Grand St Bernard Monastery

Generally used as access to other tours, this is a fun little trip in itself if conditions rule out anything more adventurous.

Also in Valais, Switzerland

Ski Touring Easy

Distance
12 km
Ascent
578 m
Descent
577 m
Duration
4-5 hrs
Low Point
1.9 km
High Point
2.5 km
Gradient
22˚
Grand St Bernard Monastery Map

This is a famous and historical tour with no technical difficulty and minimal objective hazards. It is possible whenever there is snow on the ground and the road to the Monastery is closed (which it generally is between November and May).

Description

Start at the carpark of the now-defunct St Bernard ski area, and simply follow the clear jeep track which winds up to the Grand St Bernard Monastery, on the Col Grand St Bernard. The climb takes about 90 minutes and takes you through some very dramatic and wild scenery, without requiring too much effort on your part.

The Grand St Bernard Monastery is wonderful, with an eerie feel and cold, empty rooms combining with a warm welcome from the monks who live there. Food and drinks are served at the Monastery and it's suitably simple but delicious fare. Support the monks and the unique place they run by buying a meal and then take time to explore the various parts of the monastery.

From the monastery you can either ski back to your car, or carry on to the far side of the col and embark on a further tour from there.

Difficulty

Easy

Wide gentle slopes at around 20 degrees or less.

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.

Remoteness

3 out of 4

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

Best time to visit

January, February, March, April, November, December

Features

  • Single Descent

Equipment required

  • Skins

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area