A seven day hiking tour of the Maritime Alps Nature Park, on mountains nominated for inclusion on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Breathtaking views and scenery, straddling the peaks between Italy and France.
795 € per person
The wolf & the Alps
The Uomini e Lupi Centre in the town of Casermette in Entracque consists of a fenced in area measuring approximately eight hectares where several specimens of Canis lupus italicus reside. These animals are not able to live in the wild because of the number of serious accidents, almost always with cars, or because they were born in captivity. In the middle of the area there is a three storey observation tower from which you can see a large part of the enclosure. You have to be very lucky to see a wolf in the wild and encounters are extremely rare, however it must be said that there are no guarantees that you will see the wolves here either.
Day 1: participants gather in Vinadio where free parking is available, to begin a climb along the Riofreddo Valley-Stura Valley towards the Malinvern Lodge at a height of 1836 meters. Dinner and overnight stay (climb 300 meters, duration 1.5 hours).
Day 2: after breakfast, the hike officially begins in the Maritime Alps Nature Park protected area, the largest in Piedmont. Participants hike up to the Lupo Pass and after the Bassa del Druos, complete the circumnavigation of the Testa di Malinvern (also called Mont Malinvern – 2939 meters). After traversing the basin of the Vallescura and Claus lakes, the day ends with arrival at the Vallone del Valasco Lodge for dinner and overnight stay (total climb 1000 meters, duration 6 hours).
Day 3: after breakfast, the group will hike to the Colletto del Valasco and cross the spectacular Fremamorta lakes, then descend to Pian della Casa before climbing back up through the Assedras Valley, all the way to the Remondino Lodge at the foot of Monte Argentera (3297 meters), the highest peak of the Maritime Alps. Dinner and overnight stay (total climb 1400 meters, duration 7 hours).
Day 4: the scenery becomes decidedly Alpine, with its scattered lakes and small glaciers. After breakfast, the tour begins with a climb to the Colle del Brocan (2892 meters) and subsequent descent to the Genova Lodge. One brief and last climb leads to the Passo Fenestrelle and the Soria Lodge. Dinner and overnight stay (total climb 900 meters, duration 6 hours).
Day 5: breakfast. Monte Gelas, also called the Cime du Gélas, is located at the border of Italy and France at a height of 3143 meters. It is known as the “Monte Bianco of the Maritime Alps” and remains covered in snow until late in the season. This leg of the tour crosses the Ghiacciai Pass, the convergence point of the perennial glaciers of Gelas and Malivern, before a spectacular balcony-trail leads all the way to the Pagarí Lodge. Dinner and overnight stay (climb 1300 meters, duration 7 hours).
Day 6: departure from the Pagarí Lodge leads directly to the small Muraion glacier, along which one arrives at the Pagarí Pass and, after a brief descent, the top of Monte Clapier at 3045 meters. This is the highest of the 3000-meter Alpine mountains that make up the Maritime Alps. Only 40 km from the sea, the view from the top stretches from the French Riviera to the Island of Montecristo and from Corsica to the entire crescent of the western Alps, including the peaks of the Matterhorn and Monte Rosa. After the descent to the Nice Lodge, set among imposing rock walls and mountain lakes, is dinner and overnight stay (climb 500 meters, duration 5 hours).
Day 7: after breakfast at the lodge, the tour will climb to Pas de la Fous and then to the nearby eastern hill of Clapier (2862 meters). The final descent of the tour winds around the beautiful eastern glacier of Clapier, whose water feeds into the picturesque Agnel Lake. From here the descent continues all the way to San Giacomo di Entracque in the upper Gesso Valley, where the tour ends (climb +700 meters, duration 6 hours).
DEPARTURE/RETURN: Vinadio (Gesso Valley).
MEETING PLACE/TIME: by 12.30 p.m.
DURATION: 6 nights / 7 days.
CHILDREN: not recommended.
WHEN: from 10th of June to 15th of September
LANGUAGES: Italian, French, English.
GUARANTEED DEPARTURE: minimum 6, maximum 12 people.
TOUR OPTIONS: extra nights in valley before or after the tour, entrance to the "Uomini e Lupi" (Men & Wolves).