The Refuge

Link to detailed route page and map click on route title 

Refuge Oulettes du Goude

  • Distance 17 km
  • Time 4 h 18 min
  • Speed 4 km/h
  • Min altitude 1431 m
  • Peak 2176 m
  • Climb 949 m
  • Descent 921 m
February 21, 2017
We started from Pont D’Espagne and had a lovely climb c. 235m up the shoulder of a river valley through a beautiful pine forest. The path meandered up and down round trees and granite blocks and was a lovely start to the day.

Gaube lake

Gaube lake was frozen and so we were able to skin across it (keeping close to the margins!) and rejoin GR10 on the far side. More climbing through the woods up to a summer cabin and then the valley opened out. Up to this point nothing particularly tricky and lots of evidence of snowshoers. However, we then had to climb a rocky outcrop above a waterfall (Cascade Darre Splumouse) which was a bit steeper and the snow turned very sticky on our skins which was not much fun as they balled up. Decided to walk round a narrow edge instead of skin as the balling was so bad – after that however the valley opened up again and we had wonderful panoramic views of the Vignemale (3298m) which is the highest peak in the French for tea and then back down before the snow turned any warmer, makes the flat bits much harder to get across!

Great ski down with much less polling than we had thought. We took a different route from Gaube lake to the left of the main stream with the aim of contouring round to a ski run about a km from the lake. Unfortunately the whole slope had avalanched so after picking our way through some debris we decided to change plan and skied down to the stream and followed some snow trackers before contouring left onto the ski run. Much easier than combat skiing through the trees

Please click on the play button for some video clips of our ski tours in the Pyrenees

Lunch stop with Mt. Vignemale (3298m)in background

Jax at the Refuge enjoying her tea