Difficulties:E - Excursionist
from 01/01 to 31/03
Departure:Druges Hautes - Saint-Marcel (1615 mt.)
Arrival:Prapremier (2011 mt.)
Difference in level:571 mt.
Duration going there:1h15
Duration coming back:0h45
How to get there
Nus motorway exit. Follow the directions for Aosta. Turn left towards Saint-Marcel. Once past the village, go towards the Santuario di Plout. The roads climbs and winds up through the woods to Les Druges.
Little-known but extremely beautiful route. The territory of Saint-Marcel is in a strategic position: its central location in the Val d’Aosta provides some marvellous views to be enjoyed.
Description of the route
From Druges Hautes walk towards the houses in the village: from here you take a path that proceeds through the wood, often used by snowmobiles. Go around the buildings on the right and continue on until you meet a no-thoroughfare sign on th farm road which leads to the Alpine pastures of Fontaine Froide. Climb up through the larch and fir-tree wood, completing an initial fairly steep section, then a little after, the route becomes less arduous; you go round a hairpin bend and you come to a small wooden chalet. The climb continues along a lengthy straight section which leads to the pastures of Fontaine Froide. The route continues round two wide hairpin bends leading to some buildings: you have to stop here to take a look at the view over the Matterhorn and the Monte Rosa group, which is quite unforgettable.
You start off again turning to the left above the Alpine pastures; the route through the woods continues to climb steeply until you reach a small level clearing where there is a wooden signpost indicating the Alpe Bren: fro here you begin to see the snow-capped “cake” of Mont Roux. The path continues on towards the ridge of the Valle della Clavalité and reaches another clearing from where you can enjoy some interesting views over the eastern peaks of this wild valley. Within a few minutes you reach the Alpe Bren and the characteristic wooden Christ. Continue on towards the destination: after a quarter of an hour’s gentle uphill climb, you come to the farm buildings of Prapremier (2011 m).
From these Alpine pastures you get an interesting, though narrower panoramic view than the one from Fontaine Froide, but you can certainly enjoy the silence of this place which makes it even more appealing.