Hiking the Cèvennes

Since we’ve been living in the Cèvenne national park we’ve been sussing out the different walks and hikes, waiting for the opportunity to get out the hiking boots once again.
The time comes, and we have a route mapped out by our the centre managers, which is expected to take 3 days. Dan and I are accompanied by our new flatmate and the centre’s tutor, Lucy, we pack our bags, looking like we are off for weeks, and head up the hill….I mean mountain.
The first leg of the journey is directly vertical, winding up to the summet of Mount Lozere. At this point I question my actions and contemplate where I COULD be, and all the wonderful things I COULD be doing.. Once we make it up, huffing and puffing, (it’s harder at altitude you see) we take a right, and head for our first nights rest spot, the hikers shelter.
12 miles later and we arrive at a very cute, cobble stone shelter set at the top of a huge gorge, facing the impressive French Alps in the distance. The shelter is amazingly well kept, with an open fire place, table, pots and pans, a second level for sleeping on, and even a spice rack!!
We nestle in for the night, making the most of the fire by eating toasted marshmallows! Me, being the very experienced marshmallow-toaster’er leading the way.
The following day we set off on the same, wide dirt road trail, eventually finding our way onto a nicer forest trail.
The track runs around Pic Cassini mountain, going through a few very isolated villages. Halfway through the second day we realise we could finish the trail by the end of the day if we push on… The thrill of doing it quicker than expected, and the excitement of some wine at the finish line, push us on!
We clamber to the base of Mount Lozere, amble slowly up and round to our new home, which sticks out like a sore thumb, sitting at the top of the gorg, halfway up the mountain. But not before I have a wee practise of my horse whispering skills, (currently reading Monty Roberts, The Horse Whisperer) on the largest horse I have ever seen, Butch Barbie we called her.
M

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