Lonquimay.
Night in Hotel Malalcahuello

Day 2: Skitour volcano Lonquimay 2865m
Our first volcano, Lonquimay is surrounded by very old Araucaria trees and is perfect for a start into the Volcano-tour.
+ 1365m
Night in Hotel in Malalcahuello

Day 3: Skitour volcano Llaima 3125m
Llaima is one of the biggest volcanos in this area and stands in the Conguillio National park. It’s name means “the reawakened” in Mapuche language, the language of the local people.
+1325m
Night in Hotel Malalcahuello

Relaxing day

Day 4: Travel to Pucon and hot springs „Los Pozones“
We use this day to relax and reload our batteries. The Pozones hot springs is the perfect spot to relax and enjoy nature. Pucon is one of Chiles favorite outdoor destination, a small vibrant town on the foot of Villarica vulcano. We spend the evening and night here.
Night in Hotel in Pucon
Drive: 160km

Day 5: Skitour volcano Villarica 2847m
A short drive up into the Villarica national park. Today we will climb the 2847m high volcano Villarica.
The long ascend is very much worth it: a view in to the bubbling Magma in the crater and a great downhill run on the slopes up to 35° back down to the car.
+1450m
Night in Hotel Pucon

Hidden hot springs and more volcanos 

Day 6: Hidden Hot Springs in the woods – Huilo Huilo Natural Reserve
A magical relax day! This natural hot springs  have an idyllic setting between the mountains. There are several pools with varying temperature for personal selection. The setting is very natural and quiet. After soaking our muscles we continue the drive into the Huilo Huilo natural reserve where we can discover the Valdivian rainforest.
Night in Hotel in the Huilo Huilo Nature Reserve

Day 7: Skitour volcano Choshuenco 2300m, travel south to Llanquihue lake
The Mocho-Choshuenco volcano lies directly behind our Hotel, we cross the Huilo Huilo river with it’s clear blue water and skin up trough the rain forest to the top of this twin volcano.
After the tour we drive down south into Chiles Lake District and to the beautiful Llanquihue.
+1000m
Night in Hotel in Puerto Varas

Day 8: Skitour volcano Osorno 2650m – Antillanca hot springs
Maybe the most perfect conical shaped volcano on the tour. We reach it after a short drive around Llanquihue lake, Chiles biggest sweet water lake. From the top we will be able to overlook the whole lake basin and all the way to the Fjords near Puerto Montt. A short drive brings us to Antillanca and it’s hot springs near the Argentine boarder.
+1300m
Night in Hotel in Antillanca

Volcanos Casablanca and Puyehue

Day 9: Volcano Casablanca 2050m
Casablanca or the whit house is our last volcano in Chile. Easy to reach from the Antillanca ski area.
In the afternoon we drive over the Samore pass and the boarder line into Argentina down to the Nahuel Heap National Park
+900m
Night in Hotel in  Puyehue

Day 10: Refugio Puyehue, 1450m
We walk up to Refugio Puyehue trough thick Valdivian rainforest.
+1000m
Night at Refugio Puyehue

Day 11: Volcano Puyehue, 2240m
Skitour up to Volcano Puyehue where we’ll be able to overlook the huge crater. Ski back down.
Night in  Hotel in Puyehue

Day 12: Travel day to Bariloche, Argentina
We drive over the boarder into Argentina today and enjoy a relaxing afternoon in Bariloche.
Night in Bariloche

Cerro Tronador

Day 13: Skitour Refugio Meiling, 2000m
We hike up to Refugio Meiling from the hamlet of Pampa Linda. It takes a 1.5hr drive from Bariloche trough the Nahuel Huapi National Park and along the pale blue Gutierrez and Mascardi lakes.
We first hike trough a forest and skin up reaching the hut at the foot of the glacier.
+1000m 
Night at Refugio Meiling, 2000m

Day 14: Skitour Cerro Tronador 3200m, Back to Bariloche
We start early this morning after a breakfast at the hut. We skin up over big, wide glaciers to the Blanco Pass. The last part to the summit gets a bit steeper, but no climbing techniques are required.
Ready for an unforgettable ski run down?
+1200m
Night and farewell dinner in Bariloche

(Itinerary will be adapted to weather and snow conditions if needed.)

