Tent reservations

f_r_e_d

Posted: Sun, Sep 6, 2015, 14:24

Hi,

I'm trying to make a reservation for a tent (I'm NOT bringing my own tent). But this doesn't seem to be working on the website... I can only make reservations for beds inside the refuges, which is not what I want..

Does anybody know whether or not I'm using the right website (http://www.parc-corse.org/vad/), and if so how to make the reservations? People seem to be able to do it as some of the spots are taken in the tents.
Is it allowed to arrive without reservation? I see there are many available spots in the tents, so I assume there shouldn't be a problem in that perspective..

Thanks in advance!

Frédéric



Gaffr

Posted: Sun, Sep 6, 2015, 15:58

Hello,
I wouldn't worry too much... September is a quieter time on the route. There is certain to be tents available for hire. If not already erected they will have extra tents in store.
Good travelling.

--

Gaffr



GRRR 20

Posted: Sun, Sep 13, 2015, 19:08

It's the middle of September now, and I just left the GR20 yesterday and returned home today. I have to say that I have never seen the trail so busy. There were commercial groups, bunches of pals, couples and individuals. The refuges were full. The hotels on the route were full. Even the campsites were nearly full and those who turned up late for hire tents were given tents and told to go and find somewhere to pitch them. As all the best camping spots were already taken, late-comers nearly always ended up on a bad slope or a pile of stones. I've walked the trail in July and August, and it was busy, but this past week in the middle of September has been the busiest I've ever seen. On the other hand, there must have been 200 people at Verghio, filling the hotel, gite and campsite, but when the bus from Corte came, it left empty. The bus driver went to the hotel reception desk and said that as he had no passengers, he was calling a halt to the bus service with immediate effect. So, if you want to catch that bus, it won't be running again until next summer.



Gaffr

Posted: Mon, Sep 14, 2015, 5:22

Many thanks for that info.
As I said I have been just once to Corse in the middle of September when we crossed the GR20 during the MM Centre walk and later we accessed the GR20 from Bavella....but that was six years ago. There didn't seem to be many folks around but that was between Asinao and Usciolu.
It seems as if this year the 'traffic' on the trail was as we have found the GR20 to be during out visits in June and July. The popularity of this route is ever increasing.
I must say that I have not ever got involved with the scrummaging for bed spaces in the refuges or for tent hiring and have always carried my own camping kit but that does require a bit more fitness and just not rushing during the walk.
Looking around the Forum here I think that one of the features that regularly comes up is perhaps how little research is done by many folks going to the route and one would hope that the Forum is some help towards resolving some of the problem areas.

--

Gaffr



GRRR 20

Posted: Mon, Sep 14, 2015, 10:19

Hi Gaffr

The GR20 seems to have got a lot busier in the past few years. I walked it once early in June and met very few people. June had a reputation for being fairly quiet, but now it's very busy. Two years ago I was all over Monte Incudine in the middle of October. There were lots of people on the summit, including day walkers from Bavella, as well as GR20 trekkers. Given that it would be very difficult to purchase food in the middle of October, they were having to carry plenty. Normally, I wouldn't have expected to meet anyone on the trail at that time of year. In the past, I've had that whole area completely to myself.

It's true that scrummaging for refuge beds is a mug's game. My very first experience of those refuges was when I had a couple of them all to myself in the winter. I tried them again in the summer, but they were so overcrowded that I switched to camping and have never stayed in them since.

It's also true that some trekkers are doing very little research. I've seen a few who have no maps or guidebooks. Instead, they're just following the paint marks and asking other trekkers what they know about water, food and places to stay ahead. Seems to be asking for trouble.



Michele
moderator

Posted: Mon, Sep 14, 2015, 13:12

Thanks GRRR20 for your interesting report. It's kind of scary to hear every place was packed!!

