A family-friendly walk exploring the Island of Oiselet and the banks of the Rhône.
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.
Reach the Island of Oiselet using the marked path, Chemin de l’Oiselet. Park in the car park after crossing a rocky area which leads across the backwaters of the river Rhône, just before the old Arméniers bridge.
(S) From the car park, follow the tag post directing you to the "Peupleraie" which is at the crossroads facing the rocky feature ahead.
Turn left onto the paved road in the direction of "Oiselay" (old spelling) with views over the old Arméniers suspension bridge (no entry).
(1) At the first intersection, continue past the road ahead lined with very large plane trees and veer right. Follow this shady road for a kilometre without worrying about access to private properties.
Note the views at the right turn over Mont Ventoux, the Dentelles de Montmirail and Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
The road heads off to the left towards the Cabanas, turns right and quickly left through fields to reach the "Land of Oiselet" post tag at a T-junction
(2) Head to the right along the road in the direction of Dragonnet. 400 m further on, at the post tag, turn left towards the Rhône dams leaving the tarred road behind.
Cut across a path, continue straight and do the same again and climb a few meters ahead to a path that joins the Rhône embankment.
(3) Take a left on the path that runs along the river for two kilometres.
(4) At a huge sign that reads "Barrage", placed there so boats do not enter this part of the River Rhône, pass a path on the left and continue to the dam.
Head around it on the left and immediately take the following path to the right along the River Rhône, prized by fishing enthusiasts. Continue straight ahead, passing by a path on the left just before reaching the end of the road.
Continue to a sign warning about developments to the Avignon area that reads "Aménagement d'Avignon prudence", and take a path that leads right into the rocks and joins the River Rhône. Continue to the end of the peninsula.
(5) Turn around and take the sandy path to the right that takes you round a small circuit. This path soon joins the path taken at the beginning. Continue on the road, passing a path on the right which joins the river and arrive at the dam.
“N.B. The track to the right on the map which supposedly makes a loop around the peninsula, doesn’t exist... ''
Go past the dam, pass a path down to the right heading to to the water's edge and continue to the next crossing.
(4) Turn right, cross the canal and follow the path continues opposite. This path veers to the right and runs through more or less farmed land for about 1.5 km.
(6) Just before the path veers left, pass two paths to the left and continue across the main road.
Head onto an esplanade and continue on, veering slightly left on the same path to a fork to the right that leads to a raft. Here a fish ladder has been built.
(7) Do not cross it, but continue straight on, always keeping to the path furthest to the right to skirt around the branches of the Arméniers. The trail then leads into the forest on to the car park.
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 92ft
1 : mi 0.18 - alt. 105ft - Crossing, turn right
2 : mi 1.57 - alt. 79ft - Turn right in the direction of Dragonnet
3 : mi 1.88 - alt. 85ft - Turn left along the Rhône - Rhône (le)
4 : mi 3.08 - alt. 72ft - Crossing, "Barrage” sign
5 : mi 4.03 - alt. 69ft - End of the peninsula
6 : mi 6.04 - alt. 75ft - Continue straight ahead
7 : mi 6.22 - alt. 69ft - At the raft, continue straight ahead
D/A : mi 6.72 - alt. 92ft
From the start until point (3), the roadsare paved, then becoming wide stony paths.
Optionally, bring children along on bikes as there are few cars and the paths are not difficult.
If you turn left at point (4) to meet up with point (6), the circuit is shortened by about two kilometres.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
The island was named Île de l'Osier which is a distortion of Oseraie, then Oiselay the eighteenth century. The name Island of Oiselay itself has been subject to many changes over time, to become "Île d’Oiselet" or even "Île de l’Oiselet".
A very easy walk. The first part up to the dam, very pleasant and shady. There's not shade on second part until you arrive, so wear hats in sunny weather.
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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.