Walking Across Europe is superb so get on your walking boots to see the region at its very best and really get away from it all.
Being among the most exciting and challenging hikes that could possibly happen in your life, consider trekking through the Northern Alps in France. There are some spectacular high points to cross along the way, including the ones over 2000m. The journey features fascinating views of Mont Blanc, Dents Blanches, Lake Geneva and Switzerland. In our next few posts, we will cover the route GR5/GR55 from Lake Geneva to Briançon. Enjoy!
Day 1 – Arrive in Thonon-les-Bains. Route to Chevenoz (25km; 1000m ups / 540m downs)
Day 2 – Chevenoz to La Chapelle d’Abondance (22km; 1710m / 1630m)
Day 3 – La Chapelle d’Abondance to Chésery (21km; 1500m / 550m)
Day 4 – Chésery to Samoëns (25km; 68m / 1510m)
Day 5 – Samoëns to Refuge de Moëde Anterne (23km; 1810m / 510m)
Day 6 – Refuge de Moëde Anterne to Les Houches / Chamonix (21km; 990/2000m)
Day 7 – Les Houches to Les Contamines (19km; 1510m / 1350m)
Day 8 – Les Contamines to Plan de la Lai (25km; 1540m / 830m)
Day 9 – Plan de la Lai to Refuge du Col de Palet through Landry (57 km; 2410m / 520m )
Day 10 – Refuge du Col de Palet to d’Entre Deux Eaux (24km; 760m / 1250m)
Day 11 – Refuge d’Entre Deux Eaux to Roc de la Pêche (23km; 955m / 1255m)
Day 12 – Roc de la Pêche Modane / Forneaux (23km; 955m / 1755m)
Day 13 – Modane / Forneaux to Refuge du Thabor (17km; 1505m / 55m)
Day 14 – Refuge de Thabor to Nevache (17km; 530m / 1205m)
Day 15 – Nevache to Briançon (28km; 1385m / 1830m)
Day 16 – Nevache to Briançon (27km; 1385m / 1830m)
Boat is a usual way to get from Nyon to Thonon-Les-Bains. You start in Thonon, leaving residential streets and leading uphill. There are some sleepy villages near the lake with the views of the mountains. You walk on some rural roads, and the height steadily increases. Upon arrival in Chevenoz, you can have a proper rest in gîte d’étape (a lodging site). Make sure you arrive on time to get provided with some food there. Take some powerful snacks with you, because tomorrow is your big day.
By doing 9 hours of walk to La Chapelle d’Abondance, you will be covered more than 20kms. The route will take you steeply uphill through fresh air in forests and open alpine. To get a panoramic 360° view back to Lake Geneva and Switzerland, you will have to catch a cable car that takes you up the flank of a crest to the very top of the Tête des Faux (1772m). There are some spectacular high points to cross along the way, e.g., Le Grand Chesney (altitude of 1414m); Les Portes d’Oche (1937m); Tête des Faux; Col de la Case d’Oche (1812m); Col de Pavis (1944m); Col de Bise (1915m) and Pas de la Bosse (1816m). Upon your arrival to town, you will have dropped to 1020m.
It all starts with a nice walk along the riverbank before the challenging 2 hour climb around the slopes of Mont de Grange. You will pass the forest and continue in the spectacular open alpine (be aware of the electric fences). The top of Les Mattes (1930m) will give you a fascinating view of the Dents du Midi and Dents Blanches. You will notice cattle and goats grazing around. You will be able to cross some valleys to enter Switzerland for a stay in an excellent refuges in the Alps.
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