Start: Eaux Chaudes End: Eaux Chaudes
Arrival at Col de Pourtalet, situated at nearly 1800 metres right on the border between France and Spain, with the Pyrenees at your feet. If you arrive early, you might have time to climb up to a peak on the Spanish/French border. Delicious evening meal with mountain views.
After a short 30-minute ride, you start with a section in Spain then cross over into France for a beautiful descent along the river. Next you conquer the long ascent up to the mountain hut, hiking first through forests then through barren mountain landscapes. Refuge de Pombie is beautifully situated on a lake beneath the majestic Pic du Midi d'Ossau.
NOTE: If you are travelling by public transport, the bus to Col du Pourtalet leaves at 09.00 hrs.
Hike: 12 km, 800 m ascent, 600 m descent, 5 hours.
It's time to circle back to the starting point of your mini-trek. And this may be the last hiking route, but it's certainly not the least! Soon you reach the first alpine jewel, Lac Bersau. Next you can opt for an adventurous section on the ridge bordering France and Spain, following vague sheep tracks with magnificent views and the feeling of being alone in the world. This option can only be done on clear days with the use of our travel App/GPS device. If the weather is not the best, you can trek along clear paths at the foot of Pic du Midi. Traversing a lovely high plateau where flocks of sheep or half-wild horses roam, you end the day's journey back at a comfortable hotel.
NOTE: If you are travelling by public transport, the bus to Col du Pourtalet leaves at 16.40 hrs
Walk: 14 km, 800 m ascent, 1000 m descent, 6,5 hours. The adventurous variant is a bit shorter, with less ascent and descent but much more difficult paths.
At the mountain huts you will find basic sanitary facilities (no shower), electricity from solar panels and above all lots of peace and quiet. You should bring your own sleep sheet, pillow case and towel.
You can book an extra night at Refuge d'Ayous, a cosy hut situated in stunning surroundings among alpine lakes.
La Caverne is nestled at an elevation of 674 m. Its terrace overlooking the Gave will invite you to relax and reflect. This unique peaceful place is a paradise for mountaineers and makes an ideal base for hiking. The restaurant offers traditional cuisine made from local products for a well-deserved dinner after your walk.
The refuge is situated in the heart of the Pyrenees National Park, in the upper Ossau Valley, at the foot of the south-east face of the Pic du Midi d'Ossau. This pastoral setting surrounded by towering peaks, makes the Refuge La Pombie a classic starting point for the ascent of the Pic du Midi d'Ossau. The wardens, who are very attentive in welcoming hikers and mountaineers, will be pleased to give you a taste of quality cuisine.
The Ayous Refuge is situated at an elevation of 1980 m in the Ossau Valley of the Pyrenees National Park. The refuge is a meeting place for hikers and nature lovers, where you can share your experiences with fellow mountaineers over a coffee with blueberry pancakes or tasty homemade dinner.
Though the overall daily distance is not so great in terms of kilometres, there are considerable ascents and descents to overcome. You will have to carry all your personal belongings, as luggage transport is not an option here. These might include clothing, toiletries, a sleep sheet, pillowcase and towel.
This is an App only walking trip, so no printed documents will be provided.
You can start on any day of the week, subject to availability, between May 20th and October 17th
If you are driving, in Col de Pourtalet there is a large public car park where you can leave your car on Day 2.
GPS tracks are available on request.