Queryas 3000 Metre Summits Trek

A high-level Alpine trek for lovers of wild places




From $1,380 Land only

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Holiday Overview


  • Views of dominating spire of Monte Viso from Pain du Sucre
  • The wooden chalets of Fonts de Cervieres
  • A tough 6-day trekking holiday in a hidden corner of France
  • Fully supported with luggage transferred to gites each evening

Sandwiched between Briancon and the Italian border, the remote Alpine region of Queyras offers exceptional trekking with a distinctly 'off-the-beaten-track' feel. Based very loosely on the Tour of Queyras circuit (GR58), this exciting new treking holiday has been modified to include the very best hikes in the area. From a succession of charming refuges and gites, we climb around 1000 metres each day to reach the high ground, before continuing to such rocky summits as Rocca Bianca (3059m), Pain du Sucre (3208m) and Grand Glaiza (3293m). Throughout the holiday, there are fantastic views, north to the snow-capped Ecrins and Vanoise massifs and south to the dominating spire of Monte Viso (3841m). Seeking out the quietest areas, we can enjoy our picnic lunches in the company of marmots, chamois and golden eagles. The quality of the hiking in this hidden corner of the French Alps is a revelation!

Is this holiday for you?

This is a superb weeks walking holiday in a hidden corner of the Alps. The trip loosely follows the route of the GR58, the Tour of Queyras long distance walk, which itself has a number of variants. However, we also make every attempt to get away from the main route, to follow rocky ridges and to reach a number of 3000 metre peaks. We follow way-marked footpaths for most of the route, but also find ourselves on unmarked trails, loose scree and easy scrambling terrain. Almost every day we are faced with a considerable ascent (between 1000 and 1500 metres) from a valley base, to reach the upper slopes. This is a tough trek, with 6 long days - expect to be out for 8 to 10 hours per day, including stops. 

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • A single transfer is provided from Turin Airport to the group hotel in Briancon.
  • Drive to Basse-Rua and walk via the Pic d'Escreins (2734m) to Ceillac.
  • Walk to the Col des Estronques (2651m) and the Pointe des Marcelettes (2900m). Overnight in Le Chalp.
  • Drive, then hike to Rocca Bianca (3059m) and Pic de Caramantran. Descend to the Refuge Agnel.
  • Ascend Pain de Sucre (3208m), then descend beside Lac Foreant and continue downvalley to Abries.
  • Hike up the Guil Valley to Pic du Malrif and Grand Glaiza (3293m). Descend to the hamlet of Les Fonts.
  • Walk via the Col de Chaude-Maison to the top of L'Escalinade (3087m). Descend and return to Briancon.
  • Departure day. A single transfer to Turin Airport is provided.
Sun 19 Jun - Sun 26 Jun Code QST /01/16/ Adult$1,380 Status Available Book now
Sun 21 Aug - Sun 28 Aug Code QST /02/16/ Adult$1,380 Status Guaranteed Book now
Sun 11 Sep - Sun 18 Sep Code QST /03/16/ Adult$1,380 Status Available Book now
We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis, joining at the group hotel in Briancon. The nearest airport is Turin and we have included within the Land Only package cost a single transfer from and back to this airport. Please refer to Joining Arrangements and Transfers in the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

We have set up the transfers to work with the Ryanair flights from London Stansted. Click on the 'Flights information' link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively if you would prefer to book a 'flight inclusive package' using scheduled airlines from the UK please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive you will benefit from full financial protection.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • peaks
  • trip direction
  • transfer
  • trek

Holiday Itinerary

  • A single transfer is provided from Turin Airport to the group hotel in Briancon.

    A single transfer is provided from Turin Airport to the group hotel in Briancon. KE Land Only package services begin with the night's accommodation at the hotel.

    • Accommodation Hotel

  • Drive to Basse-Rua and walk via the Pic d'Escreins (2734m) to Ceillac.

