Explore 360

Snowshoe & Snowmobile

Pyrenean Adventure

  • Where?

    France

  • Altitude

    2,500m

  • Duration

    4 days

  • Weather

  • Physical

    P2

  • Technical

    T2

  • P2 - Prolonged walking over varied terrain. There may be uphills and downhills, so a good solid fitness is required. Expect to be able to do a 6 to 8 hour walk over undulating terrain with a few punchy uphill climbs carrying a pack up to 6kg in weight.

    Visit our Grading Information page for a full overview.

  • T2 - Consider this a trek, although there may be occasion to use hands for short sections of easy scrambling. No previous climbing or trekking experience is necessary.

    Visit our Grading Information page for a full overview.

  • Overview

  • Date & Prices

  • Pics & Vids

  • Itinerary

  • Kit List

  • FAQs

Overview

As if snowshoeing in the stunning Valle d’Arran region of the Spanish Pyrenees isn’t enough, with this amazing weekend getaway you can experience the thrill of a snow mobile ride through the valley to your stunning hotel, before a winter trekking expedition you will remember forever! Enjoy a long weekend in the beautiful Aigüamog Valley, adrenaline-filled snowmobiling and hiking on snow shoes, with views of the high snow capped Andorran peaks in the distance. We will arrange all the professional instruction and organisation, all you need to bring is good general fitness and an adventurous spirit!

With full instruction in the use of the snowmobiles, or Ski-doos, we will have an exhilarating ride through the valley to reach our stunning spa hotel, nestled in the heart of the Aran Valley. In the safe hands of our highly experienced 360 leaders, soak up the magical winter wonderland experience and get lost in nature on this adventurous 4-day winter expedition.

Find out more
Snowshoe & Snowmobile, Pyrenean Adventure Snowshoe & Snowmobile, Pyrenean Adventure

Date & Prices

For private trips or bespoke itineraries inc. different dates, please contact the 360 office on 0207 1834 360.

A monthly payment plan is possible, please contact the office to chat through the options.

For private trips or bespoke itineraries inc. different dates, please contact the 360 office on 0207 1834 360.
A monthly payment plan is possible, please contact the office to chat through the options.

Departure & Return

Duration

Price (excl. flight)

Price (incl. flight UK-UK)

Start: 23 February 2023
End: 26 February 2023

Price without flights:  £815

23 February 2023

26 February 2023

4 days

£815

N/A

Start: 09 March 2023
End: 12 March 2023

Price without flights:  £815

09 March 2023

12 March 2023

4 days

£815

N/A

Included

  • Transfers from Toulouse airport
  • 2 full days of guided snowshoeing with your 360 Leader
  • 2 days snowshoe rental
  • Snowmobile rides to and from Banhs de Tredos
  • 2 nights shared hotel accommodation with breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Access to the Finnish sauna, thermal pool, and Jacuzzi
  • 1 nights shared accommodation in Vielha, with breakfast
  • All specialist equipment (snow shoes, poles, avalanche transceivers, probe and shovel)
  • 15% discount at Cotswold Outdoor
  • Monthly payment plan, on request

Not Included

  • Return flights to Toulouse airport
  • Personal equipment
  • Insurance
  • Alcoholic beverages, additional snacks and other items of personal nature
  • Any additional costs associated with leaving the expedition early

Pics & Vids

Itinerary

DAY 1 : Arrive Toulouse

You will be met at Toulouse airport and transferred to the stunning mountain town of Vielha. We will check in to our centrally located guesthouse, and have an introduction to snowshoe techniques and safety procedures before we begin our snow trek the next day. The evening will be spent having a relaxing dinner in a local restaurant.

(D)

DAY 2 : Snowmobile into Banhs de Tredos

Today, we begin our winter exploration and adventure! We start the day with a hearty traditional continental breakfast, load our rucksacks, snow shoes and safety equipment into the mini bus for a short transfer to the start of our adventure. Dressed ready in our mountain gear, with snow goggles and warm jackets, we will meet our snowmobile guide, and they will give us a safety briefing and instructions on the snowmobiling, before we head off for an exhilarating snowmobile ride through to the Banhs de Tredos Hotel.

