Choume (Tête de)

Choume (Tête de)

Vertical drop (m)
Starting altitude (m)
Top/Max altitude (m)
Ski grade
Route type
Sparse forest

Start point Support point

- Timing: 1h50’ up
- Best season: November to March
- Aspect of the descent: S-E
- Ascent length: 3.200m

Searching for the Aosta Valley Linea Cadorna

Tête de Choume is the first summit of the chain going from Plan Puitz as far as the Tête de Barasson. At the outbreak of WW1, there were fears of a possible Swiss invasion and a series of fortifications were built quickly, now known as the Linea Cadorna, going from the Aosta Valley to Lombardy. Some relevant evidence of this is found close to the Tête de Choume, at Plan Puitz. This route is more ski touring-like, with regards to Plan Puitz, and gives a good idea of the reason why such fortifications were built here: from here, in fact, you’ll have complete control of anyone passing the Col du Grand Saint Bernard.
This route is the classic ascent one with a trailhead in Eternon dessous, where you’ll find a colourful, distinctive small chapel, then you’ll enter the Barasson valley and climb the magnificent Plan Puitz woods. This is a good choice for any snow and weather conditions, since there are no challenging sections. The descent is via your uptrack, freely.
From the motorway exit Aosta Est, take the tunnel leading to the Grand Saint Bernard valley, then follow it and go beyond the hamlets of Gignod and Etroubles. Shortly before Saint-Oyen, turn right and follow the sign for Prailles. Climb up the municipal road for about 4 km and then reach the small hamlet of Prailles dessous: continue straight towards Eternon dessous, that can be reached after 2 km. Do not go down to reach the hamlet, but leave the car at the fork: you can usually ski straight from the car.

From the car, follow the forestry road as far as the first hairpin bend, leave the road and climb up open pastures until you’ll find the road again. Carry on along the uphill road and reach the Barasson mountain pasture after two hairpin bends. Climb the pretty Plan Puitz wood and choose the best route according to snow conditions. As the gradient increases, the wood thins out and leaves room for the summit slope. The summit is now visible thanks to a pylon close by; veer right and climb the last stretch as far as the Tête de Choume (2349m).

Make the descent freely via your skin track. The first section is the most lappable one.

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