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Albert Premier Hut - Charamillon - Long

Balme (Le Tour)



An accessible and beautifully-situated high mountain hut with a number of approaches.

Hiking Difficult

7.5 km
1.2 km
1.2 km
3-4 hrs
Low Point
1.5 km
High Point
2.7 km
Albert Premier Hut - Charamillon - Long Map

There are three options for reaching the hut: one 5 hours, another 3 hours, and a final 2-hour option. All converge 40 minutes below the hut and allow you to access one of the most dramatically-placed huts in the area. All involve walking up and downhill on uneven terrain and have a real "high mountain" feel. The hut sits at 2707 metres and enjoys wonderful views across the glacier and up to the dramatic Aiguille du Chardonnet.


The three options all begin at the village of Le Tour (1453 metres), at the northeast end of the Chamonix Valley, which can be reached by bus or car via a 20-minute drive from Chamonix centre. If taking the longest, toughest option, cross the large grassy slope east of Le Tour to reach the top of the ski draglifts beneath the Combe de Vormaine Valley.

From the top of the lifts, follow a path east towards the toe of the Glacier du Tour. The path climbs steeply and zig-zags before emerging at Fenêtre du Tour—a small concrete building at c.2000 metres. From here, the path follows the crest of the rocky moraine to the north of the Glacier du Tour. The path is rocky and feels unrelenting, but it does lead (eventually!) to the hut. Allow 5 hours for this route, which climbs a total of 1250 vertical metres.

The two shorter options for reaching the hut both begin from the Le Tour lift system. Ride the Charamillon cable car to 1850 metres and either walk on a good, well-signposted trail eastwards and uphill to the Lac de Charamillon (2271 metres) or continue up the Autannes chairlift to 2195 metres and follow a good trail south as it gradually climbs to the Lac de Charamillon.

From the Lac, both routes converge, and the path then climbs and traverses towards the Glacier du Tour. Keep following it to the moraine north of the Glacier and then follow a rocky path up this to the hut. The option from the top of the Charamillon cable takes 3 hours, going from the top of the Autannes chairlift takes 2.



Hiking trails where obstacles such as rocks or roots are prevalent. Some obstacles can require care to step over or around. At times, the trail can be worn and eroded. The grade of the trail is generally quite steep, and can often lead to strenuous hiking.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.


3 out of 4

Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.

Best time to visit

between July and September


  • Alpine
  • Historical
  • Picturesque

Similar routes nearby

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