THE GREAT HIKE OF THE PIONEERS

The first edition 2022

From June 15 to October 20, 2022, from the Pyrenees to the Vosges, we invited contributors to the ulule campaign to come and explore a section of the first edition of the HexaTrek with us!
 

We've selected 16 of the most beautiful sections of the Hexatrek so you can intercept this crazy adventure along the way. You will find on the map below an overview of the sections as well as the departure and arrival dates.

If you have contributed during the ulule campaign and you are registered for the pioneer march , this article will allow you to organize your visit.
See the map in detail

DISCORD discussion group

This adventure remains an adventure, and like all adventures, it will have its share of ups and downs.

Potential injuries, snow, bad weather and material problems make it difficult to communicate to you today the precise dates of our crossing points.

In order to keep you informed, we have invited all participants to join us on DISCORD.
This discussion group allowed us to organize audio conferences with hikers already registered.

In addition, this group will serve as a means of communication during the march, to inform you in real time of our position and precise meeting points.

If you have not yet joined discord, we invite you to send us an email at contact@hexatrek.com specifying the section.

 

Autonomy & necessary equipment

This pioneer walk will be mainly a bivouac adventure .

Even if we can sleep close to the refuges, offering those who wish it a bed, a shower and the possibility of catering, it is important that each of the participants is independent in terms of food and equipment to ensure roaming.

Here is the list of the 4 mandatory equipment:

  • Backpack

  • Mattress

  • Down

  • Attempted


We have written a complete article giving more information and advice on hiking equipment that you will find here.

In addition, everyone must be self-sufficient in food.
We advise you to make some provisions before departure and to refuel on the course when we come across shops.
To know the list of restocking, go to the hexatrek mobile application.

 

Section 1: Basque Country

Date: June 15 to June 19 (5 Days)

Places: Hendaye in Saint-Jean-Pied-Port

 

Starting point of the HexaTrek in the South-North direction, Hendaye!

After having fully appreciated the Atlantic Ocean, which we will not see again for the next 4 months, we will begin our adventure by climbing the Rhune.

The route crosses the culture and traditions of the Basque country.

Authentic villages, in red and white colors, such as those of Sare, Ahinoa or Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port will serve as a stopover before leaving little by little behind us, the human marvels in favor of the marvels of nature.

Section 2: Bearnaise Pyrenees

Date: June 23 to 28 (6 Days)

Places: La Pierre Saint Martin in Gourette

 

With the summit of the Three Kings on the horizon, we will follow the path on the arid soils that surround the Pic d'Anie giving the rock its particular color.

The Cirque de Lescun will be an appreciable crossing point before joining the Lac d'ansabère and crossing the winding waters of Aguas Tuertas.

 

Lac D'anglas, Vallée d'ossau, Lacs d'Ayous, Pic du Midi... If you have taken the initiative to take a camera on your adventure, you will not have a single opportunity to store it on this section of the course.

The Ossau valley will take us directly to the ski resort of Gourette, the end point of this stage.

16 Sections, the best of the HexaTrek for the week

We have selected the most beautiful parts of the HexaTrek to form sections of approximately 100/150km, achievable in 1 week of walking.

In order to be able to respect the schedule, we have estimated that we will walk at the rate of 25km per day with 1 day of rest per week.

Everyone must be able to walk at their own pace, the idea of this walk being to be able to meet each evening at our bivouac sites, define the starting point for the next day and organize your walk accordingly.

Section 3: High Pyrenees

Date: July 1 to 6 (6 Days)

Places: Cauteret in Saint-Lary-Soulan

 

Departing from Cauteret, we will take the direction of Lac de Gaube and begin to lose altitude by taking the path of the Marcadau valley, a landmark of incredible waterfalls of crystal clear water.

The route continues towards Vignemale and its glacier.

 

The highest peaks of the Pyrenees stand here, the path continues to the foot of the Breche Roland, a natural crack in its wall creating a wonderful window to admire the view on the Spanish side.

We will then descend by the ladders of Saradets to come face to face with the mythical Pyrenean wall, classified among the 50 most beautiful natural places in France, the Cirque de Gavarnie.

The following kilometers of walking will take us to the Néouvielle Nature Reserve.

Section 4: Spanish Pyrenees

Date: July 9 to 14 (6 Days)

Places: Bagnère-de-Luchon in Auzat

See the section on the map

 

We will leave the beaten track of the GR10 to venture on the HRP (Haute Route Pyrénées)

 

Nature gives little importance to the country which is its host, it is for this reason that the Hexatrek allows itself a prank, on the other side of the massif, on the Spanish side, which offers landscapes to cut the breath.