Price per skier in Swiss Francs:
  • With 2 skiers: 5690.- CHF 
  • With 3 skiers: 5184.- CHF
  • With 4 skiers: 4161.- CHF

Included in the price:

  • Organisation, UIAGM – IFMGA mountain guide, private ground transportation, 11 accommodations in hotels in double rooms, 2 nights at mountain huts, breakfasts, dinners, lunches

Not included in the price:

  • Personal insurances (accident, cancelation, travel etc.), thermal bath entries, drinks, flights, personal equipment

 

  • Please contact us for programs and prices tailored to your wishes!
How to get to to Bariloche, Argentina
  • Take a 2 hours flight from Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina.
How to get to Temuco, Chile
  • Take a 2 hours flight from Santiago de Chile, the capital of Chile.
Map with all the volcanos and our route
Map of all the volcanos we ski in Patagonia
Geography and History of Patagonia

Patagonia is the scene of the world’s great adventures. Even if you know little of the place, the name itself inhabits our subconscious, whispering of an unknown finger of the earth, el fin del mundo. You picture large silent spaces and windblown solitude.

The first Europeans to lay eyes on this landscape were led by Ferdinand Magellan, who pioneered passage trough the treacherous strait that now bears his name. His expedition named the mainland “Tierra de los Patagones” unwittingly spawning the myth of a race of Patagonian giants.

The Pampa

To the east of the Patagonian Andes, the pampa is an immense desert, by some accounts among the five largest deserts in the world. West of the Andes is another world. Here both the Central Valley and the Coast Range have sunk into the Pacific; what were once glacial valleys are now fjords, and what were once mountaintops ar now islands. Hotsprings lay revealed by coastal erosion while great glaciers further fragment the landscape, necessitating maritime or air travel. Great forests cloak the Andes from the Pacific shoreline to the continental divide, bisected by surging emerald rivers carrying glacial silt to the sea and providing habitat for fearless trout and salmon.


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Travel Blog

A ski trip to the Lake District of Chile & Argentina
“Snow-white perfect volcanoes… strung together like a string of pearls.”


volcano llaima with green fields and cows

 

The firehouses of the Mapuche Indians – The ring of fire

Volcanoes have always fascinated me. If they are also suitable for skiing and produce hot thermal water, they offer a perfect experience. In the Chilean-Argentine Lake District there are about twenty volcanoes that form part of the Pacific Ring of Fire. The snow-white volcanoes, perfectly conical in shape, are a string of pearls. They tower high above the green meadows, primeval forests and crystal-clear rivers.

The lolak Mapuche Indians called them Pillan or “firehouses”. Pillan is the name for a powerful, extraordinary, powerful and sinister appearance. Even today they still try to conjure up the spirits in the volcanoes with the help of ancient rituals.

Mapuche people

The Mapuche are considered to be the worst-humoured, proudest Indians in South America.
In December 1553, at the Battle of Tucapel, they brought a first terrible defeat to the conquistadors who were accustomed to victory. The greedy Spanish governor of Chile, Pedro de Valdivia, is said to have been
in battle. Rumour has it that the Mapuche poured glowing liquid gold into his throat. Also in the following time the Indians successfully prevented a further colonization of Chile. The ongoing resistance of the indigenous people was so successful that in 1641 the Spanish had to recognise the Mapuche nation as an independent territory in a treaty, a unique process in the history of South America. So the persistently bad mood for the Mapuche paid off. Unlike most Indian peoples, they survived colonization.

Temuco

In Temuco, where volcanic forces have created fascinating lunar landscapes over thousands of years, where remote mountain lakes glow and thermal springs gush, where thousand-year-old primeval forests with araucaria and southern beeches have been preserved – this is where our ski tours begin.

Volcano Lonquimay, 2865M

At the foot of the Lonquimay volcano we spend the night in a quiet lodge. The next morning we drive to the ski resort of Corralco, and put the skins on our skis. The Lonquimay with its 2865m is the perfect entry mountain into our ski adventure.
After an ascent of 1362m we stand on its ridge and enjoy the wonderful view of the surrounding volcanoes. We can already have a look at the volcano Llaima, our summit destination tomorrow. In the afternoon we enjoy the warm spring sun in the garden of our lodge. The neighbours invite us for a typical dinner. We can try the yellow Llao Llao mushrooms, which grow on the native Andean beeches, pasta from the nuts of the Araucaria and fresh trout from the river.

Volcano Llaima, 3125M

The next morning we drive into the Conguigilo National Park on a bumpy natural road, freshly strengthened. The snow line is exactly at our starting point and so we can start with the skins from the car. Through the lively araucaria trees we go up to the steeper slopes of the Llaimas. It is one of the highest and most active volcanoes in the area. We deposit the skis 300m below the summit and climb the last meters with crampons. Again and again it steams from holes filled with avalanche stones. A bizarre contrast to the frozen snow through which we find our way to the summit. Also on the summit there is a mixture of ice and warm, steaming avalanche stones in all colours.
A great descent brings us back down to our pick-up. A cold beer which we put in the lagoon tastes very good.

