General information on summer outings

A user’s guide for persons unfamiliar with French

An attempt has been made to make the contents of this booklet accessible to non-French-speaking persons who have at least a basic knowledge of English. General information on the summer programme is presented in English on this page. In the individual descriptions of excursions presented here, the description of each excursion is provided in English and French. Also indicated for each excursion is its level of difficulty (see page 5), hours of hiking, elevation gain and loss (in meters), and maximum altitude (in meters) that will be attained. In cases of long-distance hikes, the distance in kilometers is also shown. In the middle paragraph of each description, information is given on:

(1) the type of accommodations (“hébergement”), if applicable (normally either a hotel with semi-private rooms or an Alpine hut with dormitory accommodations);

(2) the mode of transport, e.g. private automobile (“voiture”), train, postal bus (“car postal”), cablecar (“téléphérique”) and/or boat (“bateau”); and

(3) the sign-up (“inscription”) date or dates (typically the preceding Thursday or, in cases of weekend excursions, the previous two Thursdays), as well as any limitations on the minimum number of participants that will be accepted. An estimate of the total cost per participant is also given in this paragraph (see page 9 for details of the cost components), with a distinction made (when public transport is envisaged) between holders of a half-price travel pass (see box below for details) and persons paying the full fare.

The final paragraph gives the name of the excursion leader (“chef” or “cheffe”), as well as the name of any assistant. The telephone numbers and e-mail addresses of these leaders are listed alphabetically here. In the few cases where the details of specific excursions were unavailable at the time of printing, it is noted that the details will be made available at the “permanence” on the sign-up date(s) for the excursions in question.


The summer programme is mailed at the start of the season to all members of the Club. A more detailed description of each outing is made available at sign-up time. In particular, information is then provided regarding the place and time of departure, and the exact cost of each excursion.
Each outing is organized under the responsibility of an outing leader, who acts in a voluntary, unpaid capacity. He/she has the right to cancel the excursion, change its date, modify its itinerary (as long as the level of difficulty remains unchanged), and exclude persons from participating who are ill-equipped or in inadequate physical shape.

Levels of difficulty of the outings: The outings are designated as “easy”, “medium”, “difficult” or “very difficult”. An “easy” hike generally requires less than 4 hours of walking (including the time to picnic), a vertical gain or loss of less than 600 meters, and/or a length of less than 15 km on the flat. A “medium” hike lasts from 4 to 6 hours, has a vertical gain and loss of 600 to 1000 meters, and may include a few slightly airy passages. A “difficult” hike lasts more than 6 hours, has a vertical gain and loss of over 1000 meters, and may require some rock scrambling. A “very difficult” hike either entails some experience in alpinism (often on glaciers with a guide) or rock-climbing, or involves a very substantial time duration and effort in terms of vertical gain and loss.

Sign-up: at the “permanence” in the restaurant of the Sporting Club of Varembé (Centre Sportif de Varembé), 46, avenue Giuseppe-Motta, on Thursdays between 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The leader of the outing can limit the number of participants (in such instances, Club members have preference over non-members). At the start of the excursion, moreover, the leader may refuse to accept a person who is not already signed-up.

Sign-up charge: 5 CHF per outing day for members of the Club; 15 CHF for non-members.

Cost: The cost for each excursion is approximate. It includes the daily charge, transportation and, when applicable, accommodations and some meals. The exact cost will be provided at the “permanence” at sign-up time. Payment may be asked of participants at the sign-up time, except for certain travel costs (see below). In cases where payments have been made in advance and an excursion is cancelled, the persons concerned will be reimbursed in full. If the outing takes place, signed-up persons who do not show up will be reimbursed fully except for the daily charge and any cancellation costs falling upon the leader of the outing. The surcharge of 10 CHF for non-members will be fully reimbursed.

Transportation: By public transport or private vehicles. In cases of travel by car, drivers are compensated on the basis of 0.15 CHF per km/passenger. The outing head indicates during sign-up the amount to be paid per passenger. Each passenger settles this sum directly with his/her driver at the time of departure on the outing. In cases of travel by public transport, the excursion leader may request participants to purchase their tickets themselves, or may purchase a group ticket, in which case the amount of the ticket may be included in the amount to be paid by participants at the time of signing-up.


For 250 CHF you may purchase a card that gives you the right during two years to half-price travel on the whole CFF railway network of Switzerland, as well as reductions on most cogwheel railways, funiculars and cablecars.




Minimum equipment required for hikes
For day hikes: backpack, good hiking boots (no sneakers), windbreaker or anorak, rain protective gear, sweater or other warm cover, hat, sunglasses, suncream, picnic, water bottle or canteen, local currency. Long pants, gloves and warm headcover are often useful since weather conditions and temperatures can change suddenly on mountains, even in the summer.

For excursions of two or more days: the same as above, plus clothes to change into, slippers or light shoes, flashlight, toiletries, and — if desired — sleeping bag or sheets.

For excursions outside of Switzerland, bring passport and visa.

The excursion leader always brings a small medical kit.

Rules to comply with in order to participate in an outing

  • Be in the physical shape required by the nature of the outing;

  • Come with the necessary equipment;

  • Respect the natural fauna and flora;

  • Do not leave waste on the path, carry it out instead;

  • During the outing, stay grouped together between the outing leader and the assistant, and keep visual contact with other participants;

In the case of drivers, be covered by civil responsibility insurance, in particular with respect to fellow passengers.

Accident and rescue insurance: It is the personal responsibility of each participant to carry insurance against accidents and mountain rescue, in particular helicopter

rescue operations.


Check with your employer to see if you are properly insured.

La Rega (Garde Aérienne Suisse de Sauvetage) provides coverage for helicopter rescue and repatriation (30 CHF annually. Tel. 0844 834 844). There are other similar personal insurance schemes, in particular Air-Glaciers (Tel. +41 27 329 1415.)

Membership fee: Subject to modification by the General Assembly on 27 May 2009, 50 CHF for the season 2009-2010, i.e. from 1 June 2009 through 31 May 2010, for all summer and winter activities. By becoming members it is possible to participate in early-season outings without having to pay the 10 CHF non-member surcharge per outing day.

Winter activities: From December to the end of April, the Club organizes downhill skiing and instruction, snowboarding, crosscountry skiing and snowshoeing. The winter programme will be sent to Club members during October 2009.


Additional information: For additional information, participants may wish to contact the SCIG Summer hike coordinator Abdel Ghani El-Zanati (tel. +41 79 446 0858, e-mail: or by post at 45, Chemin Moïse Duboule, 1209 Genève).  

Please note that there is no permanence on the
Thursday, 21 May (Ascencion) and Thursday, 10 September (Jeûne Genevois)