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Gran Paradiso trek & summit 2023
Trek and climb the highest peak 4061m completely in Italy
Course overview
This is a classic route and is a great mix of challenging trekking and easy Alpine climbing to reach the highest point completely in Italy. The holiday is over seven days, with five days trekking and climbing.
The vast majority of the trek is in the Gran Paradiso National Park, and so the area is unspoilt by cable cars or development. All the nights on the trek and climb, you stay in Italian mountain refuges, and can indulge in great mountain food. You stay in huts on a half board basis (included) for four nights during the week.
The trekking in the region is remote and unforgiving, so you need to have a good level of trekking fitness. For the ascent of Gran Paradiso no previous climbing experience is required, as you can be taught any skills on the mountain. We provide the safety equipment, specifically crampons, helmet, axe and harness for free.
You can look on this week as tough trekking or easy climbing, and it will appeal to those who enjoy remote areas, but love staying in mountain huts, and there is a real sense of challenge with the prospect of what is probably your first Alpine 4000m peak at the end of the week. For those who do not want a 'climbing' course, yet want to experience remote and easy Alpine summits, this is the holiday for you. If you are looking at more of a 'climbing' course, consider the Alpine Intro 4000m Course, and for details click here.
Dates: these are listed in the column on the right, and they show the live availability from our secure online booking system. When you book online, you receive immediate confirmation, your Alpine Information Booklet, course specific kit list and invoice.
Sunrise in the Gran Paradiso National Park

Daily Course Itinerary

Sun Travel to Chamonix to arrive for the 17:00 check-in followed by and course safety and itinerary briefings. There is time for kit checks or rental of equipment. Briefings are over by 19:00 and the Chamonix hosts accompany the group to pre-dinner drinks to answer any queries. Night in Chamonix.
Mon Today you travel through the Mont Blanc road tunnel into Italy, and after passing Courmayeur, to turn up the Valgrisanche. At its head you trek up to the Mario Bezzi refuge, then in the afternoon a popular option is to visit the Lago di Vuert. Another option is to head to Valsavaranches, and to head from Eaux Rousses or Pont up to one of the refugios above the valley, such as Vittorio Sella. Typically the walking time on the first day is c. 5 hours. Night in mountain hut.
Tue The objective for the day is to reach the Benevolo refuge, and this involves crossing either Col Bassac Dere 3082m or Col Bassac 3155m. If you have energy you can take in the summit of Becca della Traversiere 3334m or Punta Basei 3388m. On a alternative itinerary, you might take in a summit to the North of the Gran Paradiso massif, above the Valnontey and Cogne valleys. There is a huge range of options to select from. Walking time: 6 - 7 hours. Night in mountain hut.
Wed Today there is a choice of routes, such as the remote Col Rosset 3023m, or the ascent of the Punta di Leynir 3240m, before crossing back to the Valgrisanche via a quieter route to the north. Alternatively you might continue to cross Colle Rosset, to descend to Pont via Croce dell'Arolley, again with the possibility of taking in a trekking peak on the way. Walking time: 6 - 7 hours. Night in Valsavaranches or on Gran Paradiso in Chabod / Vittorio Emanuele II rifugios.
Thu Today is deliberately flexible dependant on where you stayed the previous night. As you crossed the valley at Pont, you'd have collected the glacier equipment (crampons, harness, ice axe), and so if high already you might head for one of the satellite peaks of Gran Paradiso, such as Tresenta. This ascent will involve crossing some dry (non snow covered) glaciers, and some roped scrambling near the summit, to help you prepare for the next day. Walking time: c. 6-7 hours. Night in mountain hut.
Fri A very early start to cross the boulder field behind the hut, to reach the glacier, then it's crampons and harnesses on for the ascent of the highest point completely in Italy. On the glacier you are roped up for safety, and it is a long but gradual ascent to Col Montcorve, then steeper to reach the summit ridge. Here it is a short and easy but exposed scramble to reach the summit at 4061m. After the summit celebrations you descend to Pont and return to Chamonix. Walking time: 9 - 10 hours. Night in Chamonix.
Sat The morning is free for you to spend as you wish. Most people opt to explore the Chamonix market for local produce and presents. The accommodation check out is by 10:00.
N.B. ITINERARY NOTES: Where possible we follow itineraries. Mountain adventures are weather and conditions dependant, so occasionaly we are forced to alter the plans. If this is the case, suitable alternatives are offered. Please use this outline itinerary as a guide to the types of route / activity that you will attempt.
Summit celebrations on Gran Paradiso
Course Prices
Standard course
5 full days of guiding, 1:3 max ratio
7 days holiday in total, Sunday-Saturday
Live availability
Click on the planner logo to the right to
see the real time live course availability
Latest Availability
Secure online booking system
Standard Course Inclusions: 1) IFMGA Guide for five days, 2) Chamonix course hosts for logistics & briefings, 3) Self-catered accommodation or hotel in Chamonix (inc. beddings & towels), 4) Up to four nights half board in mountain huts (inc. costs for guides), 5) Pre course information booklet, 6) Equipment discount voucher for UK shops, 7) Free 36 page technical Course Instruction Booklet, 8) Road transport in Chamonix valley, including travel to / from Gran Paradiso region, 9) Evening technical instruction when in Chamonix.
Exclusions: 1) Travel to and from Chamonix, 2) Equipment hire, 3) Personal laundry, telephone calls, lunches, evening meals in valley, & any purchases in mountain huts / hotels / restaurants, 4) Cable cars and mountain uplift (not normally required), 5) Activities insurance, & excess baggage charges.
Group sizes: 2 - 3 people per group. Two people booking together guarantees any date. For this season we have improved the guiding ratio to adapt to climate change, and to improve the safety on the glaciers.
Notes: If you require the loan of any specified free safety kit (crampons, helmet, axe and harness), this must be reserved at least 2 weeks before the course. Extra rental items e.g. B3 boots must be paid for.
Course upgrade options
Many clients on this trip consider upgrading with one or more of the following course additions...
Big 5 Alpine
kit rental
  Upgrade to single from
£300-£500 in addition to
standard course price,
depending on week.
Extend by 2 days after
to ascend one of the
Big 5 Alpine peaks as
an extra summit.
Rent all technical kit
for a week. Full Alpine
Bundle costs you just
£100 for the week.
Saturday night spent in
Chamonix, with choice
of self-guided or guided
on Sunday. From £70.
  Click for details Click for details Click for details Click for details
Standard course accommodation - normally clients are based in self-catered flats (details), so take a look, and decide if it's for you. For more luxury, contact us for quotes in higher standard apartments, or hotels of any standard required. If you have / source your own course accommodation, or we cannot provide an upgrade, the standard course price has a £100pp reduction applied on your invoice.
Stunning views near the Victor Emmanuel hut
Current course availability

