Trekking the GR10
Through the French Pyrenees: Le Sentier des Pyrenees
Guidebook to walking the GR10, the Sentier des Pyrenees, a 955km trek across the French Pyrenees from Hendaye on the Atlantic coast to the Mediterranean coast at Banyuls-sur-Mer. The book describes 55 stages, with information on planning, transport, accommodation and facilities. Walk the entire GR10 in around 45 days or in shorter trips.
SeasonsBest July to October (June in a low snow year)
CentresHendaye-Plage on the Atlantic coast to Banyuls-sur-Mer on the Mediterranean through the French Pyrenees.
DifficultyThe GR10 is extremely well waymarked following good mountain paths with short sections of boulderfield and occasional very easy scrambling. It is tough because there is more steep climb and descent than on many long-distance paths. Good network of inexpensive accommodation for those who prefer not to camp. Frequent resupply possible
Must SeeThe GR10 starts with the rolling hills of the Basque country leading to the High Pyrenees including Pic du Midi d'Ossau, Vignemale and Gavarnie. The remote Ariège with Mont Vallier follows and Canigou dominates the approach to the Mediterranean. Wildflower meadows are magnificent throughout.
Guidebook to the GR10, a 955km trek across the French Pyrenees from Hendaye on the Atlantic Coast to the Mediterranean coast at Banyuls-sur-Mer. Described in 55-day stages of 7-27km, the route can be completed in its entirety, usually in around 45 days, or in shorter sections using the bus and rail links found throughout the Pyrenees.
Step by step route descriptions are accompanied by 1:100,000 mapping and gradient profiles. Useful practical information is also included such as when to go, getting there and back, camping, accessing fuel and water, plus handy equipment tips and more.
The easiest, oldest and most popular of the three long-distance routes that traverse the mountain range, the GR10 is well waymarked and follows good mountain paths. For many walkers, the highlight of the route is the magnificent wildflowers and associated butterflies. For others, it's the spectacular mountain terrain, while those keen on bird watching will delight in scanning the sky for the many varieties of birds of prey that can be seen in the region, from the massive Griffon vulture to the distinctly coloured Egyptian vulture.
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After taking early retirement from his career as a physics and sports teacher, Brian Johnson found time for three thru'-hikes of the Pacific Crest Trail, a 2700-mile round-Britain walk and a single summer completion of the Munros (Scotland's 3000ft mountains), as well as climbing all of the Corbetts (Scotland's 2500-2999ft mountains) and Grahams (Scotland's 2000-2500ft mountains). He also completed a 2200-mile cycle tour of Spain and France and multi-week canoe tours in Sweden, France, Spain and Portugal. A keen climber and hiker, he led school groups in Britain, the Alps, the Pyrenees and California and completed ten traverses from Atlantic to Mediterranean on the Pyrenean Haute Route, GR11 and GR10. As a fanatical sportsman and games player, he competed to a high standard at cricket, hockey, bridge and chess. His crowning achievement was winning the 1995/96 World Amateur Chess Championships. Sadly, Brian passed away in 2021.View author profile
Stuart Butler, who has lived for most of his life at the western end of the French Pyrenees, is a journalist, guidebook author and award-winning photographer. His areas of speciality are the Pyrenees, Himalya and East Africa. He has written over a hundred guidebooks for Lonely Planet, Rough Guide and Bradt, as well as a number of specialist hiking and wildlife watching guides on the Himalaya, France and Spain. He writes frequently about conservation, the environment and hiking for the BBC, Geographical magazine, New York Times, Sierra magazine and the i newspaper.View author profile
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