The Col is very high, with the average altitude of the Alps approximately 1100m, there is a varied array of plants, the most hardy, spiked trees and bushes becoming more sparse above 2500m, the approximate height of the Grand Col Ferret.
A ‘Col’ is an alternative name for a mountain pass or low point in a ridge between two formidable summits. Cols have been important throughout history – used for transportation, trade and strategic places for the military, using the mountains as vantage points, providing advantage and hiding places if necessary. The French Alps and their natural mountain passes were of particular wartime importance when the Allies of France fought the Italian Front.
During your Salamander Adventures tour of Mont Blanc, your party will reach the town of La Fouly before embarking on the steep and awesome hike across the Grand Col Ferret, its geographical location straddling the Swiss and Italian border. Salamander Adventures sees the party reach the area on day six of the eleven day tour. Whether booking your adventure with fully experienced guides or by following self guided maps, the tour has been carefully planned to helping you and your group challenge and enjoy every step of the way. Waking up in La Fouly on the sixth day enables us easy access to pass through the Grand Col Ferret – it is a truly dramatic vantage point that will not be forgotten. Its high elevation giving us the most incredible view of Les Grandes Jorasses and the Italian face of Mont Blanc itself before leading us down to the village of La Palud for rest day, half way through the 165k trail.
The Grand Col Ferret is a very high mountain pass, with an elevation of up to 2537m.
Making up the first pass and valley-shape in the famous Valle d’Aosta, the pass runs underneath the Pre de Bar Glacier, running parallel is a freshwater stream that leads to La Palud, the village destination waiting for us on our rest day in beautiful Italy. The Col has notably attracted settlements over the years due to the easier accessibility, and the municipality of Courmayeur is also home to the nearby villages of Arnouvaz and Planpincieux. The descent along the Grand Col is steep and rapid, enabling the group to reach La Palud before nighttime beckons, its half-way point on the trip welcoming the group with a wide choice of restaurants and places to relax and explore with some well earned downtime. Your hotel for the night will provide ample, delicious food and drink, however the village of La Palud and nearby Courmayeur is a chic place with lots going on to spend your time regenerating and relaxing for the second part of the tour.
The considerable detail and thoughtful planning taken by Salamander Adventures make their Tour du Mont Blanc the very best in guided and self-guided trails of the moment. Salamander Adventures run their guided tours over the summer months and choose the best sites to sleep and while accessing the best possible views of the Mont Blanc tour; all the while tending to avoid busy, tourist heavy destinations when there are beautiful alternatives nearby.
The Grand Col Ferret is an important milestone and landmark to trek through as part of the Mont Blanc Tour. For more information about this area and the Valle d’Aosta, please check out