The Walkers Haute Route trek is fast becomming one of the most popular and most spectacular treks in the world, witnessing some of the most breathtaking mountain views. The Walkers Haute Route 'Best of in Refuges' trek allows you to see the highlights of the trek in a shorter period staying up high in the most remote parts of the trek. It combines trekking and the use public transport which allows you to achieve the linier route in 8 days.
9 night itinerary
DAY 1: ARRIVAL IN CHAMONIX:
As we are based in Chamonix please ask if you wish to have a self guided trek briefing to go through any aspect of your trek before you start on your adventure.
If you require a briefing on your day of arrival please specify at the time of booking so we can make sure someone will be available.Accommodation:
Lodge, private rooms, B & B
DAY 2 CHAMONIX TO TRIENT:
You take a short bus ride to Montroc where you start the route with an ascent to the Col du Balme via the beautiful Aiguillette des Possettes. You make your way to the col by crossing the border into Switzerland and descending to the Swiss village of Trient.Daily stats:
Distance: 14km | Height gain: +1100m | Descent: -1000mAccommodation:
Auberge, dormitory, evening meal with breakfast.Guide notes:
The route over the Aiguillette des Possettes is magnificent and one of my favourite peaks in the Chamonix valley. Enjoy the 360 degree far reaching views over the Mont Blanc massif, the Aiguille Rouges and the Swiss Valais. Refreshments of a kind at the Col du Balme but don't expect service with a smile!! It's worth the experience nonetheless!
DAY 3 TRIENT TO CHAMPEX-LAC:
Leaving Trient, you climb steeply to the Fenetre d’Arpette. A tricky descent over boulders leads us to pastureland and to the picture postcard village of Champex-Lac.Daily stats:
Distance: 14km | Height gain: +1400m | Descent: -1200mAccommodation:
Pension, dormitory, evening meal with breakfast.Guide notes:
Option to take the Bovine route if the weather isnt so good which is more sheltered in poor weather. The true Haute Route goes over the Fenetre d'Arpette and although tough you wont be disappointed.
DAY 4 CHAMPEX-LAC TO CABANE MONT FORT:
You start the day with an easy descent into to the Orsiére Valley and trough the Swiss villages of Sembrancher and Châble. From Châble, you take the cable car to Les Ruinettes within the Verbier ski area and a short trek will take us to the Cabane du Mont Fort.Daily stats:
Distance: 17km | Height gain: +350m | Descent: -700mAccommodation:
Refuge, dormitory with evening meal and breakfastGuide notes:
A lovely leisurely day after the challenges of the first two days. Enjoy the easy angled terrain and recharge yourself for what is to come!
DAY 5 CABANE MONT FORT TO CABANE PRAFLEURI:
You make our way on a lofty traverse via the Sentier des Chamois to the Col du Termin. From here, you continue to the rocky Col de Louvie and traverse below the Grand Desert Glacier where you pass a series of small tarns before ascending once more to the Col de Prafleuri and descending steeply to the Cabane de Prafleuri.Daily stats:
Distance: 14km | Height gain: +900m | Descent: -500mAccommodation:
Refuge, dormitory with evening meal & breakfastGuide notes:
It’s up and out early as possible today as the day is long and hard. Amazing views of the Grand Combin & the lunar landscape of the Grand Desert. The statistics don’t give the day justice, as the high altitude terrain is larger than life!
DAY 6 CABANE PRAFLEURI TO AROLLA & LA SAGE:
Passing over the Col des Roux, you descend to the Lac Dix and contour above the shoreline for several kilometers before rising again to the Col de Riedmatten. Descending from the col, you finally reach the small Alpine village of Arolla. From here you will take the bus to Les Hauderes and La Sage.Daily stats:
Distance: 17km | Height gain: +850m | Descent: -1400mAccommodation:
Hotel in private rooms, evening meal and breakfastGuide notes:
Another big day over challenging terrain so an early start is a must. Fabulous views of Mont Blanc Cheilon as you ascend the glacial moraine. There is of course the option of the Pas de Chevre for those with a head for heights!
DAY 7 LA SAGE TO ZINAL:
You climb steadily to the Col du Torrent before descending via Lac Autannes to Lac de Moiry and the barrage. From here, you have two options. Ascend towards Col de Sorebois and descend steeply through the ski area where you take the cable car to Zinal, or take the bus from the barrage to Zinal to shorten the route and reduce the height gain and descent (dependent on weather, fatigue and time).
Guides notes:Daily stats:
Distance: 12.5km | Height gain: +1750m | Descent: -900m or full route: 18km | Height gain: +1870m | Descent: -1745mAccommodation:
Auberge, dormitory, evening meal and breakfast.Guide notes:
This potentially can be a very long day but we have options! Don't underestimate this col as its high at 2916m, with far reaching views from the col back towards Arolla and its significant peaks, on a good day you can see Mont Blanc!
DAY 8 ZINAL TO GRUBEN:
A steady climb through woodland to the high mountain pastureland passing the remote Barnueza Alpage. Once at the Col du Forcletta, you make your descend in to the Gruben valley to the small village of Gruben.Daily stats:
Distance: 14km | Height gain: +1200m | Descent: -1000mAccommodation:
Auberge, dormitory with evening meal and breakfast.Guide notes:
Making your way over the Col de la Forcletta and into one of the most remote valleys of the trek is a fabulous experience. This valley is closed off from autumn to spring and is used during the summer months for cattle farming. Get ready for the Hotel Schwartzhorn which seems totaly incongruous to this remote valley.
DAY 9 GRUBEN TO ST NICKLAUS & ZERMATT:
Another steep climb from Gruben to high-level pastures of the Augustbordpass. You make your descent steadily from the col towards Jungen where you take the little cable car to St Niklaus and a short train ride through the Matterhorn valley to Zermatt.Daily stats:
Distance: 16km | Height gain: +1100m | Descent: -1000mAccommodation:
Hotel room only, dormitoryGuide notes:
The Augustbordpass passes without any notable acclaim as the col seems to be somewhat hidden away, the views are reserved for later in the day with the narrow traverse above Jungen which reveals the delights of the Matterhorn valley!
DAY 10: DEPART ZERMATT:
On the departure day you are free to leave at any time you wish.
Option to add an additional day in Zermatt.Guide notes:
Once you have completed the trek I hope you will agree that the Walkers Haute Route is truly an exceptional trek & has a worthy place as of one of the worlds top 10 long distance walks.
"Take only memories, leave only footprints"