Circuit around Combret-sur-Rance

Very interesting hike as much for the landscapes (Rance valley, Rougier de Camarès) as for the culture (village of Combret, Notre-Dame d'Orient, numerous crosses).
Some portions on tarmac, but with the magnificence of the small paths and the beauty of the landscape, you'll quickly forget them.

Technical sheet No. 33589850

A Combret walk posted on 07/05/23 by Wanderer du Gard. Last update : 10/05/23
Calculated time Calculated time: 6h15 ?
Distance Distance : 16.55 km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 541 m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 547 m
Highest point Highest point : 590 m
Lowest point Lowest point : 322 m
Moderate Difficulty : Moderate
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Area Area : Massif central
Location Location : Combret (12370)
Starting point Starting point : N 43.842215° / E 2.672985°
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Circuit around Combret-sur-Rance Circuit around Combret-sur-Rance Circuit around Combret-sur-Rance Circuit around Combret-sur-Rance


Start : Village square of Combret 12370 (A) (GPS co-ordinates: N 43°50' 32 E 2° 40' 23).
Waymark : Yellow markings are present all along the route.

(D/A) Leave the square by the Rue de la Clede, going down to the left of the Auberge de La Tour (350 m or so).

(1) Follow the road D91 on the left for about a hundred metres, which overhangs the river Rance.

(2) Just before the bridge, turn left on a path and continue North-East until the fork.

(3) Turn left (South-West) on the hairpin bend. The path climbs and allows you to reach a road at the top of the village, the Church Saint-Jean-Baptiste and the cemetery. You can see the remains of terraced cultivation, supported by stone walls called "paredous".

(4) Turn right on the tarmacked road and follow it for 500 m.

(5) At the fork with a path, take the small path on the left (North).

(6) On reaching the house, make a return journey to the left to admire the three Jubilee Crosses. And a very nice view on the village of Combret. Retrace your steps. Then, as you come back to the junction, go to the left on the path which, after having crossed a small brook, climbs towards the church of Sainte-Léonce de Haut-Villar (ruins) (B). Next to it, you will find the statue-menhir of Sainte-Léonce.''

(7) Continue to the right on a wide track which rises and offers you an admirable panorama.

(8) After 570 m, take the track on the left and admire the magnificent view: in the distance the Monts de Lacaune (windmills) and the Rock and the Virgin Mary statue of Roquecézières culminating at 891 m. Carry on the path for 2 Km, ignoring paths coming from left and right until you reach a road.

(9) Cross the road and go straight ahead, ignoring the place called Layrolle on the left, and follow the path in a general Westerly direction.

(10) At the crossroads, go straight ahead and descend towards the Terraignes farm, whose name comes from "terre de feu" (land of fire) certainly due to its red colour. We are in the "Rougier de Camarès".

(11) From Terraignes, a round trip by a solid concrete footbridge over the Rance (the other footbridge, below Saint-Maurice, has been washed away by a flood. Will it be rebuilt...?) allows you to reach Notre-Dame d'Orient (C) (visit strongly advised). Retrace your steps. Then as you come back to the junction, continue to the right (East-North-east) on the small road to the hamlet of Ran, passing by the Château du Grès.

(12) After 1.5 Km, just before the hamlet of Ran, turn right (South) and descend to the level of the Rance to cross it on a very nice bridge.

(13) Just before a small bridge over the Ruisseau de Luzerp (stream), go straight ahead (South) on the small path (you stay on the left side of the stream).

(14) Reach the D91 road that you cross to take the path opposite. By a wood of pubescent oaks, to reach a ridge after 1 Km.

(15) Cross the wide track and continue, slightly to the left (East-North-East), on a small path. Through a chestnut grove and following a very old path lined with low walls, go down to Combret. Very nice views of the village built on a ridge.

(16) Take the D91 on the right (North-East) for 360 m.

(17) Cross the bridge over the Rance (cross on the bridge) and go up into the village. A visit to this beautiful village is well worth it to end this hike. After having visited the "Jardin des Pierres", take a very beautiful calade (cobbled street) going up to arrive at the car park.(D/A).

Waypoints :
D/A : km 0 - alt. 382 m - Village square of Combret - Rance (rivière) - Affluant du Tarn
1 : km 0.35 - alt. 361 m - D91, turn left
2 : km 0.52 - alt. 364 m - Path on the left, before the bridge
3 : km 0.94 - alt. 372 m - Turn left "Sentier des Paredous"
4 : km 1.56 - alt. 415 m - Turn right on the road, signposted "Boucle de Combret"
5 : km 1.95 - alt. 403 m - Small path that descends on the left
6 : km 2.28 - alt. 400 m - Round trip to the "croix du Jubilé". Fork left.
7 : km 4.22 - alt. 533 m - Saint Léonce church
8 : km 4.79 - alt. 570 m - Track on the left
9 : km 6.81 - alt. 545 m - Cross the road
10 : km 8.56 - alt. 450 m - Crossing of tracks
11 : km 9.43 - alt. 359 m - Terraignes
12 : km 12.44 - alt. 400 m - Fork right before the hamlet of Ran
13 : km 13.43 - alt. 339 m - Straight ahead: small path
14 : km 13.67 - alt. 364 m - Cross the D91
15 : km 14.78 - alt. 479 m - Cross a wide track
16 : km 15.84 - alt. 378 m - D91 on the right
17 : km 16.21 - alt. 358 m - Bridge over the Rance river
D/A : km 16.55 - alt. 381 m - Village square of Combret

Useful Information

Start : Village square of Combret 12370 (GPS co-ordinates: N 43°50' 32 E 2° 40' 23).
Waymark : Yellow markings are present all along the route.

Parking : Park in the village square of Combret 12370 (GPS co-ordinates: N 43°50' 32 E 2° 40' 23).

Facilities : Notre-Dame d'Orient : picnic area and toilets

Walk translated by Wanderer du Gard originally from the French author pyrene12.

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

During the walk or to do/see around

(A) Combret : village with medieval vestiges, built on a ridge of red sandstone and dominating the meanders of the Rance.
To see :
- the seigniorial justice hall,
- Renaissance houses with vaults, windows and doors, sometimes with double corbelling,
- at the top of the village, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Church and its small cemetery,
- the Garden of the Stones : vestiges and statue-menhirs
- Cobbled streets

(B) Church of Sainte-Léonce de Haut-Villar (in ruins)

(C) Notre-Dame d'Orient ("Auriens" original spelling) : baroque church, unique in Rouergue (17th century) :
- wooden ceiling resembling a huge mat made of fern leaves
- magnificent and highly decorated altarpiece (17th century).

  • Numerous crosses:

- cross of the rogations : processions and public prayers taking place in April and during three days to attract the divine blessing on the work in the fields and thus ensure the protection of the harvests against the climatic hazards (hail, drought... etc.)
Today, the farmers will contact their insurer...
- Jubilee Cross

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