In search of the Fort du Truc garrison
Mountain bike (electric)
In search of the Fort du Truc garrison

In search of the Fort du Truc garrison

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Here you will be riding through an area where the Alpine mountain passes and roads were once closely watched over. Various Alpine defence buildings line your route, which also offers up a beautiful view over the valley of Bourg Saint Maurice.

This itinerary takes you on a discovery of Alpine defence bulidings. The myriad structures you'll come across were mainly used to keep watch over the Alpine mountain passes and roads.
Many are now long gone, while others lie in ruins, but it is still possible to see some vestiges of this architecture to this day. On the upper section of this circular route you'll be treated to a gorgeous view over the Haute Tarentaise valley. But first, brace yourself for a fairly steep climb uphill, though thankfully along a wide track, before your scenic reward!


Setting off from Bourg-Saint-Maurice, this route takes you past old Alpine defence buildings. The first stretch runs along roads as far as the hamlet of Le Villaret along a lovely uphill section. After the hamlet, a steep and slightly more technical track leads up to the highest point of this outing: the hamlet of Grandville, at 1,484m. The descent takes you all the way back down to the centre of Bourg-Saint-Maurice, along a quiet mountain road, with a stunning view over the Beaufortin and La Vanoise mountain ranges to accompany you!

Follow the blue waymarks: Fort du Truc.

E-bike rental shops: 

297 Av. Marechal Leclerc
73700 Bourg Saint Maurice
+33 (0)4-79-40-05-54

Intersport Bourg Saint Maurice
Zone commerciale de Super U
73700 Bourg Saint Maurice
+33 (0)4 79 04 04 30

Laboshop Bourg Saint Maurice
avenue du stade
73700 Bourg-Saint-Maurice
+33 (0)4 79 07 07 61

PRECISION SKI Mountain Tribu
43 Place de la Gare
73700 Bourg Saint Maurice
+33 (0)4 58 14 04 44

  • Departure : Place de la gare (in front of the station) - 73700 Bourg-Saint-Maurice
  • Arrival : Place de la gare (in front of the station) - 73700 Bourg-Saint-Maurice
  • Towns crossed : BOURG-SAINT-MAURICE

Altimetric profile


Rando Vanoise has been designed to help you pick and choose your outings, but cannot be held liable where they are concerned. The mountain offers up a wide range of routes and trails for cyclists of all levels, but remember, it is a living, unpredictable environment and it is important that you head out suitably equipped. Ask advice from cycle rental operators.
If in doubt, you can take an introductory lesson in how to ride an electric bike with an instructor.

If you see a herd ahead, slow down and go round it. If there is a patou, a guard dog, climb down from your bike and walk, pushing it alongside you. Avoid making any sudden or aggressive gestures towards the dog and move away from the herd slowly and calmly. The dog will only be checking that you do not pose a threat to its herd. Respect the parkland and close gates behind you after you've gone through them.

The mountain is living, please respect it by staying on the paths and tracks.

Information desks

Place de la Gare, 73700 Bourg-Saint-Maurice

https://www.lesarcs.comcontact@lesarcs.com04 79 07 12 57


Train services run as far as Bourg-Saint-Maurice. Find out more at:
Have you also thought about car sharing?

Access and parking

From Moûtiers, take the RN90 road to Aime or Bourg Saint Maurice.

Parking :

Bourg Saint Maurice: Arc-en-Ciel car park (free) located behind the station (opposite the marshland, start of the greenway)

10 points of interest

  • Pastoralism

    The dairy cooperative

    The cooperative in Bourg Saint Maurice brings together 52 producers who are wholeheartedly committed to making AOP (protected designation of origin) Beaufort cheese.
    One of the Cooperative’s buildings is entirely given over to showcasing this outstanding cheese with an exhibition area, shop and tasting area.
    You’ll gain an insight into the long-standing history of this cheese. A few dates at a glance: Back in Roman times, Pliny praised the different cheeses from Tarentaise and extolled the quality of the dairy cows. In the 19th century, agriculture and livestock rearing were still the main sources of livelihood for communities in the Haute-Tarentaise Valley. In 1888, the Herd-book of the Tarine breed was compiled (official description of the characteristics of cow breeds). In 1894, a cheese-dairy school was founded in Bourg Saint Maurice to train students in the cheese-making trade. In each hamlet and in the village, livestock rearers grouped together to establish these cheese dairies, or fruitières, as they are known, to make cheese. The French name refers to the fruit of the common labour of a village or hamlet. From 1960 to 1964, an economic recession set in and agricultural produce struggled to sell. From 1964, part of the village’s cheese dairies closed and the whole of the municipality’s production was centralised at the main village’s cheese dairy, which was named Coopérative laitière de Haute-Tarentaise. It obtained the controlled designation of origin (now the AOP) for its Beaufort in 1968.
    Free, unaccompanied tours of the site during the shop’s opening hours.
    Tel.: +33 (0)4 79 07 08 28

