Albert Premier

Trail running Le Tour trails, Chamonix, France

Albert Premier: Quick access to the alpine above Le Tour

A steep moraine to a flowing descent in a stunning landscape

→ 17km

↑ 1600m

Δ 2702M 

♦ Medium


A perfectly defined, steep moraine trail sits like a beacon above the tiny ski village of Le Tour, just up the valley from Chamonix, the end stop for one of the bus lines. In the same way climbers seek beautiful lines up peaks or walls, runners seek uniquely defined trails making their way through the landscape. Few natural land forms offer better trails than a glacier’s moraine, and it's also steep enough to put it into the VK category.

Combine an ascent of the moraine with a stop at the Refuge Albert Premier Hut for a coffee, followed by the traverse to Col de Balme, topped with blueberry picking on Aihuillette des Posettes, and you have the makings of a Chamonix Valley trail running classic.

Detailed GPX Track

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GPX Track
Start:   46.003640, 6.946612
Town:  LE TOUR
Department:  Haute-Savoie
Country:  France

  • Consider the multiple huts as aid stations and browse the menus.

  • The trail continues past the Albert Premier Hut where it finally dead ends on the glacier. It's a great place to explore and see the big mountains a bit more up close.

  • For one more extension, angle over to Croix de Fer from Chalet du Col de Balm, a grassy, then rocky ridge to a fine summit point.

Run the Alps
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Trail running Le Tour trails, Chamonix, France

On the glacier moraine headed for the Refuge Albert Premier Hut.

Trail running in Chamonix, France

In comparison to the photo above, from fall 2019, is this, from 2004. Note the glacier size difference.

Trail running Le Tour trails, Chamonix, France

Just before the hut, the trail leaves the moraine and switchbacks the final meters to coffee and cake.

Trail running Le Tour trails, Chamonix, France

The descent splits off the moraine just below the hut, seen in the upper right. This trail is long & smooth all the way to Le Tour.

Trail running Le Tour trails, Chamonix, France

After turning the corner away from the glacier valley, you swap glacier for blueberry bushes.

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