Alpine Trekking

Overview

Time of year:1st-8th July / 8th-11th July 2023 (incl. travel)
Duration: 5 / 2 days guided trekking, 9 day GR by private booking.
Grade: Moderate-difficult
Max group size:Up to 10
Fees:€695, €1245 & €1795pps depending on trip type
Additional costs: Flights, transfers + personal travel insurance

Highlights

  • Alpine trekking in the French and/or Italian Alps
  • Guided alpine trekking through stunning landscapes abundant in flora
  • Overnight mountain hut / wild camping experience
  • Sunsets, amazing night skies and sunrises you will never forget
  • Option to make it private: couples / friend groups / clubs

What`s included

  • Briefing in advance (in person & zoom options)
  • Training day in Wicklow
  • Itinerary planned for your group in accordance to your requirements
  • Guided alpine trekking by insured UIMLA Certified International Mountain Leader(s)
  • Accommodation & meals
  • Any specialist kit (tent, sleeping bags, stoves etc.)

ALPINE TREKKING

The Alps are the destination of dreams for many hikers. You’ve gobbled up all those books with famous place names, dreamed of the towering mountains and the valleys full of ringing cow bells and wildflowers. Believe me, the reality will live up to those dreams. And you don’t have to be an alpinist climber to achieve that.

Our base in the Alps straddles the French/Italian border giving us access to the most beautiful part of the alpine range with mountains of 4,000m+ as our backdrop. We have been exploring the area for almost 20 years and still there is so much yet to explore.

In late May, early June, the slopes and meadows literally explode into flower as the winter snows melt. The rivers charge, roaring down the valleys and towering pillars of rock begin to warm up and reflect the early summer heat. June is a great time to visit for alpine trekking. It’s not yet too hot and the tracks and huts are nice and quiet.

July and August are popular times for hiking in the Alps, so the towns, villages and huts have a wonderful buzz about them. The weather is more stable in this part of the Alps than elsewhere, so it’s an ideal region to try your hand at some multi-day alpine trekking. Booking well in advance is advisable if you’d rather hut-to-hut than try a wild camping experience.

Led by an experienced, UIMLA certified International Mountain Leader and alpine trekking planned to suit your particular group needs, you have peace of mind that we have taken care of your mountain logistics.

Warning: This type of experience induces cravings for more.

Express your interest today!

Alpine Trekking: Who’s it for?

People who hike regularly on our trails and mountains here. Naturally the 9 days on trail is the most physically demanding attracting a grade of ‘strenuous’. There are no dates set for summer 2023 as yet.

For the 2 and 5 day on the trail options, if you regularly hill-walk in Ireland at weekends on long routes lasting roughly 6 hours or are a happy ‘A’ or ‘B’ club walker who would gladly hike a few days in a row here, then you are probably fit enough. An alpine pace is generally a slow, steady one. If you are concerned about your fitness, give us a shout and we’ll have a chat.

1st – 8th July 2023: 5 days of daily hiking incorporating 1 rest day within your week, incorporating 1 overnight alpine refuge or wild camping experience and a rest day to allow you visit local attractions, try a via ferrata or perhaps chill out at the natural spa in Monetier Les Bains. (Rest day activities are at participants own expense).

8th – 11th July 2023: A flying visit to include 2 full days of trekking and an overnight alpine refuge or wild camping experience.

We can include a training day in Wicklow with a briefing for all participants in advance if desired, along with ongoing support and assistance.

Alpine Trekking: Accommodation

Based in comfortable, gite style accommodation sharing a room with 1-3 people when in towns/villages and mountain hut/refuge accommodation on the route. Mountain hut accommodation varies hugely – from similar to the gites to much more rustic, bunk room or mattress sleeping. Bunks can sleep 2/3 people abreast in some huts. During busy periods, if hut accommodation is not available, we camp.

Alternative accommodation can be organised as an extra. For instance, some people like to end their trekking holiday with an overnight in a hotel or with a spa day.

We’ll provide you with a full kit list. All participants receive a 15% discount on purchases in our store in advance of departure.

Alpine Trekking FAQs

If I express my interest – am I committing to going?

No, you’re not. It simply means that we will contact you to let you know if the trip is going ahead, and to offer you a place on your trip of interest if it is. You can always decline. Express your interest today!

How many days will I be trekking?

