Ice Climbing with a Guide in Cogne, a Paradise in the Aosta Valley

Marina ParraJanuary 21, 2019

Located at the heart of the Gran Paradiso National Park, the valley of Cogne is one of the most outstanding destinations for ice climbing in the Alps. With more than 150 spectacular frozen waterfalls, it provides endless climbing adventures in a wild and unspoiled setting.

Casey and Lauren —two friends from the United States— spent 5 days in Cogne last January on an ice climbing trip led by Sébastien Laurent, an IFMGA certified guide they booked through Explore-Share.

Casey & Lauren with their guide Sébastien. Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.

They have both tried ice climbing before, so their main goal was to improve their technique and skills on the ice. During the 5 days of the trip, they explored different spots in the valley, including the Lillaz Gully, L’Archeronte and Azavatta:

“We gained skills and confidence in ice climbing, as well as some mountaineering skills”.

After reviewing the basics, they learnt how to lead and completed a few multi-pitch routes. “The guide was extremely knowledgeable and supportive, we look forward to join him on a trip again”, they said.

Going on an ice climbing course with a guide is the best way of building solid climbing skills that will allow you to become autonomous.

“It was a great experience for them, they broke their limit!”, said Sébastien, ambassador of Kayland, Karpos & Altitude Eyewear. For him, “Cogne is an amazing place for ice climbing because there are a lot of lines and all of them are different. Besides, the Italian atmosphere is very nice: nice people, great food…!”.

Sébastien also offers a 5-day ice climbing course in Chamonix and 2-day program in both Cogne & Chamonix.

 

Climbing L’Archeronte icefall. Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.
Climbing L’Archeronte icefall. Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.

In Brief:

Area: Gran Paradiso National Park, Aosta Valley, Italy.

How to get there: the nearest airport is Turin International Airport (Turin-Caselle). From there, you can reach the town in taxi, hire car or local bus in 1h 50 min. Cogne is also at a  1h 20m drive from Chamonix-Mont Blanc and less than 1 hour from Courmayeur.

Best season: January and February provide the best conditions for ice climbing in Cogne.


The winter season provides amazing opportunities to try new adventures. Whether you want to step into the world of ice climbing or improve your existing skills, you should start thinking of Cogne as your next place to visit!

See all the options available for ice climbing in Cogne!

 

Still not convinced? Here are some more pictures of Casey and Lauren’s 5-day ice climbing course for further inspiration!

 

Climbing Azavatta route (WI4++). Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.
Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.
Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.
Climbing at Lillaz Gully (WI4+/M4+). Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.
Climbing at Lillaz Gully (WI4+/M4+). Photo: Courtesy of Sébastien Laurent.

 

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