EN
EN

Discover the different path types to hike at your level !

Discover the French classifications to hike at your level during your hiking holidays in France! Indeed, the French Hiking Federation has developed a classification system with 3 criteria: effort, technical and risk.

Don't forget to brush up on compass basics and look at the map before setting off.

Discover the different path types to hike at your level !

IN FRANCE

The idea of effort expresses the physical difficulty of the hike.

Discover the different path types to hike at your level !

The technical level is linked to the terrain and the number of obstacles on the path.

Discover the different path types to hike at your level !

The risk is related to the exposure to serious or less serious consequences in the event of a fall.

Discover the different path types to hike at your level !

Hikes are then classified on a scale from 1 (easy) to 5 (difficult). Looking at these 3 criteria will enable you to decide if the hike you want to do adapted to your ability. Here is a quick guide to the different levels:

1 : easy: No physical difficulties. Path or part of the path that presents no or almost no particular difficulty. Feet are put down flat. Injury is possible but likely to be slight.

2 : fairly easy: A walk or short hike. Few obstacles, they are no higher than the ankle. Low risk of accident, minor injuries.

3 : a little difficult: Physical exertion required, but measured. At least one obstacle no higher than the knee. Low risk but risk possible on some parts of the path.

4 : Fairly difficult: Significant and sustained physical exertion. The irregularities if the terrain requires the use of poles, obstacles can reach the hips. Fairly high risk of injury or serious accident.

5 : difficult: Very sustained physical exertion. Obstacles higher than the hips, using hands mist be required in some parts, poles are likely to be a hindrance. Some passages may be secured. Very rugged terrain. Maximum risk of an accident.

IN THE UK

If you hike in the UK, hikes are also graded:

- Easy
- Easy/Moderate 
- Moderate 
- Moderate/Hard 
- Hard 
- Very Hard
- Severe - Challenge Routes

These levels depends on different criteria:

- Terrain covered by the route. Some walks might have pathless parts that are not as easy to walk through as real paths.
- Total height gain in the walk
- Total distance
- Equipment required
- Navigation and compass skills required

Don't forget that bad weather can make any easy walk way more difficult! Always check the weather before going on a hike and adjust, or cancel, if necessary. Read our article about what to do in the event of a mountain storm here.