vendredi 12 juillet 2019

Col de Crusous to Col de la Serre du Cot (Mines de Salau to Rouze d'en Bas)

13.5km, 1420m of ascent, 1720m of descent, about 20 summits and very hot...but a magnificent day.

Alas Susie had a sore knee and elected not to come, but Al, Breezy and I had a great day. We left a vehicle at Rouze d'en Bas, then drove to the mines at Salau to start the walk. Apparently the permit for the exploratory works to appraise reopening the mine has been revoked because the mining company can't meet the EU anti money laundering regulations...they are of course appealing so it may only be a temporary reprieve. We climbed steeply up to the Col de Crusous in 1hr 50min where we stopped for a break and refreshment. The route from here is straightforward - turn left (north) and follow the ridge for about 7km. A rocky scramble at first, the ridge slowly becomes more and more gentle as you head northwards until finally on reaching Pic de la Tèse it becomes broad and grassy. The first peak Pic de l'Arrech is the highest at 2350m

The ascent of Pic de l'Arrech

 Looking back over the Col de Crusous towards Cap de Ruhos

 Summit of Pic de l'Arrech

 One of the many summits on the ridge

After about 11.30 we were in and out of clouds (until our descent from Pic de la Tèse after lunch) adding to the drama of the position. Some vultures and a very distant isard shared our day, as well as some horses and cows.

 Looking back towards Pic Montabone

 My reflection in a droplet of dew

Merens horses

A long descent on GR10 which became a bit of slog in the heat finally led us to the car and a quick drive back to Salau for a well earned beer.

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