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Finishing the GR10

It’s time for another walkie 🙂 This time it’s a 113mile stroll, completing the 538 mile GR10 trek from the Atlantic coast to the Mediterranean coast along the French/Spanish border.

Geoff Starting GR10 in HendayeI started the walk from Hendaye on the 4th September 2007 giving up at the halfway stage, in totally foul weather, at Bagneres de Luchon on 25th September 2007.

Last year I returned and set out from Bagneres on the 9th July hoping to reach Arles sur Tech, so that I could spend some time with Dave & Susie who had rented a gite there.

Yellow trainHowever, I ran out of time, so decided to stop at Merens Les Vals (Actually at Ax les Thermes) and save a few days by taking the train  to the Spanish border at Latour-de-Carol where I caught  the lovely open topped Yellow Train to Villefranche followed by a bus to Vernet . After spending the night. I then walked back up to the GR10 near Canigou and then down to Arles (a tough day’s hike!).

This year I’m taking Sally (previously I walked it on my own) to Ax les Thermes to sample the sulphurous waters and hot baths before starting the GR10 again at Merens. This time, walking all the way, so we should finish the GR10, arriving at the Mediterranean in Banyuls. 🙂 I’m not taking the tent this year so hopefully the gites/refuges/hotels are not to busy!

Not sure how much blogging etc will get done especially after reading this excellent article by Earl “Why Have Travelers Stopped Talking To Each Other?“also some of the refuges are quite remote with no regular phone line. But I’m taking the Air just in case…..

Shortcut on the GR10

Tonight I christen my new birthday sleeping mat from Sally The tent is safely pitched in the garden of Yann Cornic at his gite in Saint Lizier gite in Saint Lizier
Last night I was sharing a room with Michael and Cherie? In the slightly hippy gite at Esbints learning about sheep dogs and farming in the mountains from it’s young owners ( who were about to disappear for the night salsa dancing) whilst his father was stuck, on his own, in a mountain cabin for 90 days looking after the sheep!

I left M&C at 8am to Walk the Tour du Val du Garbet to here, imagine my surprise to bump into them walking into Seix (pronounced Sex). Yep I had nearly walked a circle 🙁 I continued into Seix with them and then found the correct walk! Some shortcut, twas another difficult day.
An even bigger surprise was when trying to negotiate the final bend I was to discover them behind me again 🙂 two pressions later they returned to Seix, by taxi, for the Tour de France tomorrow and I continued my walking here!
Tomorrow I will journey on to Aulus or even Bassies.

Thick cloud on the GR10


Today I recommence my GR10 walk from the Atlantic to The Mediterrean along The Pyrenees. I stopped halfway in Luchon 4 years ago in freezing cloud & very wet! Today is not looking so good either. It should be 11 hours to get to Fos reaching 2193metres above Luchon (650metres).
Now for breakfast….
Evening update!
I arrived in Fos at La Gentilhommiere hotel (run by English folks) at 17.47 having walked 18.2 miles in 7hr 21min plus 3hr 6min of stopped time. Must have done at least 2000m ascent & descent 🙂
Drank all my 2 litres of water!
On Pic de Cabanere (2193m) I managed to glimpse above the clouds the Pyrenees only glacier! Otherwise visibility was horrific – thank goodness the balisage were plentiful on the tops.