The Pic Ardiden is one of the important peaks of the valley of Lutour-Ardiden, one of the prettiest valleys of the French Pyrenees. This mountain is the highest peak of the zone and it constitutes also a magnificent observatory and one of the objective mountaineers of first order, in spite of the fact that a few meters they separate it to reach the mythical height of 3000 meters.
Of all the range of mountains that are found between them you known villages of Cauterets and Luz it emphasizes the massif of Ardiden by presenting pretty and sharp ridges that give it an aspect of high mountain. It is frequent to find in this zone abrupt gaps and granite aiguilles although the normal way of this peak generally does not overcome never the degree II.
The normal route goes across the pretty valley of Lutour and the ridge SW (with or without scale in refuge Russell). Another posibility by the north across the lakes of Ardiden exists but it's out of path (it's not advisable, the final ridge north it's a little complicated).
Valley of Lutour-Ardiden
Another peaks in the massif: Cestrède (2947m), Chanchou (2949m), Soum d'Abiste (2897m), Viscos (2141m). In the west side of massif over the valley of Lutour, near of the great massif of Vignemale, you can find more peaks: Estibe Aute (2815m), Araillé (2759m), La Sède (2976m), Labas (2941m), Estom Soubiran (2829m), Soum d’Aspé (2968m), Malh Arrouye (2965m) with pretty high lakes in the named Cirque d'Estom Soubiran.
The enthusiastic of ski arrange also of stupendous stations in this zone although neither one must forget the cyclists that have here some of the mythical ascents as Luz-Ardiden, Col de Peyresourde or Col de Tourmalette (near of the great pic of Midi de Bigorre).
Getting ThereFor approach to this area of France you must arrive to Pau or Tarbes (E80-A64 from Irun-Hendaya, E07 from Somport-Huesca, 929 from Bielsa or 117-N20 from Andorra or Catalonya). From Tarbes or Pau you must follow to Lourdes and finally to Cauterets. For approach to La Fruitiere, point of beginning of normal route, you must follow the road from this village.
Red TapeNational Park of Pyrenees, it’s forbidden the free camping. No fees, no permits.
When To ClimbSummer is the best time (june to september)
CampingNo free camping.
-Refuge Russell (free, not guards, 15 places, little tax or 3€, Tel:05 62 36 93 23-club Alpin of Tarbes)
-Little hut in La Fruitiere (to 50m of Hotel, free, 10 places)
-Refuge d'Estom (guard, 30 places, Tel: 05 62 92 74 86)
-Chalet-Hotel of La Fruitiere (Tel: 05 62 95 52 04)
-Many hotels in Cauterets
Mountain ConditionsMeteo France
Books and mapsEsp.Pirineos 2002-Las 50 cumbres mas bellas (sua)
Pirineos 1000 ascensiones vol III (M.Angulo, elkar)
- Routes Vignemale-Ardiden
good page with routes of the peaks of the zone with maps and pictures (text in frech)
- Club Alpin-Refuge Russell
dates of the refuge of the Club Alpin
- Pic d'Ardiden
the route (in french) with picture of the sight from the summit
Information about Hautes Pyrenees