The 66 via ferrata routes in this guidebook are grouped by area - Geneva and the Northern Alps, Chambery, the Tarentaise and Maurienne valleys, Grenoble and Briancon - and run the full gamut of challenge, from very easy, protected routes suitable for children, through to extremely exposed and technical routes for experienced ferratists only. Routes are illustrated by topo diagrams on colour photographs, and simple sketch maps. Those used to the older Italian routes will find these French routes quite different, closer to scrambling or rock climbing and often seeking out the most vertigo-inducing terrain. But most routes should be within the reach of any strong hillwalker and protection is high and well maintained. Recent years have witnessed a surge in the number of via ferrata routes set up in the iconic mountains of the French Alps. With routes set on or near many classics including the massifs of Mont Blanc, the Vanoise and the Queyras, this guide shows the best of what is now available.
Richard Miller is a passionate traveller and explorer, with experience of outdoor pursuits in many of the world's mountain ranges. His first via ferrata was in the Italian Dolomites. Finding it much to his liking, he set his sights on those in the French Alps.
Mountain safety Map key Route listing Overview map Introduction When to go Getting to the Alps Getting around Language Costs Accommodation Maps Route grading Equipment Moving safely Climbing with children Dangers Accidents and mountain rescue Insurance Using this guide Routes and bases Geneva and the Northern Alps Chambery Tarentaise Maurienne Grenoble Briancon Appendix A Routes listed in order of difficulty Appendix B Glossary of via ferrata terminology Appendix C Useful French words and phrases Appendix D Useful contacts