Experience the highest mountain in the Alps from our trek around Mont Blanc. The trek, designed to be unbelievably fun, cultural and doable, brings us to mountain villages in France, Italy and Switzerland. Everyday, we stay at a different bed and breakfast, experiencing the best hospitality of the Alps and getting away from the crowds. Campers need not carry their bags, as a support van will transport luggage and is available for safety. With mesmerizing views of glaciers, valleys and Mont Blanc, this is an adventure that will not soon be forgotten!
FRENCH ALPS: WHITEWATER RAFT, ZIP LINE & COMMUNITY SERVICE
After an incredible trek around Mont Blanc, Bold Earth campers spend the final days of Bold Alps in Chamonix. Located on the border of France, Italy and Switzerland, Chamonix is a world-famous adventure town. Under the shadow of the Alps, we experience the best adventure activities! Starting with a zip-Line adventure, campers experience rappelling and zip-lining above a narrow canyon and above waterfalls. The next day, we whitewater raft, experiencing class 3-4 rapids on the adventure of a lifetime. To end the Bold Alps trip, we take a cable car ride to the top of the famous Aiguille du Midi, to experience incredible views of the Alps and of our accomplishments trekking around Mont Blanc!
- Geneva: Welcome and Goodbye
- Les Contamines : Start of Mont Blanc Circuit
- Courmayeur: Italian Alps and Gondola
- La Fouly: Best of the Swiss Alps
- Chamonix: Canyoneer & Whitewater Raft
Buying Guide: The packing list above is mandatory for your trip; however, the linked items are just shopping recommendations. Backpacks, sleeping bags, and sleeping pads may also be purchased from an outdoor store that has tested gear for varied environments. More generic gear such as mess kits, duffel bags, etc. can be bought relatively inexpensive at Target, Walmart, etc. Feel free to find the gear that suits you and your budget best. The Bold Earth office welcomes and expects questions about packing and equipment!
Travel and Packing Tips: Don't worry about how your backpack is arranged right now. Once you arrive, your Trip Leaders will show you the most efficient way to pack your bag for a multi-day trip. If you have the space for it, a great idea for your airport and travel days is to pack your empty backpacking backpack into your duffel bag. This will reduce your checked bags from two to one.
Spending Money: Bring approximately $75 per week. For most campers this is more than enough. This is for personal expenses and gifts. Unless there is an emergency, Bold Earth will not advance money.
Identification: ID is required when checking in for flights. Bring along a picture ID, library card, school ID or state ID card. Your trip leader will be happy to hold any ID or important documents.
Helmets: Helmets are provided and required for rafting and ice climbing.
Laundry: We visit laundromats weekly. You will wash your own clothes, we provide the suds, coins and know-how. Many participants have identical jeans, socks, hiking boots, etc. A good practice is to put your name on items which are not unique to you.
Trip Journal: Bring along a notebook to record the challenges and successes of your adventure. Forest Service (“USFS”) and National Park Service (“NPS”): Bold Earth is required to notify all participants that, to the extent a court determines USFS and NPS restrictions on waivers of liability apply to Bold Earth as a matter of law, Bold Earth’s liability for negligence may not be waived while you are traveling on those affected lands.
Reading List: The people, places and activities you will encounter on your trip are diverse and incredible. These are a few books offering background information. We suggest you consider reading these books before, during or after your adventure. Also, you might like to read Outside Magazine, Backpacker Magazine, Climbing Magazine, Rock & Ice or Trilogy Magazine, available everywhere. For additional adventurous reading, check out Extreme Classics: The 100 Greatest Adventure Books of All Time
Active? Yes. 14 non-stop days of Adventure Sport
• 7 days to trek around Mont Blanc, highest mountain in the Alps • Whitewater Raft • Canyoneering & Rapel • Italian, Swiss & French – Culture!
Trekking in the soaring Alps is as good as it gets! Bold Earth’s Bold Alps takes campers to the Italian, Swiss and French adventure capitals of Europe!
Seven days of trekking in the Alps is INCREDIBLE! Bold Earth carefully selects the hiking terrain for its beauty, relative ease and diversity in culture and views. Think of this less as a pure trekking trip and more of a trekking + eating + jumping in lakes + laughter + best friends ever trip! Hiking in a small group leads to incredible group bonding as we share the ups and downs (literally!!) of the Mont Blanc circuit. We experience the best food, authentic locals and avoid the crowds. This trip rocks!