Drive to Pucon

We drive around the Llaima and after a three-hour drive in the south through forests, small villages and green meadows we reach the big Villarica lake. On its southern shore lies the volcano Villarica which proudly watches over the area.
We spend the night in the small town of Pucon, the Chilean outdoor Mecca par excellence. A paradise for hiking, rafting, biking. There is a lot going on in the main street with all the restaurants and cafes. We enjoy a nice dinner with Sopa y Pilla, the typical salty pastry as Appetizer and Carmenére wine from a winery near Santiago de Chile.

Hot springs

If in Pucon then you have to treat yourself to a day in one of the surrounding thermal baths. We drive on the east side of the Villarica to the Geometricas baths. These are beautifully located, hidden in a small valley. Red wooden walkways lead to the numerous pools with water temperatures between freezing cold and 39C. Large, green Nalcabättern, a kind of wild rhubarb decorate the slopes and slowly but surely the tired muscles recover.

Villarica Volcano, 2847M

A layer of fog covers the valley floor around Pucon. All the more we are drawn up into the sky. Also the Bandurria birds (Ibis) with their loud screeching help us to exchange the bed for the ski touring skis. As hoped, we quickly get out of the fog. A huge sea of fog lies below us. Pucon also has a small ski area from which the tour to the volcano can be started.
The Villarica offers a very special spectacle. Already on its steep summit flank a wave of stinking eggs rises from time to time in the nose. We’ll soon find out where these smells come from. A huge crater opens and we can even observe the red, bubbling Lawa in its throat. The descent from 1400m offers some ice above, then hard powder and beautiful spring snow below.

A Legend

A legend explains why volcano Lanin is extinct: The god of the volcanoes Pillan, sign of the evil has become angry, because the boys Huaiquimil Indians Huemules, Andes stags would have hunted. He made the volcano Lawa spit ashes and stones over the landscape. The volcano could only be reassured when Huilefun, the prisoner’s pretty daughter, was sacrificed to it. So they brought the Indians to a sacrificial stone where they were immediately recited by a large condor and thrown into the crater. From this moment on the volcano has calmed down, its fires are extinguished and Huemules may not be hunted any more…

Argentina, Volcano Tronador 3187m

When rain is announced in Chile, it is often worthwhile to change to the Argentinean sides of the Andes. So also this time. Through dry steppe landscape we drive into the so-called Switzerland of Argentina, to Bariloche. The little town is situated at the big Nahuel Huapi Lake and is very popular with tourists and athletes from all over the world thanks to its beautiful landscape.
To really dive into the Gaucho world we test ourselves the next day on horseback on a ride on an estancia. We are invited by the Estancieros to a fine Asado with delicious beef, Empanadas and Malbec wine. An extensive siesta and we are ready for tomorrow’s ascent to Refugio Meiling at Cerro Tronador.

Ascent to Pampa Linda 

In the Pampa Linda, the beautiful Pampa, our ascent begins through an impressive forest with huge Coihues trees. In about 4 hours we arrive at the Refugio. Lorena has already heated up and brewed coffee. She cooks a delicious lentil stew while it blows and snows outside. The strong winds shake the hut all night long. It only remains to hope that tomorrow it will be calmer. We almost overslept, no sound can be heard and the sun slowly rises in the distance. A splendid day without clouds and wind!

To the top

Federico, our local IVBV mountain guide from Patagoniatiptop, will take you up to the pass between the Pico Argentino and the Pico Internacional. The extinct volcano has 3 peaks. Our destination is Argentina, the Pico Chilene in Chile and the International, as the name suggests, right on the border.
From the pass it goes steeply up with a short, easy climbing tour in the second degree at the very end. It’s great to be up here. If our guests had more time, we could add some more volcanoes to the program. We see the volcanoes Osorno, Puntiagudo, Puyehue which erupted in 2011 and Casablanca. All are great ski touring mountains.

After the descent and a short descent we drive through the Nahuel Huapi National Park back to Bariloche. Our guests from Switzerland fly back home in the morning.

 

Arrival:

The tour can be made as a round trip from/to Bariloche or as an Andes traverse from Temuco, Chile to Bariloche, Argentina or vice versa. The airport of Temuco can be reached with a domestic flight from Santiago de Chile, that of Bariloche with a two-hour flight from Buenos Aires.

Best time to go ski touring:

Early September to mid October are ideal for ski tours on the volcanoes. The days are longer and the climate is comparable to March/April in the northern hemisphere. Down in the valleys it is already pleasantly warm and often the slopes of the volcanoes offer perfect firn conditions. As in the Alps, it can snow in spring. The volcanoes often surprise you with powder snow.

