An anthology descent on the Gébroulaz Glacier, in the heart of the Vanoise. This ski route
of more than 10 km lenght is one of the jewels accessible from the 3 Valleys. A ski touring run that is quite short on the Chavière Glacier gives us access to the Gébroulaz Glacier which stretches its slopes towards Méribel and Pralognan la Vanoise.
After joining the Col de Thorens by the Val Thorens ski lifts, we equip ourselves with safety equipment. It is compulsory to wear a harness when you venture on glaciers. The climb is done withs skin on the gentle slopes of the Chavière Glacier. About an hour of effort is generally necessary to reach the Col de Gébroulaz which can be crossed on foot or on skis depending on the snow quality, the last 50 meters being quite steep.
At almost 3,500m above sea level, the Gébroulaz pass lets us see the start of the descent. Rid of our skins, we attack the descent in the middle of this magnificent glacial landscape where the blue shards of serac ice fascinate. You must of course follow in the tracks of the high mountain guide in this part because you must avoid crevasses. The slopes widen and it is now possible to deviate – but not too far! – from the guide to make your own trail.
Towards the Aiguille du Soufre the Gébroulaz glacier divides and we will have to choose an option:
– take the direction of Méribel via the Saut refuge then the flat sections where you will have to push on the sticks to reach the Tuéda reserve, then the Méribel Mottaret station;
– Or turn towards Pralognan la Vanoise by the Roc de la Pêche refuge. And finish with the cross-country trails which overlook Pralognan. A return by taxi is then necessary (at your expense).
It is often possible to see a few ibex or chamois once you have passed the Gébroulaz glacier.
This outing lasts the day and requires good physical shape (1 hour of skining up and a long descent). The slopes are never very steep but you have to be able to control your trajectory and speed because we sometimes have to ski between crevasses. Of course you have to be able to ski off piste in all types of snow.
We can either take picnics or eat at the Roc de la Peche refuge if we go down to Pralognan.
Please contact me directly to discuss your fitness level if you are unsure if backcountry skiing is appropriate for you or anyone in your group.
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||Meribel, Courchevel, Val Thorens.|
|DEPARTURE TIME||To be decided with your guide|
|DURATION||9:00 AM – 4:30 PM|
|MINIMUM AGE||14 years old|
|LEVEL||Moderate. Minimum class 3 level required.|
|GUIDE RATIO||1 Guide for 1 to 6 people|
|WHAT TO BRING||All ski touring equipment , lift pass, a small back pack|
|PRICE||600€, Private guide, 1 to 5 people|