 

We will leave the Hautes-Pyrénnées National Park to reach the peak of Aneto.

From here begins the great crossing of the spectacular Aigüestortes National Park, surrounded by numerous peaks reaching 3000m, this place is also nicknamed the region of a thousand lakes.

 

The finish point of this stage will be very close to Auzat, the only place in the region with additional access by bus.

Section 5: Catalan Pyrenees

Date : July 17 to 22 (6 Days)

Places: L'Hospitalet-prés-l'Andorre in Vinça

 

After a departure at the border of Andorra, the Bouilleuses lake and the Lanoux pond will offer us a moment of respite and calm in the heart of the snow-capped peaks.

From Pic Carlit, we will follow the Canrenca. These splendid gorges will lead us to the entrance of the Mantet Reserve.

 

Whatever the weather conditions, this Nature Reserve will deliver sublime landscapes.

Seeing the Pic du Canigou, there is no doubt that the landscapes will give you the energy to see more and continue in its direction.

The last day of walking will take us through multiple lakes and will end at Lake Vinça.

 

The start and finish of this section are difficult to access, you will have to take a bus or hitchhike there.

Section 6: Haut-Languedoc Natural Park

Date: July 28 to August 1 (5 Days)

Places: Labastide Rouairoux in Lodeve

 

Departing from labastide, for 5 days, we will travel the ridges of the Haut-Langudoc Natural Park.

 

We will pass close to the summit of the region, Mont Caroux, and we will follow the high plateau through its many lakes and its breathtaking views of the valley.

 

After crossing the orca cliffs, the path continues towards the lake of Avène.

 

Located at the southern limit of the Massif Central, this park is a marvelous balcony over the Mediterranean. The variety of its landscapes and its reliefs makes that in a few kilometers, one completely changes universe and decoration.

Traditions, gastronomy, local know-how intermingle in this region still little known to tourists.

Section 7 : Tarn Gorges & the Grands Causses Natural Park

Date: August 2 to 7 (6 Days)

Places: Lodeve in Saint Enimie

 

The circuses of Tournemire and Saint-Paul-des-Fonts will welcome us to the region.

 

We will cross the Regional Park of the Grands Causses, a place where water is sorely lacking to fill the water bottles of hikers but whose landscapes are amply deserved.

 

The Gorges de la Dourbie have nothing to envy to its close neighbors, we will cross them to begin the ascent to the Corniches du Rajot.

They will make us gain height and will carry us to the Chaos of Montpellier le Vieux

the path to the balconies of vertigo is impressive, after these moments spent at height, a stop at Pas de Soucy, a real haven of peace frozen in time is essential

 

Change of region, Change of landscape, Yet still Gorges. That of the Tarn this time.

Hanging on the river, Le Cirque de Saint Chely, a natural wonder and the Point Sublime, which as its name suggests will offer us a beautiful view of the Gorges du Tarn

Section 8: Ardeche Gorges & Cevennes

Date: August 9 to 15 (7 Days)

Places: Saint Eminie in Saint Martin d'Ardeche

 

From Saint Enimie, a small village near the Gorges du Tarn, we will go around Mont Lozère and pass by the fabulous lake of Villefort.

The path continues in the wildest corners of the Cevennes National Park before ending its course in the very popular Arche de Vallon Pont D'arc

 

The Gorges de l'Ardeche open up to us, the cradle of our last kilometers on this section.

The immensity of its walls will make us feel small, the route alternates between breathtaking views and a path close to the river, swimming in the crystal clear waters and bivouac nights will be our daily life in this wild region.

Section 9: Crossing the Vercors

Date: August 19 to 23 (5 Days)

Places: Die a Vif

 

From the village of Die, we will begin to discover the Diois region before the great crossing of the Vercors ridges.

From here we will alternate between a small lost village and breathtaking views of the surrounding valleys.

This crossing will begin with a magical place, Le cirque d'Archiane. The evening colors on its walls are an unmissable part of the HexaTrek

 

The landscapes of the crossing of the Hauts Plateaux are unique in France, the ascent of Grand Veymont and its view of Mont Aiguille is an unforgettable sensation.

A real UFO standing in the middle of this magical setting, it will show us the way to get to Vif, the end point of this section.

Section 10: Alpes Huez and the Traversée de Belledonne

Date: August 25 to 29 (5 Days)

Places: Vizille in Bourg d'Oisans

 

Departing from the town of Vizille, Lake Achard, Lake Roberts, Lake Leama or Lake Crozet, the many lakes of the Belledonne chain will be our daily life for the days to come.

We will leave the panoramic view of the Chartreuse and Bauges Regional Natural Parks to make our way to Pas de la Coche and find ourselves on the other side, more wild and mountainous.

