LE CHEMIN DE STEVENSON. Day 7.

Wifi has been a big problem in these parts, so I’m catching up at home.

Le Bleymard  —  Le Pont de Montvert.

At last some morning sunshine and clear skies! The route out was steep all the way up to the small ski station of Lozere where we stopped for coffee. Once out of the ski runs we picked up the wonderful line of standing stones leading up to Mt. Lozere. These granite stones occurred every 50m or so and were individually beautiful pieces, some being re-erected as the GR70 gained in popularity. A wonderful feeling of past navigations.

To reach the summit of Mt. Lozere, 1699m, they are left to follow a well defined track westwards.  At the moment there seems to have been a lot of art work installed on the route, further research will be necessary to found out why and by whom. There is a mole like track of new soil leading you on, there are several ‘washing lines’ on the  horizon, there is a multitude of cleverly balanced small cairns and at one point a bath installation!!

JpegThe summit today gave 360degree views. The French ‘trig’ point was rather disappointing compared to ours in the UK.We lunched by a boulder enjoying the sunshine and southern views over distant ranges towards the Med.    Stevenson wrote of  ‘a sea of blue hills to the south’

Rougher tracks took us into the valley of Finiels and onto ancient tracks between boulder cleared fields. The whole valley was filled with boulders and one can only imagine the labour needed to farm this landscape.

Eventually Le Pont de Montvert came into sight, a cluster of houses around the confluence of two rivers – the Rieumalet and the larger Tarn. This is a popular tourist destination with a busy street alongside the Tarn and an old arched bridge connecting the two areas of the town. Our hotel was on the southern bank, Hotel les Cevennes, and was the one Stevenson stayed in.

We arrived to find a key and a rather confusing note as to the whereabouts of our room across the street from the hotel. We, along with a couple of women with a donkey whom we met, tried several private doors in the narrow streets before entering an old house with well presented bedrooms. Unfortunately our bathroom was flooded with an inch of water, so bailing out was our first duty. The bohemian hotel staff, when summoned, didn’t seem too worried and fortunately there was no further problems. Dinner was superb.

We have been blessed with perfect conditions, after our recent rain, for crossing Mount Lozere

This whole area was the scene in the 18th century of persecution of the Protestant population by the Catholic church and many bloody conflicts occurred.

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