21 September 2017 – Les Salces

This week we propose a relatively level walk of about 7 km in the forest area south of Les Salces. We have done this walk several times over the years.

The walk is all on forest tracks and is relatively easy. The first part rises gently over several km, with a few steeper sections, and at the end we have views down to St. Jean de la Blaquiere and across the Lergue valley. The return descends gently to the Marguerite river valley before a final ascent back to Les Salces. The forecast for Thursday is for a return to the normal quiet and sunny weather for September.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50, ready to depart at 10:00. The walk will start from the car park in Les Salces at about 10:30. We should be back in Lodeve by 13:30.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: 7 km, climbing about 100 m in total

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14 September 2017 – Lunas to Col de Peyrolls

This is a moderately easy walk of about 4 km. It includes a long but gentle climb and returns beside the Gravezon river.

This walk starts in the centre of Lunas and the first 2 km are a long but gentle climb, rising about 100 m, to the Col de Peyrolls. Initially this is a concrete road (with good views down to the town), then an old Mule path, which is often very stony (so good shoes are recommended), but is never steep. At the top we join a good forest track for the gentle descent (with views across to Le Bousquet), and the last part of the circuit is a flat path beside the river.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50, ready to depart at 10:00. The walk will start at about 10:30 from the main bridge in Lunas (next to the Chateau) – parking is generally easy in the town or beside the river. We should be back in Lodeve by 13:00.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: ~4 km, climb 100 m
Bring: good footwear

7 September 2017 – Roqueredonde to l’Orb

This is a moderately hard circular walk of about 7 km which descends from Roqueredonde to the Orb river and then returns by the Plateau du Gres.

The first part of this walk (about 1.5 km) is a descent dropping about 150 m on a marked footpath, which is occasionally stony and tricky, until it reaches the hamlet of le Furou on the Orb river. The next (longer) section is a more gentle ascent on tracks and quiet roads (though with occasional steep sections), up to the Plateau du Gres. From here we return on a level track to the start. The forecast this week is for a continuation of the current sunny weather.

Now that we are in September and approaching the equinox we shall revert to our standard timetable. So we shall meet at the Luteva Cinema at 9:50 ready to depart at 10:00. The walk will start from the main parking area in Roqueredonde at about 10:40. We should be back in Lodeve by 13:30.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: 8 km, climb 200 m

31 August 2017 – Lacoste

The forecast for this week is not good, with possible thunderstorms in the morning and rain in the afternoon. But if it stays dry we will do a short circular walk around Lacoste, giving views to Lake Salagou and down into the Lergue valley.

The walk is on a mixture of tracks and paths, and is mostly flat, though it starts with a descent and a following climb. Total distance is about 4 km.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 8:50, ready to leave at 9:00. The walk will start from the main square in Lacoste at about 9:30. We should be back in Lodeve by 11:30.

6 July 2017 – Forêt de Parlatges

With the return of the hot weather we propose another forest walk, in the area between Parlatges and St Pierre de la Fage.

The forecast for Thursday is for a largely sunny day, with temperatures reaching 30°. We propose a walk of about 5 km in the forest below St Pierre de la Fage. The walk is all on forest tracks, and is all down hill for the first half, and uphill for the rest, with a total climb of about 200 m, much of it shaded. At the lower points there are good views down to Parlatges and beyond towards St Etienne and Soubes.

As usual we shall meet at the Luteva Cinema at 8:50, for departure at 9:00. The walk will start from the walkers car park at St Pierre de la Fage – just after the main roundabout in the village, on the road to La Vacherie, turn right on the narrow road indicating the car park, which you reach after nearly 1 km. We should start from here at about 9:30, and be back in Lodeve by 12:30.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: ~5 km, 200 m climb
Bring: Sun protection, water.

22 June 2017 – Forêt des Monts d’Orb

A relatively easy and short walk in the forest south of Ceilhes, overlooking the Lac d’Avène.

This is a walk of about 6 km, in a forest and so largely in the shade, around the Canton de Bouisse. It is all on easy tracks, but rarely completely flat, with about 100 m of climb. In many places there are good views down to the lac d’Avène and its barrage. The hot weather is expected to continue, but there should be a reasonable breeze to offset the heat.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 8:50 ready to set off at 9:00. The walk will start from a parking area at the Col de la Moutoune, on the D8 between Ceilhes and Avène, at about 9:50. The walk will take about 2 hours, so we should be back in Lodeve by 13:00. Alternatively, it should be possible to get lunch at the cafe by the little lake in Ceilhes.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: 6 km
Bring: Water

25 May 2017 – to Canals on the Guilhaumard

This is an easy circular walk of about 6 km, on the Guilhaumard plateau between La Pezade and Canals. We have done this walk regularly in previous years. There is a good chance of seeing some of the later flowering orchids at both the beginning and the end of this walk.

The first part of this walk is along the GR from La Pezade, heading for Mas Reynal. At Canals we strike off on country tracks to return to the starting point. This is one of the best areas I know for orchids, and although the weather has been rather difficult this year, there is a good chance that we will find several varieties.

The weather forecast for Thursday is for full sun and light winds from the South, so it will be hot. Come prepared, with a hat, sun cream and water!

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 9:50, ready to depart at 10:00. The walk should start at about 10:40 on the plateau. We should be back in Lodeve by 13:30, unless people want to spend longer looking at orchids!

For those going directly to the starting point, take the motorway to Le Caylar, and then (after negotiating your way round the diversions associated with the roadworks at the Aire) head for the D609. This is the road (alongside the motorway) signposted to La Couvertoirade, Nant and l’Hospitalet. Stay on the D609 until you get to La Pezade (don’t go toward La Couvertoirade or Nant – and beware that the road number seems to change to the D809 when you cross the department boundary). In La Pezade turn left onto the D140, towards Canals, Mas Reynal and Le Clapier. The meeting point is a bit more than 1 km along this road, at the brow of the hill, where you can park on the right.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: ~6 km
Bring: Sun protection, Orchid books