Panoramic loop from Arolla up to a high mountain refuge, down to the piercing blue waters of the idyllic Lac Bleu and back via a geological trail.
This hike up to the high slopes overlooking Arolla promises a thrilling experience of mountain terrain, spectacular views, fascinating geology and a wealth of alpine flora.
The trail starts at Arolla, which takes its name from the tree that shapes the local forests: the Arolla pine, also known as the Swiss stone pine (pinus cembra). The aromatic wood from the tree is said to help sleep: beds are made from the timber, and pillows stuffed with its shavings. The tree propagates with the help of a distinctive alpine bird, the spotted nutcracker, which splits open the cones with its powerful bill to reach the seeds, some of which it buries in the ground as a food store for winter. The bird invariably forgets a proportion of the seeds – some of which may grow into trees.
Our trail climbs out of the village and above the tree line, steadily scaling the slopes to a welcoming mountain cabin. The Cabane des Aiguilles Rouges stands at the foot of a dramatic chain of peaks, draped with glaciers, known as the Aiguilles Rouges d’Arolla – the “Red pinnacles of Arolla”. The views across the valley are bewitching.
The trail then leads down to a lake, the Lac Bleu, framed by Arolla pines. A spring just above the lake, fed by glacial water, feeds a cascade that tumbles straight down to the piercing blue waters.
The path from the Lac Bleu back to Arolla leads along a geological trail – one of several in the valley, known for its variety of rocks and minerals. Visitors can explore with the help of a free app, “GéoGuide Val d’Hérens” (details and online version at www.evolene-geologie.ch). The tourist office at Arolla can provide further printed information.
At Arolla, the Sentier des Arolles (about 300 metres) is a charming nature trail through an ancient forest of Arolla pines.
Use of the trails and the information on this website is at hikers’ own risk. Local conditions may entail changes to routes. Valais/Wallis Promotion accepts no liability for the accuracy and completeness of information on this website.
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