4 hours; climb: 350m
A tranquil circuit from Vernet-les-Bains which crosses into the pastoral valley of the River Rotja, renowned for its apple orchards.
1 - THE START (Place République). We descend a stone staircase, and we follow red-and-yellow waymarks...We cross the river ('Pont Kipling'). We go to the right, then to the left (Rue du Temple), and then to the right...We climb towards a campsite ('Les Cerisiers').
2 - Campsite entrance (on the left). We go straight ahead and we follow a path which enters a forest...At a bifurcation we go straight ahead....At the second bifurcation we go to the right (sign for 'Sahorre').
3 - Junction of the path and a track. (Here we leave the red-and-yellow waymarks.) We go to the right and we follow the track.
4 - Junction of tracks. We go to the left.
5 - Junction, under some pine trees. We descend, on the third track on the left (in the direction of Sahorre)... At a fork after a sharp left bend , we go to the right and we continue to descend on the main track... At a junction with the D27 road, we go to the left, along the road.
6 - Road junction. We go to the right, down the minor road. At the bottom, we go to the right, and we follow a former railway line.
7 - Bifurcation. We leave the former railway line and we go down the footpath on the left. At a crossing below, we go straight ahead and we descend on a minor road... The road crosses the River Rotja, then it leads us towards Fulla (Fuilla) d'Amunt.
8 - Road (D6). We go to the right, along this road.
9 - After a few metres on the road, we go to the right on a lane which descends towards the river...The lane turns to the left ('Ancien Chemin de Villefranche')...It becomes a path...Then it becomes a lane again...We continue to follow this lane, with the river always on our right. (On the left: Fulla del Mig and Fulla d'Avall.)
10 - Road (D6). We follow the road again (to the right), as far as a bridge.
11 - Junction (after the bridge). We go to the right, on a lane. The lane turns to the left, it climbs, and it passes a few houses...The lane becomes a track.
12 - Crossing of paths and tracks (dolmen opposite). We go to the right (we follow yellow waymarks)...The path climbs towards the St Clément chapel.
13 - Chapel, rock with 'stone cups' and viewpoint over the Rotja valley...We descend...We follow a track for a short distance.
14 - Junction (track and path). We go to the left, on the path...We follow yellow waymarks towards Vernet-les-Bains, and we pass a horse-riding centre.