MTB 11 - Descent to Meyrueis – graded red

MTB 11 - Descent to Meyrueis – graded red

Agriculture and livestock farming
Architecture and village
History and culture
Water and geology
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One of the emblematic descents of the area, which presents no particular difficulty except for speed management. The contrast between the summit of Mont Aigoual and the “southern” bustle of Meyrueis is always striking…

12 points of interest

  • Flora

    Summit of Mont Aigoual

    At an altitude of 1,565 m, the climate is harsh: weather conditions are the same as they would be at 2,000 m elsewhere, with only four “frost-free” months a year. Winds of above 60 kph blow on 265 days a year, and the average annual temperature is 4.8°C. Trees do not have enough time to complete their life cycle. Local plant formations are those of the montane zone: subalpine short-grass prairies.

  • Archaeology

    Archeosmart (Marc Limousin)

    Smartphone imprints appear on the rocks: fossils of the present that will become mysterious in the future. This carved stone, like the cup-shaped marks and other rock art of the region, discloses history revealed in matter and resonates with Malraux’s phrase: “The future is a present given to us by the past”.
  • Natural environment

    Pôle Nature 4 Saisons

    The Pôle Nature 4 Saisons of the Aigoual massif offers outdoor activities in all seasons in the central zone of the Cévennes National Park, overlooked by the legendary summit of Mont Aigoual (1,570 m). Discover our network of trails on foot, on horseback, by bike, or else by mountain-bike or with a donkey, as the fancy takes you!
    Children can explore the orienteering circuit or geocaching.
    For the sportier among you we have laid out trail running circuits!
    Prefer road biking? We have created circuits of varying difficulty levels so you can discover our villages and valleys.
    Try not to make any noise! Wildlife enthusiasts can spot mouflons and other animals.
    And if you would just like a gentle walk on the massif, the discovery trail “The cliffs of Mont Aigoual” is for you. There are various rest stops over its 4.5 km, with only 150 m in height difference.
    We look forward to seeing you on our paths.
  • Natural environment

    Beech trees and the Mont Aigoual forest

    Beech is the main species of the Mont Aigoual forest, which consists of a large variety of trees adapted to the diverse soil types and exposure. Like most deciduous trees, beech stumps put out many shoots after a tree has been felled. Foresters select the best of these for timber. Old beeches can attain remarkable sizes, such as the beech in Le Suquet forest in the municipality of Camprieu, a vestige of the original forest that has come down to us through the centuries and has a circumference of six metres and a height of 25!
  • History

    The salt road

    La Caumette pass is on a former salt road. From Antiquity to modern times, salt has been a precious merchandise used for preserving food and tanning leather. Salt has always been traded and taxed during its transport inland from the Mediterranean coast. The sentry box at the pass was built in the 16th or 17th century at a strategic point at the crossroads of several roads, both to levy the salt tax and for surveillance against smuggling. 
  • History

    From canons to the King’s Road

    Have you noticed that you are on an ancient path?
    Let’s plunge into history… Around the year 1000, this track was called Camin Ferrat and was used by transhumant shepherds and their flocks, pilgrims and merchants between Meyrueis and Le Vigan. From the latter, it passed through Mandagout, L'Espérou and the Col de la Serreyrède pass before descending to Bonheur Abbey and going back up to La Croix de Fer and reaching Meyrueis. This important mule track enabled trade between the Mediterranean and Meyruies. The Baron de Roquefueil, the region’s lord, had an abbey built below it, in the Bonheur valley, to aid travellers lost in the mountains. In the late 11th century, he founded a religious community of six canons who performed religious services and, in bad weather, rang the “bell for the lost” at regular times to guide passers-by in danger. The Abbey was abandoned in 1790. In the 18th century, the Camin Ferrat was disused in favour of the King’s Road, which you follow from the Col de la Caumette pass to Meyrueis. This new route went via the Col de la Serreyrède and the Col de la Caumette, after which it followed the ridge. The wall that you walk alongside from La Caumette and La Croix de Fer might be a vestige of the King’s Road or else the limit of the Bonheur Abbey estate. The secret remains, only our ancestors knew…
  • Water


    Above the path, the soft sound of trickling water… These are wetlands, a fragile zone that must be protected. The peatbog is made up of rushes, sedge and many types of moss, such as sphagnum. Numerous insects live here, such as the large marsh grasshopper and dragonflies, as well as the common frog. If you make little noise, you may see deer here, or other animals that have come to cool down.
  • History

    Col de la Croix de Fer pass

    At the col de la Croix de Fer pass, which is a strategic crossroads of several tracks, there used to be an inn for travellers. The magnificent ruin with its two impressive vaults was also a sizeable farm, owned by the Baron de Roquedols. It was located at the limit of the municipalities of Meyrueis and St-Sauveur-Camprieu on the route of the Camin Ferrat and the King’s Road. In the days of religious persecution, the preacher François Vivens* organised secret Protestant gatherings in the small valley just below the buildings.  (*Vivens was killed in 1692, 10 years before the Camisard War)
  • History

    Pierre plantée (Pierre plantée)

    Since ancient times, stones have stood along the Camin Ferrat: directional markers indicating a crossroads. Above all, they marked the boundaries of two parishes. Since the creation of Departments in 1790, they have outlined the border between Gard and Lozère.
  • History

