Hiking the gorges and peaks of Verdon
Duration : 5 days
France, Southern Alps, Provence
Level : intermediate
from 630 € / p. from 4 to 10 personsInfos & Booking
First reliefs above the plain of Provence, Verdon is best known for its small villages and its monumental gorges, a veritable canyon of several kilometers long, more than 700 meters deep and traversed by famous path with evocative passages: White-Martel named in honor of its explorers then Imbut and Styx, river of hell of the Greek mythology.
But Verdon is also wild and very little traveled summits, the essence of Haute-Provence, hanging grassy plateaux surrounded by cliffs and lavender, overflown by the newly reintroduced vultures. From above, the view takes you to the great peaks of the Alps and sometimes to the sea... Thanks to the observatory refuge perched on one of them that will welcome us for one night it will carry even to the stars!
D1: Ridge of Issioule.
Above Sainte-Croix lake with opaline waters, the first reliefs of the pre-Alps in which the gorges are dug offer a superb belvedere. This is the first contact with the vegetation and the typical relief of Verdon: oak forest, coppice of boxwood, lavender and limestone in all its forms, triptych that will accompany you all week long. From the peaks the panorama is sublime on the lake and the plain below, the peaks behind and above the first vultures ... A beautiful set atmosphere.
Positive and negative altitude differences: 600 meters, 4.5 hours of walking.
D2: Blanc-Martel trail.
It is surely the most famous trail of the gorges. Named in honor of the first explorers to have realized in 1905 the complete course of the gorges, it was then arranged in the thirties by the "Touring Club de France". Starting from the Sublime Point, it crosses the first fifteen kilometers of the canyon by crossing some natural obstacles without difficulties but which make the charm of the course: tunnels, ladders, footbridge, etc.
D+: 600m, D-: 300m, 5.5 hours of walking.
D3: Imbut trail.
After Blanc-Martel path, it is time to go deeper into the heart of the canyon to discover Styx and Imbut for the most beautiful but also the most technical hiking in Verdon. The atmosphere is always impressive and the hike full of surprises in one of the narrowest passage of the gorges where the blue of the water contrasts with the gray of the rock. Some wired passages without difficulties will spice up our day.
D+/D-400m, 4.5 hours of walking.
D4: Summit of Chiran and its observatory.
It is on the old Roman road that you will begin our mini raid of two days on the summits. By a regular climb through the brooms returning to land abandoned by agriculture, we will join the portal of Blieux, a large pass that opens on Cheval Blanc and Estrop mountains further north. You will then climb the last slopes to reach the peaks of Chiran, its summit with the exceptional view and its refuge-observatory.
Overnight at the refuge-observatoire du Chiran, astronomy evening and star gazing if conditions are OK.
D+: 950m, D-: 150m, 5 hours of walking.
D5: Ridges of Mourre de Chanier.
After a panoramic sunrise for the bravest, a clever passage will allow you to reach the peaks and the summit of Mourre de Chanier overlooking the region from the top of its 1930m. Unique atmosphere between earth and sky to end the week in style!
Return without difficulty to our point of departure by old mule tracks.
End of the day at 5pm in La Palud-sur-Verdon.
D+: 350m, E-: D: 800m, 5 hours of walking.
The price includes
- Supervision by the mountain leader.
- Accommodation and reservation in cottages or mountain huts, with full board (picnic for lunch).
- Meals and overnight stays of the mountain leader.
- Stargazing evening animated by an astronomer at the Chiran observatory hut.
The price does not include
- Personal expenses: drinks, aperitif, etc.
- Liability, repatriation and cancellation insurance.
- Transport to and from the meeting place.
- Anything not mentioned in "The price includes".
- Accommodation in mountain refuge and cottage.
- Comfortable dorms, duvets or blankets provided, hot showers at Chalet de la Maline.
- More simple accommodation at the Chiran observatory hut, no shower.
- Meals cooked by the hut keeper. Picnics for lunch.
- Confirmed and full