    After breakfast, we are met by our English-speaking tour guide or 'accompagnateur' and our support vehicles. We then drive south to Guillestre and along an unsurfaced road into the valley of the Rif Bel Stream. We disembark close to the Basse Rua Refuge (1760m) and the few derelict houses and intact chapel of Alta Rua. Our main bags will be transported from here to our next overnight stop at Ceillac. Meanwhile, we set off through pine forest on a marked path, zig-zagging up above the trees and finally to the summit of an open, rocky peak, the Pic d'Escreins (2734m). There are great views to the north-west of the Ecrins peaks - Barre des Ecrins, Pelvoux and Meije. After a leisurely lunch, we have the option of following the rocky Crete de Panestrelle or taking a slightly easier descent route into the small valley of Pelouses, where we find a streamside shepherd's hut and the chance to bathe our feet. We then cross steep, forested slopes on the south side of the Cristillan Valley, traversing around on scant trails and gaining quite a lot of height, before dropping down steeply to the village of Ceillac, with its distinctive church in the middle of a corn field. Overnight in a hotel.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1330m

    • Distance 15km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1440m

    • Time 8 - 9 hrs walking

  • Walk to the Col des Estronques (2651m) and the Pointe des Marcelettes (2900m). Overnight in Le Chalp.

    Our walk today starts out through the village of Ceillac, which has several 'carpenters' crosses' and another distinctive church or bell-tower. We are now following the GR58, as we ascend the upper valley of the Cristillan torrent, which bears signs of avalanche damage, with broken trees and lots of debris in the bed of the stream. We may well see other trekkers, as we make the long and zig-zagging pull up to the Col des Estronques (2651m). From the pass (leaving the GR), we head east along the Crete de la Tete and the Crete de la Blavette to the Pointe des Marcelettes (2909m). Here, is a good place to stop for lunch overlooking the valley of the Aigue Blanche and the village of St. Veran, before dropping down steeply to the Pic Cascavallier (2576m). Traversing beneath this, we reach a grassy ridge (where marmots play) high above the village and then drop down through a forest to finally reach the valley floor. A trail through flower-filled meadows then leads down to the very pleasant gite 'La Baita du Loup' in Le Chalp.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 1410m

    • Distance 17km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1280m

    • Time 8 - 9 hrs walking

  • Drive, then hike to Rocca Bianca (3059m) and Pic de Caramantran. Descend to the Refuge Agnel.

    After breakfast, we use our support vehicles and a local shuttle bus to take us (on a rough track) to the head of the valley. Following the continuation of this track towards a prominent chapel, we turn off beside a stream and make directly for a rocky headwall, below which is situated the Refuge de la Blanche (2499m), a great place to stop for coffee. The headwall above forms the frontier with Italy and the most direct crossing point is at the Col Blanchet. We follow the path towards this pass, then divert across boulders and scree to make an ascent of Rocca Bianca (3059m), a rocky peak north of the pass which involves easy scrambling to reach the summit cross. There are superb views of the impressively spiky Tete des Toillies (3175m) south of the pass. From here, our route traverses across to the Pic de Caramantran (3025m) and then descends to the Col de Chamoussiere (2884m). Great views from the former of Le Pain de Sucre and of Monte Viso. We drop down from the pass and traverse around to the Refuge Agnel (2580m).

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1110m

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 770m

    • Time 7 - 8 hrs walking

  • Ascend Pain de Sucre (3208m), then descend beside Lac Foreant and continue downvalley to Abries.

    Today's route follows the GR58 across the Col Vieux (2806m) and pleasantly down the Bouchouse Stream to L'Echalp. After a steady early hike to the col in an hour, we set out to include the ascent of the very prominent Pain de Sucre (3208m). This is basically a long rocky ridge climb at an angle of about 30 degrees. The approach follows a cairned trail to a summit that overhangs a huge rocky bowl, with Pic d'Asti directly opposite and Monte Viso in the near distance. Look out for bouquetains (wild goats) and climbers on the steep rock walls of Pic Asti. We then descend to the pass and then continue to loose height to Lac Foreant, a good place to have lunch. Fishermen can often be seen here, in pursuit of a species of char. A long descent, through pleasant Alpine scenery, takes us to L'Echalp, where we meet a local transfer bus for the 10 minute journey down the valley to our gite in Abries. Abries is a pleasant mountain village with shops and bars, for those in need of refreshment.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 700m

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1530m

    • Time 7 - 8 hrs walking

  • Hike up the Guil Valley to Pic du Malrif and Grand Glaiza (3293m). Descend to the hamlet of Les Fonts.

