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La Pilatte

Altitude : 2 577 m

Open: Early June to mid-September
Departure point: La Bérarde ( St Christophe en Oisans)
Height gain: 840 m
Time: 3½ hours
Difficulty: Very steady walking
Number of places:  summer 120 – winter 32
Hut keepers: Mathilde Dahuron and Armand Barbet
Owner: FFCAM

The refuge

Refuge de La Pilatte

Getting there :

The path starts above the Centre Alpin de la Bérarde towards the refuge of Le Carrelet. It takes one hour to reach the Plan du Carrelet: please take a little rest at the refuge du Carrelet!
Ignore the path off to the left that leads up to the refuge of Temple Écrins, and keep following the mountain stream. Once at the end of this glacial valley, cross the Vénéon river by the footbriges, or on the snowy patches, at the beginning of the season. You then climb up the left bank on a path that becomes steeper, before zigzaging up to a rocky shelf below the refuge.

At the foot of the Massif des Bans, right in the heart of the Ecrins National Park, the hut of La Pilatte is indeed a wonderful destination for hikers, but it is also an unmissable rendez-vous for mountaineers.

The view from the terrace is grand, with the glacial circus of La Pilatte, dominated by the north face of Les Bans. North and east, the horizon is extended to Le Râteau, La Meije, the Barre des Écrins and L’Ailefroide.


A word from the hut keeper

Gardiens du refuge de la Pilatte

Why be a hut warden? Well, one day you come here, and the next thing you know it has become a passion, for the love of the mountains and the people you meet up there. It’s a privilege to live in the hut for a few months of the year and share a corner of paradise at the foot of majestic mountains, such as the Ailefroide, Les Bans and the Barre des Écrins. And to make the most of those moments of relaxation when you’ve just come off the mountain or after a good meal, there’s even a pétanque boules pitch! See you soon…

Mathilde Dahuron


From the hut:

Mountaineering and ski touring
  • The refuge of la Pilatte is the starting point for a number of climbs of all levels. Some are rather glacial, such as Le Gioberney (3351m), famous for its panorama, the Cols of Les Bans (3402m) and La Condamine, the north corridor of Les Bans (3669m); other climbs are rather rock or mixed, such as Les Boeufs Rouges (3515m), the voie normale, and the north-east Pilier of Les Bans. Concerning raids, the Cols of Le Sélé (3278m) and Le Gioberney allow to traverse, the first one on La Vallouise, and the second one on Le Valgaudemar.
  • The long « Balade au bout du monde » climb on the Pointe Richardson was re-fitted in the summer of 2014. The starting point is now marked and the first pitches are secured.

Le refuge en images

Refuge de La Pilatte

Refuge de La Pilatte