The evening is ours to enjoy at this beautiful spa hotel, and we will enjoy a group dinner in the hotel’s restaurant.

(BLD)

DAY 3 : Snowshoeing

Our hotel is in the perfect location for a day of snowshoeing and, after a hearty breakfast, we will make our way out into the snow, and head out for a day on foot!

Our route will depend on the weather and how the mood takes us this morning – we will either snowshoe up through the Pla of the Montanheta, walk up the Aigüamog Valley or make our way to the Pontet de Ruda passing through the serene Porera forest but, surrounded by stunning scenery, every route is simply breathtaking.

We’re close to the entrance of Catalonia’s Aigüestortes National Park, with spectacular mountain landscapes and glistening ice-covered lakes, and the views have to be seen to be believed.

(BLD)

DAY Day 4 : Return to the UK

A continental breakfast starts the day before we wrap up warmly and head back to our snowmobiles for another adventurous ride back down through the valley.

We will then transfer back to Toulouse airport in time for our flights home.

(B)

These are subject to minor changes depending on flight arrival and departure times, weather, group dynamics and fitness and so on, but the itinerary outlined provides an excellent indication of the trek and what you will experience.

Kit List

Bags & Packs

Rucksack

Approx. 40-50L rucksack. Your day to day pack that you carry with your daily essentials, fitted with shoulder straps and importantly a waist belt

Waterproof rucksack cover

To protect rucksack from rain

Spare bag

Spare bag with spare clothes, towel, etc which can be left at Lesparrou Retreats and Adventures so you can get changed at the end of the 2 day expedition

Headwear

Sunglasses

Worth spending money on good UV filters. Category 4 wrap around style are essential due to the strength of UV rays at altitude.  Julbo is our preferred supplier

Warm headgear

This can be a warm hat, beanie, balaclava, anything to reduce the heat loss from your head

Sunblock

Buy the highest SPF you can find as UV intensifies with altitude

Lip salve

Sun cream will not work on your lips and they are very susceptible to burn without proper protection

Upper Body

Waterproof jacket (Outer layer)

Gore-Tex or event seam sealed are recommended and big enough to fit over a couple of layers. This jacket will also serve as a great windproof too

Base layer

This is the layer closest to the skin and its principal function is to draw (wick) moisture and sweat away from the skin. You can also get thermal base layers for use at higher altitudes that provide an additional insulative layer while still drawing sweat during times of high exertion

Quantity: 2

Mid layer (long sleeved fleece tops)

These are typically lightweight microfleeces or similar technology that provide varying degrees of warmth and insulation without being overly bulky or heavy to pack

Duvet jacket

Synthetic jackets recommended as they stay warm if wet. Arc’teryx recommended

Lower Body

Waterproof trousers

Like the jacket, an essential piece of kit to stay dry and should also be Goretex

Long Johns

Thermal insulation for the lower body

Underwear

Merino or wicking material, not cotton. How many pairs you take is entirely up to you

Feet

Trekking socks

Single layer or wearing 2 pairs is a personal choice and lighter weight merino wool is a good option

Quantity: 2

4 season trekking boots

Well broken in with mid – high ankle support

Hydration

Water bottles / bladder

2L capacity in  Nalgene bottles

Evening Wear

Comfortable trainers

Comfortable trainers/shoes for the evening

Evening clothes

Comfortable clothes for the evening

Swimsuit

For showers in camp or the odd swim

Toiletries

Travel towel

Travel towels from the likes of Lifesystems are perfect

Wash kit

Keep it simple on the mountain. Essentials are toothbrush, toothpaste and deodorant. Moisturiser is advisable, everything else is a luxury!

Miscellaneous

Personal medication

Keep this in your daysack

Personal first aid kit

The 360 med kits are designed to be used in emergencies and akin to an A&E rather than a pharmacy on Expeditions so please come prepared with useful meds for yourself such as painkillers (Ibuprofen if you can take it and a Paracetamol) plus blister plasters, plasters, antiseptic, rehydration sachets and any muscle rubs you wish to use.

Miscellaneous

Thermal flask

Lunch box

To put your lunch in so your sandwiches don’t get squashed, un-squashed ones are much more appetising!