    There are a couple of options from Abries, the first of which involves transferring to le Roux and hiking up to the Col des Thures (variant of the GR58). Alternatively, we can hike directly from the gite (on the main GR58), traversing high above the Guil Valley and passing the old hamlet of le Malrif (in the process of being rebuilt). Higher, there is a steep zig-zag climb across flower meadows to reach le Grand Laus, the biggest of the Malrif Lakes and an impressive place. A steep 300 metre climb then leads up to the Pic du Malrif (2906m), a great place to stop for lunch with excellent views, including Monte Viso. From here, we take a diversion away from the main trail, heading north-east along the Crete aux Eaux Pendantes to the high point of the trip at Grand Glaiza (3293m). Again, this is on the Italian border and there are views northwards into that country. Descending directly across scree (and possibly snow early in the season) we rejoin the valley trail and follow the Pierre Rouge Stream down to the collection of old (and renovated) wooden houses at Les Fonts (2040m). Our overnight accommodation is in a pleasant gite.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 1750m

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1270m

    • Time 8 - 9 hrs walking

  • Walk via the Col de Chaude-Maison to the top of L'Escalinade (3087m). Descend and return to Briancon.

    Today, we follow the GR58 for just half an hour, with Pic de Rochebrune (3320m) ahead of us, before turning off westwards on a scant trail towards the Col des Marsailles (2601m). Great views of small and larger (emerald colour) lakes as we traverse around from this col and make a steep ascent to the Col de Chaude Maison (2825m). From here, a ridge-line heads towards Rochebrune and we followe this over the top of Turge de la Suffie (3024m) to l'Escalinade (3087m), with great views now of Rochebrune. Look out for the rare aromatic herb - genepi, used to flavour a strong local spirit. Back to the col, we make a steep descent across scree and Alpine meadow to a bergerie, from where an abandoned forest road takes us down to the Bletonnet Stream. A pleasant hike then leads to Le Laus, where we meet our transport for the 30 minute drive back to Briancon and our hotel.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1200m

    • Meals bl

    • Descent 1490m

    • Time 7 hrs walking

  • Departure day. A single transfer to Turin Airport is provided.

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. A single early morning transfer to Turin Airport is provided.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • A single group transfer from Turin Airport on Day 1 and back to Turin Airport on Day 8
  • An experienced English-speaking local tour leader
  • All accommodation as described
  • Meals as detailed in the Meal Plan
  • All road transport required by the itinerary
  • Baggage transfers between each overnight stop

  • Travel insurance
  • Airport transfers other than group transfers
  • Some meals as detailed in the Meal Plan
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

Included in the Land Only cost of the trip, we provide a single group transfer in each direction between Turin Airport and the group hotel in Briancon. These transfers are timed to the arrival and departure of the Ryanair flight from/to London, Stansted Airport. Anyone may use these transfers regardless of their flights but if you are arriving on a flight other than Ryanair from Stansted and wish to make use of the group transfer, you must inform the KE office. The group transfer will normally depart from Turin Airport in the late morning of Day 1 and takes an hour and a half to reach Briancon. The return transfer to Turin Airport will leave the group hotel in the early morning of Day 8 and arrive at the airport at approximately 8.30.

It is also possible to travel direct to Briancon on the train from London. Take the Eurostar train from London Saint Pancras to Paris Gare du Nord. Then, take the overnight (sleeper) train from Paris Gare d'Austerlitz to Briancon, which arrives at breakfast time. For information about train travel between the UK and Briancon, check out www.seat61.com

Contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your joining instructions 3 to 4 weeks prior to departure. If you are driving to Briancon we will provide route details and directions to the group hotel.

After breakfast at our overnight accommodation, we try to get a reasonably early start. We will carry a packed lunch and stop off for a picnic at a scenic spot along the day’s route. We will generally walk for around four hours in the morning and for three to four hours in the afternoon. We aim to reach our next stop by late afternoon, giving us time to rest for a couple of hours before dinner is served. The pace of the walking is not too fast, as the French 'accompagnateurs' usually work to a rate of ascent of approximately 300 metres per hour. This allows us plenty of time to stop to admire the views and to take photographs.

