Tarbesou and Carlit Adventure

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Another weather window appeared for the Carlit area to the East of us. This is the year to go places anew. Two nights away so potential for walking 3 days.

Day One – Pic de Tarbesou

Left the barn early and picked up a map (and had a coffee) in Ax Les Thermes before heading up to park at Col de Pailheres – 2000m. Steady climb up to the Pic at 2364m then took the ridge towards Col de L’Esue and dropping down to the lakes. Etang bleu and Etang Noir. Lots of people at the lakes both in and out of the water, as a very popular walk. Windy and clear skies until we climbed to the Col de la Coumelle and the other side was a swirling mass of cloud. 11.4km and 850m of ascent, a nice half day walk.

Day Two – Porta to Pic de Carlit

Stayed the night at a little Auberge in Porta and they, very kindly, let us leave the car. Early start and self service breakfast before finding the track up to Col de L’Homme Mort and on up to the ridge by El Punxo. From there we followed the ridge North towards Carlit. Easy undulating ridge to start with becoming more technical and blowing a whooly. Cloud was swirling around the summit of Carlit threatening to obscure the ridge ahead. This would have made progress and navigation very tricky but were were in luck. It lifted.

The latter third of the ridge was slow going as some serious scrambling on the limit of requiring a rope. The first people we met were on the summit of Carlit. Easy, but long, descent down to the Refuge Bouillouses at the reservoir. Just renovated, it was more like a hotel and not busy so we had our own room. Food was great.

24km 2014m of ascent and just under 10 hrs.

Day 3 – Refuge Bouillouses to Porta

Having had a long day we had to then get back to the car. The previous day was the most direct route so this had to be longer though not as much vertical. Wind was just as strong if not more so. Took the GR up to Portella de la Grave and on to Cabane Rouzet at the East end of Etang des Lanoux. Followed that to the dam wall and then the GR down to Porte Puymorens. Would have been better rout to follow the valley floor path than the GR, as we had little shade on a boring rocky track. We were melting in the heat by the time we got to the village so stuck our thumbs out and got a lift the last 4km to Porta. 37 degrees when we got back to the car. In all 25km 1000m and 7.5 hrs not including the lift

Categories: Summer 2023, The Project Tags: Tags:

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