Camera

Bring plenty of spare batteries and memory cards

Snacks

You will be fed very well and given snacks each day however we advise bringing a small selection as a little bit of comfort. Extra snacks can be bought en-route if needed. Energy gels and protein bars are not suitable

Head torch

We recommend Petzl head torches. Bring spare batteries.

Documentation

Passport

Don’t forget this! Your passport should have at least 6 months validity.  With your passport expiry date at least six months after the final day of travel.

Copy of passport

Just in case

Travel insurance

Copy of own travel insurance details.  And relevant contact numbers.

We have a partnership with True Traveller and would recommend that you contact them when looking for travel insurance for your trip with 360. However, it is vital that you ensure that the insurance cover they offer is suitable for you, taking your personal circumstances (items to be insured, cancellation cover, medical history) into account. Many other insurance providers are available and we do recommend that you shop around to get the best cover for you on the expedition you are undertaking.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the appropriate insurance for your intended trip.  To include medical evacuation and coverage up to the maximum altitude of this trip.

Dental check up

We recommend you have a dental check-up before your trip. New fillings can be an issue at altitude if there is an air pocket left in the gap

EH1C (formerly E111)

While you do have travel insurance, this can save you paperwork and reduce upfront costs should you have a minor ailment or need to see a local GP if you already have one

FAQs

Guides

Are your guides qualified?

All the guides working on our courses hold the International Mountain Leader (IML) qualification, which is equivalent to the French ” Accompagnateur de Montagne”. The snowmobile giudes are also all qualified instructors.

Food and Water

Where do we get drinking water from?

We will fill water bottles before we leave Vielha. There is drinking water at the hotel.

What is the food like in the hotel?

The food in the hotels is plentiful and of very good quality, often using locally sourced ingredients. Breakfasts consist of pastries, fresh bread and jams and you can expect a three course meal in the evenings.

Can allergies be catered for?

Absolutely, please inform the office of any allergies or intolerance’s and we will ensure that these are taken into account on the trek.

What if I run out of snacks? Are there places to buy stuff?

We would advise you bring enough snacks for the snowshoeing expedition with you, though it is possible to buy additional at Banhs de Tredos.

Accommodation

What is the hotel like?

The Banhs de Tredos hotel is simply beautiful! Rooms are simple and cosy, and the spa facilities a welcome break after a long day out in the snow.

Can you get a hot shower there?

Yes, hot showers are available.

Health and Safety

What happens if there is a problem on the trek?

Your 360 guides are suitably qualified for such situations and have access to rescue services.

Am I likely to suffer from altitude sickness on this expedition?

We do not go to significant enough heights on this trek to worry about any effects of altitude sickness.

The Trek

What do I do if I arrive early on the pickup day?

Toulouse centre is easily accessible from the airport by buses which run every 15 minutes. There are left luggage facilities at Toulouse train station, where the bus drops you. Toulouse is a beautiful city to explore. If you would prefer to arrive a day earlier, let the office know and we can assist with additional transfers or night in Vielha.

How fit do I need to be?

This is a fun few days of adventure! Of course, the fitter you are before coming out you’ll enjoy it far more than if you are struggling, but the days aren’t long, and the weekend is designed for all levels of experience.

Kit

What bag do I need?

A rucksack of around 40-60L should do you just fine – it’s better to have a bigger bag with space, than a smaller one with everything crammed in!

Your day sack should contain only the essential items you will need for the day and activities and your aim should be to keep it as light as possible. When out snowshoeing, we recommend you carry at least: a warm layer, waterproof jacket, your packed lunch and snacks, , water, camera, sun cream and personal medication.

If you are borrowing or buying a rucksack, ask someone to help you adjust it to fit your back. And ensure you are making these adjustments with weight inside it, not empty. Generally, it should sit reasonably high on your back so that the weight is acting vertically downwards, not forcing your shoulders back or drooping past your backside. Again, it’s about how you feel comfortable wearing it and important to get right.
Make sure too that it is either waterproof or you have a waterproof cover for your rucksack.

Do we need any technical gear for this? Is equipment provided?

Snowshoes will be provided, so standard walking gear outlined in the kit list should suffice. For the snowmobiling, all safety equipment necessary will be provided – though you will need warm trousers, coat and snow goggles.

Do I need a sleeping bag?

