A trip to highest point of the Massif Central.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
At Mont Dore take the Route de Sancy and park in the car park in front of the Gîte de l'Ecir(D).
Take the right-side opposite and reach the Vallon de Courre.
When you get to the ski lift (1) take the trail that crosses this small valley before climbing sharply up to the col (2) by the the Tour Carrée (square tower) where it joins the GR30.
Turn left on this GR and quickly reach the summit of the Puy de Sancy on the path along the ridge (3).
Follow the GR to reach the Col de la Cabane to change GR. It is currently the GR4 that leads to the summit of the Puy de Cacadogne (4) and then the Roc de Cluzeau (5).
Then descend in the plain, by the stream (intermittent), leave the GR and turn left onto a tail along the left bank that leads to the Grande Cascade (6).
Continue the descent, reach Mont-Dore again and return to the car park (7) via the road on the left.
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 4229ft
1 : mi 0.27 - alt. 4393ft - Val de Courre ski lift
2 : mi 1.36 - alt. 5577ft - Col toward the Tour Carrée - Col de Courre (1781m)
3 : mi 1.93 - alt. 6079ft - Puy de Sancy - Puy de Sancy
4 : mi 2.13 - alt. 5814ft - Col de la Cabanne
5 : mi 3.17 - alt. 5725ft - Puy de Cacadogne - Puy de Cacadogne
6 : mi 4.15 - alt. 5594ft - Roc de Cluzeau
7 : mi 6.1 - alt. 4311ft - Grande Cascade
8 : mi 6.98 - alt. 3570ft - D983 return to car park
D/A : mi 8.6 - alt. 4229ft
On the same side as the car park is the Gite de l'Ecir where we stayed a few weeks ago.
We advise taking IGN maps with you on this walk. Click here to buy : 2432ET, 2432ETR, 2433SB.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
In good weather you can get a clear view of this entire French mountain region from Le Puy de Sancy, the highest point of the Massif Central. There are numerous Puys (volcanic hills) in the surrounding area and with the help of the orientation table it's easy to spot each of them. The most famous (the most publicised in any case) is the Puy de Dôme opposite above Clermont-Ferrand, which being so close seems to invite you over.
A very beautiful hike in a conservation area.
The very secretive and beautiful Chaudefour valley is a classified natural site, closed up by the steep contours of a glacial cirque. Peaks, needles, plumbs are as many natural defences for an intact and preserved valley.
A Grand Tour of the beautiful and mysterious Lac Pavin, passing by the Puy de Montchal and the Creux de Soucy chasm.
A hiking trail in the Auvergne summer pastures, on a summit overlooking the spa resort of La Bourboule.
A circuit that forms a figure of 8 around Lac Chambon, with panoramic views of the lake and the Sancy range, the Valley of Chaudefour and a section through Murol via its castle.
A wander among the underbrush along the Couze Pavin, from bank to bank, flowing in cascades.
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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.