GR 20 27.04 - 10.05 (south-north direction)


Posted: Tue, Feb 4, 2014, 13:50


There are two of us planning GR 20 starting south is early May of 2014.
I've examined a vast amount of information on this route, but still several issues are not clear.
Hope someone of you can help! :)

- Can we rely that gas or fire will be in EACH refuge, so we can cook there?
If no, can you help suggesting what amount of gas for our stove should be taken? Is 450g would be enough? (I'm going to buy Optimus Crux for the purpose).

- It seems it is forbidden to take a gas balloon on the airplane. Is buying gas baloon in Bastia a problem? Can you suggest a place for that?

- We are thinking to reduce amount of food to be taken with us from the start. Cause all in all it's appears to be 13 kilos. How many places on the route (like Vizzavona probably) where we can easily and guarantee buy basic things like buckwheat/sugar/wurst/rice?

- We are not really experienced with snow, and I've heard that bypassing some areas because of the snow can be an option. What do you think is it a good idea and can be easily done in most places? Or we shall consider completely changing our route when facing huge snow problems?

- Do we need to get any approvals to apply to this route? Or register our group somewhere before starting it?

- Shall we take any special medicine or tick sprays for some kind of dangerous bugs that appear on the route this time?

- We are arriving at Bastia 25th of april. Since bus to Conca leaves at 16, and we land at 18 - it seems that the only option for us is a taxi. Is that right?
If so - anyone who would like to share - you are welcome! :)

Thank you so much for any help in advance!!


Posted: Mon, May 26, 2014, 21:30

Holy crap, Mumz, please post a picture of your thighs! 10 hours to Asco, then a night in a hotel and then 2 days from Restonica to Conca. How on earth did you get fed up with "trail food" in 3 days? I am sure you had no time for eating anyway.

Anyway, fantastic performance I guess, and good info for my trek starting Thursday in Conca. By the time you had finished the whole thing I am probably still knocking down my wine at Refuge number two.

I was on the northern part same time last year and did everything without alpine equipment. If there's more snow this year, well, then there is detours and more wine and chats to fellow travellers for me I think.

Be healthy, Mike


Posted: Tue, May 27, 2014, 6:36

Thanks Mike,
Some do call me thunder thighs
Your wine-trip sounds lovely, maybe next year....


Posted: Tue, May 27, 2014, 7:04

Yes Mikeyeti the guy Mumz is swift... no very swift.... but the two days as you say from Restonica to Conca is not quite so!
As I worked out he had one day from somewhere on the road between Vivario and maybe Canaglia or even further up the road passing through l'Onda and then down to Vizzavona. Then one day for five stages through to Bavella (very quick!) and then finally another short day down to Conca. So three days for the restart on the route to avoid the winter stuff between Haut Asco and l'Onda bergeries. So five stages of the route not visited....but not forgetting the very fleet footed journey between Calinzana and Haut Ascu.
If only he had come to the island in June then I would have thought that he would have had an almost certainty of a fast completion.
Anyway good luck with your trip from Conca to Calinzana. You are almost guaranteed a finish in the North....I assume that you are going all the way this time?
I have been a couple of times for the whole trip starting from both the North end and from the Southern end. Being a pensioner I just kind-of plod along with my tent, camping and cooking kit.:-) and have fine chats with the Eurolanders.




Posted: Tue, May 27, 2014, 7:50

I guess I was exaggerating Mumz' speed a little. Still, there's is NO way I could have done Calenzana - Asco with my 20 kg backpack including camping gear in one day last year. Plan for this year is to go all the way, enjoy the walk and the camp and the chats with 'eurolanders" (nice word; actually, being a eurolander I probably only need to talk to myself then :). Fast completion is not very high on my priority list...


Posted: Tue, May 27, 2014, 13:57

Hi Gaffr,
Yes, I did have 4 days hiking. Missed 5 stages eh?…probably 5 of the most impressive. I do, in fact, have the month of June off. But my husband (with a nick-name like Thunder Thighs, Mumz of course has to be a girl!) will have nothing to do with all this speed-hiking, so I try to squeeze my little adventures in. I gave myself about a 53% of being successful on doing the whole GR.
I had a beautiful trip, and will certainly come back.


Posted: Wed, May 28, 2014, 12:53

Hello Mumz,
I am pleased to hear that are returning to have another journey along the beautiful route. The important thing is when coming to terms with adverse conditions in mountain terrain is to make safe decisions which allow you to return for a further trip! Me, I think that all of the stages of the route offer great interest to the walker/runner.
I think, as I have said before, that the fascinating variety of terrain to be found in the many stages of the GR20 is what brings folks back to the island. After our first visit to the GR20 in 2007 we have returned on a further four occasions to visit five other randonnee routes some of which cross over the GR20 at various locations, to visit a few of the summits and to do some of the variations of the main route all of which added greatly to our knowledge of the island.