3 refuges walk

3 refuges walk

Archeology and history
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A 3-day walk in the heart of the Mercantour National Park between the sedimentary valleys of L'Ubaye and Haut-Var. A geological journey on the mythical Route des Grands Alpes.

4 points of interest

  • Refuge

    La Cayolle refuge

    Refuge managed by Mercantour National Park.


    Capacity: 36 in refuge

    Warden: 04 92 81 24 25 (from 15th June to 15th September) or 04 93 05 54 90 (all year if no reply at first number).

    E-Mail: fan.refugedelacayolle@orange.fr

    Website: www.refugedelacayolle.com
  • Lake

    Lac des Garrets

    The lake incurs the ramifications of its high altitude. The high level of evaporation in the summer sees it shrink, giving it the characteristic shape of a wine glass in autumn. The freezing weather which causes it to “hibernate” for nearly 8 months a year, would appear to prevent life from surviving in it. However, an energy-capturing phytoplankton began developing there, opening the way to life in the mountain lakes.
    Here, however, life halted at the plankton stage. The rare organic matter is used by an inactive lifeform. Given that the lake is “cleaned” in this fashion , the waters of this oligotrophic lake are clear, despite it being stagnant.

  • Flora

    From one cairn to another

    A bare, secretive and fascinating environment: From Pas du Lausson to Col de la Petite Cayolle, these are the high mountains. The décor is rocky and grass is thin on the ground. This is also the stronghold of audacious plants. In order to protect themselves against the hostility of the climate, they are small and perennial, often with large and colourful flowers.

    This vegetation which, highly adapted to climatic hardships, is fragile and of exceptional value. Plants which can be found here include the spring gentian, moss campion, glacier crowfoot, the stemless gentian, Alpine toadflax…, but also certain endemic species like Berardia subacaulis and Campanula allionii.
  • Refuge

    Bayasse Refuge-Hotel

    Mercantour National Park Refuge-Hotel


    Refuge open all year

    Restaurant open every day from May to September and upon reservation all year

    Capacity: 11 bedrooms; 2 dormitories (6 to 8 people), 4 family rooms (2 to 4 people) and 5 double rooms.

    Half-board from 44€, special prices for families, children and groups.


    Tel: (0)4 92 32 20 79

    +33 (0)6 38 83 21 42


    Prices and complementary information: http://www.refuge-bayasse.fr/

Altimetric profile


Make sure that you prepare for your hike:

- Contact Météo Montagne on 0 899 710 206 to be informed of any possible bad weather or specific meteorological conditions (snow, storm, fog, strong winds).

- Make sure you take all that you need with you: water, sufficient resources for energy, backpack, hiking boots, a hat in summer, a first aid box.

- Remember to make reservations at the refuges before your hike, particularly during the summer months.
Is in the midst of the park
The national park is an unrestricted natural area but subjected to regulations which must be known by all visitors.

Information desks

Ubaye Tourisme / Office de tourisme d'Uvernet-Fours (Pra Loup)

Maison du Tourisme, 04400 Pra Loup

http://www.praloup.com/04 92 84 10 04


Saison été
• Tous les jours de 9h à 12h30 et de 15h à 18h30
Saison hiver
• Tous les jours de 9h à 19h
Intersaison jusqu'au 5 juillet inclus
• Du lundi au vendredi de 9h à 12h et de 14h à 18h
• Du 27 avril au 5 juin inclus
• Du 21 septembre au 16 octobre inclus
Find out more

Access and parking

From Barcelonette, head towards Col de la Cayolle, Nice(D902).

From Nice, head towards Digne (N202), then Col de la Cayolle via Guillaumes (D2202).

Parking :

Bayasse refuge carpark

Report a problem or an error

If you have found an error on this page or if you have noticed any problems during your hike, please report them to us here: