The bordermarkers of the Pyrenees : all my trips
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- saturday 22 july 2017 -
Redoing bm065 to 074

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Summary: part of 13 day-trips in the Pyrenees, covering various targets from the Basque country up to Llivia.

Today: redoing bm65 to bm074 in two trips

Weather: cloudy
Trip 1 Bm065-072

(click to open this trip in Google Earth or copy link to Google Maps; click right on this link to download gpx-version). The gps-track has not been manually  corrected which explains the inaccuracy and misalignment at some points. For cartographic backgrounds: see the cartography-page

According to Google Earth: 12,8km, max-height 138m, min-height 51m, elevation: +446m -448m
Start 9:23 Finish 14:49
Luxurious breakfast with marmelade on my toast.

It's about 7 km along the GR10 (from the camping in Dantxarria) to bm065.

I cover that stretch while trailrunning with a small backpack which goes surprisingly smoothly.

It seems that my escalator-training in the gym has benefitted me.
In between: this view towards La Rhune
Important change of course in the GRPdesBf, when coming from bm066.

Going straight on would bring you to Ainhoa. Turning right brings you to Dantxarria.

Still looking fit.
The GR10 follows in the last kilometers of this stretch a muddy trail along a stream with the dirtroad just meters besides it. For the GRPdesBF I will use the dirtroad.
Bm065 seems even more tilted than before.
Bm065. The number is still visible.
Walking back.

The yellow line is the borderline
The GR10 takes a short shortcut to the left in stead of continuing along the dirtroad but my GRPdesBF sticks to the dirtroad.
At the abondoned house near bm064 I change some clothes (capri-trousers and long socks instead of my running-short).

I think I will need them in the blackberry-undergrowth and I'm indeed right.
Besides the (abandoned) house crossing the fence and descending to the stream.
There is a remarkable difference in the landscape compared with 2009: blackberries and ferns are taking over entire fields.

In 2009 we could cross the stream easily, climb a fence and walk uphill to bm67 (in fact we did that the other way around).

That's not possible anymore. The stream seems more wide but more important: the lower part of the hillside is a jungle of ferns and blackberries.
Bm66 is particularly difficult to reach, it is now surrounded by a dense layer of blackberries.

I almost give up but in my last trial I use my walking sticking to hit and slay a path through the blackberry which is easier than it looked.
Bm066 is about 10m from the stream.

A look into the corridor
with a zoom-in to bm066

You need to enter the meadow besides the house to get as close to bm066 before you force yourself a path to it.
Zoom-in to where to struggle yourself to bm066.

As said before, crossing the stream and climbing the hill to bm067 is not possible anymore.

The stream seems more wide but more important: the lower part of the hillside is a jungle of ferns and blackberries.
But there´s an alternative. Back along the dirtroad I've seen a branch entering the forest.

That is here.

That brings me,
taking twice the right fork at two successive biforks, in the direction of bm067.

This is the first bifork.
Passing this ford.
This is the second bifork, a fallen tree ahead.
I arrive at open terrain
and from here I walk over the meadow
to a second meadow towards bm067.
But (the destroyed) bm067 and its neigbour - a municipal borderstone) are hidden in ferns and in between two fences.
I use my walking stick
to clear the spot
In the front the demolished bm067 and behind the old municipal marker.
I don't find any trace of a number or cross on the bm-pieces.

So far so good.
In the adjoining field I make a half circle around the forest edge to the NE-end of the meadow.

From the end of the meadow a muddy trail goes SE to this muddy stream-crossing.

Then I go wrong, going S, and I'm puzzled because I follow my own directions and pictures on my website.

It takes a while before I discover what is wrong: my website is wrong. There are two muddy stream-crossings!

Let's show it on the map.
So: from the first streamcrossing, follow the trail NE and E

which descends to an even more muddy stream-crossing

Now you have arrived at the border-fence. It's is best to keep at the Spanish side with all his cow-trails, keeping close to the fence.
I try the French side but the forest strip along it is difficult to get through. Bm68 is however on the French side of the fence.
I switch back to the Spanish side, reach now easily the meadow and then the large building which you see at this picture.
Just before the building's premises, it is easy to get over the fence to the left and proceed
to bm069.
The building itself - once mysterious, seeming abandoned - is now in use as a group accomodation for the scouting-movement (I think).
Then along the N-side of the Spanish meadow
to its NE-point where a muddy cow-trail
descends along a stream
and a fence
until it ends at bm70, close to an abandoned house.
The abandoned house.
At the other side of the stream, a steep trail (a game trail, I think) brings me to a field, fully taken over by ferns
View back towards
La Rhune.
Wrestling through the fern uphill, I reach a forest strip and bm071 which is at the Spanish side of the fence.
Bm071 with a view towards Dantxarria
I know that the Spanish meadow is in use for horses so I switch back to the French side.

I have - further on - to cross a meadow with cows and can descend to the road, following the forest-edge.
I discover that at the back of the Venta besides bm72, there's a gate which gives access to the venta's premises and the road.
Almost at the road.
Bm072 to the left.

Back to the camping for a break. 

I'm content with this trip and surprised how the landscape is changing, nature beating agriculture.
Trip 2

According to Google Earth: 5,5km
Start 17:13 Finish 18:55
Then in the late afternoon a short trip to bm73 and 74, following a yellow trail.
Further on, I leave the road
and pass this footbridge
to get to bm074
In the stream besides bm074, I search for the split half of the old bm74 - Jacques Koleck found that in 2013 - but I can't find it.
I walk back. This is the spot where you have enter the forest straight on (between the two roads) to get in 25m to bm073.

The right fork is a private road.
Back at the camping and enjoying my macaroni-dinner.
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