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Snowshoeing The Contamines natural reserve

Duration: 3 days

Level 1: You have never practiced.

Level 2: You have some initial experience.

Level 3: You practice occasionally.

Level 4: You practice regularly.

Level 5: You have a sustained practice.

Price from: 535€
For more information, contact Pôle Randonnée :
General information

Discover an exceptional site, ideally situated at the heart of the Contamines Montjoie nature reserve, in front of the Mont-Blanc massif, offering some stunning landscapes in the winter. This place is a must and is where the Prés mountain hut is located. Recently renovated, this ex pasture chalet offers a warm, comfortable and environmentally friendly accommodation. Discover an area dedicated to nature and outdoor lovers while snowshoeing. In this protected area, you will also have the chance to discover a rich fauna. All snowshoeing trips by the Compagnie des Guides de Chamonix are for small groups of 8 people maximum. In this way, our guides will be at your complete service, guaranteeing a high quality trip.

This trip is part of a selection of our favorite journeys, offering unique destinations to explore local heritage and provide you with a genuine change of scenery. Enjoy two discovery trips, one located in the heights of Vallorcine and the other in the Giffre Valley, near Samoëns. Immerse yourself in vast open spaces, whether it's in the Contamines Montjoie reserve or at the Grand Saint Bernard Hospice. Lastly, explore the Italian Val Ferret in the Aosta Valley.

Group booking

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 : See below for the group booking module

Price 2024 : 535€ per person based on minimum of 4 participants

This price includes :
- organisation and mountain Leader guiding service
- one night half-board in dormitory in a mountain hut (no shower)
- picnic lunches
- snowshoe, pole, avalanche transceiver (DVA), shovel and probe rental

This price does not include :
- travel to the meeting point
- drinks and personal expense (souvenirs…)
- repatriation insurance (mandatory)
- anything not mentioned in « included in the package

Private booking

Private booking is the historical relationship that binds a guide to his/her client. It allows you to be alone, or in a constituted group, with your guide that meets your specific needs. It is undoubtedly the ideal formula to realize your projects because it guarantees you a maximum of comfort. You are free to choose your departure date (depending on the availability of the huts) and the itinerary can be adjusted, according to your specific expectations.

Prices 2024:
1 person : 2080€ per person
2 people : 1170€ per person
3 people : 865€ par person
4 people : 715€ par person
5 people : 625€ par person
6 people : 565€ par person
7 people : 520€ par person
8 people : 490€ per person

The price includes :
- organisation and mountain Leader guiding service
- one night half-board in dormitory in a mountain hut (no shower)
- picnic lunches
- snowshoe, pole, avalanche transceiver (DVA), shovel and probe rental

Not included in the price :
- travel to the meeting point
- drinks and personal expense (souvenirs…)
- repatriation insurance (mandatory)
- anything not mentioned in « included in the package

Further information

Find in this in this section, all the information about this activity. For any further information please contact our advisors (contact details above).

Meeting point : Meet at 10:30 am at the Notre Dame de la Gorge car park - 3782 Route de Notre Dame de la Gorge - 74170 Les Contamines-Montjoie

Ability level : 2/5 - Multi-day snowshoe hike for people with trekking experience. 3 to 5-hour hike with average vertical gain between 300 m and 600 m. Snowshoe hikes on steeper terrain. Prior experience recommended

Guiding policy : each mountain leader can guides a group from 5 to 8 people.  The Compagnie des Guides de Chamonix's guiding policy guarantees a high level experience. Children minimum 12 years old accompanied by a parent

Accomodation : in catered mountain huts, two nights in mixed dormitory (no shower)
Before & after the trip: We have some hotel partners in Chamonix with special prices for our customers

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

Preparing for the trip : one week before the trip, the mountain guide will be in contact to answer any questions you may have


We recommend you to pay particular attention to the choice of your equipment. It contributes greatly to the success of your stay. Weight is decisive: you always have to evaluate the ratio weight/comfort, to find the best compromise. In a general way, it is better to pile up several light coats rather than wear one big clothing.

Hiking boots 
- Boots for snowshoeing should be warm and waterproof. They should also provide high ankle support. New boots should be worn a couple of times before.
- If your feet tend to get blisters easily, you can apply baby talc on dry feet in the morning before wearing your socks.

- Minimum size 35 L (a back-pack with extra room is better than too small).
- Once everything is packed, make sure there is enough room to fit your picnic lunch.
- Although backpack covers are very convenient in bad weather, we recommend using a very large plastic bag as a pack-liner to protect your personal belongings from getting wet.

Underwear : avoid using cotton. 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.

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).

Daily needs
- 1 synthetic long-sleeve shirt,
- 1 light polar fleece,
- 1 pair of Goretex pants, 1 long synthetic underwear to wear under your trousers,
- 1 a pair of wool socks,
- 1 Goretex jacket,
- 1 pair of fleece gloves, 1 pair of mittens, 1 pair of silk gloves,
- 1 warm hat, a scarf or neck warmer,
- 1 water bottle (1.5 quart, to 2 quarts minimum) isothermal if possible,
- 1 pocket knife + 1 « spork »,
- Cap or sun-hat and sunglasses (category # 3 minimum), sunscreen (face and lips),
- a camera and a pair of binoculars (optional).

What you need for the entire trip
- Down jacket or warm polar fleece,
- long underwear or sweat pants for the evening,
- changes of clothes: (T-shirt, underwear and socks) prefer synthetic to cotton,
- Pocket light or head lamp,
- Individual first aid kit *,
- Ultra-light shower kit (feel free to customize …) + synthetic « dry fast » towel,
- 1 one-person sleep-sheet (silk is the most comfortable and remains the lightest),
- ID card or passport + spare change for personal expenses + paper tissues and toilet paper,
- gaiters (recommended if your Goretex pants don’t have a boot-skirt).

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

Our Rental Partners : You can rent your equipment with our rental shops partners and benefit from special price Sanglard Sports, Ravanel & Co & Concept Pro Shop
Our Equipment Partners : Millet, Dynastar, Julbo, Grivel & Monnet


Day 1

We take the famous Roman Road to reach the Rosière plateau. The preserved forest may let you see some of its inhabitants, or at least their tracks in the fresh snow. Without disturbing, we hit the road again towards Nant Borrant and the Bois de la Rollaz. The last uphill slope takes us to the Prés mountain hut (1 803 m) from where the view on the surrounding summits is stunning.
Elevation gain: 600 m


Day 2

Today, explore the bottom of the Val Montjoie. First, we walk along the plan de la Fenêtre, before taking the direction of la Balme. The snow conditions fix the itinerary. It is your chance to learn something new about the mountains in wintertime thanks to the explications of your guide. We will be back to the Prés mountain hut in the afternoon.
Elevation gain: 450 m - Elevation loss: 450 m


Day 3

We reach Notre Dame de la Gorge through a different trail, which takes us to the other side of Bois de la Rollaz. Our itinerary at the heart of the forest alternates smooth and steep slopes. Here you have the chance to try a few funny slides. Make your way back to the parking in the middle of the afternoon.
Elevation loss: 600 m


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Discover the carbon emissions of this activity and add your trip to the meeting point.

CO2 emitted per person for the activity: 32 kg. Learn out more about the footprint calculation of this activity

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