2 - 3
FATMAP difficulty grade
A day out in the mountains near the Swiss Frontier with lunch at a mountain refuge.
Begin with a leisurely train journey from Chamonix to the hamlet of Le Buet where you disembark.
Walk down the tarmac road and cross the bridge before turning left and up to Le Couteray car park.
From here keep going right and you will come to the start of the forest cart track.
Easy hiking as you climb steadily on the 4x4 track until turning off for Loriaz.
The trail is very pleasant and on a hot day is in the forest for the first half of the hike which makes for more comfort.
After climbing for a while you will take a trail to the right on a bend, (not the first right, but second right) which takes you across the mountain side on a small trail.
This will zig-zag through the forest until arriving above the tree line to great views to Switzerland and back to Mont Blanc.
You will soon see the Refuge de Loriaz above you, and this is a great spot to buy lunch and enjoy sitting on the terrace.
Great soup and local cheese! Descend by a different trail which heads across the Combe and follows the cart track all the way back down.
This is the route taken to bring supplies in to the Refuge, and if you are unsure ask the staff at the Refuge to point out the direction of the route.
It is easy walking all the way back to your starting point.
Take the train back home, and rest your legs!