Sentier des 1000 Marches - Saut et Lac de Vezoles

This trail is a marvel exploring the Saut de Vezoles and its lake with spectacular amenities.

Technical sheet
A Riols walk posted on 03/03/15 by slinky. Update : 11/12/17
Calculated time Calculated time: 6h15[?]
Distance Distance : 16.67km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 623m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 620m
Highest point Highest point : 993m
Lowest point Lowest point : 406m
Difficult Difficulty : Difficult
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Area Area : Massif central
Location Location : Riols (34220)
Starting point Starting point : N 43.536798° / E 2.799835°
Map IGN Map (Click to buy) : Ref. 2444ET
Download : -
The Sentier des Gardes

Description

Car park between the hamlets of Falgouze and Langlade.

(S) From the car park, head towards the hamlet of Langlade following the yellow and yellow/red markings. At the junction, continue straight toward the centre of the hamlet.

(1) At a fork, go left on a path lined with stones that rises among the chestnut trees. It leads down to the north-west and passes a water tank. Ignore the trails on the left and head around a house on the left. The trail descends and crosses the stream to get to the other side.
The the markings lead steeply uphill and must be carefully watched as the trail is not marked on the stones.

(2) When the path joins Sentier des Gardes, continue left on a beautiful flat portion for about 600 m. Approaching the stream, it goes up on the right on the first few man-made steps. The rise continues by alternating steps and paths crossing the river several times. Above, a cable helps cross a small, steep path which can be slippery with water runoff.
At the foot of a beautiful waterfall, the trail goes back to the left going around the Saut de Vezoles.

(3) Arrive on a paved road, continue opposite on a small road signposted in the direction of the Lake Vezoles tower. Just before the dam, head left to cross the small car park and follow an unmarked trail along the lake.
When it reaches the yellow and yellow-red markings, continue straight ahead and follow the curve of the lake to cross Fraisse-sur-Agout located at a picnic area.
Turn right still following the signs close to the shore, ignoring paths off to the left.

(4) Arrive on a paved road, continue on the right, cross the stream and continue to the Campblanc refuge. Immediately after the refuge, turn right and follow the signs along a beech hedge. When it rejoins the track, continue straight as far as a picnic area.

(5) Leave the track, cross a fence and continue along the lake to find a new picnic area. Head around it on the left along a beech hedge, pass a barrier and take the path right in front of a stone house.
Continue right on the path along the track at the start and towards the lake afterwards. It meets the track further on and leads to a large crossing.

(6) Make a round trip on the right to the dam and enjoy the views of the Saut de Vezoles. Take care at the edge of the cliffs.
Backtrack to the intersection, leave the marked path and continue on the track that goes uphill opposite. Pass by a menhir (standing stone), ignoring the path that leads to its immediate right and continue on the track. 300 m further on, take the right path with a sign that reads “Sauf Service" that joins with the start of an EDF conduit.

(7) Make a left turn through almost 360° to find a path that goes parallel below the one you just left. At the next fork, go right for 400 m to a new crossing.

(8) Continue left, pass by the next few visible paths on the right to find a new fork (not present on the map).
Continue straight for 300 m to yet another crossroads.

(9) Continue on the less leftward of the two paths and continue the descent to find a track just before a shelter.

(10) Take the track on the right that descends past a ruin used by the guerrillas. Ignore the paths leading off.
''The Map shows markings, but these are not present on the ground"
In a turn, pass by Chemin des Gardes on the right and continue down to the left on the track.

(11) 400 m further on, turn right onto the trail that goes downhill. 800 m away, at the next junction, turn left and find tank No. 447.

(12) Turn right behind the tank to find the GR77 that leads off on a trail. When crossing a road, continue opposite downhill joining the trail left left above.
Continue to the left on this track which will join the stream. Leave the road to the left and cross the bridge on the right which goes along the EDF conduit.

(13) Cross the conduit on the left and continue the path that climbs to the hamlet of Langlade. Pass a Rogation cross then a sloped paved road (in Provence a “calade”) that leads to the church.

Waypoints :
D/A : km 0 - alt. km 0
1 : km 0.12 - alt. km 0.12 - Left in the hamlet
2 : km 1.47 - alt. km 1.47 - Left on Sentier des Gardes
3 : km 3.34 - alt. km 3.34 - Ahead on the road
4 : km 6.4 - alt. km 6.4 - Turn right on the road
5 : km 7.19 - alt. km 7.19 - Leave the track on the right
6 : km 8.89 - alt. km 8.89 - Return route available via the dam
7 : km 10.48 - alt. km 10.48 - EDF conduit site
8 : km 11.54 - alt. km 11.54 - Left at the crossroads
9 : km 12.05 - alt. km 12.05 - Left at the crossroads
10 : km 12.65 - alt. km 12.65 - Turn right on the trail
11 : km 14.05 - alt. km 14.05 - Turn right on the trail
12 : km 14.93 - alt. km 14.93 - To the right, behind the tank
13 : km 16.04 - alt. km 16.04 - Cross the EDF conduit
D/A : km 16.67 - alt. km 16.67

Useful Information

The Campblanc refuge is managed by the ONF and can accommodate up to 26 people.

We advise taking IGN maps with you on this walk. Click here to buy : 2444ET.

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

Opinions and comments

Average

Global average : 4.61/5
Number of opinions : 64
Description quality : 4.48/5
Routemap quality : 4.48/5
Walk interest : 4.86/5


Walker
on Mon 06 Nov 2017 09:20:49 CET

Global average : 5 / 5

Date of walk : 06/11/17
Description quality : Very good
Routemap quality : Very good
Walk interest : Very good

Great climb to the barrage with fantastic views of the region and several nice river crossings in between the waterfalls. Borderline too difficult for our Golden Retriever (an experienced hiker/climber though) and really intensive with the back packs for our overnight stay in the forest.

This is a serious hike with a few challenging climbs. We skipped the tour around the lake because we had around 8km extra to get to Langlade, and that was perfect for a 2-day hike.

We're still looking for a nice & beautiful spot to stay the night, though, as the 'abri' in the forest wasn't all that charming.

Other walks in the area

distance 10.34km Vertical gain +697m Vertical drop -702m duration 4h35 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Colombières-sur-Orb - 34 - Hérault

An exceptional circular walk above the torrent of Arles where you can discover a cave dwelling and a superb Cervennes collection in the hamlet of Fage.

The Megaliths of Minerve
distance 12.66km Vertical gain +443m Vertical drop -443m duration 4h40 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in La Caunette - 34 - Hérault

This hike, at the start of La Caunette, will take you above Minerva and will let you discover the megaliths scattered along the route. You'll criss-cross vines, scrubland composed of gorse, thyme, brush, evergreen oak trees and the odd wood.

Following the footsteps of the Visigoths in Villarzel-Cabardès
distance 6.83km Vertical gain +91m Vertical drop -92m duration 2h10 Easy Easy
Starting point Starting point in Villarzel-Cabardès - 11 - Aude

You'll be amazed by the well-preserved state of the Visigoths' tombs found along the way. You can explore the cemetery, made up of fifteen or so graves, at the corner of a path in the middle of shrub land.

For more walks, use our search engine.

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