Peaks and Ridges
Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 January 2013 09:21
The Eastern Pyrenees near Andorra is one of France's best kept secrets. It is the widest part of the mountain range and has been described as one of Europe's true wildernesses. The mountains are rugged, the lakes crystal clear and the wildlife relatively abundant.
This unique trekking holiday combines traditional backpacking (carrying your gear) with 'peak bagging' (taking in summits with small day sack) - This holiday itinerary gives us the best of both worlds. The backpacking takes us into the heart of the wild mountains, where we stay in comfortable mountain refuges in stunning locations. Once installed, we explore the peaks and ridges around the Refuge without the burden of our overnight kit. Staying high in the refuges at 2100m gives us the added advantage that the 2900m peaks are within easy reach, leading to more time on ridges, or even several peaks during the day with a few optional easy scrambles. This walking holiday has to be the perfect way to explore the 'real' Pyrenees!
The week is lead by James Thompson a qualified International Mountain Leader (IML) who has made his home in the Pyrenees. He and is passionate about the region, its wildlife, forests and peaks.
Is this walking holiday for me?
This is a moderately strenuous walking holiday aimed at people who enjoy staying in Mountain Refuges. If you have not stayed in Mountain Refuges before, this trip is a fairly good introduction, as they are both comfortable and modern with hot showers (extra cost). If the idea of staying in a dormitory with other people does not appeal to you then please do not book this holiday!
There are 3.5 days of light backing when you will need to carry all your own gear with you, however the refuges provide blankets so your rucksack should not need to weigh more than 10kg . On these days the distances are fairly short and we tend to stick to marked paths.
On the other 2.5 days we will carry light bags enabling us to travel faster and further. On these days we will be walking on extended sections without paths and will be crossing boulder fields, scree slopes, snow patches and some places where easy hands on scrambling is required. Naturally, tips on how best to cross this difficult ground will be given. As we are traveling on ridges, there is an element of exposure on this holiday (similar to Striding Edge in the British Lake District), however it is generally possible avoid this exposure (if you want to)! Every day there will be between 800 and 1450m of ascent.
It is important to us that you book the right walking holiday, so please do contact us with any questions.
2012 Dates and Prices
Sun 18 Aug - Sun 25 Aug 2013 (Trip code TFR M33)
Costs: £650, starting at Toulouse Airport or the Hotel Terminus in Ax-les-Thermes.
Accommodation in the Hotel Terminus (fist and last nights) is on a twin share basis however single room is possible for a supplement of £50 - let us know on booking. In the Refuges and Gite d'Etape we will be in mixed gender dormitories of 4 to 8 (possibily 16 in one refuge)
Flights are not included but can be picked up very cheaply if booked in advance. Allow about £50 for drinks and the meals not included (outlined below). There are no other local payments or hidden costs. Please note that we offer a 5% discount if you book more than 3 months before the departure date. We also offer group and loyalty discounts.
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This price includes:
6 days guided walks with a Qualified International Mountain Leader. Airport Transfers (specified times only). 2 nights in a 2* hotel, 1 night in Gite D'Etapes and 4 nights in Mountain Refuges. 6 evening meals, 7 breakfasts, 6 picnic lunches.