The big trek: Col du Glandon, Col du Merlet and Mont Pourri
Put on your mountain boots because we are setting off on a trek in the Maurienne valley and the Belledonne mountains, on the mythical Glandon and Merlet mountain passes in Savoie. Then we head for Mont Pourri to explore a legendary Alpine peak, well known to mountain climbers and hikers.
Col du Glandon
In the Maurienne valley, take advantage of your holiday residence in Saint-Colomban des Villards to go up the Col du Glandon, between the Belledonne and Arves mountain ranges. The Tour de France has passed this way on many occasions since its first visit in 1947. At an altitude of 1,924 m, the Col du Glandon is considered as one of the most difficult mountain passes for cyclists in the Maurienne range, alongside its prestigious neighbour, the Col de la Croix de Fer. With an exceptional view over Mont Blanc included! Starting from Col du Glandon, you can visit the Lac de la Croix, the lake at the foot of the Aiguilles de l'Argentière mountains. This small part of the Belledonne range boasts a magnificent view over the Villards Valley. A beautiful gem of glacier origin and a breath of fresh mountain air!
Col du Merlet and the Villards Valley
From our holiday residence near Saint-Alban-des-Villards, set off to see the Merlet valley and mountain pass (2,286 m). At the heart of the Belledonne range, people have lived in the valley from ancient times, as can be seen by the cup and ring marks in the Combe du Merlet. These are engravings made on blocks of stone by shepherds in the Neolithic period. Their original purpose is still a mystery. The sculptures may be dedicated to worship of the mountains and glaciers. And don't miss the Merlet torrent, the Croix des Charrières, the ruins of chalets on the Veille Route and the southern peak of the Merlet, still so untamed and striking.
Mont Pourri, a hiking tour in the Vanoise National Park
What a strange name ("Rotten Mountain") for the second tallest peak in the Vanoise National Park, at 3,779 m! Mont Pourri is close by our holiday residence, Les Hameaux de La Perrière. There are several different ways up the mountain, but the most popular are the Geay glacier and the Col des Roches routes. During a 4 to 5 day hiking tour, you will walk all the way round Mont Pourri, taking in the Col de la Sachette and La Martin, Turia and Mont-Pourri refuges. The Mont-Pourri refuge is always open in winter and also provides a wonderful panorama over the Lac de la Plagne valley. You can get up close to the marmots, mountain hares, Alpine ibex and sometimes to chamois and bearded vultures.