The bordermarkers of the Pyrenees : all my trips
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- friday 23 august 2013 -
Traversing beneath the borderridge

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(click to open this trip in Google Earth or copy link to Google Maps; click right on this link to download gpx-version)

Summary: part of a 12-days trip to the Pyrenees with a lot of targets from the Aričge mountains to the Basque country

Day 3: third day of a 6-days hike following the Aričge borderridge from bm418 to 425, today trying a traverse on the mountain slopes from Col de la Pale de la Claučre to Port d’Aula to Port de Salau

Weather: sunny
For explanation of the gps-coordinates and other cartographic backgrounds:

Start: 9.00, break: 13-14 , finish: 18.00 , net walking time: 8h
According to the gps-tripteller:
Maximum height: 2522m
other parameters unreliable because of partial failure of the gps.

According to visugpx

- distance : 14,7 km
- cum. elevation gain :  681m
- cum. elevation loss :  955m
- total elevation:  1636m

- altitude maxi :  2526m
- altitude mini :  1839m
- altitude average :  2153m
First along Étang Long to Col de la Pale de la Claučre.

The safety-cords along the lake are partly destroyed/loose which make some parts tricky.
There’s still snow in the valley up to Col de la Pale de la Claučre which I already noticed yesterday.

But the first part of the climb (red/white waymarked) to Col de la Pale de la Claučre is on the green strip on the left.
Only much higher
the red/white waymarks disappear under the snow .

But then I can easily walk on the snow because the inclination is small

Looking back, the Étang Long still visible.
And so I continue on the snow until the final climb to the Col.

This picture: I've reached the Col
And as you can see, I get a little bit sun-tanned after two days of walking in the sun.
From the Col, a SE-route on the mountain-slopes will lead me to Port d’Aula in ± 2h while crossing two NS-ridges.

That divides the route to Port d'Aula in 3 parts:
1. From Col de la Pale de la Claučre on a non-waymarked trail to a ridge/cliff and climbing over it. That's fairly easy.

This picture: the trail of part 1 (approximately)
And also on this border-pass an information panel about the refugees fleeing France in WWII.
I'm on my way
and look back to Col de la Pale de la Claučre

Zoom-in of Col de la Pale de la Claučre
I'm approaching the first ridge to cross = the end of part 1
Some leftover snowfields to tackle
and a last look back to Col de la Pale de la Claučre.
I'm allmost at the ridge and am surprised
by these plastic drums. Why here?

This picture: taken from the ridge. We're looking to the second part of the trail to Port d'Aula.
Part 2: the trail first descends to a ‘bottom’ - a valley floor -, then climbs S to the second ridge. PM: I took a route too high in the beginning (the blue line), I should have descended more directly to the bottom
I'm on my way, I just climbed over a hill-ridge in-between.
The trail ahead is well visible.
The climbing gets a bit annoying: a tilted and slippery path. Pink waymarks have appeared.

I'm approaching the second ridge and look back.

The last stretch of the second part.


Almost at the second ridge

Part 3: from this second ridge the Port d’Aula is now visible

and the pink trail brings me - now more comfortable - to it. At one point I made a shortcut where the pink trail seemed to vanish.

I'm getting closer to Port d'Aula

The Estany del Port d'Aula

And now we're allmost there

at Port d'Aula with bm421

Lunchbreak at Port d’Aula

Then from Port d’Aula to Port de Salau.

That’s proves to be easy: an abundantly white waymarked trail leads me almost the whole way. It will take me ± 2˝h.
The trail bends on a next ridge and then

we can see the next valley with Port d'Aula in the far distance.
The white trail passes a source later on (the first watersource since Étang Long) and some little streams later on.
But then the white waymarking stops abruptly at this large painted sign.

I almost can’t believe it and return to check it. In fact the white trail is continued by a sparsely yellow waymarked trail.
If you continue the path from the end of the white waymarking, you have to be attentive to see the (yellow) branch to the left.
And that's after ± 150m, right after this a small stream crossing the path.
The yellow trail will bring me to Port de Salau.
Port de Salau

And also here an information panel about the refugees in WWII

The ramshack and dirty refuge built in the ruines has collapsed.
On the hillside 75m to the SE, there's bm422bis
After ‘doing’ bm422 and 422bis, I descend to the nice and comfortable Cabane de la Lanne.

It's foggy in France.

Beyond the refuge, there's this source at ± 300m, to the right of the trail.
Back at the refuge
where I enjoy
the evening-views
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