Le Monastier — Le Bouchet. St Nicolas.
We left Monastier early, for us, faced with a 24k walk. This is where Stevenson departed with his newly acquired mule, Modestine. The old tracks we followed can’t have been much different to those in his time. We walked from hamlet to hamlet with prominent stone crosses at most of the intersections. Volcanic rocks were under our feet and the Velay volcanic mountains a constant background. A steep drop brought us into Goudet on the Loire and a possible refreshment stop at the hotel. The conversation went something like this…
Have you a sandwich?
No.we are busy with Sunday lunch.
May we buy a baguette?
I can give you one.
Thank you so much.
Maybe you would like a little salad with it.
Just a little thank you.
The steep climb out of the valley was rewarded with fresh orange drinks in the bar in Ussel. By now we were beginning to spot fellow GR 70 walkers from different European countries.
The smart gite in le Bouchet provided a friendly evening meal with a group of French walkers. It was unfortunate that one of them gave us a terrible night with his snoring and coughing. The joys of the communal gite experience.