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

15 June 2017 – Escandorgue Forest

This is a short and fairly easy walk in the (largely shaded) Escandorgue forest.

The forecast for Thursday is for continuing high temperatures, but with increasing wind and some cloud for the afternoon. So we propose a walk in the Escandorgue forest, where there will be a reasonable amount of shade. The walk is about 6 km, all on forest tracks, with ascents and descents throughout.

As usual we shall meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 08:50 ready to depart at 9:00. We should start the walk at about 9:20, from the parking area at the entrance to the forest, on the D142 just opposite the turning to Roqueredonde. We should be back in Lodeve by 13:00.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: 6 km, ~ 50 m of ascent.
Bring: Sun cream, water.

8 June 2017 – all-day walk from Pegairolles

2015-03-27 14-12-58This walk is the recently opened circuit of the Escalette from Pegairolles. It incorporates parts of two other walks that we have done in the area. It is a hard walk – about 16 km (5+ hours), rising about 600 m, and with some short scrambly sections.

Starting from Pegairolles we walk up the Lergue valley to Le Bronc, a walk that we have done several times in the past. From here we climb up to the old mule track leading to the Escalette – this is the part of the walk that has recently been reopened and marked. 2015-03-27 14-01-15Then we cross the motorway and take a new path to the top of the cliffs above the tunnel, leading down towards Camp Rouch. Here we join a path that we took for an all-day walk a couple of years ago, including precipitous views down to the motorway from the top of the cliffs. A few bits of this section involve some difficult descents. The last couple of km pass through woods before descending back to Pegairolles.

The forecast for Thursday is for full sun and 26C after a cool start – the beginning of a period of hotter weather. Parts of the walk are shaded, but at least half is in full sun, so come prepared.

As usual we shall meet at the Luteva Cinema at 8:50, ready to depart at 9:00. The walk itself will start at 9:30 from the parking area above Pegairolles on the road into the village from the motorway (junction 51). We should be back in Lodeve by 16:30.

Leader: Andrew
Bring: Picnic, water, good shoes, sun protection, stamina
Distance: ~16 km, ~600 m climbing, 5+ hours walking
Difficulty: Some difficult sections.

1st June 2017 – the ‘Enchanted Forest’ at Nogaret

This is a fairly straight-forward circular walk, mostly in a Beech forest, about 9 km in length, climbing a total of about 100 m, and occasionally stony underfoot.

The walk starts from a parking area at Nogaret, close to the Arche community, and should take about 3 hours. It will be led by Anabelle, who describes the area as la ‘forêt enchantée’. Good shoes are advised, and bring a snack, as it is a slightly longer walk than usual. The forecast for Thursday is for sunny intervals, but not too hot.

As usual we will meet outside the Luteva Cinema, but at the summer start time of 8:50, ready to depart at 9:00. The walk itself should start at about 9:45, with a return to Lodeve by 13:30.

Leader: Anabelle + Dorine
Distance: 9 km
Bring: Snack

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

18 May 2017 – Le Puech dolmen

This is a circular walk of about 7 km, starting in Le Puech and climbing up to the top of a nearby hill, where there is a Dolmen. We visited this spot last year, but using an adjusted route – the proper circuit has now been reopened, and we will follow that. The walk involves a substantial climb (over 200 m) and is a bit tricky underfoot in a few places.

The forecast for this Thursday is for cloud, with rain at the end of the afternoon – we should be back well before that.

As usual we will meet outside the Luteva Cinema at 09:50, leaving at 10:00. The walk itself will start from the walkers parking area in Le Puech at about 10:25. We should be back in Lodeve by 14:00.

Leader: Andrew
Distance: ~ 7 km
Bring: Good shoes, snack