Circuit around the Pic Saint Loup

There are several very interesting walks in the Pic Saint-Loup area near Montpellier, with distant views of the Cévennes to the north and the sea to the south.

Technical sheet
No. 4385618
A Cazevieille walk posted on 30/11/20 by grahawi. Update : 04/12/20
Calculated time Calculated time: 4h15[?]
Distance Distance : 9.22km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 569m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 563m
Highest point Highest point : 624m
Lowest point Lowest point : 222m
Difficult Difficulty : Difficult
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Location Location : Cazevieille (34270)
Starting point Starting point : N 43.770444° / E 3.792228°
Download : -

Description

The starting point is the large car park at Cazevielle. Note that it is closed for refurbishment until 31 December 2020.
A second car park is available at the centre of the village and gives access directly to the lane "Chemin de Tourrière".
In the high season, it is often full, which is why the large car park outside the village is to be preferred.

(D/A) From the car park, proceed to the Chemin de Tourrière and follow it to the right, heading north-north-west. Carry on up the stony path, with the entry to Tourrière on the left.

A first choice needs to be made on reaching the track leading to the ruined towers. This point is marked on the ground, on the right-hand side, by two strokes of blue paint, then a yellow waymark a little further back and finally, a bit higher up on the rock mass, two large red letters A. Take the track to the left.
This is the path I recommend. It is shown on Open Street Map but not on the IGN maps.

The path shown on the IGN map is about a hundred yards further on. Care is needed, since there are two further possibilities (cairn, choice depending on how overgrown the paths are at the time).
All three routes join up just before the altitude marker 375.

The descent to waypoint (1) is very pleasant and affords fine views. However, the first three to four hundred yards after the saddle are stony and slippery in rainy weather. Shortly before point (1) there is a fork which is not marked on the map. Bear left, following a blue arrow.

(1) Take the track to the right, heading due east, and follow it as far as a fork. Keep right.

(2) On the right of the path, there is a block of stone with blue and yellow markings whose meaning is unclear. Continue to the right.

(3) At the end of the grassy area, bear right and follow this path as far as an intersection. Bear right (altitude marker 221).
Take care since there are many intersecting paths on this section.

(4) Follow the path, ignore a track heading off to the left and continue to the saddle "Pas de la Pousterle".

(5) At the junction, turn right along the long-distance path with red and white waymarks (the "GR®60").

(6) From this point, there are two options:
Option 1: climb to the summit of the Pic Saint-Loup along the ridges, but beware many difficulties: scant waymarking (occasional blue paint on stones), various obstacles requiring the use of handholds, frequent drops (cliffs) of 60/70m on the right, climbing from altitude 374 to 658, etc.
To negotiate this route you must have a good head for heights and be in good physical condition.
The route indicated between waypoints (6) and (7) is approximate.
Option 2 : stay on the GR®60 until the next junction (8) and follow a safe but very stony path to the summit, before retracing your steps.

(7) Rejoin the GR®60.

(8) Continue to the right along the GR®60 to descend from the Pic Saint-Loup and return to the car park (D/A).

Waypoints :
D/A : km 0 - alt. 297m
1 : km 2.11 - alt. 247m - Turn right, due east
2 : km 3.53 - alt. 285m - Fork - bear right
3 : km 3.74 - alt. 275m - Bear right
4 : km 4.14 - alt. 222m - Careful - several paths
5 : km 5.37 - alt. 337m - Pas de la Pousterle
6 : km 5.57 - alt. 371m - Fork: two routes possible
7 : km 6.64 - alt. 612m - Summit - Pic Saint-Loup
8 : km 7.08 - alt. 542m - La Croisette
D/A : km 9.21 - alt. 303m

Useful Information

Since the paths are rough, good hiking footwear is essential. Do not forget to take enough water since there are not many shady resting places in the warm season.

Between points (6) and (7) following the ridge there are many difficulties: scant waymarking (occasional blue paint on stones), various obstacles requiring the use of handholds, frequent drops (cliffs) of 60/70m on the right, climbing from altitude 374 to 658, etc.
To negotiate this route you must have a good head for heights and be in good physical condition.

If in doubt, choose the second option and continue along the GR®60 to point (8) (La Croisette). From here, you can either go up to the summit or return to the car park.
In places, it can be useful to have the track recorded on your smartphone and/or a good map.

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.