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La Grave, hotel v refuge
Posted: 01 September 2011 06:04 PM  
Total Posts:  15
Joined  2008-10-08

Summer’s over, so I’m planning a first time trip to La Grave in March/April, and I’m wondering whether to stay on the mountain, or in the village. Now, you may be tempted to respond, He really should know already if he prefers a hut to a hotel, but hear me out. I plan to spend a long weekend at the resort, basing myself for several days either in the valley or a refuge, and returning to the same base each night. I’m happy with a mixture of touring and freeride, but the main appeal of the refuge is savouring the empty mountain after the crowds have gone, and early before they arrive the next morning.
If I stay in a refuge, given the weather patterns in the area, am I likely to be weather bound for some of it, so would I be better down in the village, and driving to other resorts on bad weather days??
Are there any particular refuges that make a better base than others, for location, atmosphere, facilities, food, ability to bale out in bad weather, or any other reason?
Any experiences, good or bad?

Posted: 01 September 2011 06:43 PM   [ # 1 ]  
Sr. Member
Total Posts:  543
Joined  2006-01-24

I’ve stayed at the Skiers Lodge on a course and I thought it was superb, the rooms are pretty basic but the food is really quite excellent. They have guided groups going out most days, I’ve not been out with them but the feedback was good.

The atmosphere in the bar is pretty good as well, and I say this as someone who’s not interested in the apres ski concept grin

The nature of La Grave is that the mountain can get shutdown, if you’re up a refuge that could be a problem. If you’re down in the village it’s possible you could hook up with someone and take a trip somewhere else. I’m not even totally sure what refuges are in that area and operating during the winter but I guess you’ve already looked at that.

 Signature & B&B L’Epicéa, Leysin, Switzerland

Posted: 01 September 2011 07:37 PM   [ # 2 ]  
Total Posts:  2234
Joined  2003-10-24

March / April is not so bad in the valley. In January there is no sunlight in la Grave. I’ve stayed in the Edelweisse which is ok but a bit “Shining”. If you will tour within la Grave staying in a refuge would be a nice option, if you want to tour up the valley a bit or in the Ecrins stay in the village.

I think the Evariste Chancel is the main refuge

nearby are:
Le Chazelet, Village (altitude: 1830m)
Refuge du Promontoire, (altitude: 3092m) - but just over the ridge (la Rasoir?)
Refuge de l’Aigle, Refuge gardé (altitude: 3440m)