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Hiking trail

Les Chapieux/Refuge des Mottets to La Visaille via Col de La Seigne and Rifugio Elisabetta

· 8 reviews · Hiking trail · Rhône-Alpes
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The Col de la Seigne lies high above Refuge des Mottets where you leave France for Italy. Follow the trail as it descends to Rifugio Elisabetta and then to La Visaille, where you can catch a bus to Courmayeur. If you prefer to walk the entire way from Les Chapieux/Refuge des Mottets and not take the bus from La Visaille, please refer to 'Les Chapieux/Refuge des Mottets to Courmayeur via Col de la Seigne and  La Visaille' or 'Les Chapieux/Refuge des Mottets to Courmayeur via Col de la Seigne and Col Checrouit'. However please bear in mind that these two alternatives make for a very long day walking and should only be attempted by the strongest walkers and if you have time on your side. 

difficult
20.1 km
6:35 h
969 m
858 m

If you are staying in Les Chapieux, either walk the 5 km walk along the road to Refuge des Mottets or take the shuttle bus. If you are staying at Refuge des Mottets, you start ascending immediately, tackling the Col de la Seigne (2516m) which lies a steep 750 m above the Refuge des Mottets, and is where you leave France for Italy. Just wait until you see the view! Stupendous! The steep southern side of the Mont Blanc Massif, made up of jagged peaks, hanging glaciers and plunging waterfalls, seems close enough to touch. The trail descends through high alpine meadows to Refuge Elisabetta.

The trail descends through high alpine meadows to Rifugio Elisabetta and into the Val Veni. Here you continue past the snout of the huge Glacier du Miage to Visaille, where you catch the shuttle bus into Courmayeur.

outdooractive.com User
Author
Sarah Smith
Updated: January 08, 2020

Difficulty
difficult
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
2509 m
Lowest point
1551 m

Safety information

Weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains - always be prepared and carry appropriate clothing; warm as well as waterproof layers, hat and gloves etc. Please see your information pack for a detailed packing list.

Tips, hints and links

The walk is used on the following itineraries: WFSTMBCC, WFSTMBH1, WFSTMBHC, WFSTMBC2, WFSTMBCH, WFSTMBR2

 

Start

Les Chapieux or Refuge des Mottets (1559 m)
Coordinates:
Geographic
45.696721, 6.733712
UTM
32T 323560 5062849

Destination

La Visaille

Turn-by-turn directions

These maps and routes are designed to be used in conjunction with the TMB guidebook and IGN maps. 

TMB Route: La Ville des Glaciers - Col de la Seigne - val Vény – Refugio Elisabetta - col Chécroui (1956 m)

Distance: 20 km

Duration: 6.5 – 7.5 hrs

Ascent / Descent: 1400m / 900 m

Map: IGN 3531 ET ST-GERVAIS

Guidebook: Page 58: STAGE 3: Les Chapieux – Col de la Seigne – Rifugio Elisabetta (starting from la Ville des Glaciers on page 61) Page 64: STAGE 4: Rifugio Elisabetta – Courmayeur (as far as page 69 col Chécroui)

Notes:  The above distances are from Les Chapieux. If you decide to take the shuttle bus from Les Chapieux (which we recommend), or you are staying at Refuge des Mottets, then take about 5km off the above distance. 

Keep a close eye out for the turn after Lac Combal in the Val Veni, as it is easy to miss. (Page 67)

If you are staying in Courmayeur we highly recommend taking the “TMB Bad Weather Option: val Veni to Courmayeur” as described on page 67 and the bus from La Visaille. 

Transport: Shuttle bus from Les Chapieux to Les Mottets

The shuttle from Les Chapieux to Mottets operates from approx. beginning of July to the end of August. Specific timetables are not available until the start of the Summer season. For more information, please visit the following website closer to the time of departure:

https://en.lesarcs.com/move-around/bourg-saint-maurice.html 

 In June & September, when the shuttle is not operating, you should plan on walking. Alternatively, Taxi Besson is now offering a shuttle service between Les Chapieux and Les Mottets, by reservation. Call them the night before or ask your accommodation to do this. Places are limited and payment is direct to the driver: Taxi Besson: http://www.taxi-montblanc.com/  Tel : +0033450936207

Bus from La Visaille to Courmayeur

From the beginning of July until the beginning of September, a bus operates between La Visaille and Courmayeur.

Buses leave about every hour and operate approximately between 8:00 and 21:00. You can purchase a ticket from the driver which will cost a few euros.

Timetables are available at the beginning of the summer season and can be found here: http://www.savda.it/ 

 Outwith the timetabled dates, the dial-a-bus service ‘Allo Bus’ will operate, the “Allo Bus” will replace the regular public transportation buses in Courmayeur. Please note that this is an “on call” bus and you will need to call this local number to make a reservation: +39 (0) 165 1854653 For more info please have a look here:

 http://www.savda.it/it/55/alla-bus-courmayeur/ 

Note


all notes on protected areas

Arrival by train, car, foot or bike


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Reviews

4.6
(8)
Sara Merchant
August 13, 2019 · Community
Beautiful view of the valley when descending.
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Tuesday, August 13, 2019 8:36:05 AM
Photo: Sara Merchant, Community
Tuesday, August 13, 2019 8:46:57 AM
Photo: Sara Merchant, Community
Sam Fromartz
August 05, 2019 · Community
The climb up from Refuge de Mottets is steep, so go slow. But the view from the top is spectacular, then it's downhill to Refugio Elisabetta and from there to the bus. I think this was one of the most beautiful hikes we did on the TMB. Make sure to stop by the museum/former customs station just 10 minutes down from the col de la seigne.
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Photo: Sam Fromartz, Community
Beth Russell
July 23, 2019 · Community
France- Italy border
Photo: Beth Russell, Community
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Photos from others

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Reviews
Difficulty
difficult
Distance
20.1 km
Duration
6:35h
Ascent
969 m
Descent
858 m

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