This is NOT a backpacking trip. Campers DO NOT carry a heavy backpack during Bold Alps. Participants carry a small backpack with a small amount of clothing and toiletries. Because we stay in refuge’s we do not bring sleeping bags or pillows. We do laundry in Courmayeur, Italy half-way through the trip. This makes the hiking WAY MORE FUN! Campers will carry a small school style day-pack with rain coat, water and their lunch – that’s it!
Bold Earth spends countless hours securing incredible, perfect and ideal accommodations for Bold Alps. Bold Earth does it best! YES, you will be comfortable!
8 Nights Refuge: Bold Alps stays in small mountain huts with bunk beds, hot showers and delicious food. With few rooms and incredible owners, the refuges are accessible only by hiking! While rustic, the accommodations are very comfortable they offer Bold Earth participants an opportunity to learn about more about the culture of the French, Italian and Swiss Alps. With home cooked meals, amazing singing, fireplaces and cozy beds, the lodging on Bold Alps is quintessential Alps. With few other tourists, we explore Europe with the way locals do. You will share a room with 1-3 other campers of your same gender and will always have your own bed. This is a great way to get to know each other!
4 Nights Hotel: Four nights of Bold Alps are spent in a hotel in Chamonix, France. The beginning and end of the trip bring us to Chamonix for adventure activities and some time in this awesome town.
Bold Alps is carefully crafted and planned. Where, how and why we pick every night’s lodging is why you select and put your trust in Bold Earth and we honor that trust.
CLICK Bold Alps’ Packing List for a carefully detailed description of exactly what to bring.
The gear list for Bold Alps is designed to be as simple as possible. We do recommend a good pair of hiking boots and trekking poles, but other gear is not technical. It is highly recommended to break in your hiking boots before the trip.
We do laundry half-way through the trip! Therefore, you only need to bring 7 days worth of equipment.
Give Bold Earth a call at 303-526-0806 if you have any questions. A Bold Earth trip advisor is always available to help.
Small group size = SUCCESS!
• Maximum of 15 incredible and enthusiastic campers • 2 adult trip leaders (at least one male and one female)
Group size matters! A small group puts YOU right in the center of the action and success. Bold Alps will include a maximum of 15 Campers and 2 Adult Trip Leaders. You should expect knowledgeable and experienced guides to make the trip safer and 100% solid.
Small groups allow campers to embrace culture, cooking, leadership and responsibility. This is the RIGHT way to do Europe!
Bold Earth partners with local European organizations to bring the highest level of authenticity to YOUR Europe summer. A European trip designed, led and managed by Europeans – OF COURSE! People who know Europe know the difference. It is not unusual for Europeans to join our European trips. We consider this the ultimate compliment.
Mostly by sleds… NO… BUT, THAT WOULD BE AWESOME!
Unfortunately, since the end of the last ice age, it is not possible to travel by sled during the months of July and August… Ok, back to reality!
Bold Alps does not travel much! That is a good thing. We are traveling by foot as we circumnavigate Mont Blanc. We travel by private van to and from Geneva. All travel is carefully planned and coordinated to maximize activities & culture and minimize time spent in the van.
All travel while on Bold Alps is fully included (Flights ARE NOT included). Please view Bold Alps Trip Blogs to get a better idea of travel and day to day activities.
Yes! Bold Earth is a FUN educational environment. Learn teamwork, outdoor skills, cooking skills, leadership and much more on Ultimate Alps.
Leadership is a planned part of every Bold Earth day. All campers will be the Leader of the Day (LOD), and will take charge of the trip and lead a nightly meeting.
Campers will return home feeling more confident, more of a leader and more self aware with a deeper appreciation of the world around them.
Yes, for all non-Europeans, a valid passport is needed to enter Europe.
The Alps are an EPIC mountain range that dominate the majority of south central Europe. Austria, Slovenia, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Germany, France, Italy and Monaco all have boundaries touched by this epic wonderland of adventure. The mountains were formed over hundreds of millions years as the African and Eurasian tectonic plates collided, creating a series of sharp, cragged peaks.
Approximately 15 million people share the mountains with abundant flora and fauna. Edelweiss flowers bloom on the rocky slopes while ibex roam the high tops of the mountains. Also, people yodel – which we think is cool!
