Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Best Trail Run Ever! - Part II

Continued from the last post...

For the next day's run, we wanted something longer. We were also curious about the rest of the route past Le Castelas. But we didn't just want to do the same thing again. So we figured out that one of the other routes in the book not only was around the length we were looking for, but included that stretch from Sivergues to Le Castelas and up over the ridge.

Oh, some notes on the Luberon Mountains – it's really kind of one very long mountain, stretching from east to west, with a low point in the middle separating the "petit Luberon" from the "grand Luberon." Our first run was entirely on the north face of the mountains, starting in the valley, going up most of the way to the top, then back down, making a loop with a spur.

Our second run was listed as a 5 hour walk and, more importantly, as a 2-day walk. We were a bit worried about the length of our second trail run in the Luberon Mountains, but decided to do it anyway; and rightly so. It started on the other side of the mountains (the Southern face), going up and over, then back down to the valley on the other side, then making a loop that went back up to the ridge then back down to where we'd parked. So not just more miles, but more climbing too. Oh, and unlike the first run, we brought the camera this time.

We started out, climbing up out of Vaugines. Soon we were up way out of the valley, with some great views.

The trail climbs out of Vaugines, goes along the line of the mountains, and then turns right up the face. That's the real climbing (most of which we ran, but some of it we walked; it made sense to be conservative, not knowing how long the run would be).

The closer we got the better the views got; towards the very top, it really opened up, ending with a grassy hill that was like something out of The Sound of Music! From there, we could see in all directions. The next three pictures are all from that point.

I don't remember which photo faced which direction, but we had the full 360 by that point.

From there, we started heading down the other side, towards where we had started our first run. Some of this running was a bit technical, but it was pretty fun. Hard to keep your speed down, actually. At the bottom we got to the entrance to the Fort de Buoux; we couldn't decide whether or not to go in or not. It looked neat, but we also had a rhythm going and were worried about the weather changing. Finally, though, it just didn't make sense to not go in.

These last two picks are of the area right outside the fort, looking down into the valley.

1 comment:

Helen said...

The hills are alive... that really was the best run ever! Kudos to Noah for finding the book and navigating us across and out of the mountains.