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Barre des Écrins
The Barre des Écrins and the Glacier Blanc
The Barre des Écrins and the Glacier Blanc
Highest point
Elevation 4,102 m (13,458 ft)
Prominence 2,044 m (6,706 ft)
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Location Hautes-Alpes, France
State/Province FR
Parent range Dauphiné Alps
First ascent 25 June 1864
Easiest route snow/rock climb

The Barre des Écrins is a mountain in the French Alps. It is the highest peak of the Massif des Écrins and of the Dauphiné Alps mountain range. It is in the Écrins National Park (French: Parc national des Écrins), one of the ten French national parks.

It is the only mountain 4,000 m (13,123 ft) or higher in France that is outside the Mont Blanc Massif. Before the annexation of Savoy, that was part of the Kingdom of Sardinia, in 1860, it was the highest mountain in France.


Barre des Écrins - South face
The south side of Barre des Écrins

Barre des Écrins is in the northeast of the Hautes-Alpes department (commune of Pelvoux), Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region, in southeast France.

The south side of the mountain is rocky while the soil of the north side is covered with ice because here starts a glacier, the Glacier Blanc.

Barre des Écrins is surrounded by four glaciers:

  1. Glacier Blanc, on the north side. It is 5 km (3.1 mi) long.
  2. Glacier Noir; its northern part is on the southwestern side of the mountain. It is 3 km (1.9 mi) long.
  3. Glacier de la Pilatte, or Glacier du Vallon de la Pillate, on the western side. It is short, 1.5 km (0.9 mi) long, and divided now in three parts.
  4. Glacier de Bonne Pierre, to the northwest of the mountain. It is 3 km (1.9 mi) long.


The first recorded ascension of the peak was made on 25 June 1864 by the Englishmen Adolphus Warburton Moore, Horace Walker and Edward Whymper, guided by Michel Croz from Chamonix and Christian Almer from Switzerland.

William Auguste Coolidge, a mountain climber from United States made the first direct climb up the north side of the Barre des Ecrins in July 1870.

The Barre des Écrins and the Glacier Blanc

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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Barre des Écrins para niños

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