Course Dates
Gran Paradiso Trek
  • No Dates Available
NOTE: This trip has scheduled
dates, but if there are three who
are booking together, it can be
operated on any date you wish

Price: £1199 Book online

Alternative courses
Best of Mt Blanc Snowshoe
Winter Mount Toubkal trek
Monte Rosa 4000m peaks

Tour du Mont Blanc trek
Alpine trekking queries...
click here to view page
Combine this with Mt Blanc...
Some people use this week as an alternatve first week to our popular 2 week Mont Blanc Achievements course, as this trip has more nights in huts, to help you acclimatise.
Client feedback

Thank you so much for this holiday, and please pass on my thanks to the guides who made it happen. They were really professional and knowledgable

Hugh C , Gran Paradiso Trek

My partner and I couldn't agree before if we should book on a trekking or a climbing trip, so this was perfect for us with a really nice balance of the two

Delia T , Gran Paradiso Trek

As you know, I was elated to reach the top of Gran Paradiso, and it was the highlight (not to mention high point) of my whole year. Thank you

Tamsin C , Gran Paradiso Trek

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Location data for this trip
The trips all start in Chamonix valley in the French Alps, at the foot of Mont Blanc. It is easily accessed via a 90 minute transfer from Geneva airport.
Time Difference
GMT +1hr
Local Currency
€ Euros
Travel from UK
1hr flight
Course notes
Great guiding ratios where we guarantee a maximum group size of six people on each day of the holiday.
The highest quality and qualifications possible for leaders. See the section below for full details of this.
Three nights half board in mountain huts in the remote and unspoilt Gran Paradiso National Park.
Itinerary flexibility to enable you to take in several peaks during the week.
Suggested reading and kit
View full course equipment list, with examples of kit, click here
Any further questions?
A key part of choosing a company is being able to come and talk about your plans with an experienced course advisor face to face. In an increasingly virtual world, we know our clients value speaking to real people, getting open and honest advice. The vast majority of our clients are British, and our office and outdoor store is based in Windermere in the English Lake District.

Get in contact to arrange a meeting, and come in for a coffee to discuss your course in person with a trip advisor. Many people opt for this service, and it is an integral part of what we offer, as we are keen to ensure that you are prepared as possible, and that you select a course that is suitable for you. It makes it easier and more enjoyable for you and us, if you are on the right trip.

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