GR10 self-guided Section 3 : From Etsaut to Cauterets

Central Pyrenees
Self-guided GR10
Self-guided Walking
7 Days
6 Nights
6 Activity Days
From 450,00 €

From Etsaut to Cauterets, the GR10 takes you through the Pyrenean National Park. Created in 1967 to preserve an exceptional natural heritage, the park stretches from the Aspe valley to the Aure valley, along the Spanish border and two departments, the Pyrénées-Atlantiques and the Hautes-Pyrénées.

Setting off from Etsaut, via the famous chemin de la Mâture, you will reach the grandiose surroundings of the Ossau valley, that opens out before you and affords a spectacular view of the pyramid-shaped  Pic de Midi d'Ossau that culminates at 2884m. 

From Gabas to Arrens valley, passing through the ski resort of Gourette, you encounter a succession of lakes and villages in stone and slate and a never-ending wilderness that serves as summer pastures.  After having discovered the Arrens and Estaing valleys, you finish your holiday in the spa town of Cauterets, capital of the Bigorre.

Dates and Prices


Every days from the middle of June to the end of September.
Booking from 2 people (solitary traveller: consult us).


From 15/06/2024 to 30/09/2024 :

Prices with luggage transfer :
- Price per person for a group of 2 persons : 675€
- Price per person for a group of 3 persons : 605€
- Price per person for a group of 4 persons : 575€
- Price per person for a group of 5 persons : 555€
- Price per person for a group of 6 persons : 545€

Prices without luggage transfer :
- Price per person for a group of 2 persons : 475€
- Price per person for a group of 3 persons : 465€
- Price per person for a group of 4 persons : 460€
- Price per person for a group of 5 persons : 455€
- Price per person for a group of 6 persons : 450€

Extras :

- Comfort version (4 nights in rooms) : 110€/pers
- Extra for a single room (if comfort version) : 115€/pers
- Extra 6 picnics : 75€/pers
- Transfer back from Cauterets to Etsaut on a week day : 290€/transfer 
- Transfer back from Cauterets to Etsaut on Sundays and public holidays: 325€/transfer
- Extra night in Etsaut half board double room : 75€/pers
- Extra night in Etsaut half board single room : 105€/pers
- Extra night in Etsaut half board shared dormitory : 45€/pers 
- Extra night in Cauterets half board double room : 65€/pers
- Extra night in Cauterets half board single room : 70€/pers
- Extra night in Cauterets half board shared dormitory : 55€/pers

Price includes

- Half-board accommodation

- Luggage transport (depending on the option chosen) except for the two nights in a refuge on days 2 and 6

- Dossier containing maps, route notes (1 for 4 persons, given in 1st accommodation)

- GPS tracks if you ask us + access to the detailed itinerary on the Mhikes GPS mobile application

Price doesn't include:

-Holiday and travel insurance
-15€ for booking fees
-Showers in the mountain huts
-Drinks and picnics

Day 1 : Start of your holiday in Etsaut

Once you have settled into your accommodation you can visit villages of Etsaut or Borce and the Maison du Parc.

The Moulette Bridge

Easy hike in shady loop up to the Moulette bridge, in the forest to discover high barns. Distance : 4km, duration : around 2h15, altitude gain : +330m, descent : -330m.

Day 2 : From Etsaut to Ayous refuge

Today’s walk is challenging with 1700m altitude gain. It offers scenery of an amazing magnitude: the Chemin de la mature, the plateau of Baigt-Sencours, shepherd’s cabins and as a highlight, the vision of the Pic du Midi d’Ossau, whose reflection shimmers in the waters of the lake Gentau. Distance : 15km, duration : around 6h45, altitude gain : +1650m, descent : -300m.

Day 3 : From Ayous refuge to Gabas

Setting out from the refuge at Ayous, the GR10 drops down to the village of Gabas. Today's walk is shorter and it's a chance to recuperate after yesterday's efforts (or longer variants). The distance from the lake to the village isn’t far and will take about 3h00. The village is typically Pyrenean and situated in the famous valley of Ossau, with an emblematic summit, an exceptional flora and fauna, as well as a super cheese ! Possibility of two different longer variants: via Lac Bersau or via the Col de Suzon. •    Distance : 10km, duration : 3h30, altitude gain : +50m, descent : -950m. OR Distance : 12,5km, duration : 4h30, altitude gain : +200m, descent : -1100m (Variant Lac Bersau). OR Distance : 20km, duration : around 8h, altitude gain : +900m, descent : -1800m (Variant Col de Suzon)

