For my first article, I will take you for a walk in the East-Central Pyrenees, back to a (short) time when I was just thinking about doing my own thing. At the time, I could only go walking on week-ends or holidays, as I was spending the week working in an office -but that was before I started this blog…
A LATE START, BUT A PROMISING ROUTE
Last summer, on a glorious Sunday, I decided to go and explore a part of the Pyrenees called Haute-Ariège. Apart from the Pic des Trois Seigneurs (2199m), I had not had the opportunity to climb any high summit in this area yet. The main local peaks -Pique d’Estats (3143m), Mont Valier (2838m), Pic de Maubermé (2880m), etc…- are attractive for sure, but two days would be needed to reach them. I therefore opted for the Pique Rouge de Bassiès (2676m), which is much more accessible and thus doable on a single day; quite a challenge due to the substantial ascent though. There are several possible starting points. I made my mind for the car park at la Coumebière (ca. 1400m), along the D8f, the road which winds up its way from the village of Aulus-les-Bains to the Col d’Agnès.
Living only about 1h30 driving distance from the first slopes of the Central Pyrenees certainly is an advantage, as I can easily have a day trip to enjoy some summiteering there. But when it comes to reach some further parts of the range, this is another story. After a late start due to a late awakening, I found myself stuck in a traffic jam in the town of St-Girons. Sure I might have fancied staying for the local music festival, but I had something else in mind that day. After a half-an-hour detour which added to the already long drive, here I am at the start of my walk. It is already 11.45am, but there is still plenty of time left and the weather is fantastic.
I have to park alongside the road as the car park at la Coumebière is packed. The walk starts along the famous GR10 marked trail, which I follow in a SE direction for a few hundred metres before taking a right turn. The well-tr