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Tête d'Auferrand

Arve Valley

A quiet ski tour in a wild setting with fun skiing.

Ski Touring Moderate

8.7 km
767 m
767 m
4-5 hrs
Low Point
1.3 km
High Point
2 km
Tête d'Auferrand Map

An often quiet ski tour on the shady side of the Col de la Colombière which offers an excellent vantage point from which to view the more popular ski tours on the sunny side of the Col. This is wild-feeling tour and it's well worth keeping your eyes peeled for the magnificent Gypayète barbu (bearded vulture). Due to the shady aspects of the slopes there is a good chance of skiing good powder even when it has not snowed for a while. A lot of the terrain is in trees and in poor visibility it can be a good place to come and ski laps with multiple options for descents. If snow stability is in doubt the option to skin up a safer line to the ridge between Point de la Botte and Tête d’Auferrand is often better than going to the summit itself.


From the parking (which is at the end of where the road is ploughed to) ski down a short track to the building at la Sallaz. From here put your skins on and skin along the summer track until it bends to your left. Then continue up the stream bed before leaving this and skinning up the steeper slopes in the trees to where it flattens and the closed café at Aufferand. There is a short shuffle down before a rising traverse around the hill takes you to a steeper slope - skin up this to a broad col. The summit is often blocked by a cornice and this is bypassed by a traverse under it before turning and going along the ridge to the summit. Enjoy the views over to Pointe Percée in one direction and the Pointe du Midi and surrounding mountains in the other direction.

The ski down follows the ascent line but it is well worth doing an extra short skin or two to get some fresh tracks and take advantage of the surrounding terrain either in the more open ground higher up or the trees lower down. When you are near the end you will have to walk a short distance back up the track to the parking.



Slopes become slightly steeper at around 25-30 degrees.

Low Exposure (E1)

1 out of 4

Exposure is limited to that of the slope itself. Getting hurt is still likely if the slope is steep and/or the snow is hard.


2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

between December and March


  • Bowl
  • Face
  • Tree Skiing
  • Single Descent

Equipment required

  • Skins

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Guidebooks in this area