The Monte Rosa Massif is ringed by a challenging, awe-inspiring walking circuit, the Tour de Monte Rosa. The highest of the Pennine Alps, it includes seven summits over 4,000 meters (13,124 feet) high, including the Dufourspitze, the second highest peak in the Alps. Together, they form part of the border between Switzerland and Italy.
Trip Difficulty: Difficult to Strenuous
Saas Fee – Zermatt
8 Days, 6 Days of Hiking
Price per person: CAD $3950
Single supplement: CAD $400
DAY 01: Arrival Day
Arrival in Saas-Fee, Switzerland briefing and welcome dinner.
DAY 02: Macugnaga
A short bus transfer brigs us to Mattmark, our starting point. We climb steeply to the pass at Monte Moro at 2868m where the statue of the Madonna of the Snows greets us on the summit. Here we hope to get our first views of Monte Rosa and its impressive east face – one of the longest ski descents in the Alps. Our descent takes us to the charming village of Macugnaga. Elevation gain 656m (2160ft), descent 1536m (5060ft).
DAY 03: Alagna
Today we head up to the lake at Quarazza, along the river through spruce forests to the pastures at Alpe Piana. From the lush vegetation, we ascend via an ancient military road into the sub-alpine, which takes us to the Colle del Turlo at 2738m. A steep descent allows us to gain the well-preserved, Walser village of Alagna which is fast-becoming one of the best extreme ski resorts in the Alps. Elevation gain 1421m (4690ft), descent 1548m (5100ft).
DAY 04: Gressoney-La-Trinité
Today, we climb steeply up into the Valle d’Otro, again passing ancient stone buildings in the high meadows before beginning our climb proper to the Passo Foric at 2432m. We also have the option of shortening the descent by taking a cable care from Gabiet down to Stafal. Elevation gain: 1691m ( 5580ft), descent 500m (1500ft) or 1058m (3490ft).
DAY 05: Champoluc
A short transfer to Biela marks the beginning of this day. After a few steep switchbacks in the shade of a dense forest, we enter a narrow valley, where several stone buildings remain. Cresting the Pentecoll at 2770m, we have sweeping views of Lyskam and Pollux and the ski resort of Champoluc. A beautiful descent past some high mountain lakes takes us down to our quiet village for the evening. Elevation gain 947m (3125ft), descent 1200m (3600ft).
DAY 06: Breuil/Cervinia
We are heading off towards Alpe Varda and Alpe Mase and views of the glaciated slopes of the Breithorn. After climbing through Larch woods and high meadows, where cattle graze, we climb above the green waters of the Gran Lago to the Colle Superieur delle Cime Bianche at 2982m. On a clear day, the Matterhorn can be seen from here, before heading down past Lake Breuil and our accommodation for the night. Elevation gain 1412m (4630ft), descent 932m (3060ft).
DAY 07: Zermatt
Depending on the season, we have three options: The easiest would be to take a series of cable cars up to just below the Theodulpass. If the cable car is not running, we might have the option to ride along with our mountainn guide to the top of the pass, on a very bumpy jeep road. Another option would be the hike up from Breuil to the pass, which takes approximately 4 hours.
Once up on the Theodulpass – the border with Switzerland – we have a one hour-descent to the Trockener Steg, roped together while traversing the very flat glacier. To get down to Zermatt, we can either take the cable-car, or walk down. Descent 1900m (6300ft).
DAY 08: Departure Day
Our trip finishes after breakfast. If you need logistical support for your onward journey, please contact us.
– Certified hiking guide
– International Mountain Guide for crossing the Theodul Glacier from Zermatt
– Rental gear (harness, helmets, crampons) for crossing the Theodulpass (only easy glacier walking!)
– Luggage transfers (Alagna, Gressoney, Cervinia, Zermatt)
– All accommodation
– All breakfasts, and dinners on hiking days
– All lifts and local transfers