La Trescoulade Trail is a forest hike to the ridges and passes of this valley. The word trescoulade is Occitan and means “to disappear behind the heights, to cross a pass”. It perfectly describes the ambiance of this path.
In the 19th century, the copper mines were the valley's biggest employer. They closed in the early 20th century, bringing about the economic decline of Arrigas. The trays for washing the ore can still be seen alongside the D 189, as you leave the village towards Peyraube. The railway did not bring the hoped-for prosperity since, for technical reasons, no station could be built at Arrigas. To take the train, one had to walk to the neighbouring village of Aumessas. (Jérome Reversat)
Col des Tempêtes
Between the Col de l'Airette and the Col des Tempêtes, you may notice ruined buildings below the track. They are vestiges of former sheepfolds, where the flocks moving up from the valley could shelter for the night or in bad weather. (Jérôme Reversat)
To evoke the site of St Peyre, here is a text by C. Chante, taken from his work Un coin des Cévennes. Le Vigan et ses environs (1933). “All of a sudden, an oak grove appears that surrounds a small clearing where some leftover rocks, laid out in an elongated oval, seem to indicate a cromlech. At one end stands the antique structure, which the centuries have respected and which the Christians never thought to come and destroy on this almost inaccessible escarpment. There can be no doubt about its purpose: it is clearly a Druidic altar, made from granite blocks set out in a semicircle with a gradient, whence the priest must have harangued the faithful before or after the sacrifice (…).”
Walk along the D 189 towards Peyraube. About 50 m after the disused railway bridge, fork left. Take the stone path for 100 m, to a road. Cross it and head towards Blanquefort. Once you are on the D 189, turn left and walk to the sign for Peyraube. As you enter Peyraude, fork left onto a tarred lane that goes uphill and, at the first house, leave this lane to take a track on the left towards Bonnels farm. As you leave Bonnels, the path goes uphill among broom to the Col des Airettes (altitude 970 m). Take a forestry track on the right to the Col des Tempêtes (997 m). There, go right on the Cazebonne road that leads to the Col de l'Homme-Mort. At the second crossroads, turn right to reach the Barrière road. At the sign for La Condamine, walk downhill on the forestry track on the right for 100 m and go through the fence. Take a path through the broom heath on your left heading for Le Garel brook (i.e. westwards), so as to bypass the ridge on its left. After 200 m, you reach a calade (paved track). This skirts Les Ramasses on the left and takes you straight to the ruins of Le Garel. Head back towards the ridge to reach the Rocher de Saint-Peyre. From there, the path zigzags downhill to the ridge that separates Arrigas from Aumessas. It leads to a track, with Peyraube and Blanquefort on the right, and arrives in a landscape of well-maintained fields. Continue between two box hedges. Go straight downhill to Arrigas. The path cuts across the D 189 twice before ending in the village.
Make sure your equipment is appropriate for the day's weather conditions. Remember that the weather changes quickly in the mountains. Take enough water, wear good shoes and put on a hat. Please close all gates and barriers after yourself.
Tourism office Cévennes and Navacelles, Le Vigan
Maison de pays, place du Marché, BP 21, 30120 Le Vigan
04 67 81 01 72
This office is part of the National Park's associated tourist-information network, whose mission is to provide information on, and raise awareness of, the sites and events as well as the rules that must be observed in the National Park's central zone.
Access and parking
From Le Vigan, take the D 999 towards Alzon. At Les Trois Ponts, take the D 789 towards Aumessas - Arrigas
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