This is an excellent but hard, all-day walk starting at Lauroux and extending up into the Escandorgue forest. It is officially described as ‘difficile’, 16 km and taking 5 hours.
This walk is in three sections. Firstly, we walk up the valley from Lauroux, passing the Grotte de Labeil, and continuing up the escarpment to the Escandorgue forest, a rise of about 550 m. Parts of this ascent are difficult and a bit scrambly, with some intermediate descents to get past side valleys. Then we walk through the forest in the direction of the Col de Pertus, before starting the descent back to Lauroux. Some of this descent is on good tracks, but other parts are rather steep and stony, and much is rather exposed.
The forecast for Thursday is for full sun, continuing the temperatures of recent days. The walk has some shaded sections, but has other sections in full sun, particularly on the descent.
As usual we shall meet at the Luteva Cinema at 8:50 for departure at 9:00. At Lauroux we will park in the designated Walkers Car Park (just before the village), but the walk itself will start from the main bridge in the village, just after the church, at about 9:30. With a stop for lunch we should be back in Lodeve by 16:30.
Distance: 16 km, difficult, climb ~ 800 m
Bring: Picnic, copious fluids, sun protection, strong shoes