The location of our holiday flats makes possible beautiful walks or bike rides directly from the house. Sportsmen and women who are used to steep climbs can try to reach the peaks around Pelvoux – Les Claux.
You will find in this article (supposed to evolve over time) the descriptions, topos and photos of our favourites circuits and spots.
What to do?
The Chambran valley and the Eychauda lake
The entrance to the Chambran valley overlooks our hamlet. It is therefore not surprising that the trail we take is quite steep. The narrow path starts just before the tunnel on the road to Ailefroide. It passes through a few exposed places, but is not particularly dangerous if there is no ice. For this reason, I do not recommend it in winter, it is better to go up by the return route.
The next part is easier, we follow the GR 54 which leads us into the valley. From the moment you find the tarmac road, there is practically no more climbing to do. We quickly arrive at a tiny hamlet, the ideal place for a lunch break.
Those who still have the motivation and physical resources can climb to the Eychauda lake. Again, I do not recommend this part of the walk in winter. The description of our summer escapade is here. Be careful, we are entering the heart of the Ecrins National Park, dogs and bikes are forbidden.
To go down, you just have to take the GR 54 and after the characteristic picnic area with its huge wooden cross, find the laced path that leads you to the Domaine les Claux.
The Ailefroide and the Pré de Madame Carle refuge
The loop that leads from the right bank of torrent to Ailefroide (a world famous climbing site) and back down the left bank is one of our favourites. It can be done on foot, snowshoes and MTB. The river passage will spice up this easy walk.
The ascent is easy and progressive. You soon arrive in Ailefroide, a hamlet that is very lively in the high summer season and very quiet the rest of the year.
From there, you can decide to continue the hike to the Pré de Madame Carle refuge. In summer I prefer the path on the border of the Écrins National Park (forbidden to dogs and bikes), in winter it is more reasonable to go up by the road.
The most accessible walk from our holiday flats leads along the river Gyr to Vallouise. It can be adapted to your needs and physical condition by making shorter or longer loops. It can be done on cross-country skis, snowshoes, on foot or by mountain bike and is our must have walk in the valley.
The balcony trail
If you want to see all the splendour of the Vallouise valley, you have to climb the path through the Montbrison massif. The ascent is not difficult, a twisting path that starts at the Domaine les Claux allows you to quickly swallow the elevation difference. We continue along the GR 54, towards Chambran, and at the height of Choulières we find the path towards Adret. From this hamlet you return to the Domaine des Claux by a forest road unless you prefer to prolong the pleasure: the path follows the valley to Les Vigneaux, passing through several hamlets.
This loop can be done on foot or by mountain bike (mountain bike circuit n° 3). I do not recommend this part of the path in winter, it is exposed in some places and the risk of slipping is very real.
Where to stay in the Pays des Écrins.
Looking for a holiday in the Hautes-Alpes? Escapadelia will welcome you in Vallouise-Pelvoux all year round. Our holiday appartments are an ideal base to discover the Hautes-Alpes and the Pays des Ecrins.