The Tours de César circular walk

A loop above lake Bourget for a late afternoon walk.
A walk amid historical sites and beautiful viewpoints.

Technical sheet
No. 40027
A Saint-Germain-la-Chambotte walk posted on 25/08/13 by Bisserain73. Update : 04/07/19
Calculated time Calculated time: 2h50[?]
Distance Distance : 7.11km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 322m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 321m
Highest point Highest point : 826m
Lowest point Lowest point : 593m
Easy Difficulty : Easy
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Areas Areas : Jura mountains, Alps
Location Location : Saint-Germain-la-Chambotte (73410)
Starting point Starting point : N 45.779367° / E 5.874463°
Map IGN Map (Click to buy) : Ref. 3332OT
Download : -

Description

From Chambéry, keep going to Aix Les Bains and then carry on towards La Biolle, Saint Germain Chambotte, and finally Chambotte.
(D) The departure point is easy to find, below the village on the edge of the D991b. It is marked by a traditional yellow band waymark at 623m altitude.
The car park is a little lower (1). There are some parking spaces on the side of the road and a few others in a layby 80m further down the paved track.
Make sure you take the correct path at the start (2) which you then follow north for about 2km until you reach the sign for "Champ Jean Blanc". This path is marked with the small double yellow bars used for mountain biking trails.
At Champ Jean Blanc, take a sharp left (3) along a path that climbs quite steeply at times. The path has regular yellow dot waymarks on the ground.
The path leads to the ruins of Château Neuf. Together with two other towers in ruins in the nearby area, this sector is also known as the "Tours de César."
At the castle, go past the small lookout point.
Then follow the path that is signposted for Barthelliet car park 200m further on.
You will come out onto a small road, (4) which you will need to take to the right, and which then joins the road for the Col de Sapenay pass 100m further on and the small chapel of Notre Dame de La Salette (5).
Retrace your steps slightly and then take the small road mentioned above, this time towards Chez Carabin.
At the last bend in the road before the buildings, take the left-hand path (6). Before long you will reach a meadow with a small wooden building where you can relax and admire the views of the lake.
Carry on along the left of the meadow and you will reach some leafy undergrowth, which made a lovely shady path (7) when I did this walk at the end of August. This long path is overlooked in many places by impressive cliffs. Just before it reaches the road, there is a climbing site at the foot of an overhang.
Walk up the road (8) towards Chambotte. Go through a tunnel just before the village and then walk gently back down to the starting point.
From Chez Carabin the path is no longer marked, but you can’t go wrong.

Waypoints :
D/A : km 0 - alt. km 0
1 : km 1.97 - alt. km 1.97 - Champ Jean Blanc
2 : km 3.04 - alt. km 3.04 - Small road
3 : km 3.29 - alt. km 3.29 - Notre Dame de la Salette
4 : km 3.85 - alt. km 3.85 - Hairpin bed above Carabin
5 : km 4.09 - alt. km 4.09 - Start of the shady path
6 : km 5.88 - alt. km 5.88 - Route de Chindrieux
D/A : km 7.11 - alt. km 7.11

Useful Information

You will need good walking boots and walking sticks, especially for the return path under the cliffs.

We advise taking IGN maps with you on this walk. Click here to buy : 3332OT.

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

Within 200m of Notre Dame de la Salette, there is a series of viewpoints with information boards including one for the quarry, which briefly recounts the history of the monks who settled in the abbey on the edge of the lake later on.
Chambotte viewpoint can be reached by car along a small road from the hamlet. There is a panoramic restaurant at the viewpoint overlooking lake Bourget, which is very busy even on a Sunday evening, and a site above the restaurant that is open to the public with beautiful panoramas.

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