Sur Cou South Face

Ski-Areas > Northern Alps > Haute-Savoie (74) > Bornes > Orange > Sur Cou South Face


This route is well known by locals for days when the Aravis bowls are too dangerous. From the car park climb the track to the south-east towards the Chalet de Balme (closed in winter). At 1400 a path heads to the north-east high on the right bank (looking down the mountain) of the Nant de Cou stream. At the col de Cou (1614 m) the path turns west to climb the Sur Cou by the south face. Descend directly to the Col de Cou then via the chalet de Balme via a traverse rather than the path you climbed.

Mountain RangeBornes
SummitSur Cou
Altitude1809 meters
OrientationSouth and West
Starting Altitude1170 meters
Vertical640 meters
Maps3430ET La Clusaz, Grand Bornand
GPS Waypoint 
GPS RouteGoogle-Earth:Sur-Cou
Grade[1]Danger: 1, Climb: F, Ski: 1.3
CommentsBeware of snowshoers climbing the trails
Road AccessOrange then chalet de Balme, park at 1170m (20 parking spaces).

Trip Reports

13th January 2008

Lots of cars at the car park at 8.45am – I found one of the few spots left. Obviously a popular location when there is a lot of new snow (50cm at altitude and an avalanche in the Combe de Tardevant the day before).

There was little snow below 1200 meters on the forest trail, the pastures in Orange were better served. The path is wide and would be a good beginners tour with better snow cover. The south slopes of the Sur Cou also lacked snow, they were obviously pretty bare before the last snowfall. The surrounding Aravis landscape is fantastic, full of rock buttresses and deep valleys interspersed with sleepy mountain villages. We linked the climb with a descent of the east face.

  • Weather : Sunny, relatively warm
  • Avalanche Risk: Considerable (3/5)
  • Participants: David, Tibo, Herve
  • Snow level: 800 m (skiable 1200m)

Category: Trip Reports << | Orange | >>