The Fort de l'Infernet

The Fort de l'Infernet. Source : ECPAD

Culminating at 2,380 m, the Fort de l'Infernet is one of a group of forts and batteries constructed around Briançon from 1874 onwards.

Perched on a peak that culminates at 2,380 metres, the Fort de l'Infernet was built to replace the old forts whose defensive purpose progressively dwindled with advances in artillery. It is one of a group of forts and batteries constructed around Briançon from 1874 onwards, as part of the programme known as the "Séré de Rivières system". Like the Fort de la Croix de Bretagne this fort aimed to close off the border with Italy by controlling the valley from a distance.

Built between 1876 and 1878, the fort is characterised by a semi-circular arrangement of canons and an enclosure providing minimal protection. It is at the top of a summit, the artificial levelling of which caused landslides. The garrison of two hundred and ten men and officers was housed in a casemated barracks, protected from dangerous blasts by the mass of its artillery cavalier. The twelve 138 and 155 mm canons were set on the platforms of this cavalier and of the battery in the lower courtyard and directed towards le Pampinet, le Gondran and the Izoard pass.
On the 21st and 23rd June 1940, the two 280 mm Schneider mortar sections (lieutenant Miguet) set up on the slope to the south of the fort neutralised the armour-plated Italian battery that was firing on Briançon from le Chaberton. As the sound of canons resounded for the first time in two centuries, this fortified body thus effectively fulfilled its role as a deterrent.
The Fort de l'Infernet 05100 Briançon Briançon Tourist Information Office Tel. + 33 (0) 4 92 21 08 50 Fax + 33 (0) 4 92 20 56 45 E-mail : office-tourisme-briancon@wanadoo.fr

  • The Fort de l'Infernet. Source : ECPAD