The Beautiful Vallee d'Ossoue from Gavarnie


Another sunny day dawned on Wednesday in the Haute Pyrenees and we were eager to explore the peaks lying to the north east of Gavarnie that we had looked on from Pic de Tentes the previous afternoon. Not too eager, however, since our legs were a little tired from the previous days bike ride and as the morning slowly turned into the afternoon we realised that we had better get started before the sun dipped behind the mountains once more.

The summit of Vignale at 3298m, sitting in the middle of a high ridge several kilometres long, was the giant of the area we wanted to explore, its slopes containing one of the few Pyrenean glaciers we had seen (although it was still small compared to the monumental ice flows we had enjoyed in Switzerland). It was the Glacier d'Ossoue, at the head of the valley which bears its name that was our destination. Had we set off with the sunrise it would probably have been possible to hike all the way there and back in a single day, however, setting off in mid-afternoon we planned to cycle as far as possible up the valley along the narrow winding road which climbed to 1800m before continuing on foot.

After descending a couple of hundred metres from our aire to pick up the start of the road we climbed steeply at first, then more gently, following the river gorge which was stunningly beautful in the late autumn sunshine. Flanked on the north side by vertical rocky slopes which towered above the road and on the south side by red and golden forests with the sunlight reflecting off the leaves, it had a magical atmosphere, with the summit of Vignale visible in the distance.

Somewhat surprisingly the road turned out not to be a road all the way, switching to a stony track after 5km at around 1600m and sadly forcing us to give up on the idea of making it all the way to the glacier that day. Nevermind, it was still an amazing place, and we continued on foot regardless through the remote, grassy plains feeling a million miles from any sort of civilisation. It felt like the perfect setting to escape the hustle and bustle of the modern world.

At 1800m we reached a lake sitting between two steep sided cliffs that converged to a waterfall and as we were aware that our shadows were lengthening fast we decided this was far enough for today. Taking quarter of an hour just to sit and feel the peace of the setting, we just wished we could have stayed all night and watched the sun set fully over the hills. However, with the air cooling fast we knew we didn't have the gear with us for that today (better packing required next time).

As we strolled back to the bikes we felt so fortunate to have chosen this route today. Although we hadn't travelled far, or even for very long due to our late start, it had felt like a perfect place to be. So much so that even the freezing cold cycle descent at the end felt well worth it.

Other Related Posts:
Road Cycling in the Hautes-Pyrénées - The Most Famous & Difficult Climbs of the Tour de France

Hiking in the Hautes-Pyrénées & the Pyrénées National Park - Gavarnie & Cauterets

7 Spectacular Cycling Climbs From Vallée d'Aure, Hautes-Pyrénées - Arreau & Saint-Lary-Soulan

See All Our Cycling Climbs in the Pyrenees

See all Our Hikes in the Pyrenees










COMMENTS

Name

Adventure Articles,23,Alpine Adventure Summer 2016,30,Alps,148,Animal,8,Archaeology,6,Astronomy,3,Backpacking,16,Baronnies Provençales,6,Beach,35,Belgium,3,birthday,4,Britain,18,Buying A Motorhome,19,Cabo de Gata,56,Cabo de Gata Hikes,16,Camping,27,Career Break,5,Caves,4,Charity,3,Christmas,9,Cities,9,Clearing Out,4,Coast,35,Community,9,Cost of Motorhome Touring,15,Cycling,91,Cycling Articles,8,Cycling French Alps,34,Cycling Holland,6,Cycling Norway,1,Cycling Provence,5,Cycling Pyrenees,22,Cycling Spain,8,Cycling Switzerland,2,Diary,58,Dog,19,Ecrins National Park,25,Egypt,2,Family,5,Featured,11,Featured Places,8,France,157,France Hikes,60,Friends,35,Germany,3,Glaciers,29,GR route,57,Haute Route,5,Health,1,Hiking,127,Hiking Articles,12,Holland,23,Humour,14,Incontinence,4,Interrail,3,Italy,7,Italy Hikes,1,Juicing,4,Lake District,2,Lakes,16,Leela,21,Lego Motorhomers,8,Local Community,8,Local Traditions,16,Luxembourg,3,Markets,19,Mindfulness,14,Money,6,Motorhome,62,Motorhome Articles,24,Motorhome Sleeping,4,Museums,6,Music Event,2,Norway,2,Nutrition,12,Organic Food,16,Places UK,2,Places Egypt,1,Places France,19,Places Italy,3,Places of Interest,56,Places Spain,12,Places Switzerland,20,Prehistoric,5,Provence,3,Puppies,12,Pyrenees,39,Queyras,44,Recycling,4,Rediscovery,7,Relationship,11,Roman Ruins,2,Route des Grande Alpes,7,Running,17,Scotland,1,Sea,27,Spain,69,Spain Hikes,19,Stars,5,Sun,17,Sunrise,5,Sunset,10,Switzerland,55,Switzerland Hikes,28,TE,3,Thoughts on the road,29,Tour de France,43,Tour du Mont Blanc,19,Travel Advice,20,UK,14,Val d'Anniviers,31,Vall de Laguar Hikes,2,Volcano,12,Walks,120,Waterfalls,11,Wellness,15,wildlife,26,Winter Stays,5,
ltr
item
Adventures In Life, Love, Health, Travel... & Puppies!: The Beautiful Vallee d'Ossoue from Gavarnie
The Beautiful Vallee d'Ossoue from Gavarnie
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-f371YrSWGfU/VEjLwmeICAI/AAAAAAAAEQ8/lHg1_Szuhe4/s1600/IMG_4669.JPG
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-f371YrSWGfU/VEjLwmeICAI/AAAAAAAAEQ8/lHg1_Szuhe4/s72-c/IMG_4669.JPG
Adventures In Life, Love, Health, Travel... & Puppies!
http://www.estheranddan.com/2014/10/vallee-dossoue-cirque-gavarnie-cycling-hiking-pyrenees.html
http://www.estheranddan.com/
http://www.estheranddan.com/
http://www.estheranddan.com/2014/10/vallee-dossoue-cirque-gavarnie-cycling-hiking-pyrenees.html
true
4369079780186902262
UTF-8
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Readmore Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS CONTENT IS PREMIUM Please share to unlock Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy