We left Gréalou about 7.30 after breakfast which Esther had left ready for all of us. We washed our dishes to help her out and chatted to the young Japanese walker who turned up late last night asking for food and a bath. He was camping and Esther showed him a space beside the church and was so kind to him. He is a student and hoping to walk to Santiago but has French friends to visit so may not make it to the end.
Today’s walk was reasonably gentle and short. We deviated from the GR65 ( Chemin St Jacques) to follow the ridge and end up beside the Lot River for the next two days .
We walked through lanes and rough tracks, many with dry stone rock walls with wild honeysuckle and dog roses. This area was depopulated when phyloxia struck in the 1830s which explains the fields apparently let go wild and now being reforested with Oaks, Mountain ash and a type of Maple.
We also came across prehistoric burial sites called Dolmens. The drystone walls are also a modern development when ploughs were used because more stones were revealed so they made walls with the rocks!
We eventually arrived at a view point high above the Lot Valley which is so neatly cultivated and a contrast to where we have been walking. We had seen lots of dead shrubs and we were told that a Box Moth has decimated the box plants.
While we were sitting above the valley we all thought this would be a good place to hang glide but it was a bit windy and a young guy appeared. I asked him if he was a hang glider ( I had seen a car with something on the roof) and he said yes but it was too windy today.
Our relaxing sit was quickly disturbed by Karen finding a tick on her arm! We packed up after that.
We arrived at our campsite at Ruissieu Triel which is run by an English couple. It seems odd to arrive in a little bit of England as the other campers are English. Our campsite neighbours offered us a cup of tea which was so kind. They have a mobile home and have been travelling around France.
We have had another lazy afternoon reading and playing cards. After the last few weeks it seems a bit odd to have so much time. The campsite managers offered to cook us a meal tonight even though the restaurant isn’t officially open because we are a few kilometres from town and the only restaurant wasn’t open! That was really nice of them but breakfast doesn’t come till 8.30 which is too late when we want to get to St-Cirq-Lapopie tomorrow which is an arty town and close to some interesting cliffs that became a tow path for the river.
We will eat cherries off the trees as we go instead!