Activity: Pyrenees snowshoeing week, Ax-les-Thermes
Duration: 6 days guided snowshoeing - 7 nights accommodation
Explore some fantastic local snowshoeing day routes - we will find the best conditions for you to enjoy these treks including Plateau de Beille, France and a foray into Andorra to visit peak the col de Puymorens and climb Tossa Rodona (2597m). Explore local history and culture, shopping as well as an optional local spa treat. See detailed itinerary for more information.
Dates and prices: £695/person
|SNOW1/17||28 January - 4 February 19||£695||Spaces|
|SNOW2/17||25 February - 1 March 19||£695||Spaces|
|SNOW1/18||27 January - 3 March 19||£715||Spaces|
Group Bookings & minimum numbers: If you have a minimum of 4 people and a maximum of 10 we are happy to offer the trip on dates suitable to you. Guide ratio is maximum 1:10 so larger groups can be catered for if you would like to bring more people.
Fitness Level Needed: It's not necessary to have the fitness level of a mountaineer to snowshoe but you do need a good level of fitness that includes being able to walk comfortably for up to 4 to 5 hours at a steady pace. Ascents and descents are comparable to walking in any rolling mountainous terrain.
Equipment Provided: Snowshoes, poles and transceivers (when required) will be provided.
For clothing bring a good layering system as it can get very warm, but equally quite cold. Essential to your normal walking clothing are: warm hat; gloves; waterproof jacket; waterproof trousers; fleece; sunglasses; sunscreen; water bottle (1 litre minimum); 3-season walking boots; and a 35-50 litre rucksack with the ability to attach snowshoes to the outside.
Optional, but recommended, are: hot water flask, gaters.
What's included: Food and accomodation as in the itinerary, local transport and airport pick up, guiding from an international mountain leader, 1 x spa entry optional.
What's not included: Spa treatments, flights, personal insurance, travel outside the itinerary, snacks and alcoholic beverages, telephone calls.
Day 1 Airport pick-up or overland joining of group at Toulouse
Drive to Ussat les Bains (550m) journey time of around 1 hr 15 minutes.
Day 2 The Plateau de Beille (1800-2000m)
The plateau de Beille is the best cross country ski area in France and the Pyrenees. It is also the ideal place for snow shoeing. Although it is a plateau, the undulating paths offer the perfect opportunity to practice snowshoeing on different angles of slopes. Our day's travel will take us through beautiful pine forests and you'll take in magnificent views of Spain and Andorra.
Day 3 Pic d’Estibat 1400m (or alternative peak of 2000m)
In my opinion this is one of the nicest mountains in the Pyrenees. From the Col de Port (1249m) we will set out on the beautiful snow covered hill side and walk for an hour and a half to the summit. From here we will get one of the best views in the Pyrenees. On a good day you can see all the way to the Pic du Midi in the central Pyrenees. We will loop back and visit the "interpretation" signs to learn more about life in the Ariege and the landscape. The day's shoeshoeing concludes with mulled wine or coffee in the rustic restaurant on the Col.
Day 4 Col de Puymorens
We start at 2000m on the Col de Puymorens, following a wide valley amongst amazing mountain landscape. The objective of the day is to reach the peak of Tossa Rodona (2597m). This is a stunning wilderness walk.
Day 5 Mont Fourcat of Chouilla
From the little village of Mercus we drive up to 1200m. We park at a monument for the Resistance. Then we start our walk through a path that winds through a pine forest. We emerge on to a an open area where we follow the gentle gradient all the way to the summit. The views are incredible on one side you can see the famous Cathar castle of Montsegur and Roquefixade, On the other side you can see the Spanish Pyrenees. We will visit Col de Chioula, as an alternative, where it is possible to walk up through magnificant beech forest onto a high plateau. Optional visit to the thermal spa in Ax-les-Thermes.
Day 6 Peak Tarbesou close to Ascou
Snowshoeing from this high col close to Andorra or climb peak Tarbesou with +677m of ascent
Day 7 Departures
Group transfer to Toulouse Blagnac for your flight
For all our winter snowshoe programmes we reserve the right to change itinerary to enable us to get the best snow and also to reflect the prevailing road access conditions.