Mont d’Orge and Siphon Bisses
The Mont d’Orge and Siphon bisses are crossed in a loop on the magnificent slopes of the South side of the Mont d’Orge hill. It offers a pretty view of the Rhône valley and in particular the city of Sion with Valère and Tourbillon.
- 📍 Location: Sion
- 🏆 Interest: ⭐⭐
- 📏 Length: 5.34 km
- 🏞️ Length: – (Mont d’Orge) – (Siphon)
- 🔁 Loop: ✔️
- ⌛ Time: 120 min
- 🏗️ Construction: ?
- 📐 Positif altitude difference: 250 m
- 🏔️ Altitude min/max: 785 / 581 m
- 💧 Water intake: Lake of Mont d’Orge
- 👁️ View: Rhône Valley, city of Sion
- 📌 Curiosity: Castle of Mont d’Orge
A shaded car park is available at the eastern tip of Mont d’Orge Lake..
Mont d’Orge bisse
The Mont d’Orge bisse is a little river that takes its water from the Mont d’Orge lake to irrigate the vineyards. From the car park, the path starts by going down steeply for about a hundred metres and then turns right to follow the bisse in the vineyard.
It will be necessary to be very careful with small children along the bisse because the narrow path sometimes winds along the edge of walls several meters high without protective barriers.
The path along the Mont d’Orge bisse stops at the level of a small asphalt road where it returns to the starting point at the level of the lake of Mont d’Orge via the Siphon bisse.
Hills of Sion
No less than 7 hills dot the commune of Sion with the two most famous ones that are Valère with its fortified basilica and Tourbillon and its castle that can be clearly seen at the beginning of the route. The hills of Sion are the result of erosion that was slower than the one that formed the Rhone Valley.
The climate of the central Valais is particularly dry, it rains even less than in the Mediterranean climate. The southern slope of the Rhone Valley, like the one used by the Mont d’Orge bisse, is very different from the northern slope, which is less sunny and therefore colder.
On the route of the bisse, we can observe the presence of cactus, an imported species that is doing well there.
Dry stone walls
The Valais grape varieties
The vineyard is omnipresent during the tour. A didactic panel lists the different grape varieties in Valais.
- Chasselat called Fendant in Valais
- Pinot Noir
After the end of the Mont d’Orge bisse, the path follows a paved road and returns east. After some time of ascent by a gravel road through the vineyard, the path reaches the retention basin of the Siphon bisse.
The Siphon bisse takes its water by pumping it from the Mont d’Orge lake into a retention basin to flow towards the lake. This bisse no longer seems to be in water.
Castle of Montorge
Shortly before returning to the car park, a path leads to the top of the Mont d’Orge hill where the castle ruins are located. The path climbs steeply and allows you to discover a very beautiful viewpoint.
If you want to avoid this effort, you can continue on the road towards the lake of Mont d’Orge, which you can reach in a few minutes
The path along the Mont d’Orge bisse, the Siphon bisse and the top of the Mont d’Orge hill offer beautiful views.
Lake of Mont d’Orge
The lake of Mont d’Orge is located directly north of the hill of the same name just next to the car park. It is supplied with water by the Lentine bisse and supplies water to the Mont d’Orge bisse by gravity and the Siphon bisse by pumping.
Webcam on the Sion aerodrome with a view of the Mont d’Orge.
A video of the ascent of the Mont d’Orge bisse.