Program suggestions:

Flexibility is the magic word for a good ski tour program in this area. Depending on the weather, it can be very valuable to switch quickly from one side of the Andes to the other. Weather and conditions can vary greatly. We like to keep our programs flexible so that our guests can enjoy the best descents. 

Personal requirements:

Daily ascents from 1200-1800m should be mastered. On some volcanoes you have to climb the top with crampons. Experience is required. Downhill runs in all kinds of snow with up to 40 degrees should not be a problem.

Author:

Ella Alpiger, Swiss hiking guide and snow sports teacher, owner Patagoniatiptop GmbH. For over 10 years I have been travelling back and forth between Patagonia and the Alps and have been able to turn my dream into my profession.

 



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Patagonia Skitouring weeks, Bariloche


Patagoniatiptop video


Dates: September and October are ideal for this tour

Ski touring week, Bariloche

Patagonia…one of this rare places to remain wild and pure. It’s a real paradise for adventurer and those that like to explore this places on skis!
You can enjoy great views on the striking blue lakes around Bariloche and after some powder runs you might want to enjoy the famous Argentinean cuisine and its wines. We skitour the nicest peaks around Bariloche, explore the Frey hut area and finish our trip with the ascent of the sleeping volcano Cerro Tronador.

Day to day itinerary:

Arrival day:
Meeting at the Hotel in Bariloche to check the equipment for the week
Night and dinner at Hotel in Bariloche

1st Day:  Cerro Chall-Huaco (2000m)
A bit outside of Bariloche in the step lies Cerro Chall Huaco. A perfect warm-up tour!
Night and dinner at Hotel in Bariloche

2nd Day:  Cerro Lopez (2070m)
Our personal favorite ski touring mountain in our back yard! We pass the Lopez mountain hut and get to the top of Cerro Lopez where spectacular views to Cerro Tronador and over the Lake District await us.
Night and dinner at Hotel in Bariloche

3rd Day: Refugio Frey (1700m)
We take the lifts from Cerro Cathedral ski area to get to our starting point today. We ski tour to Frey Hut that lies just above tree line next to the small Laguna Frey. A ski touring paradise!
Night and dinner at Frey hut

4th day: Skitouring Refugio Frey area
Countless options for today: Couloires between the red granite towers and small mountain lagoons wait to be discovered.
Night and dinner at Frey hut

5th day: Bariloche
We enjoy some more ski touring in the Frey area before skiing back to Bariloche.
Night and dinner at Hotel in Bariloche

6th day: Pampa Linda –  Meiling mountain hut (2000m)
We follow the tracks of Otto Meiling one of the first Andringst. We reach the Mietling hut from “Pampa Linda” in the Nahuel Haupi National Park. This hut lies on the foot of Cerro Tronador surrounded by glaciers.
Night and dinner at Meiling hut

7th day: Cerro Tronador, Pico Argentino (3200m)
Cerro Tronador, the king of the mountains in the Bariloche area! We enjoy a very long glacier descent on this sleeping volcano today!
Transport back to Bariloche
Night and final dinner at Hotel in Bariloche

Patagoniatiptop video

Rates:

Up to 2 pax: 2596.- USD per pax
3 pax: 2006.- USD per pax
4 and more pax: 1723.- USD per pax

Included in the rate:
Organisation, local, english speaking UIAGM/IFMGA mountain guide, all transporte from/to Bariloche airport, 4 nights with half board at mountain huts, 4 nights with half board at Hotel in Bariloche, skipass day 3, all lunches

Not included:
Flight, personal insurance (accident, travel, annulation, etc. ), drinks

How to get to Bariloche

Bariloche is situated in the Argentine lake district and can be reached with a 2hrs flight from Buenos Aires (also by bus from Buenos Aires aprox. 18hrs).
If you come from Chile, Bariloche can be reached with a bus from Puerto Montt or Osorno.

What people think about Bariloche

“This place is full of shocking beauty. Bariloche, likely the most well-known Argentine Patagonian outpost, has mountains and subsequent vistas with a scale that makes the Rockies or the Alps look almost fragile. The terrain here is huge not only in height but also in space occupation, and, with the added bonus of wide dabbles of lakes cutting through the volume, the effect is only amplified by the resulting interplay of light, reflection, and depth perception.”

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Ski touring Patagonia, Expedition Cerro San Lorenzo

Dates: September – November 

Cerro San Lorenzo is the third highest peak in the Patagonian Andes (47° 36′ S, 72° 19’W). It’s a huge mountain range that rises about 3300meters out of its surroundings.

Not only its elevation is very special, also its location. This mountain stands between the southern and the northern continental icefields and exactly between the Argentinian and the Chilenian boarder.
It is surrounded by four huge glaciers.

