Refuge de l'Arpont via the Col du Moine

Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne

A committing adventure in the heart of the Vanoise.

Ski Touring Difficult

Distance
10 km
Ascent
1.1 km
Descent
1.3 km
Duration
5-6 hrs
Low Point
2.3 km
High Point
3.3 km
Gradient
36˚
VIEW ON MAP
Refuge de l'Arpont via the Col du Moine Map

Description

A fantastic journey where it's possible you'll see few other ski tourers, unlike other popular hut to hut ski tours in the Alps. There is a choice between the Col du Moine and the Col de Labby and it is a good idea to chat to the Guardian as to which is in better condition. The Col du Moine is described here as it offers excellent fall line skiing. Escape would be challenging past a certain point so good weather and a very stable snowpack are essential for the traverse.

Leave the Refuge de la Dent Parrachée and ascend fairly mellow terrain until you reach Lac du Génépy. Go past this and turn to skin up the west facing slope towards the Col du Moine which gradually steepens, requiring a number of kick turns to reach the top. On the other side of the col is 50m of easy mixed ground which requires care to descend. This will require your skis to be strapped to your backpack, and most likely with your boot crampons on. Consider carefully how you are going to safely descend based on group ability and conditions.   Once on the glacier transition into skis and enjoy the superb north facing descent in a wild situation below the very impressive Dent Parachée. As you near the bottom of the glacier, a traverse leads to a flattening, where skins go back on to access a shoulder. From here transition again, ski a steep pitch to flat terrain and then traverse this to the other side of the valley. This may require another transition into skins. The final ski down to the hut involves navigating complex but never steep terrain before following moraine to the hut. 

The hut is modern inside with excellent food and a terrace to enjoy the incredible view. The hut also gained fame for the resident rabbit called Roger who lived life to the full.

Difficulty

Difficult

Serious gradient of 30-38 degrees where a real risk of slipping exists.

Medium Exposure (E2)

2 out of 4

As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.

Remoteness

3 out of 4

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

Best time to visit

February, March, April

Features

  • Bowl
  • Face
  • Alpine
  • Cliffs
  • Couloir
  • Ski Mountaineering

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Skins
  • Ice axe
  • Crampons
  • Glacier kit

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area