Lac Charpal Neige 1 21(6)©a.manceauLac Charpal Neige 1 21(6)©a.manceau
©Lac Charpal Neige 1 21(6)©a.manceau
I tested it for you ...

Snowshoes outing on Plateau du Roy

Alexandre took the time to tell us about his first time snowshoeing around Charpal lake in Margeride.
How beautiful it is!

Lac Charpal Neige 1 21(4)©a.manceauLac Charpal Neige 1 21(4)©a.manceau
©Lac Charpal Neige 1 21(4)©a.manceau

Seasons are over!

You may have heard this sentence before, or even said it, but this year winter is exactly where you expect it to be!
And so, after 2 years in Mende and the first winter without any snow, I finally discovered the Lozere winter and especially the snow!

Well, I’ve already seen a lot of snow, 5-6 cm, but Lozere is a mountain, so you can add a zero (and it’s not the maximum!).
So what to do with 50 cm of snow without ski lifts?
You have to use snowshoes of course!

As I’m not a regular winter sportsman, I don’t have any snowshoes.
Luckily, snowshoe rental companies are not lacking, especially in the resorts.
The closest to Mende is the one of the Plateau du Roy, only, you already know it! There is the lake of Charpal which Claire already spoke to you about. (If you haven’t read the account of Charpal, it’s over here!)

So here I am, leaving at the very beginning of the afternoon for the home located in Laubert, where you can rent cross-country skis, sledges and of course snowshoes.
The prices are affordable ( €6 for half a day) and the snowshoes are, at least, of good quality.

Some advice from the hirer on the itineraries and the use of snowshoes, and I was off on an adventure!
Almost, the two snowshoe circuits start from the Charpal chalet. It’s a 5/10 minute drive from the home in Laubert, equipment is mandatory.

I chose to do the big circuit called Charpal (6.5 km) which goes down in the woods towards the lake.
For information, the small circuit called “Arboretum” which is 1.5 km long is ideal for families. + More information about the resort and the pistes.

Once there, I put on the snowshoes and let’s go.
So, nothing very complicated, if you know how to walk, then you know how to snowshoe.
Since there weren’t many people there that day, I was lent sticks and I must admit that this is a real plus.

The path goes down gently in the forest following the streams, not totally frozen which join the lake.

Silence surrounds you and the landscape is frozen, a complete change of scene!

The 6.5 km loop takes you along the lake before going up along a field under the trees. This is my favourite part, well you have to bend down to get under the branches and not get covered in snow, but the feeling of being off-piste is intoxicating.
And I appreciated the shelter of the trees because the view of the lake is superb, but the wind was biting, by -5° it is not surprising.

In the end, a superb 2 hours outing, I didn’t rush, leaving me with a taste of coming back, maybe on cross-country skis, again it would be a first!

Alexandre view

Lac Charpal Neige 1 21(4)©a.manceauLac Charpal Neige 1 21(4)©a.manceau

Water gurgling under the ice, snow crunching under your feet, wind rippling the branches and endless whiteness: the Great North at your fingertips!

Alexandre, prefer a Sunday stroll to a half-marathon.

Good to know

  • Mandatory equipment!
    The term “snow” often means “difficult roads”. Equipment is often mandatory. Plan ahead to enjoy the peace and quiet.

 

  • Come early.
    Smaller resorts enable you to have vital space between practitioners (cross-country skiers & hikers).
    However, there may be long queues when it comes to hiring equipment. Think about it so you don’t waste too much time.

Invitations

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