Plan Monnay

A lovely circular walk for a half day out which is good if the weather is forecast to deteriorate in the afternoon. It can also be extended if you want a longer walk. Amazing views from the top of Plan Monnay.

Technical sheet

A Liddes walk posted on 04/08/22 by Alwayswiththehills. Last update : 08/08/22
  • Walking
    Activity: Walking
  • ↔
    Distance: 8.23 km
  • ◔
    Calculated time: 3h50 
  • ▲
    Difficulty: Moderate

  • ∞
    Return to departure point: Yes
  • ↗
    Vertical gain: + 506 m
  • ↘
    Vertical drop: - 505 m

  • ▲
    Highest point: 2,103 m
  • ▼
    Lowest point: 1,597 m
  • ⚐
    Area: Alps
  • ⚐
    District: Liddes 
  • ⚑
    Start/End: N 45.992504° / E 7.162053°

  • …
    Today’s forecast: Loading…
From Plan Beu
Western edge of the Mont Blanc Massif
Saleinaz Galcier to Aig. du Chardonnet (L. of centre) Grande Fourche and Aig. Dorees
Val Ferret with Mont Blanc Massif beyond


Start : Car park chair lift at Vicheres.

(S/E) From the parking walk along the road passing a sign post on the left up some chalets (Nid d' Amour and Bavon), ignore this and continue straight on. The tarmac road ends and becomes a stone track, walk along this in a Northerly direction.

Ignore the first turn back on the left (which goes back to the chalets) and continue straight on. At the next bifurcation, ignore the path that descends on the right and continue ascending via the left hand track. This will soon bring you to another turn back on the left. Again, ignore this turn back and continue ascending straight on (North-North-West), after about 500m you will arrive at a third turn back on the left.

(1) As before, ignore this turn back and continue straight on.

(2) After about 600m there is a further, less defined, turning on the left which you can take or, as shown, continue to the end of the track.

(3) At the end of the track take the path on the left uphill (South-West) which brings you onto the path from (2). This is marked with a prominent wooden post and yellow makers for a cross country ski trail. Turn right (West) and continue uphill to where the path flattens out in front of a boulder and multiple sign posts with the first of the great views in front of you. (Plan Beu 1828m)

(4) From in front of the boulder take the path on the left, marked with wooden sign 'Bavon' and then yellow diamonds. This path will continue to the top and you will follow, yellow diamonds, yellow flashes on trees, magenta paint flashes and some magenta snow shoe trail markers, numbered 12.

The path winds its way up through the forest following these markers. The ascent is steepest in the middle part but the trees provide shade. As the angle eases and the trees thin out there are minor branches off the path, ignore these and continue to follow the paint flashes to a good view point. Following this you will come to a distinctive split in the path.

(5) Take the right hand path that heads uphill (yellow paint flashes). It will bring you to a magnificent view over the Val Ferret and the western end of the Mont Blanc Massive, but be careful you are on the edge of a sheer cliff face. Continue upwards to the top at 2111m. where the trees thin out and the 360 degree view is spectacular. This is a great place to eat your sandwiches and enjoy the view.

(6) From the summit head on down the path in a southerly direction towards the edge of the trees until you arrive at the workings for a button tow. Below you on the left is a small cabin and the lower mechanism and a further chair lift. Walk past the button tow mechanism to where the grassy path bends left and the right to pick up a track beside the chair lift.

(7) There are three tracks leading away from here. You need to take the left most (lowest - South-West) track. You will pass under the cables from the chair lift from Vicheres and arrive at a split in the track.

(8) Take the track on the left and descend to another junction. (The path on the right goes to the cow sheds at Bavon, if you like cows then you may find a fine herd here)

(9) At this point you have two choices for the descent. The track GPX track shown is described here and an alternative in Useful Information below. Take a grassy path on your left descending ahead of you to a cabin and ski lift mechanism. (Blue piste sign at (9) Chapalet)

At the cabin turn left again and follow the path descending across the pasture, skirting the edge of the forest and then briefly through the trees (ignore the path on the right in the trees) and then across the pasture again to the chalets at Le Chapelet just above the parking. Follow the track down past the buildings to the path that descends to the end of the car park.

(1) Turn right and follow the track descending gently back to the car park (S/E)


  1. S/E : km 0 - alt. 1,597 m - Chair lift at Vicheres
  2. 1 : km 1.3 - alt. 1,706 m - Junction
  3. 2 : km 1.88 - alt. 1,726 m - Junction
  4. 3 : km 2.08 - alt. 1,735 m - Yellow makers
  5. 4 : km 2.44 - alt. 1,825 m - Boulder
  6. 5 : km 3.8 - alt. 2,069 m - Yellow paint flashes
  7. 6 : km 4.05 - alt. 2,103 m - Tsamonay summit
  8. 7 : km 4.9 - alt. 2,015 m - Downhill
  9. 8 : km 5.54 - alt. 2,022 m - Junction
  10. 9 : km 5.95 - alt. 1,988 m - Junction
  11. S/E : km 8.23 - alt. 1,598 m - Chair lift at Vicheres

Useful Information

Parking : Park at the car parking for the chair lift at Vicheres. The chair lift is closed in the summer but there is plenty of parking, although none in the shade; a reflective shield for your car windscreen will help to keep the heat down.

Alternative descent
From waypoint (9) turn back on yourself and follow the obvious broad stony track that descends to pass beneath the line of the chair lift, you may find a herd of Herens cattle in the pastures to your left. This good track descends gently and enters the forest, it passes beside a slabby outcrop of rock and brings you back to (1)

Facilities : There are no restaurants open in the summer so take all your water and refreshments with you. The top is a great place for a pic-nic.

Note :

  • Take appropriate clothing; this walk can be done wearing approach shoes or trainers with a suitable sole for grass, rock and soil.
  • Please note that the way down crosses summer pasture and cattle may be grazing. The farmers train the animals to stay within the pasture using electric fences. These may be on or off and you may have to cross them. This is easily done but please take care to keep any electric fences intact.

This walk can be extended.
At the same level of difficulty; from the button lift just before (7) continue up the grassy slopes to Le Tejeur and the top chair lift station. Then take the path on the left down to the cattle sheds and Bavon and descend from (9) as described.

Always stay careful and alert while following a route. Visorando and the author of this walk cannot be held responsible in the event of an accident during this route.

During the walk or to do/see around

The views from the summit are amazing, you get a full 360 degree panorama from Cotogna past Champex-Lac, the western peaks of the Mont Blanc massive, the Val Ferret, Tour de Bavon, across to the Grand Combin and the slopes of Mont Brule and Six Blanc above Orsieres.

There are many interesting breeds of cattle, some of which are unique to a particular area or which are used to make certain types of cheese. On this walk you may see Abondance, Simmental and Herens.
Originally unique to the Valais are the Herens breed, which are originally from Val d' Herens . These stocky animals are still entered into competitions where pairs of animals lock horns and head wrestle for the title 'Queen of queens.'

The slabby rock that you pass on this wall is the same formation that makes Li Blanche on the side of Catogne across the valley. It is a type of sedimentary rock with a mineral content that was heated and metamorphosed. It outcrops in the region (most prominently at Li Blanche) an

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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.