We choose the so called “routa de Agostini”, named after the first climber Padre de Agostini in 1943.
We offer this route as a wonderful skitouring expedition.

Itinerary ski touring Patagonia, Cerro San Lorenzo:

Day 1
Transport from Balmaceda airport to the hotel in Coyhaique.
Meet and greet with the guides and the other guests.
Night in a hotel in Coyhaique

Day 2
Transfer by car to Cochrane, one of the last small villages at the famous routa 40. (6 hours)
Overnight stay in a hotel in Cochrane

Day 3
Transport with a fourwheel drive car to Fundo San Lorenzo, our starting point
Here we enjoy a typical, delicious patagonian grilled sheep, a “Cordero Patagonico”
Night at the Fundo, a local farmers mountain home

Day 4
Trekking to Refugio Toni Rohrer, a small pretty shelter in the woods. Night at the Refugio

Day 5
We reach Paso del comedor and Brecha del comedor (aprox. 6hrs)
Overnight in the tent

Day 6
Cumbre!!! All the way up to Cerro san Lorenzo today and a great ski down back to the camp (aprox. 8-9hrs)
Overnight in the tent

Day 7
Back to Refugio Rohrer

Day 8
Back to Fundo San Lorenzo
Overnight stay at the Fundo

Day 9
Transport back to the hotel in Coyhaique
(This program is base on nice weather. As the weather can change very quick in this area, it’s important to plan a couple back up days)

Day 10-12
back up days

Map:

map of cerro San Lorenzo Patagonia

Personal requirements:

Proper parallel turn in all snow conditions
Walking with crampons
Enough personal fitness to climb 1000m a day (total 3100m), with a backpack (15-18kg)

How to get there:

Flight to Santiago de Chile and from there to Balmaceda airport. It’s served by Latam airlines. That’s where we pick you up.

Price:

Please contact us for the actual price and your group size

Included in the price:
– Organisation from Patagoniatiptop
– 2 local IVBV-IFMGA mountain guides 
– Transport from Balmaceda airport, Coyhaique to Fundo San Lorenzo and back
– All meals
– Night at Hotel
– Luggage transport to the mountain hut by horse
– Tents and Cooking equipment

Not included in the price:
– Personal equipment
– Personal insurance (accident, annulation, travel etc.)
– drinks


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Rock climbing Bariloche, Refugio Frey – Patagonia

Dates: October through April

“Granite spires in an uncomparable setting!”

Climbing experience:

Rock climbing from 2 – 5 days with a certified UIAGM – mountain guide. There is something for every level of traditional and sport climbing. A wide spectrum of climbing from the clean cracks to challenging heady sport cracks to chimneys to off widths with each ending atop some precipitous spire with a view.

Imagine a wonderland of endless spires of quality granite bathed in alpine sun amid a backdrop of snow capped volcanoes, enormous alpine lakes, soaring condors, and friendly Argentines that know how to make pizza, beer and chocolate. Indeed such a land does exist nestled on the east side of the Andes a short steep hike up from Bariloche in the lake district of Argentina.

It’s regarded by many as the best rock climbing area in South America. Honey-coloured granite pinnacles surround a beautiful  basin with a laguna. The rock is weathered, solid and breathtakingly beautiful.

To climbers, Patagonia means rumbling glaciers, ceaseless wind, and world-class alpinism. Frey, a pair of connected alpine cirques in northern Argentine Patagonia, borrows from both of these perceptions. It’s the Patagonia of steep splitters and looming spires. If you’d rather climb than scowl over bleak forecasts, Frey’s one- to 10-pitch granite routes, following steep splitters and huecoed faces, might just be Patagonian paradise.

Prices:
  • 2 days of guided rock climbing:

1 person: 600 USD
2 persons: 300 USD each

Every following day: 300 USD
(max. 2 climbers/guide)

  • Price does not include transportation, huts, meals, insurances
Frey Hut, 1700m:

A two-story stone Refugio above tree line, a mere frisbee toss from frigid Lake Toncek that servers delicious food and Argentine wine and their own beer. You can camp out or sleep in the dorms.

The Frey mountain hut in Bariloche lies on a beautiful lake in the mountains

climbing-guide-bariloche

Getting there:

A flight to Buenos Aires and a 21 hrs deluxe tour bus ride, or a 2hrs  direct flight from Buenos Aires to reach San Carlos de Bariloche. A 10km +700m hike from Villa Cathedral brings you in 3-4 hours up to Refugio Frey.


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Ski Vallee Blanche, Chamonix

Dates: January to May

The world famous 18km journey with 2800m of vertical descent through some of the most stunning glaciated alpine scenery rarely disappoints!

