Ascent to the Oppidum and the Dinosaur footprints
This walk is from the main car park in Lodeve up to the Oppidum, which is to be found just under the high cliffs above Grezac. A display panel showing this and other walks is located at the top of the car park.
The first part of the walk is straight up the hillside, offering good views back across Lodeve – it is a well-established path, though not always well-maintained, and always up hill! The final part up to the Oppidum is a little more difficult and does involve a bit of clambering. At the top there are various display panels about the pre-roman occupation of the site, and the dinosaur footprints can be seen on the nearby rocks. It is also a good place for a rest after the climb.
After descending from the Oppidum, we returned via the Fontbonne track and Payssials le Bas, but various alternative routes are possible. The overall distance is about 7km, and the initial climb rises about 300m.
The walk started at the parking beside the cemetery in Castelnau-de-Guers. The weather was good and not too windy. It was a delightful walk with a lot of variety in the country side including forests, vineyards and open fields. We had spectacular views over the valley to Pezenas and beyond.
Almond trees still beautifully in blossom.
After a few kilometers we passed the ruins of the l’Hermitage Saint-Antoine and its chapel.
All in all it was an easy walk, with only a short moderate climb at the end of the 10 kilometers’ walk and a few rocky patches earlier on.
Following discussions over the past week we have set up a plan for the walks to be undertaken for the next few weeks, until Easter.
- 25 February: Dorine will lead a walk around Castelnau-de-Guers, near Pezenas: this has already been announced.
- 3 March: Andrew will lead a walk on Grezac up to the Oppidum and dinosaur footprints: We have done this walk before but not for several years.
- 10 March: Ben will lead an all-day outing to Etang de Vendres: this is near the coast, beyond Beziers, and has bird-watching opportunities.
- 17 March: Dorine will lead a walk finishing at Belbeze: with an invitation to lunch.
- 24 March: If the weather develops as expected, Andrew will lead a walk to see early spring flowers on the plateau, perhaps at Cantercel.
That takes us up to Easter. We now have a good list of long and sportiv walks to undertake, but we still need suggestions for shorter and easier ones – don’t hold back!
The walk this week will be in the area south of Saint-Andre-de-Sangonis, through the vineyards and down towards the Herault river. The walk is essentially flat, and all on quiet roads and good farm tracks, a bit over 7km in total.
The forecast is for it to be cold and grey, with a slight chance of some drizzle, but the wind of the past few days will have dropped away to nothing.
As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50 ready to depart at 10:00. For those who prefer to go directly we shall start at 10:30 from the south end of the main square in St. Andre, leaving by the road to Brignac, past the cemetery. We expect to be back in Lodeve by 13:30.
We have been walking together in this group for more than five years (since Phyl first suggested it in 2010), and this Blog (set up by Celia) has been operating for over a year. We have 32 registered readers, and the walks are usually well-attended – 18 people and 3 dogs for the last one.
Many people have contributed or suggested walks over the years, but recently most suggestions have come from me or from Celia. Celia has now decided to withdraw from the group, at least for the time being, so we need some more input for suggesting and/or organising walks. Some people have already offered suggestions, and we do have a list of potential walks (many repeats of previous walks, and some new ones), but more are always needed.
This is an opportunity! People often say to me how much they enjoy discovering new walks with the group. Now is the time for you to allow the rest of the group to discover your favorite walk(s)! You can send suggestions to my e-mail address or by adding a Comment to this post.
Please don’t hold back – suggesting a walk does not mean that you have to lead it, though that is always an option, as is editing the announcements and write-ups on this blog.
The weather is expected to be clear on Thursday morning, so we shall certainly walk.
The proposed walk is an easy ramble on farm roads through the vineyards to the North of St Felix – we last did this walk just over a year ago. It is about 6km, and completely flat.
As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50 ready to depart at 10:00. For those who prefer to go directly we shall start from the car park outside the cave cooperative, behind the restaurant Le St. Jacques, at 10:30. We expect to be back in Lodeve by 13:00.