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Duration: 3 days
Price from: 475 €


The project is original: two nights, one in a refuge and the second in a bivouac (unguarded refuge) for 3 days of extraordinary hiking in the Val de Cogne in the heart of the Grand Paradis massif. During the second night, the mountain leader will prepare the evening meal for you on his stove. This bivouac offers us a total immersion in the mountain universe with a great feeling of freedom and intimacy. A superb experience to partake in a small group (5 max) in an exceptional site where we will be bathed in the silence and serenity of the place.

It is because everything is exceptional that it needs to be protected. The Grand Paradis massif was classified as a Royal Hunting Reserve in 1850 and became the first National Park in Italy in 1922. It was originally 2,100 hectares; it covers 72,000 today. Six deep valleys provide access to typical Valle d'Aosta villages, where a network of paths leads us to the passes and summits. Wild, the route traverse’s magnificent landscapes: larches, alpine pastures, turquoise lakes in the foreground and snow-capped peaks in the background. Superb! The flora and fauna, rich and varied, flourish here with a complete peace of mind. There are now 6000 chamois and 4500 ibexes, not forgetting the many marmots and other mammals! It is this famous Capra ibex which takes centre place along with the luminous and delicate Lily of Paradise as the emblem of the “Parco Nazionale”.


Day 1: Valnontey - Vittorio Sella Refuge
Morning transfer to Val de Cogne and the hamlet of Valnontey (1,674m). After a climb through the larches, we go off-piste in the grasslands of Petit Lauzon which are loved by marmots, chamois and ibex. The area around the Vittorio Sella refuge (2,579 m) is undoubtedly one of the sites in the Alps which offers one of the highest densities of wildlife. Night at the Sella refuge.
Elevation gain : 920 m - Elevation drop : 100 m

Day 2: Victorio Sella Refuge - Cirque de l'Herbétet - Bivouac Leonessa
A wonderful balcony route takes us to the bottom of the Herbetet cirque, located in the upper reaches of the Val de Cogne, near the eastern slope of Grand Paradis. In this place, the panorama is magnificent, a dozen glaciers flow from the summits of Herbetet, Becca di Montandayne, Piccolo and Gran Paradiso, Testa di Valnontey, Torre del Gran San Pietro, which dominates the Valnontey valley. At the national park chalet, Herbetet (2,441 m), we continue to climb through the alpine pastures towards the marvelous Leonessa bivouac (2,910 m), a real eagle's nest offers a unique experience. Look at the photo, there are no words ! An extraordinary evening and night in this 10 place refuge. We become natives in the middle of the magic of the mountains!
Elevation gain : 500 m - Elevation gain : 500 m

Day 3: Bivouac Leonessa - Alpage de Money - Valnontey
In the dawn light, we reach the moraine of the spectacular Tribulation glacier to watch the sunrise over the glacier and the eastern slope of Gran Paradiso (4,061 m). We return to the bivouac for breakfast. We then descend into the upstream of Valnontey and pass to the other side towards the panoramic and magnificent mountain pastures of Money (2,334 m). A beautiful path brings us back to Valnontey (1,674 m).
Elevation gain : 600 m - Elevation drop : 1000 m

The route is given as an indication. Depending on the conditions, whatever they are, the mountain guide may have to modify the program.


Group session associates several people who don’t know each other. It allows for a planned program to benefit from an attractive price on fixed dates. This formula is ideal for people looking for the friendliness of a group.

Dates 2020 : from Friday September 4th to Sunday September 6th.

Price 2020 : 475€ per person based on minimum 3 participants.

Included in the package :
- The organization and supervision of each tour by a state qualified trekking guide/s
- Half-board accommodation in mountain hut (dormitory)
- Picnic lunches
- Minivan assistance throughout the trek

Not included:
- Drinks and personal expenditure (souvenirs…)
- Repatriation insurance (mandatory)


You are a private group, you can ask for a customized trip.

- Exclusive guide

A more individualized relationship between your group and the professional.

- Choose your date of departure
You can choose your date of departure within the limit of the hut availabilities.

- Flexibility all along the trip
Depending on weather conditions, your level and your expectations, the guide can suggest you some different options of itinerary.

For any further information, please contact Anaïs :
Tel : +33 4 50 53 92 78 or Email :

Further information

Rendez-vous : at 7.30 am in front of the Compagnie des Guides in Chamonix on Day 1.