  • Start altitude (Aiguille du Midi): 3777m
  • Finish Altitude (Chamonix): 1050m
  • Vertical Descent: 2727m
  • Length: 18Km
  • Season: Usually January to April
  • Time: Varies according to skiers ability and priorities but commonly 4-5 hours

This magnificent ski journey can be done in a short day by confident black slope skiers. Thanks to the height gain (2742m) given by the Aiguille du Midi cable car. The descent of the Vallee Blanche is often the highlight of a ski trip to Chamonix!

We provide fully qualified (IFMGA) Mountain Guides who work hard to ensure, that you have a safe, enjoyable and interesting descent. We are also able to offer interesting variations on the descent. Would you like to choose  steeper lines? Or include a short ski tour across to the Italian side before skiing down the classic route to Chamonix.

Requirements to ski the Valle Blanche:

If you ski confidently on a black slope you will be ready for THE Vallee Blanche with us!

Map:

map of vallee blanche skiing in chamonix

Price: 380.00€* 

(* up to 6 skiers) 

Included in the Price: UIAGM / IFMGA mountain guide – a fully qualified and experienced Patagoniatiptop guide will accompany you, we provide you with an avalanche beacon and harness.

Not included in the price: Cablecar ride up to Aiguille du Midi 

Bad weather option:

If the weather or snow conditions are not suitable to ski the Vallee Blanche, we will not cancel the trip but follow an alternative off-piste skiing program. Chamonix offers perfect terrain for a guided off-piste skiing day.

Lift Pass:

A lift pass to access the Aiguille du Midi cable car and the Montenvers train is needed, the Mont Blanc Unlimited is the best option as it covers both.

Video:

Have a look at our video showing the Valle Blanche skiing:

Guest Blog:

Our guests left their impressions on an interesting blog, read it here.


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Ski touring Haute Route Chamonix – Zermatt

Dates: March – May, please choose your date for privat tours

From the French to the Swiss historical alpine capital

This six day Ski tour on glaciers for the most part, offers exceptional beauty of the landscapes. It traverses the crest of the Western Alps and passes through some of the most stunning mountain scenery in Europe. We start in Chamonix, at the foot of Mont Blanc and ski across the Wallis glaciers of Switzerland. The tour ends with a unique ski descent on the foot of the Matterhorn down to Zermatt.

  • 6 skitouring days
  • 5 nights in typical mountain huts
Daily itinerary

Day 1: Chamonix – Refuge d’Argentière
Chamonix – Refuge d’Argentière
Elevation gain: 200m
Vertical loss: 800m

Day 2: Refuge de Trient
Ref Argentiere  – Refuge Trient
Elevation gain: 1100m
Vertical loss: 300m

Day 3: Refuge Prafleuri
Refuge Trient – Refuge Prafleuri
Elevation gain: 700m
Vertical loss: 2700m

Day 4: Cabane de Dix
Refuge Prafleuri  – Cabane de Dix
Elevation gain: 800m
Vertical loss: 450m

Day 5: Cabane des Vignettes
Cabane de Dix – Cabane des Vignettes
Elevation gain: 850m

Day 6: Zermatt
Cabane des Vignettes – Zermatt
Elevation gain: 900m
Vertical loss: 2100m

Map:

map of the haute route Skitour from chamonix to zermatt

Price:

1560.-€ (min. 4 guests, max 6)
This spectacular tour can be done in many different ways. Adding more peaks or changing tour route with other huts. Please contact us for more informations.

Included in the price: Organisation, IFMGA mountain guiding, Private Transport Champex – Verbier on Day 2,  half board in the huts
Not included in the price: Lunch & Drinks, Lift tickets, personal insurance*, personal equipment

*We strongly recommend the purchase of a cancellation, accident, travel insurance.

Level requirements

This trip is for experienced ski tourers who have already done at least one hut-to-hut tour or a multi-day ski tour. You should be able to skin up to 5 hours with up to 1100m vertical gain per day, at a good steady pace.
Efficiency in your skinning technique and confident moving over a steep and exposed terrain should be no problem. You are expected to be comfortable and safe doing kick turns on slopes of over 35 degrees.
Are you an excellent off piste skier, confident and efficient in skiing in all snow conditions without losing control over your skis?  Skiing on slopes of 40 degrees is not a problem of you?
You should be physically fit, ready to hike and ski for up to 8 hours per day without being too tired the next day. You have to be able to move reasonably fast (climb 400m/h).

Haute Route Mont Blanc Extension 

Why not benefit from your fitness and acclimatization and climb Mont Blanc with skis following your completion of the Haute Route? Take a look at our program!


