My walk to refuge Pombie from Ayous was disappointing. I was looking forward to the climb to Peyregret and different views, compared to my walk in 2009. On that occasion, partly on the advice of an Italian party at Ayous, I went down the valley and up to Col du Suzon which is the other side of Midi d’Ossau. One of them said it was the better way of getting to Pombie. Last year, 2013, I gazed across the area from Pic Ayous and thought the Peyregret walk was probably better. Now I’ve done both. I think the Col de Suzon route is better. It’s not the route you find in the books if you undertake the Haute Route Pyrenees. That was my first disappointment. If you go up to Peyregret you spend the day with the same outlook as you climb higher. If you walk to Col de Suzon you visit a different area.

The second disappointment was the weather. It was largely rainy and cloudy. At one moment I wondered if I could continue. The rain was so heavy no clothing could protect you for more than twenty minutes. I walked back downhill aiming for a shepherd’s hut. I took shelter behind a large rock which was closer, then set off again when the downpour slowed.

The view here is from Col de Peyregret. I waited for about twenty minutes hoping conditions might improve. They got worse. Mist rolled in and visibility was reduced to a few metres. I like this shot because it has a subtle and unusual beauty. That’s a vast distance you see there. I did however want clear skies not this receding landscape of cloud.


Pyrenees Mountain Photography: Clouds From Peyregret

Wednesday October 8, 2014