The rocher du vent hike

Located in the Beaufortain massif in Savoie, the Rocher du vent hike has a beautiful setting with breathtaking views. Late Sprint to early Summer, the trail can still have snow but it’s also a great time to see all the flowers blooming.

The hike begins at the Plan de la Lai Refuge near the river. The trail is quite steep and it takes at least an hour to reach the canyon.

At the top, a small canyon runs along the Roc du Vent via Ferrata and leads to a small belvedere with an exceptional view of the lake and Roselend dam. The via Ferrata is pretty aerial and windy. ‘Vent’ means ‘wind’, a pretty windy place indeed!

The canyon

From the top of the hill, there is great views of the Gittaz and Roselend lakes.

Second part

Don’t forget to make a small detour to see a tunnel dug in 1936 by Spanish immigrants. It was part of a road project which aimed to connect Evian to Menton by the Alpine pass. Allow around 20 minutes for the round trip. You will need a flashlight or a phone because the tunnel isn’t lit and the ceiling quite low in some places.

Last time I went to the Rocher du vent, the sole of my shoe came off. My hiking boots were VERY old. As a result, I had to tie plastic bags to my feet since the second sole was already coming off too. Part of the descent was easier on the snow…

After the refuge (where the hike starts), is the Cormet de Roselend: a pass located at 1,968 meters high between the Beaufortain and the Mont-Blanc massifs. It is a road used by many bikers and cyclists and has often been crossed by the Tour de France!


From Annecy, it takes around 1.5 hours to reach the start of Rocher du vent hike. You can park at the Park at Plan de la Laie refuge. Along the road, there are beautiful views of Lake Roselend and higher up, a tall waterfall:

Don’t forget to buy Beaufort cheese from one of the farms on the way back. This is my favourite cheese: firm texture with powerful aromas. It is a key ingredient in Savoyard cuisine (fondue for example). It was nicknamed the “prince of the gruyères” by Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, gastronomist and political figure of the 18th century. Another cheese was renamed to its homage in the 1930s.

Altitude: 2 322 mètres
Elevation: 588m
Average time (return): 3h30