    The Commanders

    You are on a ridge path on the so-called “Commanders’ crests”. It is the last trace of the fact that this area belonged, from 1312 onwards, to the Knights Hospitaller and then to the Knights of Malta, who were based at the nearby hamlet of Servillières, at their “Commandery of Meyrueis and Servillières”. You are here on the border between the Gard and Lozère, marked by a standing stone. This ridge path is called the “wolf pen drovers’ road”, a variant thousands of years old of the main drovers’ road of La Lusette between L'Espérou and Meyrueis. Transhumant livestock would overnight here, in a closed-off space safe from wolves.
  • Know-how

    Forest management

    The Mont Aigoual forest.
    The wood harvested here comes from a forest that was reforested from the late 19th century onwards, after a period of overgrazing. This forest begins, grows and dies like all living beings. The job of foresters is to manage and support its development while respecting the laws of nature. They harvest trees before they die to make room for young trees. These tree trunks supply an entire economic sector, from the lumberjack to the skidder operator, the saw operator and the carpenter or cabinetmaker. Wood also accompanies you throughout your lives, from your cradle, furniture, woodwork and the wooden frame of your house to your coffin.
  • Architecture

    The village of Meyrueis

    The geographical location of Meyrueis is remarkable, nestled between the Aigoual massif, the causse Noir and the causse Méjean. Here the Camin Ferrat crosses the Jonte river. Pilgrims and transhumant flocks of sheep stopped in the village before continuing their journey. Many merchants came to its large fairs. Stroll through the lanes and relive the flourishing past of the belle époque. From the prosperous bourgeois residences to the marketplaces, everything still speaks of the past! Sheep’s wool from the plateaux was woven here, silk was spun. There was intense economic activity. In the 17th century, Meyrueis became a centre for hat-making. By 1860, 17 milliners were busy making hats for Languedoc and Provence, beautiful and exceptionally high-quality hats made from felted wool and silk bourette. Discontinued as of about 1920, this activity left room for tourism, which today animates the village.


Signposts will guide you all along this route. In the description below, the signposted place names and/or directions are given in bold italics between quotation marks:

From the weather station, head down to the left on the GR® 6-7-66 trail towards “le Pontet”.
1) Then turn left and follow “Station de Prat Peyrot”.
2) At "Station de Prat Peyrot" take the GR® 6 towards “Col de la Caumette” and, on the descent, make sure you take the turn-off on the left onto the former escape lane.
3) Go towards “Col de la Croix de Fer”. Stay on the ridge until you reach “La Pierre Plantée”.
4) At “La Pierre Plantée”, start the descent towards “Meyrueis”
5) At “Bout de côte” cross the road and continue on the track (the GR® 6).
6) Reach the D 986, take the path on the other side and continue to “Meyrueis”.

This circuit is taken from the guidebook Massif de l’Aigoual, published by the communauté de communes Causses Aigoual Cévennes as part of the collection Espaces naturels gardois and the label Gard Pleine Nature.Nature.
  • Departure : Summit of Mont Aigoual
  • Arrival : Meyrueis
  • Towns crossed : Val-d'Aigoual, Meyrueis, Saint-Sauveur-Camprieu, and Lanuéjols


Altimetric profile


NB: The starting point and arrival are not in the same place. Make sure you organise return transport for yourself. Before committing yourself to a circuit, ensure that it is suitable for your activity level and ability. You must wear a helmet. Protective equipment is recommended. Respect other road users and stay in control of your speed and trajectory. NB: The circuit is also used by horse riders. Make sure your equipment is appropriate for the day’s weather conditions. Remember that the weather changes quickly in the mountains. Take enough water. Please close all gates and barriers behind you. No off-roading.

Caution: patous (livestock guard dogs) on Mont Aigoual! Seek advice on how to behave near these dogs from tourist offices and National Park information centres!
Is in the midst of the park
The national park is an unrestricted natural area but subjected to regulations which must be known by all visitors.

Information desks

Tourism'house and national Parc at Florac

Place de l'ancienne gare, N106, 48400 Florac-trois-rivières

https://www.cevennes-gorges-du-tarn.cominfo@cevennes-parcnational.fr04 66 45 01 14

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.

On site:  exhibitions, video projections, events and shop Open year-round

Find out more

Tourism & national parc'house

Col de la Serreyrède, 30570 Val d'Aigoual

https://www.sudcevennes.comoffice-du-tourisme-causse@wanadoo.fr04 67 82 64 67

The Maison de l'Aigoual houses the tourism office Mont Aigoual Causses Cévennes and the Maison du Parc national. This visitor centre provides information on and raises awareness of the Cévennes National Park, its sites and events as well as the rules that must be observed in the National Park's central zone.

On site: changing exhibitions, video projections, Festival Nature events and shop Open year-round

Find out more


liO is the regional public transport service of the Occitanie/ Pyrénées – Méditerranée region. It facilitates everyone’s movements by prioritising public transport. For more information, call 08 10 33 42 73 or go to

Access and parking

From Meyrueis, take the D986 towards St-Sauveur-Camprieu. After the village, stay on the D 986 and take the road on the left towards the col de la Serreyrède pass. At the col de la Serreyrède, turn left towards mont Aigoual on the D 269, then take the D18 to the car park at the summit of Mont Aigoual.

Parking :

Summit of Mont Aigoual

More information


CC Causses Aigoual Cévennes Terres Solidaires
Parc national des Cévennes
Pôle Nature Aigoual

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