Valnontey – Sella refuge
The Ibex (Capra Ibex), king of the Gran Paradiso National Park, is the unmatched protagonist of the Aosta Valley moutains.
This wonderful species risked to become extinct at the beginnig of the 19th century: it had disappeared all along the Alps from France to Slovenia, and the only place where it survived, in really small numbers, was in the Aosta Valley, between Cogne and Valsavarenche.
From 1922 it has become the symbol of the oldest protected area in Italy, and the hike starting from Valnontey to reach the Sella refuge (2,579 mt., a former hunting hut of the Savoy dinasty) goes exacly across the heart of it, in May and June it is easy to spot them half way near the old pasture huts of Toule (2,001 mt.) and Pascieu (2,111 mt.) a few metres from the footpath. From July onwards, they start to climb, and they can be seen near the refuge, or, even more, towards the Colle della Rossa pass (3,195 mt.) and the Lauson pass (3,296 mt.). Plunge in this wonderful scenery to live an unforgettable experience with the King of the mountains!
about 900 mt
about 14 km. return
about 2h 30 ‘ climb
Height difference Length Duration difficulty