Friday 23rd July 1999
This part of the walk was between the two main mountain ranges – The Massif du Sancy and the Monts du Cantal. Perhaps not very exciting but very satisfying walking.
Had breakfast at 8. The weather was windy, cold and cloudy, so we took our time packing.
We set off at 9:40 and quickly put on our water (and wind) proofs. It was only about 10ºC. We had provided ourselves with half a baguette and pains au chocolat/raisin.
We found that we were able to cover the flatter ground of today at a faster rate than we had been doing before. So we began to think that we might be able to get to Super Lioran on Monday rather than Tuesday.
The walking was easy and very pleasant. The country is rolling with no big ascents or descents. Lots of grassy fields and woods. A surprising number of horses. We even met some donkeys. Memorable parts were (1) where one farmer was keen to keep the GR route away from his farm house, so it went round a bog and over broken styles. A was quite indignant. (2) Just after this we met a dog – a terrier of some sort who mysteriously appeared, followed us for miles and then as mysteriously disappeared again.
Lac Chauvet is a peaceful spot. It is difficult to imagine it as a volcanic crater.
We had a snack on the shores of Lac Chauvet and later had an enjoyable lunch of our porc roti, baguette and pains. We met a couple of young Frenchmen who were also on the walk but they were a bit quicker than us. Mind you they set off from Volvic the same day as us.
We got into Egliseneuve at 2 and at the second hotel got a room with two beds. We rested and then explored the town. Not a great deal to see. It is small but very urban. Got supplies at the bakers and butchers.
I think that there are at least three hotels in the town. It is difficult to think why. Perhaps it is the centre for the farmers of the area.
It looks as if there should be a factory about, but I could not see one.
We found the cheese museum – 40F to get in but tells a lot about the rural life of the area. Samples at the end with wine! Next door we bought some Cantal to replace our odorous St Nectaire. Back to the hotel, had a beer and lemonade, read and at 7 phoned home – all well.
We ate at the hotel and A and I shared cote du beouf on the bone! Plain but pretty good. Then a short stroll and so to bed.
This was at the time when the British Government had recently banned the sale of beef on the bone.