The beginning of July was my peak training week in preparation for the Khan-Tengri (7010 m) expedition which I leave for on Friday.
After 44 km ran during the week, Anna and I made a Trail/Trekking this weekend aroundSaint Etienne-de-Tinée. We wanted to go at a higher altitude than usual, even though in the Mercantour that means running on tons of rocks. We chose the Mont Tenibre (3031 m) which is one of the few 3000 meters peaks of the Alpes Maritimes. It is also a good training because the Trail started of by a straight 2000 meters of elevation gain in just 11 km.
Climbing toward Tenibre, Rabuons lake behind (© Philippe Gatta)
After the Mont Tenibre, we made a loop to the Breche Borgonio (2904 m) and continued to the Lake of Vens, then we climbed the Crete des Babarottes before coming back to Saint Etienne-de-Tinée.
Anna in the first forest toward Rabuons lake (© Philippe Gatta)
Overall this Trail is technical, very rocky and because of the altitude and numerous scree is more a trekking than a trail running, so be prepared. It is very scenic though as it crosses 15 lakes, including Rabuons and Vens which are some of the nicest lakes in the Mercantour.
Philippe on the Chemin de l’Energie (© Anna Gatta)
Distance: 28 km, ascent: 2600 m / descent: 2600 m.
Anna on the Chemin de l’Energie (© Philippe Gatta)
GPS Track recorded with Suunto Ambit: GPS Track
Philippe with Tenibre in the background (© Anna Gatta)
Description: start at Saint Etienne-de-Tinée and climb to the Refuge and Lake of Rabuons (100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105). Continue to the top of Mont tenibre (106, 107). Descend on Southwest face toward the Lake Des Varicles and at around 2500 m, turn right toward the Lake de Tenibre (very rocky, no clear trail). Climb up to the Breche Borgonio (scree) and then descend to the Lake and Refuge of Vens (25). Continue to the lowest lake (27, 26) and then climb up to the Crete des Babarottes. Descend on the other side, to Clai Haute (113, 114). Turn left and soon take a small trail in the forest to the Fournels (109). A steep descent leads back to Saint Etienne-de-Tinée (108, 100).
Anna running toward the Lacs de Vens (© Philippe Gatta)
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