A small loop around the river Luech that goes through the ore-rich fault zone between schist and granite and passes former mining sites.
At Rieutort (meaning “twisted river”), there was a flour mill and a paraudier or draper's mill. In the 17th century, wool that had been carded, spun, woven and fulled in the cold waters of the mill was made into a stiff cloth called cadis. This was used to make hard-wearing bed sheets. The profession of “bed-sheet miller” disappeared in the golden age of silk.
The geological fault of Vialas
A bridge crosses the Rieutort. This river, which is called Pudissine upstream from here, has its spring at an altitude of 1,425 m on Mont Lozère, near Mas de la Barque. In this valley, rounded masses of granite contrast with rectangular and fractured blocks of schist. In the Rieutort, you may see schist stuck to granite, as if they two rocks had been cut with a knife and then glued together. This is due to the fact that, in the Carboniferous (285 million years ago), the granite massif of Mont Lozère was pushed up through the schist layers, fracturing them. This path runs alongside the mining sites linked to the Vialas fault, which is perpendicular to the large Villefort fault.
Take the road for 1.5 km after the retirement home (maison de retraite). At the fork, take the lower road, below Polimies, at the foot of La Fare mountain. Walk past 3 cypresses – trees traditionally planted in Cevenol cemeteries – then past a burned-down chestnut grove taken over by broom bushes. Cross the bridge over the Dreiléirède. After the bridge over the Rieutort, take the path that goes uphill to Soleyrols. In Soleyrols, at the fountain, follow the road on the left to the end, then take the narrow tarred lane below, go down a few steps, and walk past former orchards towards the torrent. Cross the Luech at the gué (ford). The path goes uphill in a steep and narrow valley between a low wall and, on the valley side, some standing stones. Use the ford to cross the Villaret and take the track that runs downstream along the Luech. The track joins up with the road to Castagnols. Go downhill for 1.2 km before taking the small path on the left into the undergrowth of a chestnut grove. Near the riverbanks of the Luech, there is an area maintained and fitted out for bathers. After crossing La Planche bridge, take the path on the left that goes back up to Vialas.
- Departure : As you enter Vialas on the road from Le Pont-de-Montvert
- Arrival : As you enter Vialas on the road from Le Pont-de-Montvert
- Towns crossed : Vialas, Pont de Montvert - Sud Mont Lozère
Fords: when water levels are high, please make enquiries before setting out. 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.
Office de tourisme Des Cévennes au mont Lozère
le Quai, 48220 Le Pont de Montvert sud mont-Lozère
04 66 45 81 94
Access and parking
Take the D998 road towards Génolhac to Vialas
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