Chartreuse Regional Nature Park was created in 1995 on one of the smallest (but most beautiful) mountain ranges in France, between Isère and Savoie, bordered by Grenoble in the south, Chambéry in the north, and Voiron in the west. The ski season in the Chartreuse Mountains runs from December to March and the skiable terrain is made up of 160 mi of slopes for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing and 65 slopes for downhill skiing (24 of which are part of Saint-Pierre-de-Chartreuse's only ski resort). Classified as a Regional Nature Park, this mountain range situated in the heights of Grenoble and opposite the Vercors provides the ideal terrain for ski touring, the perfect sport for getting closer to nature, among the fir trees and spruces, in a mountain range that is 60% covered in forestland (the largest national forest in the Alps) and often blanketed in snow all thanks to its location in the French Prealps. Don't miss out on climbing to the highest summit in the Chartreuse Mountains, Chamechaude, 2,082 metres above sea level, where you can enjoy a magnificent view that extends right across to the Vercors! Easily accessible (just a 30-minute drive from Grenoble), the Chartreuse Mountains offer a medium-altitude setting where the resorts are significantly cheaper than those up on the higher mountains in the Alps, with the cheapest adult ski passes starting at just £8.50! In the summer, skiing gives way to hiking, as well as mountain biking, paragliding, climbing and speleology, among other sports, which are all great ways to admire the lynxes, chamois, golden eagles, marmots, alpine ibexes and black grouse (a type of wild cockerel) that live in these mountains. Accessible only on foot, the Réserve Naturelle des Hauts de Chartreuse (Hauts de Chartreuse Nature Reserve) stretches across the high plateaus at the heart of the Chartreuse Mountains, from Mont Granier in the north to the Dent de Crolles in the south.
The climb to Chamechaude located at 2082 meters is a must. Here you can enjoy a wonderful panorama with views as far as Vercors!© Yoann MORIN / 123RF
This mountain range located in the heights of Grenoble, opposite the Vercors Regional Natural Park, offers a perfect playground for cross-country skiing.© Fotosearch / GraphicObsession
In summer this is a perfect place for hiking, but also mountain biking, paragliding, climbing, caving and much more.© David Hughes / 123RF
You will find lynx, chamois, eagles, woodchucks, ibex and black grouse (a type of wild cockerel).© Fotosearch / GraphicObsession
Accessible only by foot, it extends to the highlands in the heart of the Chartreuse mountain range from Mont Granier in the north to the Crolles Dent in the south.© Willy Vendeville / 123RF