Tour du Grand Galibier via the Col de la Ponsonnière - VTTAE itinerary


Conquer part of the legendary Ultra Raid de la Meije race. This high-flying route will take you past high altitude lakes and high mountain landscapes. Mythical passes and exceptional terrain await you.

Benefits of this itinerary: high altitude lakes, view of the Meije glacier, passage along the old Galibier route, arrival at the top of the Col du Galibier.

Unless you're in excellent physical condition, we strongly recommend that you bring two batteries for your bike.

Medium physical difficulty due to its length and difference in altitude, the outward journey is all uphill.


- The routes you take are your own responsibility. You must choose a route adapted to your physical and technical capacity. If in doubt, do not hesitate to contact mountain professionals.

- Find out about the weather conditions before your departure.

- Be properly equipped to practice hiking in complete safety and deal with the vagaries of the weather.

Tell someone if you are leaving alone and prefer a morning departure so as not to be surprised by the night.

Guidebook with maps/step-by-step

Departure - From the tourist office, head up Rue des Grandes Alpes towards the hamlet of Les Verneys 1 - Once you've crossed the bridge, walk along the parking lot to take the footbridge on the left of the main road to the "Vitta Vittel" fitness trail 2 - At the equestrian center, continue straight ahead to pass the Les Verneys chairlift 3 - Continue straight ahead on the path and then the D902 road along the river towards Col du Galibier and Plan Lachat. At Ferme des Etroits, take the route through the hamlet of Bonnenuit. 4 - At Plan Lachat, follow the 4X4 track up towards the Camp Militaire. 5 - At the 11th bend, take the path on the right, towards Lac des Cerces. 6 - Once you've reached Lac des Cerces, you can either detour past the lake or continue straight on towards Col de la Ponsonnière, where you'll need to carry your bike a few times (you'll be on the GR 57). 7 - At the Col, a hellish descent awaits you as you continue on the GR 57 to the torrent du Rif. You'll pass several lakes and a refuge before forking right to Alpe du Lauzet via the GR 50. 8 - At Alpe du Lauzet, take the Chemin du Roy which leads to the foot of the Col du Galibier. Follow the road for 1 km, then take the old Galibier road (footpath) to the tunnel. At this point, continue on the road to switch to the other side of the Col and descend towards Colomban Noir. 9 - Continue on the route du Galibier (D902) to descend almost to Granges du Galibier, then switch to a path on the left of the road to return to Valloire via Colomban Noir. 10 - On the path you'll pass the sheepfold. There's a technical descent before you reach the Lauzette plateau. 11 - Cross the torrent e la Lauzette and continue on the path towards Valloire. 12 - Cross the water a second time to join the D902, just before the hamlet of Bonnenuit. 13 - Return to Valloire along the same path as the outward journey.

Tour du Grand Galibier via the Col de la Ponsonnière - VTTAE itinerary

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