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The Chamonix Valley offers a huge variety of hikes and walks. The Lac Blanc mountain hut (2,525m), situated on the south-eastern slopes beside a small lake, is a great destination for a September family hike. Take a cable car ride up, follow the contour-hugging trail along the Grand-Blacon Sud for stunning mountain scenery, and enjoy a delicious lunch at the hut. Here’s a tip on how to avoid the crowds of high season and take advantage of cable cars before they close on the 15th of September!

The steep, forested slopes of the Chamonix valley are challenging, but a good idea to help you on your way is gaining 1,500m with a cable car and chairlift. Once at the top, the hike to Lac Blanc is part of the famous Tour du Mont Blanc trail, along a beautiful ridge offering stunning views of the Mont Blanc, the Mer de Glace and the Argentiere and Le Tour glaciers.

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The soaring peaks you look up at along the trail form part of a protected nature reserve called the Aiguilles Rouges, named for the reddish hue of the rocks. If you are lucky, you might even spot ibex near the mountain hut. (Note that dogs are not allowed in the reserve).

To get there, take the cable car from Planpraz to Flégère, and from there the Index chairlift. From the top, follow the well-signed trail to Lac Blanc (about 1.5 hours). We opted to take the return trail to the Flégère cable car, making a nice circuit (about 2 hours). You can download a useful overview summer map (but always bring a proper topographical map of the area with you).

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The lifts are open every day until September 15th. The first departure is at 8:15am, and the last return from La Flégère at 5pm, from Index at 4:45pm (more information on summer lifts in Chamonix). Tip: take the ‘Rando/Alpi’ rate (22€ for adults and 18,70€ for kids 4-15 years old). Check the weather online.

fraiche air is an outdoor club that organises outings to explore our beautiful surroundings in the Jura and Alps. Check out our calendar of activities and give us a try! On the Jeune Genevois holiday (Thursday 5 September 2013) we’ll be doing a great Family Hike in Gruyere area with a visit to a chocolate factory!

Bio

yvettebiophoto new3Yvette Evers grew up camping, hiking and skiing in the Swiss Alps. A Canadian with Dutch roots, her career in international development allowed her to explore mountain areas around the world. Since moving to the Geneva area in 2009 with her husband and two teenage daughters, she also works as a sustainability consultant specialising in tourism.

Yvette is the founder of ‘fraiche air’ - an outdoor club that fills a gap in the market for global locals who are looking for information about outdoor recreation and tourism in English. The outings in small groups provide a wonderful opportunity to discover new activities and join an active community of like-minded sporty friends – powerwalks, hiking, snowshoeing, ski-touring, and family days.