From here begins the crossing of the eastern slope of the Belledonne range

From Lac du Verney The path continues alongside the many glaciers of the Alpe D'huez region

We will take the Tour de France by bike its famous pass to reach the town of Bourg d'Oisans, at the foot of the Ecrins massif.

The view of the Pic de la Meije will certainly make you want to venture into its between.

Section 11: The Ecrins Tour

Date: August 30 to September 4 (6 Days)

Places: Bourg d'Oisans to Col du Lautaret

 

We will circumvent the Barre des Ecrins from the south, mainly taking the fabulous GR54.

1 week of walking in the heart of the jewel cases, a real disconnection with the world.

 

We will cross some of the most beautiful places of the tour des ecrins, the lake of muzelle and that of Lauvitel, the Desert in Valjouffrey, the lake of Eychauda and many others...

Arrived at Lautaret, you can make a detour to discover one of the most beautiful villages in France, La Grave.

Section 12: Crossing the Beaufortain and the Vanoise National Park

Date : September 8 to 14 (7 Days)

Places: Modane in Les Houches

 

Lac des vaches, Glacier du milieu, la Grande Casse, mythical places in the heart of the Alps in the Vanoise National Park.

This region is one of the most mountainous of the Hexatrek, we will have to spend several days in autonomy, far from any village and source of resupply.

 

At each summit, a new angle to admire Mont Blanc in all its forms, every day the eternal snows of the massif get closer for the greatest pleasure of our eyes.

 

We will make our mark in La Grande Traversée Du Beaufortin, where all the villages bear the names of cheese.

Obligatory passage by the lake of Roseland and the Pierra Menta, this crossing will lead us to the gates of the Chamonix valley.

Section 13: Crossing Haute-Savoie

Date: September 16 to September 21 (6 Days)

Places: Houches in  Thonons the baths

See the section on the map

 

We will start this section directly on the route of the Tour du Mont Blanc.

In the direction of the Aiguilles Rouges Reserve, the Mont Blanc massif on our right, we will chain the incredible viewpoints to the most popular, Lac Blanc.

 

Mount Buet, from the top of its 3096m, the highest point of the HexaTrek, may require us to use crampons in case of fresh snowfall.

 

The descent will take place in the Cirque des Fonts before returning to the most visited cirque in France, that of Sixt-fer-a-cheval.

 

Morzine, Les Gets, Samoens, with the Dents Blanches in the background, Les Cornettes de Bise stand as a real barrier between us and Switzerland, following them will take us to Lake Leman

Section 14: The High Cretes of the Jura

Date: September 25 to 30 (6 Days)

Places: Les Rousses in Villiers le Lac

 

It's time for our little adventure in Switzerland through the crests of the Jura.

Very first ascent from Les Rousses ski resort to reach La Dole

 

We will then follow the ridges close to Lac de Joux where the panorama of the Alps will be offered to us from the summit of Mont Tendre.

The Creux du Van, the Chasseron and the Aiguilles de Baulmes will offer us sublime views of the surrounding green mountains.

 

The route crosses the wildest places of the Jura, it is not rare to meet in these places the famous Lynx of the jura.

Return to France along the water, arrival at the foot of the Saut du Doubs waterfalls.

Section 15: Ballon des Vosges Natural Park

Date: October 6 to 10 (5 Days)

Places: Thann in Sélestat

 

With each awakening, we love more and more this tradition which wants nature to cover the lakes around the summit of Honeck each morning with mist.

 

The path continues towards the Grand Ballon, culminating at 1424 meters, the highest peak in the Vosges mountains.

The Strange architectural form which is at its summit, will offer us an unobstructed view of future days of walking.

 

Lac Schiessrothried, Lac Blanc, Lac de Longemer, to name but a few, are among the most beautiful in the region.

 

We will be in the Vosges during this most beautiful period, when the trees reveal the sublime colors of autumn.

Section 16: The Northern Vosges

Date: October 14 to 18, 2022

Places: Wissembourg in Saverne

 

The crossing of the fabulous Regional Park of Vosges Du Nord will lead us through the enchanted forests of this magnificent region.

 

Fort Fleckenstein Castle, Lichtenberg Castle, Wasenbourg Castle, the wonders of the Old World will be our daily life, hidden in the forests, sheltered from tourists.

We will alternate between a night of bivouac and the many incredible free refuges maintained by the Club Vosgiens!

 

An arrival at the border with Germany, in the town of Wissembourg, will mark the end of this final and final section of the HexaTrek

TRAIL

HexaTrek Association represents a 3034 km trail, linking 14 of the most beautiful natural parks and crossing France from the German  to the Spanish border.

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