Hiking the Mercantour French National Park: segment 1 of 3 is a 11.6 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Berthemont-les-Bains, Alpes-Maritimes, France that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.
Relais des Merveilles - Cime du Diable - Vallee des Merveilles - Refuge de Nice This is the first of a series of guides to hike the Mercantour French National Park, an approximately 30 mile trek that loops in one of the most preserved area of the park. Each segment roughly corresponds to a day on the trail. This Guide describes Segment 1 of 3: Relais des Merveilles to Refuge de Nice through Vallee des Merveilles. From the "Relais des Merveilles" in the Gordolasque valley, hike up the "Vallon des Verrairiers" which will bring you to the "Pas de Trem". For summits collectors, the "Cime du Diable" and the "Capelet Superieur" summits are very accessible. Hike down the trail to the "Refuge des Merveilles". Take a few minutes to contemplate ancestral engravings then climb up to the "Passe de la Valmasque" then get to the "Passe de Basto". Stop for the night at the "Refuge de Nice" or set-up tent close to nearby lakes. I highly recommend the one closest to the Basto Pass as it is common to see ibex (3-5pm).