Day 4 : From Gabas to Gourette

Today’s walk is strenuous, the climb up to the Hourquette d'Arre which culminates at 2465m, this is the highest part of the GR10 in the Pyrenees Atlantiques. You descend towards the lake Anglas and continue down to the ski station, Gourette. There is a good chance that you will be able to observe some remarkable fauna such as the majestic rare vautour fauve, vultures, royal eagles, mountain isards and marmots. Late snow covering is regular on this stage : a variant enabling to avoid the high point of Hourquette d’Arre can be organized. Possibility to shorten the hike with a morning transfer or divide the hike in 2 by adding an extra night, please contact us. Distance : 21,5km, duration : around 9h, altitude gain : +1700m, descent : -1400m OR Distance : 30km, duration : around 11h30, altitude gain : +2050m, descent : -1750m (Snow variant).

Day 5 : From Gourette to Arrens Marsous

Today’s stage of the GR10 is a transition, the trail crosses the border between the Béarn and Bigorre regions. You will be walking across high summer pastures and past shepherd's cabins to the Col de Tortes at an altitude of 1799m and on to the Col de Saucède at 1525m. You will arrive at the village of Arrens in the Val D’Azun valley, the first market town of the Bigorre region. Then you will reach the village of Estaing via the Bordères pass. Distance : 13,5km, duration : around 6h, altitude gain : +900m, descent : -1400m 

Day 6 : From Arrens Marsous to Ilheou refuge

From Arrens, you will reach the village of Estaing and its lake, framed by wooded slopes. Then the GR10 joins the high mountain pastures of the Ilhéou pass (2242m), after having passed the Arriousec and Barbat huts. From the pass, the path descends to the Lac d'Ilhéou or Lac Bleu, and its guarded refuge. In case of late snow, a variant is proposed, outside the GR10, by a balcony itinerary, passing above the Lac Noir. Distance : 18km, duration : around 7h30, altitude gain : +1650m, descent : -550m 

Day 7 : From Ilheou refuge to Cauterets

Just a short walk for the last section of this part of the GR10. To Cauterets, passing by the Escala d’Ilhéou, you will no doubt have the chance to see marmottes and isards. In this high, airy mountain ambiance there are many traces of glacier erosion, lakes and moraines. Possibility of a longer variant via the Haugade Pass and the Marcadau Valley. Distance : 8km, duration : around 3h, altitude gain : +50m, descent : -1100m. OR Distance : 18km, duration : around 6h30, altitude gain : +500m, descent : -1550m (variant).

This programme is an example of the itinerary we aim to adhere to. It may be necessary, if situations arise that are beyond our control, for the itinerary to be modified.


Day 1 at your accommodation in Etsaut (64), according to your time of arrival.


Day 7 in Cauterets (65), after your walk.


Level 4/5
Trained hiker, in good physical condition with a experience of mountain hiking. Hiking of 7h-8h per day on average, altitude difference of 1000m-1300m on average, on accessible trails but also in rough terrain, with some small technical difficulties. The walking times mentioned are given as an indication, they are average times that only take into account the duration of the actual walking without counting the break times. Depending on the weather conditions, the walking pace can also vary, ranging from +300m to +500m of climb per hour. 


Half board
3 nights in a shared dormitory in mountain refuges on days 2, 4 and 6. Bring a sack sheet (blankets provided)
3 nights in a shared dormitory in gite on days 1, 3 and 5. Bring a sack sheet (blankets provided)

COMFORT VERSION  (with extra) :
2 nights in room in guest rooms on days 1 and 3
1 night in a hotel*** in room on day 5

1 night in a hotel** in room on day 4
2 nights in shared dormitory in mountain refuge on days 2 and 6. Bring a sleeping bag liner (blankets provided)

- Continental breakfast (tea, coffee, milk, butter, jam) 
- Evening meals in accommodations, often based on local specialities, include a starter, a main course and a dessert. - Picnics not included. They can be reserved in advance (with extra). Or you can buy them directly at your accommodation or at the grocery stores, mini-markets and bakeries listed in the roadbook.
- Drinks not included. 

Luggage porterage

You will need to carry a day backpack only. Our bag-moving service means you can travel light during your walks. Your main luggage (that should please be easily transportable) will be transported by vehicle except for the nights in mountain shelters, D2 and D6, where you have to carry your necessary personal belongings for the night, including a lightweight sleeping bag or liner, change of clothes, toiletries. Unless you have chosen the version without luggage transport, in which case you'll carry all your gear from one stage to the next.


Self-guided walking, without guide.

Pyrenean travel agency specializing in your hikes and treks in the Pyrenees, the GR10 and more
ARIEGE: 20 chemin de la montagne, 09000 FOIX
+33 (0)5 34 14 51 50 - +33 (0)6 10 97 16 54
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