The mythic Corsican trail: the GR20

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The GR20 is arguably the toughest walking route in Europe and is often described as one of the most exhilarating long distance walks in the world.

What is the GR20?

GR20 basically means great trail (or footpath) n°20 in French. The letters GR refer to the words “grande randonnée” in French and 20 refers to the number used in the Corsican old postcode. Nowadays, the numbers are 2A for the southern part of the island (A for Ajaccio) and 2B for the northern part of the island (B for Bastia). In Corsica, the GR20 is called “Fra li Monti” (meaning through the Corsican mountains) as the trail follows the mountainous relief from the north-west to the south-east of the island.

All four seasons?

The GR20 trail can be done all year round. However, this long distance footpath soon becomes snowed under in winter. The only way to do the GR20 is to put your skis or snowshoes on. The GR20 becomes the Alta Strada, one of the most technical raids in Europe, which can be practiced from February to April. As early as the end of May, snow melts on the Fra Li Monti and walkers start conquering this epic trail until the end of October.

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