Here I describe my run-walk outing with a local companion into the spectacular hills above Laval.
Mr D, a neighbour of ours, generously offered to show me some of the harder-to-find tracks up into the hills above Laval. I had already done a fair amount of exploring myself but had not found the route I guessed would be there. I sought a track, or at least a marked route, connecting Laval with Quillan in the Pyrenees in southern France. Laval is not far from Quillan as the crow flies and my guess was that there would be in the hills an alternative to the 6 km on the flat road route. Continue reading
This 11 km route is on sealed and unsealed roads. There is a gentle climb up to St Julia-de-Bec and down the other side, but nothing too strenuous. It’s open country and the views are great. I used my new bluetooth beanie to listen to some podcasts of David Deutsch being interviewed about his book The Beginning of Inifinity from a few years ago – I’m reading that at present – but you could probably listen to anything or nothing on this route. Continue reading
This afternoon Tom and I go exploring up the hill above Quillan’s old castle. Despite the sunshine, I wear many layers of clothing. You can’t be too careful at this time of year. Tom is more lightly dressed. More sensibly dressed, as it turns out.
We start by going up Rampe du Chateau. This leads us onto Rue de Bitrague. Now we go offroad.
Chateau de Quillan
Completed in a little under four hours; maybe 3h52m or so.
While visiting the Bordeaux region for the Marathon de Sauternes, we are staying in a gite on a vineyard at Ste Foy la Longue. It’s a beautiful setting, as well as a rather beautiful gite. Three free bottles of the local wine come with our stay, and the place also has its own wine cellar attached. Continue reading
I came to France with just the running shoes that my workmates thought were far too orange. Continue reading
This afternoon I put on my running shoes and explored a few kilometres east along the Aude river. Here are the photos I took, plus a few notes. Continue reading
Read Ollie’s post on the run if you haven’t already. It’s true: the piles of earthworm excrement were massive. In a couple of places on the track we saw holes larger than any earthworm could make, and wondered what creature had made them. On our return, one of the holes had been partly filled in. By what? And where was the creature that had been there within the last few minutes? And then, in the forest very nearby, we saw a tree that appeared to have been snapped clean off. Continue reading
Today Dad and I went out for a run in the bush.It was a great adventure. Continue reading
This afternoon I went for my first jog from Quillan. In the banner picture for this site (top of page), you can see the hills to the south, with limestone bluffs near the top. Those hills are enticing. I headed up a road in that direction for half an hour. It was wonderful! Warm sunshine, forest both sides of the road, no vehicles at all.
The adjacent photo is where I turned back – you can see that I was a long way short of the bluffs and the ridge above them. I’m not good at judging how big a hill is and how long it might take to reach the top. So the ridge will be another day – perhaps once the boys have started school next week. I’ll need more time, and I’ll need to carry water.
The tourist office has given us a lot of informative pamphlets, including descriptions of many walking tracks near Quillan. Browsing the pamphlets tonight, I see that there are loop tracks to reach that ridge to the south.