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Guidebook to the Auvergne describing 42 walks between 5 and 20km in the quiet volcanic hills of central France. Five areas are covered: Cantal, Chaine des Puys, Mont Dores, Haute-Loire and Montagne Bourbonnaise. The volcanic geography provides a stunning backdrop to routes suitable for all walkers. Bases in Vichy, Clermont-Ferrand and Puy-en-Velay.
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|Buy your choice of routes or chapters to read online, on your mobile device or to download as a PDF to print or read.||Browse Routes|
This guidebook explores an ancient volcanic landscape formed over 70,000 years ago. The Auvergne offers a wealth of accessible walking against a backdrop of spectacular mountain scenery, which is nevertheless suitable for most walkers, with the 42 routes in thsi guidebook ranging from 5km strolls to more challenging 20km adventures.
The Auvergne region rises out of the Massif Central and spans the area from the spa towns of Vichy and Clermont-Ferrand to the historic Le Puy-en-Velay. The landscape bears witness to the seismic volcanic eruptions of bygone ages, the result of which is that the area boasts mountainous terrain set alongside a wealth of more gentle ground, all of which is open to exploration and discovery.
The Auvergne area is both accessible and provides a wide range of cultural and historical (and geological) interest. The guidebook also provides a wide range of practical information for visiting the Auvergne, with accommodation transport, and preparation advice, as well as providing a wealth of detail on the many places of interest along the walks.
The walks are grouped around five areas, as follows:
The Cantal offers steep and dramatic peaks, but these are relatively easy to achieve – a circular route to the summit and back can take just a little under three hours.
The Chaîne des Puys (Monts Dômes) is home to the very distinctive dome-shaped mountains, the highest of which (Puy de Dôme) is just 1,465m. For a city base, Clermont-Ferrand is an ideal choice, while the village of Orcival offers a quieter option.
The Monts Dore has topography that favours multi-peak ridge crest link-ups, and its location means that it can be explored from the same bases as suggested for the Chaîne des Puys.
The Haute-Loire offers gentle hiking options, with many cultural and historical sites to visit en route.
The Montagne Bourbonnaise is likewise an area for mild strolls of only a couple of hours and with little ascent – a perfect destination to escape from a hectic 21st-century lifestyle.
• 42 day walks in five areas of rural France
• illustrated with clear sketch maps and colour photographs
• with all the background information you need to plan your trip, including a useful walker’s glossary
The authors are grateful for the following suggested updates to Walking in the Auvergne:
Walk 41, page 232.
"Go straight across the road and up the left side of the café to find a path."
Can now read: "Go straight across the road and up the left side of the (new) community hall to find a path at the rear."
Walk 38, page 220.
As of 2017, disappointingly trees obstruct the view from the Puy de Roc making its observation table redundant. The trees may well be cut back in future.
Walk 40, page 227.
Route finding in the woods may prove a little challenging as you leave the valley floor on the obscure path opposite Le Moulin du Mas. It is helpful to keep in mind your position relative to the river, even after it goes out of sight. You should initially be heading in a roughly south westward and then westward direction before turning northeastwards on your descent to the river. The circular outing that extends the route is not a long one; if in any doubt about your route simply retrace your steps.
|Plants and wildlife|
|Food and drink|
|When to go|
|Hazards and emergencies|
|Using this guide|
|1 The Cantal|
|Walk 1 Puy de Niermont|
|Walk 2 An Ascent of the Puy de Peyre Arse|
|Walk 3 Puy Mary with Optional Excursion to Puy de la Tourte|
|Walk 4 Traverse of the Brêche de Rolland from Puy Mary to Peyre Arse|
|Walk 5 Around Medieval Murat|
|Walk 6 The Plomb du Cantal|
|Walk 7 A Rombière Ramble|
|Walk 8 Puy Griou|
|Walk 9 Up the Usclade|
|Walk 10 The Elancèze|
|Walk 11 Puy Violent and the Shadow Rock|
|Walk 12 Roches Taillade and Roc d’Hoziéres|
|Walk 13 Circuit of Puy Chavaroche|
|Walk 14 St Cirgues de Jordanne A|
|Walk 15 St Cirgues de Jordanne B|
|2 The Châine des Puys (Monts Dômes)|
|Walk 16 Puy de Dôme|
|Walk 17 Puys Lassolas and de la Vache|
|Walk 18 Around Orcival|
|Walk 19 Puy des Gouttes|
|Walk 20 The Crater of Puy Pariou|
|Walk 21 The Water of Volvic|
|3 The Monts Dore|
|Walk 22 The Grand Horseshoe: Puy de Sancy from Mont-Dore|
|Walk 23 Up the Chaudefour Valley to Puys Sancy and Ferrand|
|Walk 24 Around Lake Pavin|
|Walk 25 Connecting the Cascades of Puy d’Angle|
|Walk 26 The Tuilière and Sanadoire rocks|
|Walk 27 A Tour of the Curiosities of St Nectaire|
|Walk 28 Lake Guéry and the Banne d’Ordanche|
|4 The Haute-Loire: Livradois Forez and Velay|
|Walk 29 Around Chaise-Dieu and the Senouire|
|Walk 30 The Gorges of the Loire|
|Walk 31 A Circuit of Allègre|
|Walk 32 Mont Bar from Allègre|
|Walk 33 Domeyrat and the Senouire|
|Walk 34 Vieille Brioude and the Ceroux|
|Walk 35 Lavaudieu Abbey and the Senouire|
|5 The Montagne Bourbonnaise|
|Walk 36 The Ruins of Montgilbert|
|Walk 37 Milling around the Mills|
|Walk 38 Around Châtel Montagne and the Puy de Roc|
|Walk 39 Rocher St Vincent|
|Walk 40 The Cascade de la Pisserote|
|Walk 41 The Plateau de la Verrerie and its Tourbière|
|Walk 42 Pierre Châtel from St Nicolas des Biefs|
|Appendix A Route summary table|
|Appendix B Glossary of French walking terms|
|Appendix C Further reading|
|Appendix D Useful contacts|