During this trip, the group will spend 2 nights at a small hotel in Briancon. The accommodation here is twin-sharing with en-suite facilities. Once on trek, we have 4 nights in gites and 1 night at the Refuge Agnel. Accommodation for these 5 nights is generally in non-segregated dormitory style rooms with bunk beds and shared facilities.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

Continental breakfasts are provided - cereals, fruit juice, tea and coffee, bread and a variety of spreads including jam, honey and Nutella, for example. Each day at breakfast, the tour leader will lay out the items that will make up the group's packed lunches - bread, cheese, sliced ham, tinned tuna, sausage, salad, fruit. For each day of the trip there will also be a couple of small high-sugar 'energy food' items provided for each group member. At each of the gites and at the mountain refuge, a full 3-course dinner will be served, usually a soup dish, followed by some wholesome local speciality and a desert.

While staying in gites and the mountain refuge, all meals (breakfast, dinner and packed lunches) are included in the holiday price. In Briancon where there is a wide range of dining options, we have left the choice and budget for dinner to you and on these two nights evening meals are not included in the holiday price.

150 euros will easily cover all personal expenses including the 2 evening meals in Briancon. There are cash point facilities in Briancon.

The group will be accompanied by an experienced and qualified, English-speaking leader

We ask you to restrict your luggage to a single trek bag and a small daypack of around 30 - 40 litres. Your main trek bag will be carried between overnight stops in the support vehicles. There is no weight restriction as such other than that imposed by your international carrier.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to moderately high altitude. During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 2500 metres. Most people will have no difficulty with this level of altitude but before coming on the holiday, we recommend you read the advice on trekking at altitude on our website which can be viewed via the link below. You can also talk to one of our trekking experts if you have any concerns about altitude. www.keadventure.com/page/altitude.html

A passport with 3 months remaining validity is required. Passport holders from the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, or any EU countries do not require a visa. Other nationalities should check with the respective consulate in their own country.

Whilst we keep our information up to date, you should be advised that visa requirements can change. It is recommended that you contact the relevant commission in case of recent amendments.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots
  • Gaiters
  • Socks
  • Underwear
  • Trekking trousers / pants
  • Lightweight waterproof overtrousers / rain pants
  • Long johns (thermal underwear)
  • Thermal baselayer shirts (1 short sleeve, 1 long sleeve)
  • Lightweight trekking shirts (not cotton)
  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Warm fleece gloves or mittens
  • Warm hat
  • Sunhat
  • Eyewear – sunglasses
  • Ear plugs (especially if you are not the one snoring)
  • Daypack 30 - 40 litres
  • Headtorch / headlamp with spare batteries
  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)
  • Water bottles 1 litre / 1 quart (x2)
  • Sheet sleeping bag or sleeping bag liner
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Travel towel
  • Antibacterial hand wash
  • Basic First Aid Kit including: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters (band-aids) and blister treatment, insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).
  • Small Tupperware or similar container with lid (approx 1 Litre capacity) for lunch salads.
  • Spoon and penknife

The following items are optional:

  • Spare laces
  • Shorts
  • Trekking poles
  • Camera and batteries
  • Travel clothes
  • Small padlock to lock trek bag


A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:


It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking trip getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. We would suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime leading up to your trip. Before departure, we suggest that you try to fit in a number of long walks in hilly country.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

Generally, the temperatures that we can expect to encounter during the day will be reasonably warm, in the range 18 to 28 degrees centigrade. At night in the valleys we can expect the temperature to drop to between 10 and 15 degrees centigrade. The weather is usually stable at this time of year, but mountainous areas do generate their own weather systems and occasional rain and even stormy weather cannot be ruled out.

Most people in this area speak some English. However we do recommend you try to learn some simple French phrases and greetings, as attempts to speak the local language will always be appreciated.

Tour of the Queyras. Alan Castle. (Cicerone)

IGN Serie Bleue Topographic Survey 1:25,000 Scale

The French survey's excellent detailed topographic map series. For full coverage of this route you need 3 sheets: Guillestre (sheet. 3537 ET). Mont Viso (sheet. 3637 OT). Briancon (sheet 3536 OT)

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