Excursions with the snowshoes in Rhêmes Valley

The wood mirror

Destination: Pelaud small lakes (m 1870) in the Rhêmes Valley
altitudem 147
Time on the climb: 1.30 ore
Starting point:  Chanavey (Rhêmes Notre Dame), Hotel Boule de Neige

A small excursion starts from Chanavey, crossing the bridge on the torrent and follows for long stretches the bottom track that should never be trodden. Many different environments are crossed, allowing you to observe some characteristic corners: the wood of larches and alders along the brook, the villages of Oreiller and Bruil, now almost entirely restructured respecting the typical mountain architecture, the park guards valley headquarters in Bruil. Beyond Bruil the path continues following the Dora of Rhemes, in all its wonderful viability of mountain torrent. Here it meets a staircase that overcomes a rocky wall and arrives first of all in Chaudanne and then, skirting the village, in the Pellaud area, with its ponds inhabited by trouts and red frogs, dipped in a secluded and bright grove ...

The larches and spruces that encircle the lake bottom, are also the protectors and undisputed guardians for centuries: the pond could not exist if there wasn't that forest that, with his shadow, allows life to frogs and trouts that need cold waters. Their branches, moreover, give hospitality to red squirrels, chickadees, woodpeckers, crossbills and martens. The upper lake is the oldest hydro-power unit in the Valley, that still has the construction date engraved on the lintel.

Back from the outward path or through the street, closed to the traffic and covered with snow till the chief town entrance.. on the way will be easy to sight animals placed in the east-facing slope, in spring it allows the melting of snow and, in between Chanavey and Bruil, it shows vertical rock areas often taken by ibex.

Not to be missed:
- Gran Paradiso visitors centre in Rhêmes Notre Dame
- Oreiller, Bruil, Chaudanne, Pont  e Pellaud villages
- dairy in Bruil
- hoven and mill in Chaudanne
- old electrical box in Pellaud

Time signes

Destination: Alpeggi dell'Entrelor (m 2142) in Rhêmes Valley
Altitude: m 420
time on the climb: 2 h
Startng point: square of Rhêmes Notre Dame, in front of the church

The geography manuals could use the Entrelor valley as clear example of glacial treshold or step, evidence of the geological history of the valley, carved out from quaternary glaciers. In front of the city hall of Rhemes Notre Dame take a road that enters the village and reaches the bridge over the Dora of Rhemes.

Passing through the statue dedicated to the bearded vulture, in front of the Park guards headquarter, continuing on the right side ultil you reach the bottom track. Continuing along the torrent for a few meters to take the farm road that goes left. Few hairpin afterwards you reach the Pré du bois alp, recently refurbished and left the bottom track on the right, you enter in the forest, following the summer path. The path climbs up to find an irrigation canal and continues on the right plan. Suddenly, before meeting a rock that appears to block the path, turn to the left, up a steep path that fortunately after about 50 m altitude difference, reaches the junction of a path that climbs up from the village of Broillat. Still going up, make several switchbacks leaving the forest from time to time– be careful in case of heavy snow- in order to reach a wooden cross at the mouth of the Valley. The view is exciting and extends from the Entrelor top to Granta Parey and Grande Rousse, the highest of the valley with its 3607 m. This giant geological “step” makes a sort of jump from the Valley of Entrelor until the underlying Valley facing north, and allows a colonization of conifers such as fir, larch and stone pine, with a rich understory in blueberry, bearberry and rhododendron. This vegetation gives the opportunity to live to some animals that prefer the North facing slopes, such as the black grouse, Nutcracker, mountain hares. With less than 50 m high you reach the Alp Entrelor. Back from the outward path or at the junction overmentioned towards Broillat, Chaudanne and Pellaud and hence to the starting point.

Not to be missed:
- Bruil village (latteria)
- experimental summer pasture Entrelor

In order to appreciate the natural beauty of the Park with the snowshoes let the official guide accompany you (see the section Park Interpreters)

Attention please: always verify, before you leave for an excursion, the nivo regional meteorological bulletins (very useful the Bollettino Aineva Neve e valanghe), since the areas may be subject to avalanche hazards phenomena. For more information about security visit the website of the Fondazione Montagna Sicura.