This poses a big question about the future of the GR20. With the ever increasing number of hikers that crowd this trail more and more every year, what will happen when the number reaches an unsustainable critical point?



purpleisafruit

Posted: Sun, Sep 20, 2015, 3:09

Hi guys,
Following on from this (and i'm sorry if it's already been covered, I couldn't seem to find it). I'm planning to hike in the first 2 weeks of October, I was planning on taking my own tent, would I need to reserve tent sites with the parks website? Will I be allowed to hike if I don't? I'm a bit worried about locking in and paying for dates when the track might be unpredictable and the fact that I might need to be flexible with dates.
Also does anyone have a vibe on whether the refuges will be staffed early october? there's nothing on the park blog yet and I'm dreading having to pack 14 days of food - or more to the point carry it!
Thanks
Kat



Turnertactics
moderator

Posted: Sun, Sep 20, 2015, 9:09

Kat

You don't need to pre book camping pitches but I think you will need to assume that the refuges won't be staffed.
The shop in Vizzavona may still be operating though.
They're part of the station restaurant - Restaurant du chef de gare and are listed on Tripadvisor.
Their phone number is 04 9 47 24 41. They do list an Email link on Tripadvisor as well.
If you do contact them, can you come back to us and let us know how long into the autumn they are open?

--

Alan



GRRR 20

Posted: Sun, Sep 20, 2015, 12:13

I was in Vizzavona on the weekend of 19th/20th October 2013, and everything was closed. I don't know exactly when it all closed, but the only thing still operating was the train. Once the shop, hotel and bar is closed, at least you can still get the train down the line to Corte. There's a big supermarket near the station. I assume you'd still be OK camping at Vizzavona, but you might not get a shower if there's no-one around. If everything is closed on the southern half of the trail, you can still divert off-route to Zicavo, where the shops will still be open.

It will be interesting to hear how long things stay open this year, because it does seem to have been busier than usual.



Turnertactics
moderator

Posted: Sun, Sep 20, 2015, 18:44

That's a very good point. There's a Petit Casino right outside the station in Corte and a bigger one a short walk away. Sunday openings are very limited though.

--

Alan



TLJ124

Posted: Wed, Aug 22, 2018, 13:29

Anyone have any updates for 2018? Was hoping to use the refuge/Parc tents (not bring my own) and not reserve in advance to have some flexibility on the hike. Planning to start hiking September 14th. I have seen some places people have said it is possible to do this in September without reservations - that there are always extra tents. But I have also seen people say that September has gotten busy in the past few years. I just don't want to show up without a place to sleep. Any advice?



Michele
moderator

Posted: Thu, Aug 23, 2018, 11:11

Hmmm hard to give you the right answer. Obviously if you're not carrying your own tent you are taking some chances. If I were you I'd probably try my luck and count on the park tents. I don't think the refuges will ever run out of such tents. So you should be ok. But it's still a wild guess ...

--Michele



SQFP

Posted: Thu, Aug 23, 2018, 13:29

September is still shoulder season; it may be wise to book your accommodation if only one day before. For example, as soon as you reach a refuge, get info about the weather etc.; once you're sure you'll make it to the next refuge on the next day, book a tent. Or at least get fresh info about (or contact) the next refuge to enquire whether it's crowded or not, whether booking your tent there is necessary or not...

Or just accept to sleep under the starts sometimes :)

--

Geology in Corsica



TLJ124

Posted: Sun, Aug 26, 2018, 2:11

Perfect! I Also e-mailed the park and they also said that I should be fine without tent reservations for the second half of Sept. One more quick question: I am taking the train from Bastia to Calvi and am debating whether to spend the night in Calvi and take a taxi/bus in the am to Calenzana or spend the night in Calenzana. I can't seem to find any contact info for the gite d'etape in Calenzana. Does anyone know if they have tents for hire as well or other places to stay in Calenzana? Any advice?



Michele
moderator

Posted: Sun, Aug 26, 2018, 5:20

Tlj124, at the gite they have tents for hire as well as a dorm. You are good.