Hikes

Hikes

Panorama 4000

Panoramic hike high above Crans-Montana featuring views of 4,000-metre peaks, attractive mountain restaurants and the fascinating Colombire eco-museum.

  • Difficulty

    difficult

  • Length

    12.7 km

  • Duration

    4:30 h

  • Show on map

The name of this hike neatly encapsulates its star attraction: panoramic views of the Rhône valley and the glittering 4,000-metre peaks on the far side. Walkers also enjoy a clear view down the Val d’Anniviers opposite, majestically framed by five 4,000-metre summits, with the Matterhorn in the background. Starting point is the Cry d’Er gondola summit station, with its popular restaurant and panoramic sun terrace. The first section of trail is roughly level, and leads to the Cabane des Violettes (2,208 m), run by a mountain guide. The traditional, seasonal Valais cuisine is simple but excellent: the Michelin-starred chef also runs one of the top gourmet restaurants in Crans-Montana. From here the trail sweeps around to the slopes of the Petit Mont Bonvin to begin its long descent to Montana, passing by Aminona. One of the most delightful sections follows part of the Bisse du Tsittoret, an irrigation channel built in the 15th century. This takes its water from the river La Tièche, just to the east – which downstream becomes the Raspille, linguistic border of Valais. Our trail follows the bisse downstream as far as Colombire, a mountain hamlet that has found new life as an eco-museum. Housed in lovingly restored old barns, the venue explores traditional life on the high pastures, including the intricate ballet of seasonal cultivation at various altitudes that allowed local people to meet the needs of their families and animals throughout the year. The friendly restaurant, with sun terrace, serves local specialities. The complex has also won acclaim for its innovative programme of activities year-round, from guided visits to yoga walks and workshops covering subjects from traditional woodworking and cabin-building to cheese-making and identifying edible alpine plants.   Highlights: Exhilarating hike offering panoramic views of the Rhône valley and 4,000-metre peaks Choice of welcoming mountain restaurants en route Fascinating eco-museum exploring traditional life on the high pastures

Turn-by-turn directions

The hike falls naturally into three parts. The first third, roughly level, skirts the slopes of the Bella Lui and continues climbing northwards until reaching the highest point of the hike (2,347 m) on the slopes of the Mont Bonvin.

The paths are clearly marked throughout. The trail initially leads north-eastwards to the Cabane des Violettes before turning northwards to continue up the flank of the valley.

The final two-thirds of the walk consists of a long, steady descent. At first the trail leads across open, boulder-strewn slopes above the treeline before reaching the Bisse du Tsittoret.

Our hike follows the channel downstream for just a few hundred metres, but along the way hikers will see information panels for the «Sentier de l’Air» that runs the full length of the bisse. This trail devoted to the air around us explores a range of themes from health to climate change.

At the Colombire Ecomuseum, continue on the bisse for about 3 kilometres and you will reach the intermediate station of Marolires. From there, the route finally reaches the centre of Montana via Vermala. 

Start: Cry d'Er, cable car summit station (2259 m)
Destination: Montana (1517 m)

Author's recommendation

Bring binoculars to observe the local wildlife – especially birds of prey and the many marmots that live on the high, rocky slopes.

Technical information

  • Altitude

    2347 m 1499 m

  • Ascent

    400 m

  • Descent

    1155 m

  • Technique

    Bewertung: 5.0 von 5.0 Punkten

  • Stamina

    Bewertung: 4.0 von 5.0 Punkten

  • Experience

    Bewertung: 6 von 5.0 Punkten

  • Landscape

    Bewertung: 6.0 von 5.0 Punkten

Public transport

Train to Sierre. Short walk (350 m) to funicular station for Montana. Follow the red markings on the floor to reach the funicular from Sierre train station. To reach base station of Cry d’Er gondola in Crans-Montana, either take bus in direction of Crans-sur-Sierre (bus stop «Téléphérique») or walk (approx. 2 km, 20 min). Ride gondola up to Cry d’Er. At end of walk, take bus from Aminona to funicular station in Montana, and ride funicular down to Sierre. Find full timetable information at sbb.ch.

Approach

A9 motorway, exit 28 (Sierre-Ouest) if approaching from west or exit 29 (Sierre-Est) if approaching from east. Follow signs for Crans-sur-Sierre (road via Chermignon) and then «Parking Crans-Cry d'Er».

Parking

Large car park at base station of Cry d'Er gondola. Follow the local car park routeing in Crans-Montana.

Equipment

We recommend: 

  • good footwear
  • clothing suitable for the weather: always carry a waterproof jacket
  • hat or cap
  • sunscreen
  • bottle for water
  • picnic
  • camera
  • binoculars (optional)
  • hiking poles (optional)
  • printout of this hike (click «Print» icon, to download)  

For certain walks:

  • Swimwear

Safety information

Use of the trails and the information on this website is at hikers’ own risk. Local conditions may entail changes to routes. Valais/Wallis Promotion accepts no liability for the accuracy and completeness of information on this website.

For all hikes:

  • Bring a map. Download full description of this route including large-scale map by clicking on «Print» icon, top right of this page.
  • Use marked trails only, and observe all signposting – for your own safety, to safeguard grazing animals and to avoid disturbing wildlife.
  • Close gates after passing through.
  • Please be considerate to other trail users, and to the plants and animals.
  • Do not leave any waste in nature.

For mountain hikes:

  • Take extra care protecting yourself from the sun at altitude. UV radiation can be exceptionally strong, even in cloudy weather.
  • Plan hike carefully: take into consideration fitness level of each participant, weather forecast and season.
  • Weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains, without warning. Appropriate clothing is therefore essential, along with adequate supplies of food and water. In uncertain weather, turn back in good time.

For high-altitude hikes:

  • Inform others of the route you plan to take. Whenever possible, avoid going alone.
  • Do not venture onto glaciers without a mountain guide.
  • Take note of the warning signs that point out the constant danger in river beds and along watercourses below dams and reservoirs: water levels may rise rapidly without warning.

Additional information

More information about the destination: 

Literature

The tourist office in Crans-Montana has got brochures and information material about hiking in the region.

Maps

SwissTopo maps 1:25’000: 1287 Sierre