Varies. As outlined above, there are a few trip types and if you are a private group – such as a hill-walking club, we can do something tailored to your group’s wishes. The length of our trips are adapted to suit the current Ryanair flight schedule from Dublin to Turin (every Tuesday and Saturday).
9 days on trail: Grand Randonnée or Alta Via type circuit. (i.e. Saturday to following Tues, Tues to following Saturday)
5 days on trail & 1 rest day: A week of stunning daily hikes, incorporating 1 overnight alpine refuge or wild camping experience and a rest day to visit the natural spa in Monetier Les Bains. (i.e. Saturday to Saturday).
2 days on trail: A flying visit to include 2 full days of trekking and an overnight alpine refuge or wild camping experience. (ie. Sat to Tues or Tues to Sat).

Do participants need experience?

Participants need to have a reasonable amount of hiking experience for this trip to enjoy it. Fitness is particularly important for the longer trips.

I’ve done Camino trekking trips in the past. How do these trekking trips compare?

That depends on many factors. For instance – which Camino route did you walk and how far did you travel in one go? Was it guided or self-guided? Our trekking trips are fully guided by UIMLA certified International Mountain Leaders and are true mountain routes, as such, whilst they might be of similar duration, they will be a bit more physically demanding than a Camino route. See how we grade. Another difference is that these routes are not pilgrimage routes. The mountain environment we travel in offers its own kind of spirituality however with plenty of opportunity for silence and meditation along the way.

What kit do participants need?

We’ll provide a full kit list in advance. If you hill-walk in Ireland, you’ll likely have most, if not all of it already.

How many participants will there be?

Up to 10. For Hill-walking clubs, social groups and charities, we can accommodate larger groups. If you want to go privately as a small group or a couple, this is also possible.

If I organise a full group to sign up – can you operate an ‘organiser goes free’ policy?

Yes and no. If you are a club or charity group – the answer is yes for the activities and accommodation, but no for travel/transfers. We offer this in recognition of the amount of work undertaken by the lead person in a group. Depending on how much is involved at your end, some organisers use this discount to lower everyone’s costs, some use it for themselves – that bit is up to you! T&Cs & different minimum numbers apply.

What do the fees include?

> Group training & hybrid briefing day in Glendalough (In person/zoom) with ongoing advice & support
> Accommodation
> Meals (Breakfast, self-made packed lunch, dinner)
> Public Liability insurance
> Expert Guiding and tuition by UIMLA certified International Mountain Leader
> Any specialist equipment required (tents, stoves etc.)

What sort of conditions can I expect?

Weather in this region of the Alps is very stable when compared with the areas near Chamonix for example. Boasting 300 days of sunshine, it is less likely that poor weather will interfere with our plans. The trails underfoot are dry, hard-packed and uneven trails. A light boot designed for long-distance hiking is ideal to wear. On some routes, snow may persist early in the season or in sheltered locations. You won’t be travelling across glaciers.

Is altitude an issue?

Anything above 2,500m is considered high altitude. On our routes, it’s not a serious issue as we don’t go too high, and when above 3,000m, we are generally not there for too long. Participants may feel the effects of altitude above 2,500m – moving slower is the usual one and sometimes a mild headache. However, staying hydrated and taking our time is usually all it requires for people to acclimatise.

Where’s best to fly into?

Turin works really well because it is only an hour and 15 minutes by car to our base in Briançon and just south of Val D’Aosta for Italian alpine trips. You can now get direct flights year round from Dublin with Ryanair. Equally you can fly into Milan Malpensa, Lyon, Grenoble or even Marseille – all with drive times of 2hrs45 to 3hrs to our base in Briançon. You can also sail and rail if you’d like a slow travel option by taking a ferry to Cherbourg. From Cherbourg, you can hop on a train to Paris and then the sleeper train to Briançon (or bring your own car) – the further out you book these options, the better prices you’ll find. You can book your flights independently or through our bonded travel partners for peace of mind.

What is not included in the price?

> Flights
> Transfers – we are looking into a reliable summer transfer partner. Until then, it is recommended you hire a car, we can link you in with other participants to share the driving & cost. (This works out cheaper than transfers)
> Kit list items unless expressly specified. If you’re missing anything, we can advise on how to best purchase
> Any extra tours or spa treatments that participants choose to take
> Your own favourite snacks and beverages
> Personal travel insurance to include guided trekking

Do I need additional insurance?

It is essential that all participants take out additional travel insurance for the trip. This should cover repatriation to UK/Ireland and rescue fees. Your insurance must list Europe as a destination and have guided trekking as an activity. Let us know if you need details on insurance companies. We also advise that you apply for your EHIC (formally E11): Irish residents. UK residents.


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