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Ski tour Mont Blanc summit, France

Dates: March until beginning of June

Ski tour Mont Blanc:

“A challenging dream came true for me! I always wanted to ski that mountain and my mountain guide was fabulous!”

Ski touring up to the summit of Mont Blanc can be done from end of march until may and is a great spring 2-day adventure!

Itinerary:

Day 1 : Chamonix – Grand Mulets hut 3051m
Afternoon ride with the first part of the Aiguille du Midi – cablecar up to Plan de l’Aiguille (2310m).
Skitour up to the Grand Mulets hut.
+ 800m, Night at Grand Mulets hut (3051m)

Day 2 : Grand Mulets Hut – Summit – Chamonix
We start early today with a technical ascent of the north face of Dôme du Goûter cramponning, slopes up to 40º to reach the normal route, than continuing over to Bivouac Vallot to the great summit of Mont Blanc (4810m). Ski down to Plan d’Aiguille or Chamonix.
+ 1700m / – 2600m or -3500m

Price:

1300.-€
(Included in the price: Organisation, IFMGA-mountain guide)
(Not included: Overnight stay at mountain hut, Liftticket, Food & drinks, Guide expenses, personal insurance)

  • This programme is meant as a guide only. Depending on the conditions in the mountains and the abilities of the guest, your mountain guide may alter the route.
Personal Requirements for Skitour Mont Blanc:

Very good physical fitness, expert skiing skills and to be well acclimatized to altitude are needed to do this tour.
If you have a solid experience in ice climbing and ski touring, you’re ready to let the dream come true.

Grands Mulets Hut 3051m

The Grands Mulets hut is placed on a rocky island surrounded by glaciers in a real alpine environment. It’s an exceptional place and perfectly situated for our Skitour to Mont Blanc.

grand mulets hut is used for ski tour mont blanc

How it all began, the Mont Blanc first ascent:

1786: The Frenchmen Michael Gabriel Packard and Jacques Palma were the first to reach the top of Mont Blanc.

After hundreds of failed attempts by dozens of aspiring mountaineers, Paccard and Balmat made history when they became the first climbers to reach the summit of Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in the Alps. The mountain rises 4810m/15’711feet above sea level and is ranked No. 11 in the world in topographic prominence. The two Chamonix local ascended the summit on August 8th, starting the climb from the Chamonix valley.

The accomplishment was, and still is, considered historic. Eric Shipton, a British Himalayan mountaineer, described the feat, writing in his book Mountain Conquest:

“Theirs was an astounding achievement of courage and determination, one of the greatest in the annals of mountaineering. It was accomplished by men who were not only on unexplored ground but on a route that all the guides believed to be impossible.”

The first female climber

1808: The former maidservant Marie Paradis,  in 1808  became the first woman to climb Mont Blanc, joined by guide Jacques Balmat. For Paradis it was not an easy ascent. She was in such poor condition by the time the climbing party reached the summit that she actually had difficulty speaking and, reportedly, could not see the view from the peak. Her self designed outfit that she was wearing weighed just over 14 pounds.


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Private Ski & Telemark Lessons, Chamonix Valley & Megève

December – April

Skiing:
Highest ski pistes: 3842m
Kilometres of Pistes: 150km
Lifts: 49
Slopes:
21% Beginner
31% Intermediate
48% Advanced

perfect chamonix ski slope

Professional privat Ski – and Telemark lessons in the Chamonix valley & Megève ski area from December until end of April. Learn from the Swiss Ex-world cup ski racer Ella Alpiger and her team.

Everything about Chamonix ski resort is big. In the shadow of Mont Blanc, the deep valley has more skiable slopes than seems reasonable. With several ski areas distributed across the huge mountain ranges to north and south, a thriving town in the centre and smaller, charming mountain villages in the valley, there’s something for everyone.

With the Mont Blanc as its backdrop, Megève ski area is in a lovely sunny setting and the village has a beautifully preserved, partly medieval centre. It’s the capital of the mountain way of life, an authentic village in the Savoy Alps that is covered by a carpet of snow every winter.

Many different slopes in all different colors and challenging Out-bound runs are waiting for you to be discovered.
Beginners and Experts are welcome to join the lessons!

We will analyze your skiing on video camera. Fast technical progress and more enjoyable ski days are the result of that.

Prices for private teaching in the Chamonix valley ski areas:

Daily Ski and Telemark lessons, Off – piste days and Ski touring intro courses:

Half day (3hrs): 240.00€

  • 09:00-12:00 / 13:00 – 16:00: 

All day (6hrs): 360.00€ / High season: 410.00€

  • 09:00 – 15:00: 

Included in the price: Teaching, Video of your progress, pick up at your Hotel

Please consult fees for Megève ski area.

