The bordermarkers of the Pyrenees : all my trips
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- thursday 15 september 2016 -
Trying a shortcut, from Hospice de France

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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 9-days trip to the Pyrenees, covering various targets from east to west.

Today: from Hospice de France trying a shortcut within the GRPdesBF-331-333-stage. Basecamp is the camping Las Espalias in Bossòst

Weather: very windy, chilly
For explanation of the gps-coordinates and other cartographic backgrounds: see the cartography-page

The gps-track has not been manually  corrected which explains the inaccuracy and misalignment at some points.

Started at 9:45 , finish at 14:30

According to Gps-Track-Analyse

- distance : 13,8 km
- cum. elevation gain : 1592m
- cum. elevation loss : 1587m
- total elevation: 3178m

- altitude maxi : 1885m
- altitude mini : 1378m
- altitude average : 1482m

Starting point Hospice de France (near Bagnères-de-Luchon).

Some donkeys roaming around here.
It's a popular starting-point for mountain hikes, especially to the iconic Port de Vénasque (bm332).

I have passed Hospice de France and look back.
Last bridge before the winding ascent to Port de Vénasque starts.
But I turn right after the bridge, taking the Chemin de l'impératrice.

That's a trail along the forested hillside towards the Cirque de la Glère and Port de la Glère (bm331).
It's a 1,5h walk along a nice and mostly easy path but eroded at some parts.
For example here.
Here I leave the forest: the Cirque de la Glère lies ahead.

At the foot of the Cirque there are options for a bivouac.
But my goal is this valley where the ruisseau de la Montagnette descends from Lac de la Montagnette.

When having descended from Port de la Glère, this might be a shortcut to Port de Vénasque.
Let's show it on a map.

I found this on the internet on various webpages. On Google Earth we can spot the trails involved and I made this kml-route of it.
I start climbing. There are trails and cairns and
navigating your way up is no problem.
But as you get higher, it gets steeper and steeper. That doesn't show well on this picture
but is better to notice on this one.

Finally it gets too steep for me, considering that the GRPdesBF walker I have in mind carries a backpack for a multi-day hike including bivouac equipment.

So I give up and return..
On my way back along the Chemin de l'Impératrice, this view towards
Col de Barèges (bm356)
At some parts of the trail, you have to be careful while
most of it provides a smooth and pleasant walk.
I'm back at the valley leading up to Port de Vénasque.

This is a popular hiking area and I suppose that a bivouac here in the open is not allowed.
But I found these cabins, away from the main trails, where you might find a quiet spot. Streaming water is not far away.
This map shows where they are.
Hospice de France has become a pleasant hotel-café-restaurant.

The next day I drive to Lourdes for two day of resting.

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