Excursions > Regional excursions

Regional field trip #3

Aosta Valley: from Mont Blanc to Matterhorn

30 June - 01 July

This field trip will take the participants to the discovery of the south side of the Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn by crossing the beautiful Aosta Valley, a small italian region sourrounded by the highest peaks of the Alps. During the trip the participants will look at many permafrost monitoring sites, glaciers, rock glaciers and will have the opportunity to observe and discuss with the colleagues and local experts the impacts of climate change on slopes dynamics, geohazards and natural resources.

The day 1 will be dedicated to the Mont Blanc and will include a journey to Punta Helbronner with the new SkyWay cable-car a short hike to the Rifugio Bertone for lunch and a night in the city of Aosta. The program includes a number of stages to observe and discuss the different topics.

The day 2 will be in Cervinia, at the foot of Matterhorn, where a number of permafrost monitoring sites on rock walls, high-mountain plateau and rock glaciers are active since more than 10 years. The program includes a 6h trekking to visit the monitoring sites and observe the geology and the morphology of the area. The results of the monitoring activities and the permafrost characteristics of this area will be presented and discussed with the participants.

This field trip is organized by ARPAVdA, the Regional Agency for the Environmental Protection of the Aosta Valley. The program could slightly change in case of bad weather.


Regional field trip #4

Mountain permafrost in the Valais Alps : between Verbier and Zermatt

29 June (afternoon) - 01 July (late evening) / 02 July

The field trip aims at visiting various periglacial geomorphic systems (glacier forefields, rock glaciers, landslides) in the Valais Alps. While enjoying wonderful view of highest peaks of the Swiss Alps, it is intended to present and discuss the permafrost monitoring system spread out in the Swiss Alps, some human infrastructures in mountain permafrost, and hazards related to permafrost sites.

Hot spots will be first the Tortin glacier and its ice-cored lateral moraine as well as the Mont-Fort summit in the Verbier aera (3330 m a.s.l.), later the long walk to fast moving rock glaciers in the valley of Zermatt (Gugla, Dirru, Grabengufer) and finally the crossing of (one of) the world longest pedestrian suspended bridge (490 m) over the gully affected by rock falls from the Grabengufer permafrost area. 

The excursion will take place in alpine environment, most often at altitudes between 2000 and 3000 m a.s.l, and is physically demanding.  A 10-hours walk is planned on day 2, starting with an ascent of 1400 m in height and without any short-cutting opportunity! Adequate equipment (good hiking shoes and all-weather clothes) and a fit physical condition are expressly required.

This field trip is organized by Christophe Lambiel from the Institute of earth surface dynamics, University of Lausanne, Switzerland and Reynald Delaloye from the Department of Geosciences, Geography, University of Fribourg, Switzerland.

More details (detailled program, logistics, price...) on the excursion will come soon... !


Regional field trip #5

French Alps

30 June - 01 July

Description is coming soon... 

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