Unlimited skiing

With the Chamonix Unlimited Skipass (more than 3 days) we can also enjoy skiing in Courmayeur (ITA) 15 Min., Verbier (CH) 40 Min. and Evasion Mont Blanc (Megève, St.Gervais, Les Contamines) (FR) 20 Min. by car from Chamonix.

Ski touring

Chamonix also offers great ski touring options not only for Experts. Let us introduce you to our favorite sport with a Ski touring Intro. Learn all about safety, snow and technique with an UIAGM mountain guide.

Off piste, powder courses

Explore the snow on the other side of the groomed run! If you have mastered the pistes and want to learn how to ski all trains off piste, come and sign up for our Off piste courses. We will teach you on all different slopes and terrains. Let’s train to get you fit to take a ski trip down the Valle Blanche!

Helicopter Skiing

Thanks to its exceptional geographical location between Italy and Switzerland, Chamonix is a major centre for Heliskiing from where you can reach a host of exciting destinations. For a day trip, there’s nothing simpler than getting dropped off by helicopter in Switzerland or Italy with a UIAGM – mountain guide, to ski the finest transalpine slopes of Val Veny, Cervinia, La Tile and Val Grisanche. Also exploring the mountains of the Valais in the areas around Trient in Switzerland, or even Zermatt.

Equipment

We proudly ski with K2 Skis, they offer a great range of skis and boots for all different kind of availabilities and snow conditions. Not sure which material to buy or rent? We are happy to recommend the perfect ski for you.

Accommodation

Do you want to sleep in down town Chamonix or rather a bit outside in the quite or maybe ski in and ski out? Chamonix has it all, let us find the perfect place for you!

Chamonix

The Chamonix Valley is consistently rated as one of the top ten ski areas in the world. A must by all ski enthusiasts. The legendary skiing caters for every taste and ability. Some 90% of the ski area is above 2000m with an excellent snow record and a long season from December to May. It is the home of the legendary 23 kilometre Vallee Blanche and the Kandahar World Cup downhill runs. The lift pass which, covers 750km of pisted skiing includes the elegant resort of Courmayeur in Italy that is a short hop through the Mont-Blanc tunnel. The Chamonix Valley is approximately 20 kilometers long with the Aiguilles Rouges mountain range on the north side, and the Mont-Blanc mountain range on the south side, which includes Mont Blanc itself, the highest peak in the European Alps at 4808 meters.The highest lift in the valley is the Aiguille du Midi cablecar which brings you to anincredible 3842 meters elevation.

The top station of the Aiguille De Midi cablecar has a spectacular panorama of Chamonix, the Mont Blanc and the Mer De Glace glacier. It’s the access point to high elevation glacier skiing the world famous Vallée Blanche. Majestic Mont-Blanc, one of the world’s natural wonders dominates the area.

The town

Chamonix is an ancient mountain town with a stylish atmosphere and a blend of French charm, varied skiing and modern facilities that few other alpine resorts can match. Our guests return time after time and always discover something new.

The town of Chamonix with its pedestrianised cobbled streets and squares, beautiful buildings has an excellent choice of quality shops, cafes, bars, restaurants, and a Saturday market that should not be missed. Chamonix has an attractive, bustling old town centre. The smaller, quieter ski villages of Argentiere, Les Houches and Vallorcine offer a different style of resort life.

How skiing came to France; did you know?

Skiing had come to Italy via Switzerland since about 1895. The natural thing for France would have been to copy the neighboring Italians. They went to the source instead, they wanted a missionary from Norway and in November 1902 one such providentially dropped in. A junior Norwegian army lieutenant called Herman Schultz that wanted to visit France as a ski instructor in order to get out into the wider world an learn French. Later two more officers where sent to France and they started a ski school to teach the French soldiers. Those soldiers showed a legendary marching ability and could accomplish to march up to 50 or 60 km a day on skis without really being worn out. They sometimes started at 4a.m. and didn’t return until 8p.m.

The ski school was so exhausting, both for teachers and the taught, that it only ran from Monday to Thursday, with the rest of the week free; for the French soldiery at any rate. On Friday and Saturday, the Norwegians were expected to teach the officers and on Sundays, their wives. The Colonel’s lady was particularly keen. The two instructors would support her on each side and she was wearing a hat and veil! …”Suddenly her skis broke trough the crust, and we ran on, but in confusion. It was not a dignified regimental commander’s wife who got her feet, covered in blood, with hat awry and tattered veil. Afternoon tea with her was cancelled. We didn’t see her for 14 days.”

first female skier in the French alps

 



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