Peck's personal Web site
breaks from poring over the newspapers as the Bushies implode
may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a
good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught
up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
Hike of Four Huts
if we'd plucked an objectives card right off the
top of the pack, instructing us to visit four refuge huts in the forest of Grande
Rolat, but without setting raquette à neige on any signposted
trails. An exercise in folly, on 29 January 2006.
we bag an easy one straightaway -- the hut of La Pierre Tournante is just off
the Marchairuz road towards Le Brassus at about 1354m (map below).
Pirri struggling to get his big Yukon Charlies up the steps for a peek inside
bit of a mess, but cosy
no delay, Dr Pirri strides generally southwestward in search of Hut #2, in uncharted
terrain full of holes.
karst holes, in some cases
fact, in some places, more holes in the forest floor than not-holes
proceeding gingerly along in hopes of stumbling across the Refuge de la Joratte,
the second hut on our list.
-- Watch where you're going.
Things keep getting in the way, and slowing us up.
last we stragglers catch on to the joke -- Dr Pirri is leading us, for a lark,
through all the worst places he can find.
once again the laugh's on us.
is very slow going. And time is passing.
inching our way along, thoroughly lost but always with a strong instinct
about which way to go next. Each wrong instinct leads to another one, and a renewed
sense of certainty.
in the end, it was Luck that brought us here,
to the Refuge de la Joratte at 1330m.
That's two huts down.
looks for still worse ground to the southwest, more or less in the direction of
the refuge of Pierre à Ecusson.
stone wall up on the right is helpful for map-reading, unless you just miss it
entirely under the snow.
wall (if you believe maps at all) will lead us a good way along in the right direction,
and so we follow it for a while.
as we were on the point of giving up, there's the refuge of Pierre à Ecusson.
à Ecusson (1346m), 29 January 2006
cosy one, but no time to linger
we want to get a fourth hut before sundown, we need to bolt for the Sèche
in the Jura 2006
Couvert de la Sèche de Gimel as the shadow
races towards it (this isn't a proper refuge and doesn't help our hut count).
the meadow of the Sèche de Gimel and seeking out the path at the northeast
end of it
fourth hut of the day, the refuge "Intercommunale" at 1346m on the main
trail through Grande Rolat forest
time, maybe five huts in an afternoon. Or whatever the objectives card may tell
us to do.
the Carte National de la Suisse, 25,000 scale: 1241, Marchairuz
at the red dot, four refuges at the blue ones.
and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, .
All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 22 February 2006, revised 19 July 2008, 18 August 2014.