Walking in the Valais
120 Walks and Treks
By Kev Reynolds
Comprehensive guidebook to the Valais region, describing 111 day walks and 10 multi-day tours. Home to the Matterhorn and Dent Blanche, the routes are in the Fieschertal and the Aletsch glacier region, the Lotschental, Saastal, Mattertal, Turtmanntal, Val d'Anniviers, Val d'Herens, Val de Bagnes, Val Ferret and Vallee du Trient.
SeasonsValley walks should be possible between late May and late October, but for higher routes, late June until the middle of October would be the best time to go.
CentresZermatt, Saas Fee, Grächen, Zinal, Les Haudères, Arolla, Champex, Fiesch, Kippel and Blatten are just a few of the centres used for walking in the Valais.
DifficultyWalks are graded 1-3 for length and/or difficulty. Grade 1 is suitable for family outings; Grade 2 is moderate walking on good paths, but with the need to be well shod; Grade 3 routes are more strenuous and with some steep ascents and descents with which to contend. No special equipment is required.
Must SeeThe Matterhorn, Monte Rosa, The Dom, Zinalrothorn, Weisshorn, Ober Gabelhorn, Dent Blanche, Bietschhorn and the Grand Combin form a backdrop to the walks. Also featured, the Grosser Aletschgletscher is the longest icefield in the Alps, while magical valleys like the Lötschental. Saastal, Fieschertal, Val d'Anniviers, Hèrens and Bagnes have a wealth of walks on offer.
This guide describes 111 day walks and 10 multi-day, long-distance treks, exploring this whole area and suitable for a wide range of abilities. The network of walking trails in this popular region is excellent but the infrastructure is unbeatable, with excellent public transport and a wide range of good-quality accommodation from simple mountain huts to grand hotels in bases such as Saas Fee, Zermatt and Arolla.
The Pennine Alps in the Valais region of Switzerland contain more 4000m peaks than anywhere else in Western Europe and some of the greats: the Matterhorn, Monte Rosa, Dent Blanche and Grand Combin, all surrounded by idyllic valleys and hillsides dotted with chalets, hay barns and hardy little alpine flowers as well as pristine snowfields and glaciers.
Walks are arranged valley by valley and accompanied by full information about the valley bases, mountain huts, access and facilities as well as practical information for walkers new to trekking or walking in Switzerland.
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Kev Reynolds was a freelance writer, photojournalist and lecturer. A prolific compiler of guidebooks, his first title for Cicerone Press (Walks & Climbs in the Pyrenees) appeared in 1978; he later produced many more titles for the same publisher. A member of the Outdoor Writers' Guild, the Alpine Club and Austrian Alpine Club, his passion for mountains and the countryside inspired a lifetime's activity, and he regularly travelled throughout Britain to share that enthusiasm through his lectures. Sadly, Kev passed away in 2021. He will be remembered fondly by all who knew him and by many more he inspired through his writing and talks.View author profile
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