Via Ferrata de la Grande Falaise, Freissinières, Hautes Alpes

 

      Footbridge     Monkey Bridge    Ladder       Zipline    
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Features

The first ever via ferrata in France. It's part of History with a capital "H" and during some parts it's Vertiginous with a large dose of void.
Built by Lionel Condemine in 1988.

In two parts.

 

ViaFerrata Tips and Tricks

Lots of contact with the rock and no bars. Wear proper shoes.

 

Grade

 Strength
 Dizziness 3
 Type  Mountain: 3
 Technics  1
 Evaluation  Difficult

 

Information

Freissinières Tourism Office

 

Length and Altitude

Start: 1,333 m
End: 1,650 m
Length: 1,600 m.

 

GPS Coordinates

Latitude: 44.75

Longitude: 6.533

 

Time of Year

April to November

 

Timing

1h30 to 2 hours for the first part, 3 to 4 hours for the whole thing.

 

By Car

Freissinière, located in the valley that goes by the same name, belongs to the Ecrins massif.

From N94, between Briançon and Mont-Dauphin, towards la Roche de Rame take D38 to the hamlet of Pallon, then D 238B to the village of Freissinières.

Cross the village and keep going a couple hundred of meters. The parking lot is on the side of the road, in a hairpin. It's not very big so it requires discipline and courtesy on busy days. As these two features have a tendancy to create havoc, let it out a bit before and everything will be alright!

 

By Train

Check with the SNCF: schedules and fares.

  

 

Access

It takes about 30 minutes to get to the via ferrata from the parking lot. The trail (towards the East) leads you to the base of the cliff with red rocks. Go left to get to the ferrata.

 

Via Ferrata

This Ferrata is vertiginous and techinical, you won't always have your hands on metal...You will have to use the rock, in some steps that come very close to the 3+ grade. You start by climbing a rocky section and then you get to a horizontal ledge on the "Corde à Noeuds" (Rope with Knots) Wall. This leads you to the long "Minérale Gazeuse" (Vertiginous Minerals) Traverse (vertiginous sections) which has a superb panorama. After the Maquisards Grotte, the Pas Ventru, and the "Dalle au Surplomb" (Overhanging Slab), a few sections of downclimbing mark the end of the first part.

The second part goes up a wooded area on a terrace. You find the lifeline again and go up to the "Vire aux Quartz"  (Quartz Ledge) and go through a gap to get to a cave. Here you will begin the most vertiginous part of the via ferrata. When you reach a big slab, "Dalles Osées" (Daring Slab), you are in a demanding and impressive section. Then it's all freewheel to the finish.

The main feature of this via ferrata is how impressive and vertiginous some sections are.

 

Way Back

It takes one hour to get back to your ride in the parking lot.
The way down is a good vertiginous trail. Be careful.

 

Where to Spend the Night

Gîtes les 5 Saisons: 04.92.20.94.40. Calling from outside of France +33 04.92.20.94.40. You can rent equipment hear, eat excellent meals, and rest peacefully after physical exertion.

 

Media

par Jasmienes, Youtube

Difficulty & Level

Strength
1. For beginners & initiation
2. Need some practice of via ferrata
3. Require phisical strength (at least 1 difficulty)
4. Very phisical, strength, in very good shape

Dizziness
1. Light - ok
2. Middle
3. Some parts are solid
4. Tough

Type
Plaine - Mountain - High Mountain
1. Fully Equiped
2. Need to use rocks
3. Light equipment

Technics
1. Easy
2. With bridge, ladder, etc..
3. Extra skills such as zip line

Emergency

Europe

France

Phone: Mountain rescue: 112

Radio:
Canal K  158.625
Canal E ( Emergency ) 161.300

 

Switzerland

Phones:
Mountain Rescue: 144
REGA Helicopere: 1414
Police: 117

Radio:
Canal K  158.625
Canal E ( Emergency ) 161.300

 

Europe
Phone: 112

Radio:
Canal K  158.625
Canal E ( Emergency ) 161.300