Home La Meije et le Vallon des Etançons
This easy hike is perfect for close-up views of two of the major Oisans summits, the Meije and the Barre des Ecrins, as well as exploring varied high mountain scenery, including moraines, meadows and glaciers.
GPX map and layout
Inside the Ecrins National Park, so no dogs allowed (even on a lead).
Starting point: La Bérarde
Elevation gain: 522 m
Total duration: 2 hours
Distance: 6.1 km
Starting from La Bérarde, park just below the village and walk up the pedestrian path ("La Calade") to the Maison de la Montagne.
The start point is opposite the Maison de la Montagne, following signs to the Refuge du Chatelleret.
The path quickly climbs above the village, offering extensive views over the Vallon de la Pilatte. Once on the flatter ground of Les Etançons, the Vallon de Bonnepierre can be seen with its long moraine and at the end, the majestic west face of the Ecrins rears its head. The path continues along the left-hand bank of the Etançons and crosses over the Deux Soeurs waterfall. The valley then goes round a bend known as the "Grande Ruine" on account of the landslide that forms the bend. This is where the imposing south face of the Meije makes an appearance, majestic with its Glacier Carré and Grand Pic, with the Refuge du Chatelleret nestling at the foot.
Higher up, clinging to the rock face, the Refuge du Promontoire can be seen.
From 15/05 to 31/10.
Office de Tourisme St Christophe en Oisans-La Bérarde
38520 Saint-Christophe-en-Oisans - La Bérarde
Level bue - easy
D+ : 522 m