No, you’ll be in accommodation throughout and bedding is provided.

Can I bring my own snow shoes and/or poles?

If you have your own snow shoes which you like, this is fine. We strongly recommend that you have heel raisers and please also bring some spare items such as straps which are specific to the snow shoe in case you need to repair them. We carry a generic snow shoe repair kit for breakages but the specific ones are much better.

The Weather

What’s the weather like up there?

The climate of the Pyrenees is generally better than the UK, lovely and sunny, and reasonably warm (pretty hot lower down).  But, there is still the risk of inclement weather, so we advise in the kit list to pack accordingly). And just like any other holiday, having a quick last minute look at the forecast before you come out can be a useful pointer of what’s in store!

Travel

Flights aren’t included - what time should I arrive and depart to Toulouse?

We haven’t included flights as this gives you options from the UK. There are many flights that arrive in Toulouse daily from many different airports – chat to the 360 office team for more information.

We will be at the airport at 11.30 am on day one of the itinerary. On the day you leave, we will be dropping the team off at Toulouse airport for 2.30 pm.  (These times are approximate and are TBC.). Please, therefore, find flights that work for these timings.

If there are any issues with this please do let us know and we will also try and help, however it might mean in getting a hire car/train or taxi to your start/finish point.

Vielha is 1h 40 mins drive from Toulouse Airport.

What flights would you suggest?

For this expedition, you will need to book flights to Toulouse Blagnac Airport.  You can fly with any of the following airlines from several major airports in the UK: Easyjet, RyanAir and British Airways.

360 will meet you at a fixed pick up point at Toulouse airport with a meeting time that coincides with British Airways (BA), RyanAir (FR) and Easyjet (EZY) flights arriving from London. Please contact the office for flights arriving from non-London airports so we can arrange a suitable meeting time.

Insurance

Do I need insurance?

You must carry individual travel insurance to take part in the expedition. We cannot take you on the mountain without proof of insurance.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the appropriate insurance for your intended trip to include, at a minimum, medical evacuation and coverage up to the maximum altitude of this trip. 

Your insurance details are requested on the booking form, however this can be arranged at a later date, though we would always suggest having cancellation insurance in place at the time of booking. 360 Expeditions will be requesting your insurance details 8 weeks before your departure if we have not received them prior to this.

We have a partnership with True Traveller and recommend them as an option when looking for travel insurance for your trip with 360. Many other insurance providers are of course available and we do recommend that you shop around to get the best cover for you on the expedition you are undertaking.

Do I need an European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) for this expedition?

If you are eligible and it is available, as the trip is based in France it is also worth having a UK Global Health Insurance Card or GHIC (which replaces what was the European Health Insurance Card / EHIC). If you don’t already have one, details to apply for one are here.

Do check with your insurance whether your medical costs would be paid, in the unlikely event that you need medical treatment whilst you are away, if you are not covered by a GHIC.

Training

What training do we need for this if any?

For this snowshoeing weekend we advice you to spend time on general fitness training for walking. With some hill training.

Finance

What is your cancellation and refund policy?

Please read our terms and conditions careful before you depart. 360 Expeditions highly recommends trip cancellation insurance for all expeditions. Due to the nature and heavy costs of government and operator permits we must adhere to a stringent refund policy.

What additional spending money will we need?

You can buy beverages at the refuge a beer will be around 3 euros. They will not except cards so please bring cash.

There is also an honesty bar in the accommodation at Lesparrou, beer and wine are 2 euros each.

Electronics

Can we charge our phones and cameras at the hotels?

There will be plug sockets in the rooms in your hotel. We often advise bringing a powerpack (we recommend PowerTraveller) to ensure your phones / cameras / other electronics are charged throughout!

Do we need a travel adapter for the plug sockets in the hotel or are they the same as the UK?

The voltage is 220v / 50Hz like the UK. Rectangular or round three-pin plugs are used.

Will my mobile work?

In the cities, yes, out in the countryside, likely on and off! Most UK providers will provide coverage as part of your plan in France and Spain, but do check before you travel.

360 is more than just a trip, it’s actually becoming part of the 360 family. Their guides want you to achieve your goals. They want you to experience and share the same joy that they do on these adventures.

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