21st May 2015 – Orchid walk from Canals

This was a circular walk from Canals on the Guihaumard plateau, similar to one we had done several times before, an easy walk of about 6km, on paths and tracks in open country. Canals trackIt included an area where many varieties of orchids can be found (as well as other flowers). On the day the wind was strong, so it was very cold in the (many) exposed areas. In addition, the vegetation was lush and a track shown clearly on the maps did not exist on the ground so we had to strike out around fields of growing crops to join two sections of the walk.

Purple OrchidSpider OrchidAt the orchid area we found many species, though some found it too cold to stop and examine them in detail. Purple and Military orchids (and their hybrids) were the most common, but we identified about 10 different varieties in all – a rewarding outcome, though in a good year you would expect to find a lot more. anemoneIn addition, we found a hillside covered with purple anemonies (Pasque flowers).

Distance: 6km

Leader and Commentary: Andrew

Pictures: Andrew and Phyl

14 May 2015 – On the Caroux from Douch

Douch

Enjoyable walk but very hot for the first part, a long ascent of about 140 m up to the summit of the Caroux. After this, fairly level through some marshland (with walkways) and pine forests, joining the G7 which leads to the edge of the cliff overlooking the valley where you can see the confluence of the Orb and the Jaur. View from CarouxThere is a Table d’Orientation here and the views are stunning. Finally a short sharp descent through some beech forest and back down to Douch.

DouchChapel

Distance: 7 km

Leader: Ben

Commentary: Ben and Phyl

7 May 2015 – From Lieuran Cabrieres

Scenic view

A lovely walk to do in May when the wild flowers are out.
Broomwild flowers

Views in all directions over the broom to the hills in the distance – Canigou (if you looked carefully!), Sete, Pic de Vissou, Mont Liausson etc. A time to walk and talk, take in the scenery, enjoy the picnic.

On Mougno20150507_141800

The walk is waymarked but occasionally the waymarks are elusive!

Distance: 8 km
Leader: Celia
Thanks to Mike for the photos

Details of the walk can be found here

30 April 2105 – from St Guilhem le Désert to l’Hermitage de Notre Dame de Belle Grace.

Contributed by Phyl

Chateau

A beautiful walk of about 8kms following the GR74 but uphill all the way and quite steep for the first 35 minutes. A rocky path so boots are advised and also don’t go in the tourist season. Simply stunning views so easy to take a “petit pause” and enjoy.

L'ermitage

L'Ermitage

L’Ermitage is tucked away in a green flat spot, sheltered from the NW weather and is inhabited so silence is requested. We had our picnic there and wandered around the the buildings and also saw the water source coming down through the rocks at the back.

Chapel
Back to St Guilhem

Distance: 8 km. We walked at a medium pace and took 1hr 45 mins to go up and 1hr 20 to return.

Details of a longer version of this walk can be found here

Don’t forget the parking is payant and definitely not cheap.