ROUTE 14: LARRIBET REFUGE – WALLON-MARCADAU REFUGE
Larribet refuge - Col de Cambalés - Wallon-Marcadau refuge
- Time7h 25'
- Vertical rise1145 m
- Vertical descent1325 m
- Horizontal distance18,6 Km
- Type of journeyMountain Crossing
- Severity of the natural environment3
- Difficulty in movement3
- Amount of effort required4
This route starts at Larribet refuge (2072 m). A clear path heads off down the valley and after zigzagging for a while approaches the Ruisseau de Larribet river which it then follows. We cross to the other side of the river twice while heading down to a forest preceding an escarpment. This descent is achieved down zigzags leading to Cabane de Doumblas (1565 m) (crossing with routes 06 and 15). Following the left bank we head off up the Gave d'Arrens river to Labassa plain. The water in the ravine disappears and the path passes close by the Toue Labassa cabin (1700 m). We head to the left towards the steep climb that interrupts the valley, ignoring the path to the right towards Ledromeur refuge. An endless number of zigzags takes us to the crest of the hill to a flatter area and the Remoulis lakes (2040 m) which we border round to the east. An obvious path passes by Toue de Castérie cabin (2095 m) and continues its way up to Peyre Sant Martin pass. A few metres before reaching the pass itself (crossing with routes 15 and 16) we take a path to the left at a signposted crossroads. After a tight bend the route heads northeast and gains height. We reach a pass at this point leading onto a chaotic boulder field. Although it is a little difficult to follow the path here, later on there is a more defined path zigzagging along a stony slope leaving a small lake beneath us to come out at Col de Cambalés (2706 m).
The first part of the descent down the opposite side is rather hard going over broken terrain. But the path soon becomes more obvious and heads off eastwards losing height over easier ground. It leads us between the numerous Cambalés lakes over meadow and rock fields, and the first trees start to appear. After leaving the last of the lakes behind us the slope steepens and after crossing a small pine forest we finally reach Wallon-Marcadau refuge (1865 m).