28 June 2018 – St Martin de l’Arçon

This is an all-day walk in the hills to the north of the Orb/Jaur valley, below the heights of Le Caroux and L’Espinouse, on the eastern flank of the Heric gorge. At about 8 km it is not a particularly long walk, but a hard one, with a long ascent up a steep hillside, rising over 500 m, and a long descent on a stone path.

This week we propose a fairly hard walk in the hills beyond Lamalou-les-bains. It is about 8 km long and will take about 3 hours of good walking, ascending about 500 m to a peak at about 700 m. Much of the ascent involves scaling the steep sides of the Gorges d’Heric, on a proper marked path that zig-zags up the hillside. We will stop for a picnic at the top!

The forecast is for a mostly sunny day with some wind, continuing the recent pattern. So make sure that you bring sun protection and sufficient water.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50, ready to depart at 10:00. The walk itself will start from the car park at the Mairie in St Martin, at about 11:15. We should be back in Lodeve by 16:30.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: 8 km, climb ~ 500 m, hard
Bring: Water, sun protection, snack, binoculars

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21 June 2018 – Le Caylar and Roc Castel

This week we propose a relatively short and easy walk from Le Caylar, followed by the opportunity to climb to the top of the Roc Castel.2014-11-13-12-14-09.jpg

From Le Caylar we set off in the direction of Le Cros, and then make a loop to return by a different path – we have done most of this walk on various previous occasions. It is largely flat, though stony underfoot in some sections. We should get back to Le Caylar early enough for those of a more sporting disposition to do the climb up to the top of the Roc Castel, behind the town. There is a good path all the way up, and the view from the top is excellent!

It is forecast to be sunny this week, with the wind having dropped, so be prepared for a hot day.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50, ready to depart at 10:00. We walk will start from the car park beside the church (at the eastern end of the town) at about 10:30. We should be back in Lodeve by 13:30.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: ~5 km
Bring: Hat, Water

14 June 2018 – Portiragnes Plage

This is a circular walk of about 9 km, all at sea-level, involving the beach, a nature reserve in marsh-land, and the Canal du Midi.

The walk this week will start at Portiragnes Plage, led by Ben, with bird-watching opportunities. The first part of the walk is along the beach, then on to a path leading through a nature reserve, where there will be good chance of seeing some interesting water or wading birds. The next leg is along the Canal du Midi, with the canal on one side and marshes on the other, then back through the reserve before meeting the original path to retrace our steps to the start. It’s all flat and easy walking. Bring binoculars if you are interested in watching the birds.

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As this is a fairly long walk, and a long way away, we will stop for a snack in the middle. The weather is forecast to be warm and mostly sunny, with some wind.

Dogs are permitted on this walk but must be kept on a lead when within the nature reserve.

As usual we shall meet at the Luteva Cinema at 9:50, ready to leave at 10:00. The walk itself will start from the Tourist Office in Portiragnes Plage at about 11:00. To get there directly take the D612 (either from the A75 or from Vias past the airport), then the D37 past Portiragnes. At Portiragnes Plages turn right at the roundabout decorated with flamingos, direction Plage Ouest. At the next junction, go straight ahead towards Plage Est. The tourist office is just along there, set back on the right, with plenty of space for parking. We should be back in Lodeve by 16:00.

Leader: Ben
Distance: 9 km
Bring: Snack, Binoculars

7 June 2018 – Orchids?

Purple Orchid

The forecast for Thursday is uncertain but not too good. Meteo France thinks there will be thunderstorms, but the BBC thinks they will hold off until the evening. So we will go ahead with the planned wander around the orchid area on the Guilhaumard Plateau, expecting to be rained on a bit!

The early orchids have largely finished, but there are lots of later ones coming through. We will wander around the area (near La Pezade), covering 2 to 3 km. There seems quite a high chance that we will be rained on at some point, so come prepared, though we will always be less than 1 km from the cars if there is a real storm.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50, for departure at 10:00. We should be back in Lodeve by 13:00.

Leader: Andrew.
Distance: 2-3 km.
Bring: Flower books, magnifying glass, raincoat.