Climbing - Lac Besson site

Equipment : Rock climbing site, Climbing site

Recently equipped, the Lac Besson cliffs offer a varied and highly enjoyable style of climbing. 142 pitches on 2 sites:
- Les rochers des Plates, for beginners.
- La falaise du lac besson, a site for those navigating between 5 and 6.

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Difficulty: 3 > 7a
Starting altitude: 2,300 m
Number of routes: 142
Maximum height: 120 m
Rock type: gneiss
Exposure: west
Approach time: 20 to 30 min

IGN top 25, 3335 ET Alpe d'Huez
Topo escalade en Isère, Ze topo tome 2, FFME

This long bar alternates between multi-pitch routes, shorter sport routes and children's sections. On the whole, the routes are fairly steep slabs and walls with straightforward holds. Appropriate skills and equipment (helmets recommended, as rock falls are common).
A detailed document on the sites is available for consultation at Alpe d'Huez Tourisme.

It is your responsibility to assess your climbing ability. Respect safety rules. Check your equipment.
In view of its environmental capabilities (altitude, location, weather conditions), the Alpe d'Huez site may be classified as MOUNTAIN terrain, which means that the user must have the appropriate skills, precautions and equipment.
- Helmet Indispensable: winter is harsh, and despite purging the opening, some stones may have been loosened by frost.
- Check the weather forecast... Thunderstorms can be very violent here.
- Keep an eye on equipment: modern routes are equipped with stainless steel studs (10 or 12 mm) or sealed rings, and belays for abseiling or moulinettes are chained. All pitons, spits of 8 and belays with straps in the cliffs correspond to icefall anchors or old routes that have not been re-equipped. Their solidity is highly questionable!
> Equipment: 100 m abseil rope for long routes, 80 m attachment for the longest pitches. 16 quickdraws (not including belays) are sufficient for most routes, as there is no need to use jammers for climbers at route level.


Free access.

Opening periods

From 01/06 to 31/10.

Equipments and characteristics

  • Pets refused


From Alpe d’Huez, take the road leading to Lac Besson and park at the lakeside car park. Take the footpath signposted ‘site d’escalade’ which will take you to the central ‘secteur’, called ‘Ice Bill’ (15 minutes). A sign shows you where the other climbs are, but they are all easily accessible within a 5 - 10 min walk. During the tourist season, the site can also be accessed from Oz-en-Oisans using the Poutran cable car, followed by 15 minutes on foot.

  • Latitude: 45.116994
  • longitude: 6.092734


  • Mountain location
  • Ski resort