Saturday, May 3, 2008

Ain't No Mountain Higher

view of Vignemale from the north


Vignemale is a mountain massif forming an intimidating part of the Pyrenean range. I say intimidating because it is the highest point on the French side of the Pyrénées, with Petit Vignemale (3032 m above sea level) and Pique Longue (3298 m) as the predominant and known peaks. The picture above is a view of the massif if approached from the north.

Well, we did not climb these peaks for it is really a difficult trail and you have to cross Glacier d’Ossoue (the largest Pyrenean glacier) from where the picture is taken to reach the summits. And since we’re not professional hikers, we just contented ourselves with looking at it from this point (refuge des Oulettes de Gaube). Well, reaching the refuge is already quite a feat for me and I wouldn't want to push my luck. Besides, even guide books marked the trail to Vignemale as "very difficult" so I wouldn't dare try it as I'm not equipped and trained for that.

To reach the refuge, you have to cross lac de Gaube (Gaube lake) and follow a rocky path of about 2000m above sea level. It’s not as daunting as hiking the trail towards the Vignemale peaks but I think it would already give your legs and lungs a good workout. Well, I believe you won’t mind too much the physical effort once you see the view around you. It is quite picturesque, especially with the lake behind and the view of Vignemale looming ahead that you cannot help but stop and take a few photos. Just don’t forget to take lots of water and have a good breakfast before starting the hike :).

5 comments:

From the Eyes of my Heart said...

I guess thats why some people love to climb mountains. besides the thrill of climbing one, enjoying the view from above is the main prize!

have a great week ahead of you Lareine =) God bless!

Nancy said...

hello..hopping here from link referral..sorry i have done 5 reviews till i stumbled here..you have a very nice page here..would love to hear from you back to my page...continue updating...TC!

Gracey said...

Hello sis! just droppin by to say hi. you've been tagged!

nussaibah said...

Beautiful :) I've never climbed any mountains. I doubt the mountains here are high enough to offer such views. But I've done some hiking and I can say, the beautiful view that we see at the top compensates for all the walking.

lareine said...

to from the eyes of my heart: i totally agree with you... the view can be really breathtaking, particularly if it's not cloudy... you feel like saying "i'm on top of the world" :))...

to nancy: no problem with the review:) i'm glad you like my site... i'll visit yours as soon as i can..

to gracey: thanks for dropping by and i'll do the tag as soon as possible...

to nussaibah: hi! i hope you're enjoying the school vacation... and yep, the view is more than enough reward for the muscle pain in the leg and the stinging sunburn on your neck (when the sun is high)...

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