Ability level : 5/5 - A strenuous and demanding trek. More than 1000m (3350ft) vertical gain and about 7 to 9 hours of hiking daily. Some days may be long and demanding, involving altitude and high mountain passes (min.2800m). Hiking on mountain trails and terrain showing exposed and difficult sections. These trips generally require carrying a backpack with personal belongings throughout the trek. For expert hikers only. For very active, well-trained people with a solid experience in alpine trekking.

Guiding policy : By a state qualified trekking guide with a minimum of 3 and a maximum of  5 people in the group.The Compagnie des Guides de Chamonix's guiding policy is one of the strictest in the mountain guiding business. It guarantees the most balanced groups as possible as well as high-quality personalised advice.
Important : no booking accepted in our scheduled groups for people under the age of 18 without a legal guardian. Minimum age : 16 years old.

Accomodation :
- 1 night in a mountain hut (in dormitory) and 1 night in a bivouac (in dormitory) . Carrying your own belongings in your backpack.
- Before & after the trip : we have some hotel partners in Chamonix with special prices for our customers. If you want to receive information just ask Anaïs.

Documentation :
- Participants must have an insurance with repatriation cover. Cancellation insurance is highly recommended. You can take out insurance offering both of these types of cover when you sign up.
- Participants must also take valid ID with them.

Preparing for the trip : you are welcome to come and meet your guide the evening before at our office at 6 pm.


Hiking boots
- Ankle supporting boots with notched technical rubber sole (i.e. VIBRAM).
- We strongly recommend wearing new boots (several days and preferably hiking) to break them in before the hike.
- To avoid blisters, try rubbing baby talc on dry feet before using boots (sprinkling talc inside boot works too)
- Minimum size recommended 40 L (bigger is better than too small).
- Take out lunch should fit AFTER packing all your personal belongings.
- Bad weather precaution: pack covers are great to protect pack from rain or snow. We also recommend packing your belongings in a large and solid plastic bag (i.e. garbage bag) for a better protection in case of heavy rainfall.
Avoid using cotton underwear. Compared to technical synthetic material, it is heavier and it dries slowly. Wool is also getting popular amongst sportswear brands. Synthetic and wool are warmer; they dry fast, and allow you to pack light (you can easily wash a piece of underwear in the sink as you arrive at the mountain inn/hut. It’ll be dry before you finish your first beer!)
Carrying weight
Taking enough time to pack is essential, as you are going to carry every item for several days in a row. Avoiding extra weight can easily be done by packing your clothes tightly, placing heavy items at the bottom of the pack, and avoiding empty spaces. As a result weight is better spread throughout your back and weight impression diminished. Your back pack should not exceed 19 pounds (9kg).


- 1 long-sleeve shirt + 1 Tshirt (both synthetic)
- 1 polar fleece + 1 light down jacket (or a second fleece)

- 1 pair of shorts + 1 pair of hiking pants
- 1 pair of synthetic hiking socks
- 1 Goretex jacket (waterproof windbreaker)
- 1 poncho (large rain cover that fits over your pack) or 1 pack cover
- 1 pair of rain pants (although light Gore-tex pants are expensive, other types of light rain pants work too)
- 1 water bottle (1.5 quart, to 2 quarts minimum)
- 1 pocket knife + 1 « spork »
- Sun hat or ball cap, sunscreen, sun glasses, lip protection.
- 1 warm hat and a pair of gloves
- 1 pair of telescopic poles

- changes of clothes: (T-shirt, underwear and socks) prefer synthetic to cotton
- 1 pair of long underwear (synthetic recommended)
- 1 pair of ultra-light shoes (i.e. flip flops, slippers)
- 1 pocket light or head-lamp
- Personal first aid kit **
- 1 one-person sleep-sheet (silk is the most comfortable and remains the lightest)
- Ultra-light shower kit (feel free to customize ...) + synthetic « dry fast » towel
- ID card or valid passport + small change/ bills for personal expenses.
- Optional : camera, binoculars, umbrella, etc …

** Elastoplast (stretchable strapping tape), band-aids, second skin, medicine for common aches and pains (diarrhea, headaches, sore throat…)  Don’t forget to bring your personal prescription treatment if you have one. Mountain leaders also carry a complete first aid kit. Remember that packing light is essential.

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