Mount Blanc is the highest point in the Alps. At 15,782ft (4,810m), Mount Blanc is shared by Italy and France. The Matterhorn is probably the Alps’ most iconic mountain! It is sweet and powerful!
The Alps are an incredible place for adventure. The birthplace of mountaineering, climbing and snow sports, this is a region where adventure is part of the culture. The Alps have hosted 5 different Winter Olympic games – WOW! It goes without saying that this is adventure at its best!
THE BEST! Ski and ride in the summer? OF COURSE!
Because of the altitude and size of the Alps, it makes for perfect summer weather. Temperatures will be around 70ºF (20ºC) during the day with cooler nights.
On the slopes, weather is cooler. Dropping down to about 40ºF (5ºC).
Since 1976 over 16,000 students from all 50 US states and 55 countries have joined Bold Earth! We encourage you to contact our alumni directly to find out about the quality of our leaders, depth of programing and what a summer with Bold Earth is really like.
We want careful and selective families to choose Bold Earth. Our offerings are only as good as the families who choose Bold Earth Adventures. Our target student is responsible, informed and enthusiastic. To receive a list of references: Call the Bold Earth Teen Adventures office at 303-526-0806 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org! Please mention the trip you are interested and where you live.
GREW AS A PERSON!
I really grew as a person on Bold Alps. Everyday was a completely new experience. The cultures that I witnessed while there, I had been familiar with before, but I had never achieved an educated perspective to the extent that Bold Earth showed me. And the adventure on top of that made for the trip of a lifetime.
PARENTS, Jody & Andrew: Bold Alps looked like a terrific trip was planned and executed. Ian said the sites and activities were amazing and awesome. The blogs were great. I liked that each child had a turn to write. I called the office once and my questions and concerns were fully answered. Ian really liked the three leaders. From our point of view, he was on a trip to places he would not normally go to in a manner he would not normally experience
PARENTS, Jennifer & Erik: Katherine had a fabulous trip on Bold Alps, what a great experience. Johan Annie & Els did a great job leading the group, keeping them safe, providing alternate activities due to weather, etc. Very appreciative! Bold Earth, thank you for everything.
PARENTS, Jamie & Rob: Justin had a great time on Bold Alps. It was a bit out of his norm which was great. The Bold Earth leaders were positive, helpful, and fun. He enjoyed the places and meeting new friends.
WHAT AN ITINERARY!
The activities on Bold Alps were phenomenal and the diversity of the group made everything ten times more interesting. You could tell that whoever planned this trip had done everything that we had done personally and took A LOT of thought and time into planning it. The trip was amazing and I hope to be coming back to Bold Earth next year!
Bold Alps was absolutely amazing. The places and activities were fantastic, especially the trekking and canyoning. Also, the trip leaders and other campers were very adventurous and fun to be around. I really enjoyed every aspect of the trip and am looking forward to hopefully doing another Bold Earth trip in the future!
IT WAS AMAZING!
Bold Alps was amazing!!!
PARENTS, Hillary & Mark: A tremendous trip and one that he was fortunate and lucky to experience. The ability for a teenager to travel to such beautiful places under excellent supervision was just spectacular. Although Justin has has had the opportunity to experience nature, mountains and the outdoors and all the associated activities throughout his life, to do so in a foreign country is special. The international experience of visiting the Alps region and living for three weeks in a foreign area added a flavor and texture which is just not possible in the United States. The culture, the food and the people Justin came in contact with was what made the biggest impact on me. The Bold Earth experience met all our expectations. Thank you very much.
PARENTS, Michelle & Joel: Noah had the greatest trip!!! He really did. I think it was way more than he expected it to be. He loved all the activities. The camping was new to him. He had a great time with all the kids too. All around it was the greatest experience for him, and I think he will remember it forever. Thanks again Bold Earth for everything!!!
PARENTS, Syndi & Robert: Drew had an amazing adventure and Bold Alps was a life changing experience! He will carry this with him forever! Thanks!
Travel Made Easy!
- Fly Together: Our goal is to fly together as a group. All students are met upon arrival and families are called immediately from the airport.
- We recommend participants book flights three months before departure. Booking around April 1st allows the Bold Earth team to guarantee low fares and maximum coordinated group flights.
- Combine 2 Trips: Many Bold Earth participants combine Bold Earth trips. Call or e-mail our office for more information.