Panorama from the Il Piano del Praiet hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, Italy
Panorama from the Il Piano del Praiet hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, Italy

Il Piano del Praiet hike

Alpi Marittime Natural Park
View Photos
The road up to the valley on the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyThe road before the Praiet on the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyPiazzale del Cannoni on the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyTrail of the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyThe Praiet and the Colle di Finestra on the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyOverview towards Colle di Fenestrelle from the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyView from refuge towards the valley on the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyThe Monte Gelas from the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyViews from the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, ItalyThe Rifugio Soria on the Il Piano del Praiet Hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, Italy

Il Piano del Praiet hike

Distance: 8.6mi
Elevation: 2,329ft
Time: 5-7h

Difficulty Rating:

User Ratings:
9.2 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty

Il Piano del Praiet, at the foot of Mount Gelas, has been a well-known hiking destination in the Alpi Marittime throughout history. On the northern slopes of the Gelas is one of the last glaciers in the Alpes-Marittime fading quickly due to climate change. From there, you can reach the Colle di Finestra, and walk down into France on an old salt-smugglers’ trail.

Il Piano del Praiet hike Map

Getting there

When you arrive in Valdieri, go straight and after 1.2mi go left to Entracque. Then go right to San Giacomo after 3.7mi. You can park the car here. To reach the path, pass the bridge on the left.

I’ve done this 41 people have done this
I want to do this 26 want to do this route

About

When to do

May to end of October

Backcountry Campsites

Yes, on site, or in San Giacomo

Toilets

Yes, At San Giacomo

Family friendly

Yes

Route Signage

Average

Crowd Levels

Moderate

Route Type

Out and back


Il Piano del Praiet
Elevation Graph


Route Description for Il Piano del Praiet

From San Giacomo you take the road that starts between the Rifugios and continues into the beech trees next to the river.

After some bends through the woods, the track opens up to the valley, but the path always follows along the river, making it hard to get lost.

You’ll walk past some pastures up to the Piazzale dei Cannoni. From here you take the track that climbs up. You’ll continue to the Peirastretta canyon and onto the pastures of the Conca del Praiet. Above you sits the Gelas, (10312ft), and the Cougourda, (9583ft). For the local climbers, these mountains have an almost “mythic lore” about them.

The Rifugio Soria (6037ft) is the end-point of this walk. This Rifugio is one of the most popular Rifugios in the park. It lays atop some rocks on the left of the Praiet.

After a stop at the Rifugio, you’ll return the way you came to get back to your car.

Insider Hints

  • From the Praiet you can reach two passes: the Passo di Fenestrelle, to the north-west, and the Colle della Finestra, to the south. The Rifugio Soria is also a basecamp when climbing the Gelas, as well as a basecamp for skiers.

  • We recommend checking out the Rifugio San Giacomo. They are famous for their stone-milled polenta.

  • Sotto il Fagio is a great camping option in the area. If you have your own sleeping bag or blankets you can rent tents and air mattresses from them.

Comments

Gilberto Fattore 12 months ago

We did a wonderful walking trail with a great view, recommend to all those who want to spend a moment in nature

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
6h 30m Time Taken
Rolando Acciaio 1 year ago

It is a beautiful lake where you can take a nice walk, a place of dreams!

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
6h 00m Time Taken
claritam 2 years ago

What a marvelous sight! I felt lucky to see the last glacier in the Alpes-Marittime. I still hope we can somehow reverse climate change.

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Manny D. 2 years ago

Splendid views, nice and easy trail. It took me 17080 steps to complete this hike.

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Chloe P. 2 years ago

Took us about 7 hours to complete this hike. The weather was perfect, and the trail was in good condition. I highly recommend it!

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Bridget Mcbride 2 years ago

Amazing location. After checking out the campsites, we're planning to camp for a day or two next time.

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Cindhy Klins 2 years ago

Simply amazing! There are a variety of things to see on this hike like beautiful mountain peaks and a few glaciers.

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Tyler D. 2 years ago

Classic hike in the park! remarkable scenery. Not that hard. Lots of photo opportunity.

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Scott P. 2 years ago

The northern slopes have enormously changed throughout the years because of climate change. It's so sad.

9.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Jacob M. 2 years ago

I had a carefree early morning walk in the woods. It's a different world during that time. More quiet and pure nature at its finest.

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
16 Comments Show all

Similar hikes to the Il Piano del Praiet hike

Lago del Vei del Bouc trail in Alpi Marittime National Park, Italy

Lago del Vei del Bouc

Difficulty:
10.1mi
3212ft
5-7.5h

The Vei del Bouc Lake is one of the most beautiful lake hikes in Alpi Marittime Natural Park. There’s something…

Scenery from the Gorge Della Reina hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, Italy

Gorge della Reina

Difficulty:
5.7mi
2149ft
3-5h

Behind Entracque, the "village between waters", winds the trail that leads hikers to Monte Lausa and the Gorge della Reina…

Scenery from the Rifugio Remondino hike in Alpi Marittime National Park, Italy

Rifugio Remondino

Difficulty:
6.7mi
3199ft
4-6h

If you don’t want to climb the whole mountain, this is a great day hike whose views make for a…