Ski Touring: Grand Colon by the North-East bowl, Belledonne, French Alps - 2,369 m. (7,773 ft)

Sun, 29 April 2001


Minimum altitude: 1,379 meters

Distance: 6.4 km

Slope Aspect: East

Trip Reports

Vertical Climbed: 1,018 meters (3,340 feet)

Vertical Descended: 28 meters

Rating: 2.2

Avalanche Risk: -

Snowline: 1,650



From the parking at Pre Reymond (or from the "4 chemins" depending on the state of the snow), take a wide forest track to the south-east which you leave after half an hour of walking for a narrow, steep path to the left. After a some hairpins, it traverses onto the north face of the Grand Colon (normally you can put on your skis here in the spring). Continue and cross the avalanche debris coming from the Grand Colon then climb to the left to finally arrive at the Lac du Crozet.

Follow the tracks (there are always tracks!), quite high on the right bank of the lake, the crossing is a little steep (watch out for snow purges from the Dentes du Loup) but without any real difficulty in spring snow (if the snow is hard, couteaux or crampons can be very useful). After the lake enter the Vallon du Mercier to the right and immediately branch to the west. Cross the Mercier stream and climb the valley between a rock band on the left and the Roche Fendue on the right. The valley gets steeper but never more than 30ยบ. The valley emerges on a pass (around 2300 meters) behind the Roche Fendue, fork a little to the left to go up to a ridge which goes directly to the Grand Colon.

Return by the same route, or the West Face or the North Face.

Accommodation: Refuge de la Pra (not guarded in winter/spring) or the Baraque du Colon (stove) at 1748 meters on the west face.

Trip Report

I was returning to work in Nice and decided to try this route. Snow started just out of the forest. All good but a little warm for the descent in very transformed snow.


Spring snow.


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