Hiking Alongside the Gorges de la Méouge in Baronnies Provençales Regional Park

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Wednesday 28 October 2015

Hiking Alongside the Gorges de la Méouge in Baronnies Provençales Regional Park

The morning after our fun packed day at the festival of the Natural Regional Park Baronnies Provencales dawned wet and misty in the little village of Barret-sur-Méouge where we had spent the night. After a morning sat in Homer discussing our plans for winter and hoping for the mist to clear we had all but given up and were contemplating a longish drive in search of sun, when suddenly shortly after midday blue sky suddenly opened up and, despite some UK based admin that was pressing for the day, after yesterdays downpour and misty morning the sunshine was just too tempting and we couldn't resist squeezing in this 3 hour hike taken from one of the many leaflets we'd collected at the festival.

After successfully negotiating Homer back down the Gorges de la Méouge once again, we parked by the well known viewpoint next to the stone bridge close to the mouth of the gorge and set off on the Boucle des Narettes, a 3 hour hike of 8km with around 400m of climbing and it was amazing right from the off. Crossing the river and then following a narrow ledge on the sheer face of the gorge we had amazing views of the rock layers and autumnal trees jutting from the cliffs and hearing the sound of the river gushing below.

Approaching the village of Antonaves we were treated to a 180 degree panorama across far reaching flood plains where the rivers Durance and Meouge meet while looking across to the Alps, including the snow topped Ecrins National Park in the north and south towards the Maritime Alps. It was one of the best views we'd found in the Alps so far and at 'only' 700m altitude it was a bit of a surprise.

Carrying on we picked our way through mostly oak and pine lined paths, picking at wild berries using our knowledge from the festival the day before, climbing steadily to just under 1000m before circling back to Antonaves and back towards Homer. We really hadn't expected much from this walk other than to stretch our legs and get a bit of sun, but the views and easy going paths had actually made it a real gem of a walk, undemanding yet highly rewarding.

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