This is about halfway down the Ara Valley. Quite a few times I’ve had some recollection of previously visiting an area but not here. I think that’s partly because I came down the crest of a slope which wasn’t actually the path for some considerable distance. As a result the views I had were different and because it was three or four years ago and the Pyrenees are a big mountain chain, you don’t have the cosy familiarity experienced with British hills.

I enjoyed gazing up to the cryptic slopes of Vignemale and remembering the previous occasion. As I walked up from the Oulettes refuge to Baysellance a storm arrived but fortunately not the heart of it. Frightening crashes of thunder resounded from over this way in Spain. The next day I climbed Petit Vignemale before walking down to Gavarnie. I took photographs of the glacier and wondered if the views from the smaller peak were in some way better. None of this drama is evident from the Ara Valley except you do see the main bulk of Vignemale at its head.


Pyrenees Book: Ara Valley To Vignemale

Friday December 20, 2013