Grand Paradiso Ascent

Climb the 4061m Grand Paradiso with one of our experienced IFMGA Mountain Guides

The Grand Paradiso is the highest mountain wholly within Italy, and it just ticks the magic height of 4000m and so is a favourite amongst Italian mountaineers as well as everyone else!

The National Park itself is teaming with wildlife and is unspoilt by ski resorts and lifts. As we gain height and the view opens up we can see  the alps almost end to end, with Mont Blanc, the Matterhorn and the Grand Combin impressively close at hand.

Grand Paradiso AscentIt’s a great first bigger peak, technically straightforward but up an interesting glacial route with a chance to make a traverse of the mountain. We normally stay at the excellent Chabod Refuge (itself a 2 1/2 hour walk from the road) before making the ascent the following early morning. Although technically easy, the Paradiso is a long climb at high altitude and you will need a good level of fitness to make the summit and enjoy it at the same time.

After the glacial approach there is a great easy scramble to the summit block itself. We are roped throughout the whole climb and the scramble is exposed but easy. The summit day has around 1300m of ascent from the hut.

No previous alpine experience is required, as we will provide you with training on the first day and during the climb.

We can provide you with the technical mountaineering gear, have a read through of our kit list here – which is the same as our Mont Blanc kit list.

You will need to arrive the evening before in Chamonix, so as to be ready for our morning briefing on day 1.

Grand Paradiso Itinerary

Our Grand Paradiso trip is a three day programme, staying in high mountain refuges.

Day 1 – Morning briefing in Chamonix. Equipment check. There is time to buy snacks for the mountain and a packed lunch. We then head to the excellent rock climbing venue near Chamonix called Les Gaillands. We spend a couple of hours here climbing easy rock routes in big boots which is good practice for mountaineering and scrambling. It’s also an opportunity to use the harnesses and practice your knots.

We then drive through the tunnel into Italy and into the Grand Paradiso National Park (1 1/2 hour drive). The ascent to the hut takes around two and a half hours, and is a stunning alpine walk through forests with ever changing views, and hopefully some wildlife spotting along the way.

Day 2 – An early start is required for the Grand Paradiso, normally a four o’clock breakfast. The ascent takes around five to seven hours to the summit. We often descend a different route, depending on conditions and hut availability. Normally two to three hours back down to the hut and a beer!

Day 3 – A more leisurely start from the hut before an hour and a half back to the car and the drive back to Chamonix. We aim to be back in Chamonix for a late lunch.

The Grand Paradiso is also an ideal warmup for Mont Blanc, and many of our Grand Paradiso trips run side by side with our Mont Blanc courses.

Open Grand Paradiso trip dates and prices 2017

Our Grand Paradiso trips are run on a guiding only basis, with ongoing expenses split between the group members. The maximum group size is four guests to one guide. The minimum booking numbers for open courses is two.

  • Sunday 25th – Tuesday 27th June

2017 price – £545 per person. To book onto one of our scheduled trips please contact us here.

We run private courses throughout the summer on request, which can be tailored to your group including making a two day ascent of the Paradiso rather than our three day programme. Contact us with your preferred dates.

Our price includes;

  1. All guiding fees for your IFMGA Mountain Guide
  2. Hut reservations
  3. Transport whilst on the course, including travel to the Grand Paradiso national park.

Expenses to consider;

  1. Accommodation in Chamonix (we can recommend places to stay)
  2. Airport transfer from Geneva
  3. Mountain rescue insurance (BMC or SnowCard recommended)
  4. A night in the mountain refuge typically costs 65€ per person (half board) and the guides fee (discounted) is split between the group members.
  5. It’s also worth having some cash on you for drinks and snacks the huts.


Approaching the final rocky ridge on the Grand Paradiso
Approaching the final rocky ridge on the Grand Paradiso
The madonna on the Paradiso
The madonna on the Paradiso
The excellent Chabod Refuge
The excellent Chabod Refuge
Early morning on the glacier
Early morning on the glacier
The summit and north face as seen from the Chabod refuge. The normal route goes around the lower angled glacier to the right.
The summit and north face as seen from the Chabod refuge. The normal route goes around the lower angled glacier to the right.