  • History

    Rue Capitaine Desserteaux

    This street is named after a captain from the 70th Alpine Fortress Battalion which, in 1940, became famous for defending, from the Italians, the fort of La Redoute-Ruinée (located above the resort of La Rosière de Montvalezan). He died in Indochina in 1947.
  • Know-how

    E-bike rental shop: Gravity Lab

    E-bike rental shop:


    297 Av. Marechal Leclerc
    73700 Bourg Saint Maurice

    +33 (0)4-79-40-05-54

  • Viewpoint

    Panoramic view over the Haute-Tarentaise Valley

    Both forts command breathtaking views over the Haute-Tarentaise Valley and surrounding mountains, taking in the Col du Petit Saint-Bernard (2,188m), the Bellecôte range (3,417m), La Vanoise range and its highest peak, Mont Pourri (3,779m), the Les Arcs slopes and more.
  • Small heritage

    St Vincent's Chapel in Grandville

    This chapel has a bell tower dating back to 1644. Inside there is a small Baroque-style altarpiece in colour, showing St Vincent kneeling before the Virgin Mary. The chapel is closed, but feel free to have a look inside through the small windows.
  • History

    Grandville and Mineurville (1,510m)

    Grandville and Mineurville get their names from the Latin root "villa", which means farming estate. Both hamlets were situated between the bottom of the valley and the mountain pastures of Lancevard, Céré, Combameinaz, Les Rochettes, Le Fornay and Forclaz lakes.
    In the latter half of the 19th century, their large populations were heavily involved in helping to build the Le Truc and La Platte forts (1890-1894). These days, this village no longer has a year-round population. In 1945, Grandville saw a local tragedy unfold: that winter, more than 6 metres of snow fell, building up on the top slopes. On the night of 12th February, an avalanche hurtled down the steep slopes above the village, swallowing up three houses and three members of the same family lost their lives.

  • History

    Fort de La Platte

    The blockhouse or surveillance fort of La Platte stands at an altitude of 2,000m. In the same way as the Vulmix and Le Truc forts, it formed part of the fortification system intended by the engineer Séré de Rivière. Up until World War II, a series of developments were added to upgrade it: a watch tower was built for firing and surveillance, as well as railings over 30m around the fort.
    Sold by the army in the 1960s, it is now a private property closed to visitors.

  • Small heritage

    St Marie Madeleine's Chapel, Mineurville

    This lovely little rural chapel is very old (1653). It is dedicated to St Mary Magdalene, who exemplifies the repented and sanctified sinner. Its walls have been built from bonded (arranged) stones and its roof, graced with a pinnacle, is covered with lauze slate. This chapel is closed, but you are welcome to have a peek inside through the small windows!
  • Small heritage

    St Michel's Chapel

    Built on a promontory, this chapel is believed to have been standing since the 5th century. It is dedicated to the Archangel Michael, patron saint of high places and mountain pasture livestock. During the great plague in the 1650s and the village fire in 1795, the population sought refuge here. The chapel is not open to visitors, but from outside you can enjoy a scenic view over Bourg-Saint-Maurice and surrounding areas.
  • History

    Fort du Truc

    When the Duchy of Savoy (Savoie) was annexed to France in 1860, the unification of Italy posed a new threat. In 1888 France established the Alpine troops as well as a protective system that ran from the Jura all the way down to Nice: the Séré de Rivière line. For the construction of the forts, emphasis was placed on large passes and natural outlets. Tarentaise Valley was particularly exposed. It could be accessed from the mountain passes of Le Petit Saint-Bernard, Mont-Cenis and L'Iseran, and preventing such free passage was therefore paramount. The plans for the Séré de Rivière system anticipated several structures. La Redoute Ruinée, built just above the mountain pass, provided it with direct protection.
    This fort is supported by another three, with very specific purposes:
    - Vulmix (1,000m), barring access
    - Le Truc (1,573m), protection
    - La Platte (2,000m), surveillance
    Despite the distance between them, the three forts of Bourg-Saint-Maurice formed an integral protection and surveillance system.
    Building work on the Fort du Truc began in 1890 to reinforce the action of the Vulmix Fort.
    Sold by the army in the 1960s, it is now a private property closed to visitors.