Today on the blog, we have my wonderful friend Catalina Escalante, who loves to travel, explore the outdoors, and is obsessed with visiting every corner and every lake in Switzerland. This time she tells us about a remote gem her husband and 2 daughters discovered on their way from Mont Blanc to Zermatt: Lac d’ Emosson.
Beautiful Dam overlooking the grandiose Mont Blanc mountains in the border between France and Switzerland
Lac d’ Emosson is the second largest dam in Switzerland holding 227 million m3 of water and it is situated in the beautiful Canton of Valais. This lake is in the middle between Chamonix (in France) and Martigny. We drove from Chamonix and went through the Mont de l’Arpille amazed by the towering beauty of Swiss mountains awaiting to arrive to our much-anticipated destination.
If you do not have a car you can take a three-rail system that starts with a 2-cabin funicular from Chatelard, which is one of the steepest in the world with an 87% gradient; then you get a panoramic train that showcases the beautiful views of Mont Blanc and finally ride up in mini funicular which overhangs by 30 meters.
If you drive, as you arrive in Lac d’ Emosson where there is parking space located about 50m from the dam. When you park the dam is not visible, but as you walk close there is an opening between the mountains and there you see the iconic swiss aquamarine tranquil waters that make Lac d’ Emosson.
Things to Do
As you enter the location and look to the left you are immediately greeted by the clear views of Mont Blanc. In front of you have the 79m high retaining wall that makes the arch of the dam holding the waters. All around you, there are different mountains, rocky sights, and peaceful greenery that most of us yearn.
There is a souvenir store around where you can buy a trinket (or two) and a café where you can have a drink or grab a small bite. You will experience the scenic views as you walk across the arch to the other side of the dam. If you are there for a shortstop the arch walk is good enough to take in first impressions of this location. If you have more time to spare you probably want to do one of the multiple hikes around. Probably the most interesting one is a 2.5-hour hike from the reservoir where you can find more than 800 dinosaur footprints dating back 250 million years.
We did not get a chance to walk this trail this time around, but it is definitely on the list for next time!
Catalina is one of the authors of our new book coming up – 21 Hidden Gems of Switzerland, Volume 2. Stay tuned for exquisite hidden gems all across Switzerland. To download our previous copy, for FREE, click here.
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To read posts from October, click here