Sommets des Garrets hike
One of the most beautiful hikes in Mercantour National Park. You have a superb view on the Lac d’Allos, very panoramic. You’ll walk on limestone rocks, through larch forests and grassy slopes, and you can find rare plants and birds: jewels for connoisseurs. But, it comes at a price: a lot of gradual altitude gain.
From Nice airport go up the valley of the Var by the RM 6202 and then by the D4202 until you reach Allos. At the first crossroad, go right on the D2 to Lac d’Allos. You’ll reach the starting point after 7.8mi. The parking costs 8€ per car per day.
|When to do|
June to end of October
In Allos or from 7 p.m. to 9 a.m. on site
Yes. Refuge Lac d'Allos
Sommets des Garrets
Route Description for Sommets des Garrets
From the parking lot take the only path that starting near the little house. After ten minutes, you’ll arrive at the first glacier threshold, where there once was an ancient lake, now a nice bog. The path will reach a trail that will arrive from the left. Ignore it.
After 30 or so minutes (if you’re going at a good speed), go along to the left you’ll get to the second glacier threshold, from here you can see the Lac d’Allos 7310ft.
At the lake go left. You can stop at the Refuge du Lac for some refreshments (we highly recommend this) and then continue left.
Follow the path that goes up in the direction of the Col de la Petite Cayolle.
When you reach a large grassy plain, you should find a sign that says 7408ft. From here, take the path on the right and continue direction Col de la Petite Cayolle.
The path goes into the Ravin de Meouille and then reaches the edge of the Lac de la Petite Cayolle (8491ft). The lake is nestled within the limestone scree, where the snow remains until June.
In front of you there’s the Col de la Petite Cayolle (8658ft) that you can reach in twenty or more minutes. From here you’ll have a view on the Western Alps: from the Monte Bianco to the Maritime Alps.
Then, continue right. The path skirts around the lake. You’ll see the little pass (8730ft) the divides it from the Lac de Garrets (8599ft).
From the lake, you can continue up, following the path and you arrived in on to the flat crest of the Sommet du Lausson (8678ft) and the Pas du Lausson (8537ft). From here, on the right, you have the trail that falls towards the Lac d’Allos.
The path downhill brings you to the trail you originally went uphill on, in the Ravin de Meouille, at (7713ft a.s.l.).
The return is on the same path or, if you want, from the signal at 7408ft, there a direct path the goes down to the Plateau du Laus.
If you still have energy, you can go up until the Mont Pelat 10007ft, one of the highest peaks of this region. From here you have a panoramic view of Provence and - with a clear sky - you can see all the way to the Corse.
Try staying at The Refuge du Lac d’Allos. The food is great, the lodging is simple and you are right beside the lake.
Another option is the Refuge de la Cayolle. An equally charming establishment although it doesn’t have the benefit of being lakeside.
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