Tour du Val d’Anniviers: Zinal–Grimentz (stage 3)
A hike between two valleys: from the Val de Zinal over a high pass to the Moiry dam and reservoir, followed by a descent of the wild Val de Moiry to picturesque Grimentz.
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The upper stretch of the Val d’Anniviers is formed of two branches: the larger Val de Zinal and the side valley of the Val de Moiry. This hike between the two valleys begins at the top of the Zinal–Sorebois cable car with superb views of the «Couronne Impériale» – the «Imperial Crown» of five peaks above Zinal, each higher than 4,000 m. The trail climbs the steep slopes overlooking Zinal to reach the Col de Sorebois (2,835 m) before dropping down into the Val de Moiry. A new panorama opens up: way below, the elegant curved wall of concrete that forms the Moiry dam contains the turquoise waters of the Lac de Moiry. These are fed in turn by the sparkling Glacier de Moiry at the far end of the valley, framed by snow-capped peaks. Down by the dam, attractions include a restaurant with panoramic sun terrace, a via ferrata (fixed-cable climb) and guided tours of the dam interior. The second half of the hike is a long and scenic descent of the Val de Moiry – first across open alpine pasture, then through woodland, all the way to Grimentz. The pretty village of wooden houses adorned with geraniums is exceptionally proud of its rich history and keen to share its heritage with visitors. «The Geranium Trail» explores 34 varieties of the flower and their scents, ranging from rose and orange to mint, lemon and ginger. On a guided visit to the 16th-century public hall, guests taste the local «glacier wine» matured in larch barrels in the cellar. There’s a water mill, historical trail, a fun animal trail for families, a trail devoted to local legends and even workshops at which visitors can make and bake their own Valais rye bread in traditional style – followed by a fondue with rye bread. NB The Zinal–Soirebois cable car and the Moiry dam tour are free with the Pass Anniviers Liberté. Highlights Glorious views in two neighbouring valleys Lac de Moiry – impressive dam, turquoise reservoir Grimentz – historical village of wooden houses decorated with flowers