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Hiking

Chemin de la Mature and Pic d’Ayous

I wake up at 6am to catch sight of the summits of the Cirque de Lescun reddish in the beams of the rising sun. The sight is that magnificent that I hurry up to take some shots.

We have planned for today to take a route that starts in valley Aspe and ends in the neighboring valley Ossau. To do this I will walk the first section of the route with the others, then walk back and drive to the end point of the route, and then walk to meet the others. We calculate that Ilze, Benita and Imants will have to spend 8-9 hours for the route.

The route starts in Pont du Cebers. It follows the highroad then the stony path. In a quarter of hour we get to the start of the Chemin de la Mature (se more on Chemin de la Mature in a story of our previous trip). It is hot and we are wet with sweat while walking up the steep path of Chemin de la Mature. After less than hour we part and I return to the car to drive to lake Bios-Artigues in valley Ossau. The upper parking place is closed (perhaps it is full) therefore I leave the car in a stony meadow that is used here as a parking place. The meadow already has some 50 cars and the paths are full of people. Obviously the vacation time has started.

I select the route by the right side of the lake and walk uphill to Pic d’Ayous. I walk alone so I am not sure about having the right direction. I follow the path by the lakes shore for too long and hence have to return to find the right path. Then I walk uphill the forest path and arrive at the pass where I can see the summit. The itinerary book tells that I have to walk another hour to get to Pic d’Ayous. At the moment I get the message from Ilze that they are already on the summit. With some message conversation over a very poor network we agree to go downhill separately and to meet near the end of the route.

Ilze, Benita and Imants have reached the pic d’Ayous after a five hours walk at about 2pm. The height difference 1650m. The path was not particularly steep (not so steep as the pastures of the horses). On the way they met several groups of hikers, one of them being a family that have rented a donkey. The family ascended slowly and reached the pass Ayous.

The rocks here are brownish-violet, the same as near Le Pic de Gabardaille. Descending from the summit my comrades walked near the three beautiful lakes. The main summit of this part of Pyrenees – Pic du Midi D’Ossau is at our sight most of the route.

I meet the others near the end of the route.


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