6th stage of the TMB Tour du Mont Blanc

A Orsières walk posted on 11/07/11 by christophe85. Update : 23/09/16

This walk is part of the trek on Tue 28 Feb 2012 16:40:56 CET.

6th stage of the Mont Blanc tour: from the Relais d'Arpette to the Forclaz Pass via la Fenêtre d'Arpette.

Technical sheet
Calculated time Calculated time: 6h40[?]
Distance Distance : 12.47km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 1302m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 1271m
Highest point Highest point : 2660m
Lowest point Lowest point : 1492m
Difficult Difficulty : Difficult
Back to starting point Back to starting point : No
Walking Walking
Areas Areas : Alps, Mont-Blanc (Massif)
Location Location : Orsières
Starting point Starting point : N 46.031598° / E 7.106874°
Arrival Arrival : N 46.057776° / E 7.001402°
Map IGN Map (Click to buy) : Ref. 3630OTR


Starting from the Relais d'Arpette (1), take the path on the right-hand side. Go past Arpette village (after the bridge) then leave the large path taking the trail heading to the right. Go along a small stream in a rural setting, leaving it behind a bit further along.
The track gradually rises, you'll get to a ledge after having crossed the stream. You'll reach Arpette's scree (approximately 2000 m). Follow the waymarks. The track keeps rising until the path divides in two, take a right, following the direction indicated on the rock (2): 'Fenêtre d'Arpette'.
The slope gets slightly steeper, but without difficulty along the mountainside. You then reach a huge scree. There's no particular issue with orientation, just keep following the paint markings on the rocks. However, put your hiking pole aside, you're better off using your hands at this point. Cross over the firn reaching the final climb: you're facing a vertical grassed over wall, you get to the top using the trail/trails that wind along the wall. That's when you reach Fenêtre d'Arpette (3).
Once you're at Fenêtre d'Arpette, you'll be overlooking Trient glacier and its superb view.
Start a long trip downhill taking the path to the right, a rocky path at first.
Not a dangerous track but challenging due to its length, the fairly steep slope goes down towards Trient stream which you can spot a bit further down.
Pass by Vésevey (4) (a building undergoing restoration in 2011).
The descent finally comes to an end when you reach the stream, following it on the right bank. You then go through a coniferous forest leading to the Prise de Bisse building (5) (refreshment bar).
From there, follow the track along the irrigation canal (bisse) that remains at the same altitude (don't cross the Trient stream), stay on this track (ignore the trails that head down to the valley). After an hour or so, you'll reach the Forclaz Pass (Col de la Forclaz) (6), and a camp site.

Waypoints :
D : km 0 - alt. km 0
1 : km 1.3 - alt. km 1.3 - Relais d'Arpette
2 : km 4.39 - alt. km 4.39 - Crossing near Fenêtre d'Arpette
3 : km 5.91 - alt. km 5.91 - Fenêtre d'Arpette
4 : km 7.33 - alt. km 7.33 - Vesevey
5 : km 9.26 - alt. km 9.26 - Prise de la Bisse
6 : km 12.42 - alt. km 12.42 - Col de la Forclaz (Valais)
A : km 12.47 - alt. km 12.47

Useful Information

Col de la Forclaz camp site (shower included) and a small grocery for supplies.

We advise taking IGN maps with you on this walk. Click here to buy : 3630OTR.

Click here to see how to reach the starting point.

Hikideas and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

Download sheet and map

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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.