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Hiking Ailefroide

The refuges are within the reach of all hikers, sometimes at the expense of some efforts, but what a reward is waiting for you!

Leaving from Ailefroide :

Refuge Cezanne Ailefroide
The Cézanne refuge  – a pathway passes beside the torrent and leads to the Pré de Madame Carle. The Ailefroide road ends at the Cézanne Refuge, the starting point for a large number of hikes. The refuge is situated at the very heart of the Ecrins National Park.
Difference in level: 350 m (maximum altitude: 1874 m)
Clapouse Valley – before the Ailefroide campsite, head for the Clapouse valley and cross the Celse Nière waterfall. The path zigzags upwards in a fairly steep climb to the beginning of the valley; once you have arrived you may well see some chamois…
Difference in level: + 800 m (maximum altitude: 2300 m)

Vallon de Claphouse, Ailefroide
Sentier des Claux, Ailefroide
The Claux Path – After the Ailefroide bridge take the path going down into the valley as far as the tunnel by the slope opposite the road. It takes about an hour to come back up by the path. On the way, there are few animals, but plenty of strawberries and raspberries.
Difference in level: – 343 m (maximum altitude: 1550 m)
Sélé Refuge – From the Ailefroide campsite. The ascent is magnificent and varied, a little tricky in the last few metres, since the refuge is perched up on a rocky crest (a large number of cables are available).
Difference in level: 1 000 m (maximum altitude: 2510 m)

Refuge Sele Parc Ecrins
Refuge du Pelvoux
Pelvoux Refuge -From the Ailefroide campsite take the path through the larch tree forest. Situated on a rocky headland, the refuge is only visible just before you arrive. A very fine hike that you can do once you have got up to speed! The landscape is superb: the Clos de l’Homme glacier, the Sélé refuge, Mont Pelvoux…
Difference in level: 1190 m (maximum altitude: 2750 m)

Leaving from Pré de Madame Carle :

Ecrins Refuge -The path is busy until the Glacier Blanc Refuge since many hikers only go up for the day to picnic with their families. You will find it quieter in the early morning. The end of the climb is on the glacier, the crevasses of which can be open at certain periods of the year.
Difference in level: 1 300 m (maximum altitude: 3170 m)

Refuge des Ecrins
Refuge du Glacier Blanc, Ailefroide
Glacier Blanc Refuge – Leave early to avoid the crowds – and the heat, but not the marmots, which are far from timid. The climb is steep at times and certain passages are protected. The arrival at the former Tuckett refuge is superb, and then a steeper part brings you to the Glacier Blanc Refuge. Many visitors halt at the foot of the glacier, but once you arrive at the refuge, a superb view will be waiting for you. The reflection of Mont Pelvoux on Lake Tuckett is a classic picture postcard image.
Difference in level: + 670 m (maximum altitude: 2542 m)

In the vicinity :

Eychauda Lake -Eychauda is one of the most beautiful lakes in the Briançon region in a stone setting beneath the Séguret Foran glacier. The climb up to the Col des Grangettes (2684 m) to get a view on the lake is a plus, but the ascent is delicate towards the end and requires great care.
Difference in level: + 800 m (maximum altitude: 2514 m)

Lac de l'Echauda
Refuge des Bans, Ailefroide
Bans Refuge -The Bans Refuge is perched on a rocky headland and offers a superb view of the summits. A somewhat difficult passage leads up to the refuge…A fine hike for beginners, where you will cross paths with marmots, chamois and ibex!
Difference in level: + 470 m (maximum altitude: 2080 m)
Tête de la Draye -The Tête de la Draye is so to speak the twin of the Tête de la Maye, a panoramic mountain on the northern coast of the Barre des Ecrins range. From Ailefroide, hidden in a larch tree forest. The views are superb over all the Vallouise as far as the Pré de Madame Carle cirque, where the Glacier Blanc slides down the slope, accompanied opposite by the imposing Mont Pelvoux and later by the Barre des Ecrins.
Difference in level: 900 m (maximum altitude: 2400 m)

Tête de  la Draye

Some map websites :