Fri, 22 March 2013
Minimum altitude: 950 meters
Slope Aspect: EastTrip Reports
Vertical Climbed: 570 meters (1,870 feet)
From les Vials the simplest is to climb to the top of the pistes (watch out for skiers). When you reach the top of the Sauzet drag the path continues directly west up a steep slope which is partially blocked by alderwood bushes for about 100 vertical meters. The cabane de Berger is located behind a large rock for avalanche protection at 1520m. You can continue upslope to around 1700m directly under the Rochers du Midi. Be careful as the channel directly under the Rochers du Midi is liable to full depth slides.
Descend to the top of the pistes, take the Pierre Aigue piste on the right and at 1300 take a trail that leads into the woods (GR Petite Roches). After a few meters follow the slope down to join first the Chemin de l'Herse (start of cross country trail) at 1150 meters, then ski down through the phantom village to exit onto the field above les Vials.
Comments on route: The slopes above the ski area are subject to purges after fresh snow and in warm weather especially higher up under the south pillar of the Rochers du Midi.
Access: Grenoble > St Nazaire les Eymes > Station de St Hilaire du Touvet (depart possible from the ancient hospital @ 1100m) depending on snow cover
Equipment: Ski crampons.
Country: France Area: Chartreuse Trailhead: St Hilaire du Touvet
Description: Top of the ski runs. Possible at the end, beginning or during the ski season. Morning, noon or night.