Circuit around Lioux returning through the Madeleine cliffs, with fine views of the Vaucluse ranges.
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.
500 m before Lioux, take the uphill road to the right above the cemetery towards the car park at the Lioux windmill.
(D) From the car park, with your back to the direction sign, take the track opposite towards the Plan des Yves. This forks immediately. Follow the right-hand track waymarked in yellow down through the boxwood and holm oaks. Continue straight ahead at the first intersection. Ignore the next track to the right and continue downhill until you reach the Plan des Yves junction.
(1) Head left towards the Chapelle Sainte-Madeleine (ignoring the two leftmost tracks which lead back up the hill). This track runs level, through olive groves, vineyards and cherry orchards. Stay on the main track, which is well marked, ignoring all others until you reach the Chapelle Sainte-Madeleine.
(2) Continue on the other side, passing to the right of the chapel, towards the Croix de la Lave. After 50 m, leave the main track for a narrower track on the right, which runs level among pines and holm oak.
At the Saint Marc shrine, cross road D115 and continue on the other side on the track leading to the Croix de la Lave. Continue straight ahead on the main track ignoring all others. The track passes round a vineyard, dips into a valley and rises for a few metres to the Croix de la Lave junction.
(3) Bear left towards Font-Jouvale. The track passes alongside a vineyard, dominated by a dry-stone hut centre left, then enters the valley. When the track becomes narrower, leave the valley floor and follow the waymarks up a path on the left-hand side to road D115.
(4) When you reach the road, turn right for a few metres and cross over. Find the path rising to the left following the green waymarks for route No 12. The path climbs steeply, and, after a few hairpins, meets another path. Turn left and emerge on to a wider track 20 m further up. Continue to the left of this track, which climbs steadily to a cross, of which only the base remains.
(5) Ignore the track opposite and head right, following the green waymarks for route No 11. At a fork a few yards later, take the right-hand path and follow it as it bears west to follow the cliff edge. From this point on, follow the green waymarks which run close to the cliff, ignoring the other waymarks which appear from time to time.
(6) At an intersection on an esplanade, ignore the tracks to the left and the one that heads right, downhill towards the Verrerie and continue straight ahead. Keep following the same waymarks close to the cliff edge, enjoying the panoramic views of the surrounding mountain ranges.
Over 2 km later, the waymarks lead down to the car park
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 1093ft
1 : mi 0.81 - alt. 807ft - Plan des Yves
2 : mi 2.21 - alt. 1119ft - Chapelle Sainte-Madeleine
3 : mi 3.15 - alt. 1047ft - Croix de la Lave
4 : mi 4.82 - alt. 1434ft - Leave valley floor and head left
5 : mi 5.28 - alt. 1762ft - The cross
6 : mi 6.38 - alt. 1745ft - Junction with path towards the Verrerie
D/A : mi 8.02 - alt. 1093ft
Be careful! The second part of the hike runs close to the cliff top.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
The Saint Madeleine chapel and its little hermitage, which are in excellent condition.
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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.