Col De La Lavoire By The Combe Du Merlet

Ski-Areas > Northern Alps > Savoie (73) > Maurienne > Saint-Colomban des Villards > Col de la Lavoire by the combe du Merlet

There is room for about a dozen cars at the bridge. From here take a track that climbs directly into the valley following the left bank of the Merlet. You reach the attractive summer village of l'Echaut at 1512m, there is a bivouac here in the chalet de l'Echaud (1512m). Cross over a small bridge to follow a track on the right bank for about 500m. The combe de Merlet is relatively open and flat. On the left you can see the couloirs des Fouages. At the Vielle Route (chalet - closed) turn south and climb a series of short but relatively steep slopes to the col de la Lavoire on the right of the valley (looking up the mountain). The characteristic Gros Rocher is visible in the middle of this bowl as you climb.

Mountain RangeBelledonne
SummitCol de la Lavoire
OrientationSouth & East
Starting Altitude1053m
MapsIGN TOP 25 3433 OT Allevard
GPS WaypointN 45.3363° E 06.2009°
GPS RouteGoogle-Earth:Saint-Colomban
Grade[1]Danger: 2, Climb: PD, Ski: 2.2
SnowboardersThe Merlet bowl is flat and there is 400m of forest track
Equipmentski crampons for the slopes below the col
Road AccessA43 -> St-Etienne de Cuines exit -> D927 (col du Glandon) -> le Premier Villard -> Bridge 1053m
RefugesChalet de l'Echaut?

Trip Reports

16th February 2007

A beautiful day with blue skies and a good overnight refreeze. The Merlet valley at its best. We broke the trail to the summit followed by some very pleasant folk from the GUM who made a detour to the cold u Merlet before joining us at the Lavoire.

Thanks to their enthusiasm we made a little descent on the north facing bowl down to the lac Bacheux and a little bit of powder. The descent from the Lavoire was perfect spring snow, perhaps just a bit soft in places (13h). The track after the Echaut was less fun, very soft snow with some rocks underneath. Le col du Villonet was windblown and the vallon des Fouages full of avalanche debris. The ‘Natey direct’ couloirs didn’t have enough snow.

  • Weather : Hot, Sunny, Zero isotherm @ 3100m
  • Avalanche Risk: Considerable (3/5)
  • Participants: Anny, David, GUM team

This is a short video of the Col de la Lavoire by the combe du Merlet

Category: Trip Reports

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