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This guidebook describes 28 day walks in the Gran Paradiso national park in the Italian Alps south of Mont Blanc, and the 12-day Alta Via 2 trek. The Alta Via trek covers over 140km of rugged mountains and valleys between Chardonnay to Courmayeur. The walks vary from 2 to 33km and range from easy paths to routes for the experienced alpine walker.
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A guidebook to walking in the the Gran Paradiso national park, Italy, describing the 12-stage Alta Via 2 trek, and a range of 28 walks that range from 2 to 33km, as well a suggestions for combining routes into long-distance hikes. The Gran Paradiso sits in the Valle d'Aosta, in northwestern Italy, a region of grand mountains and rugged desolate valleys, verging on pristine wilderness. Views of Mont Blanc, Monte Rosa and the Matterhorn ranges can be seen from the many passes and lookouts visited during this guide.
The Alta Via 2 is a superb long-distance trek that leads over 140km from Chardonnay to Courmayeur, passing through the region and beneath the foot of Mont Blanc. The routes is described in 12 stages that are split equally between high altitude huts and valley hotels to suit everyone. The day stages in the 12-day Alta Via 2 route vary in length from 5.8 to 18.4km and in total the route covers an ascent of 9420m and a descent of 9639m.
Despite its attractions, the park is relatively undiscovered. Walkers can often enjoy unforgettable days on excellent trails through spectacular valleys all to themselves, even at the height of the summer season. The itineraries explore highlights and special places to whet walking appetites. With a map and a sense of adventure, you will be able to concoct scores of other delightful walks.
The guidebook also provides plenty of practical information on getting to and around the Gran Paradiso, as well as advice on accommodation, language, equipment, planning and how to make the most out of any adventure in one of Italy's most spectacular National Parks. A wealth of detail on points of interest walkers can explore, as well as information on wildlife, history, geology and flowers is also included.
AV2 Stage 6 + Walk 14: a new refuge opened in 2016 - Rifugio delle Marmotte (tel 389 3488785 sleeps 12, open mid-June to mid-Sept www.rifugiodellemarmotte.it) is at Alpage di Entrelor (2143m). The old farm buildings have been beautifully renovated by volunteers who also run the refuge and proceeds go to the Operazione Mato Grosso project in South America.
p90 there is a new accommodation structure near Lago Combal.
Cabane du Combal, open June-Sept, sleeps 23 in 3-4 bed rooms with bed linen and en suites. tel 0165 1756421 or mob 339 6938817 email firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to Lennart Agestam
Alta Via 2, Stage 10 p80:
Promoud: the bivouac hut is still closed.
B&B La Haut is now called Dortoir Paradis www.leparadisdortoir.com (phone and other details unchanged)
Stages 9 & 10:
p79 + 83 the paths below Col de la Crosatie and leading up to Haut Pas have been improved with steps.
Walks 15 & 17:
p160, 168, 172 Rif Benevolo now has hot showers
(Thanks to Nigel Jones and Wendy Owen)
Thanks to Mark Peryer:
p52 Rifugio Peradza is open
p80 the bivacco at Promoud is currently closed to avalanche damage
Alta Via 2, Stage 2: Rifugio Péradzà is currently closed, so plan on either staying at Rifugio Miserin or continuing down to Lillaz or Cogne for accommodation.
Alta Via 2
Stages 5: there is cable on exposed sections en route to Col Lauson
Stage 9: The path has been improved on north side Col Crosatie with cable
and slab steps.
The bivouac hut at Promoud was reportedly closed.
A 2-stage extension was recently added to AV2 (to link it with AV1) so walkers can now begin the trail at Donnas, near Hone-Bard. This link http://www.regione.vda.it/turismo/proposte/sport/escursionismo/alta_via_2_e.asp leads to the relevant info for Stages 13 + 14. Note also the new AV2 routing in Valgrisenche Stage 5.
p50: Rifugio Miserin is under new management tel: (mob) 340 9014630 open June to Sept www.miserinespritlibre.it
p73: The path after Praz-Londzet was reportedly closed in summer 2009 and AV2 re-routed towards the valley, passing close to the football stadium on the edge of Valgrisenche. Clear waymarking leads through to Frassy whence Revers.
p76: Hotel Paramont web site has been changed to:
p160, 164 & 172: The telephone number of Rifugio Benevolo has changed to 0165 936143
|The Gran Paradiso National Park|
|Valleys and Bases|
|When to Go|
|How to Use this Book|
|Dos and Don'ts|
|Mountaineering and Guides|
|What to Take|
|Alta Via 2|
|Stage 1 Chardonney to Rifugio Dondena|
|Stage 2 Rifugio Dondena to Rifugio Péradzà|
|Stage 3 Rifugio Péradzà to Cogne|
|Stage 4 Cogne to Rifugio Vittorio Sella|
|Stage 5 Rifugio Vittorio Sella to Eaux Rousses|
|Stage 6 Eaux Rousses to Rhêmes-Notre-Dame|
|Stage 7 Rhêmes-Notre-Dame to Rifugio Chalet de l'Epée|
|Stage 8 Rifugio Chalet de l'Epée to Planaval|
|Stage 9 Planaval to Promoud|
|Stage 10 Promoud to La Thuile|
|Stage 11 La Thuile to Rifugio Elisabetta Soldini|
|Stage 12 Rifugio Elisabetta Soldini to Courmayeur|
|1 The Lillaz Waterfalls|
|2 Lago di Loie|
|3 The Money Glacier Terrace|
|4 The Casolari dell'Herbetet Traverse|
|5 Punta Pousset – the local ‘Gornergrat’|
|6 Beneath the Grivola|
|7 Passo d'Invergneux and the Mines Circuit|
|8 Laghi di Lussert|
|9 Pondel's Roman Bridge|
|10 The 2205m Mont Blanc|
|11 At the Foot of the Gran Paradiso|
|12 Over Gran Collet to Col del Nivolet|
|13 The King's Path in Valle delle Meyes|
|14 Vallon di Sort|
|15 Col Rosset|
|16 Punta Basei|
|17 Becca della Traversière|
|18 Legendary San Grato|
|19 Becca dei Quattro Denti|
|20 The Royal Track to Ceresole Reale|
|21 Sentiero Glaciologico Lago Serrù|
|22 Beneath the Tre Levanne|
|23 The Villages of Valle dell'Orco|
|24 Beyond the Dam in Vallone di Piantonetto|
|25 Nivolastro to Andorina|
|26 Frescoes and Fridges en route to Bivacco Davito|
|27 Sanctuary of San Besso|
|28 Col Larissa|
|Appendix 1 Italian-English Glossary|
|Appendix 2 Route Summary Table|