Time: 7.25h. Up: 1170m. Down: 1130m.
Distance: 15.5km. Difficulty: medium.

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Stage 64: Chiappera (1640m) to Larche (1675m)

Click and drag on map above to see area around trail. Click here for large zoomable map.

Back into France... wouldn't want to overdo the Italian thing. Today's hike is a steep climb to and descent from the 2685m Col de Sautron through some very rough and rocky countryside which will do a number on your boots.

In fact, by this time you will probably have worn out your first pair of H2H boots and be working on your second (I recommend planning to make the switch in Montreux or Chamonix). Moreover you will most likely be wearing your second sets of shorts, socks, shirts, and underwear, and perhaps using your fourth set of hiking poles. The H2H is a tough hike... I hope you will still be going strong on your first pair of legs!

Larche, by the way, is a pleasant but, given that it first shows up in historical records in the 12th Century, oddly modern village. The explanation is that it has been repeatedly damaged or destroyed due to being just downhill from one of the lowest passes between France/Savoy and Italy/Piedmont.

For example, in 1693 it belonged to Piedmont and was burned to the ground by the Duke of Savoy. In 1945 it belonged to France and, after being occupied by first the Italians and then the Germans, was completely destroyed during their retreat. Despite repeated setbacks, the proud and resilient Larchois have always rebounded and rebuilt their village... recently being awarded the honorary title of "Village Fleuri" as recognition for their efforts. A nice place to spend the night.

Todays hike follows the same trails as the Via Alpina. From Chiappera head down the valley for a couple of kilometers to just above Saretto. There turn right and climb, at times very steeply, to the Col de Sautron (2685m). Descend on the far side to Larche.

Alternatives: there is no way to shorten the day, and if the weather is bad, don't hike: the trail is too steep and the pass too high to be safe in a storm.
Map: IGN-3538ET Aiguille de Chambeyron.

The House to House blog... stage 64.

<A couple of representative photos from this stage will be added here after the hike>
In the meantime, click here to go to all of the H2H photos on Flickr.

GPS Track
<To be added during or after hike>

Room and Board Options
Lunch: picnic.
Dinner and overnight: there are a several places to stay and eat at in Larche (for a complete list, see here).

Getting There and Back
Chiappera: from Cuneo, where there is a railway station, infrequent buses go the 43km up-valley to Aceglio, from which you can walk or take a taxi 7km up the road to Chiappera (contact information for taxi and bus here, and for train schedule information, see Trenitalia).
Larche: not an easy place to get away from. The nearest railway station in France is at Gap... 100km away... and the nearest one in Italy is at Cuneo... 70 km away. Nevertheless Gap is probably cheaper and easier to reach. First take a taxi the 27km to Barcelonnette, then catch one of the infrequent buses for the 1.5h drive to Gap (contact information for taxi here, for the bus here, and for train schedule information, see the SNCF). Note that the bus company has regular (but also infrequent) service to Nice and Marseille as well.
ViaMichelin Road Map and Driving Directions: centered on Chiappera, centered on Larche.

Background Information and Links
Many and various...

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