If I confess that our drinks bill this morning was 63 euros and that we had had a couple of beers at another bar in this pretty village (where I increased my lead to 5 nil in the Conques to Rodez taxi fare Cribbage tournament), you’ll understand why we had a late start today. We were grateful, too, that we only had 10 miles to do, as we needed to see how Bob’s toe would hold up.
We climbed slowly out of the village, the woodland being mostly of beech, now, passing signs for a ski station. This area is popular for cross-country skiing.
Soon the woodland gave way to open meadows and golden coloured grassland.
Please can someone identify this tall plant. It’s stems stood about 2 feet high and I kept spotting it all day. It’s leaves are collapsing. A bulb or tuber of some sort?
Here is just a single specimen. (thanks to @MarianBoswell who has suggested Phlomis)
As we climbed so the views improved.
These beautiful cattle are incredibly docile and do a lot of sitting around rather than eating.
We dropped down through this beech wood.
And then realised that we were off route slightly so climbed back up to re-join continuously rising path.
At the path sides, were plenty of Shaggy Parasol mushrooms, but I suspect the locals are more interested in collecting the Boletus edulis (cep).
We were at over 4000 feet at this point and nearing the highest point we would reach in our 10 day trek. Fabulous views.
A little wooden hut sits at about 4,400 feet and offers refuge for those caught out by the weather. It’s the only possible shelter for miles.
We then made the slow descent to the attractive and village of Aubrac, passing a rather unattractive and massive “Sports Hotel”.
Quite what sport takes place here was not obvious.
Madonnas and crosses abound by the path side of this pilgrim route.
We had our picnic lunch at Aubrac on benches by the visitor centre overlooking this view. (the foreground is the villages Botanic Garden. Don’t ask)
Before leaving I popped into the C13th church, far more impressive from the outside than inside.
From Aubrac we descended on often stony paths through the little hamlet of Belvezet stuffed full of charming ruins.
As we approached St Chely – d’Aubrac the path sits on the edge of a steep wooded valley. It was a stony and uneven descent and I was worried for Bob’s toe. You’ll be glad to know I am not going to post a photo update of the offending item.
Our itinerary and all our accommodation was arranged by Sherpa Walking Holidays.