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.
round-up of still more farm pix, 11-12 March 2006
is a farm at 1270m near the top of Bassins' Route des Montagnes of which, in our
Farms of the Jura series, we have only the most
blurry and unsatisfactory photos.
in still another load of new snow over the past week, royal-we are setting out
to get some better pix of Mondion.
from Les Platets (881m) at the top of Bassins village, 11 March 2006, we are passing
the little pond along Bassins' lovely Sentier Botanique,
Botanical Path, that winds up through the forest and, in the right season, labels
all the flowers, etc.
about in the forest of Le Jubillet we came across this fine commemorative
plaque at about 955m. 'This larch tree, at 66cm diameter, was dedicated in 1997
to the forest warden Fredy Genevay, 1952-1990'.
the top of Le Jubillet (1015m), having missed a brilliant photo of a chamois sentinel
who ducked just as we clicked, we're now plodding up through the ravine of the
headwaters of the Serine, near the area called Le Rebattiau. The daylight, such
as it has been, is declining, and we begin to fear that we may not see
Here we are at the farm of La Dunanche (1117m) as the snowfall settles in for
a spell at just short of 5 p.m., and we can finally reach consensus that Mondion
is no longer on the agenda for today.
we've made it less than halfway to Mondion, and the great trick now will just
be to get out of here before we ice over like Frosty the Snowman and stay on till
to learn from experience, we try again the next day, 12 March 2006. With still
more new snow overnight, and yesterday's track invisible now. This is the presently-inaccessible
trailhead at Bugnonet-Chaumette meadows (971m), about a half hour of labored breathing
above Les Platets (881m) where we've left our trusty Volkswagen, Dieter.
is all part of the Noirmont protected area, and similar signs and maps can be
found at all the trails leading into the park. The poster on the right shows wildlife
to look for, and how not to disturb them.
from the trailhead across the Bugnonet pasture, the farm of Bugnonet on the right.
The barrier stops the automobiles but alas not the snowmobiles, which earlier
this winter were a dismal curse but haven't shown up here recently.
farm on an extremely weird day, with hot sunshine alternating with a brisk snowfall
and brutal north wind at about four minute intervals.
Passing La Chaumette
And Le Bugnonet
top of the Bois au Ministre, the La Dunanche sign, also advertising the new tourist
amenity, the small memorial and picnic park at the extreme northern end of the
World War Two-era defensive fortifications that run down the hillsides all the
way to Lake Geneva, thus meant to impede invaders from moving up the La Côte
region from Geneva towards Lausanne and the Swiss heartland.
La Dunanche itself, out on its little promontory at 1117m. It's only 14:30 but,
as we're progressing about 60 meters every quarter hour through this snow, doubts
about Mondion are beginning again to intrude. Just like yesterday.
country lane leading towards Les Frasses. Charming, but unfortunately knee-deep
even with snowshoes. An extremely beautiful and rewarding and laborious journey.
gate on the road out towards Les Frasses (the gate's hiding under the snow at
our destination, zoomlens-wise, a skiclub hut that sits on a bluff at 1275m, a
few hundred meters in front of the farm of Mondion. But our resolution is seeping away as the day progresses faster
than we are.
near Les Frasses -- the Chemin des Crêtes (yellow with red blazon), from
Germany to France, passes right through here.
towards Mondion, now with no hope left whatsoever, but still lurching (always,
still lurching), we pursue this country lane into the unnamed combe at 1154m that
lies below the forest Les Gilles. Mondion, alas, resides ATOP
the forest Les Gilles, and we've lost another hour wading through the smoosh.
Depression sets in, and ibuprofen doesn't help.
that's it. Mondion's out! We double back and cross over a steep little ridge and
sneak up for a few new photos of Les Frasses IF we
can catch it in a sunny interval.
Frasses, 12 March 2006.
Frasses, with the Jura ridgeline near Le Planet behind.
is the sort of pleasant afternoon when we're very relieved to find our own
track to follow home again.
half an hour from the car, we're passing Le Bugnonet again as the sun finally
gives it up for the day.
at nightfall to our faithful Dieter. But not so faithful, as it turned out. The door locks had frozen
up, and the only way in was by scrambling into the driver's seat from the back
-- thank god there was no one around to see that!!
-- and then, of course, there remained the question of how to close down the back
of the protected area signs can be seen in the background.
. . . still, again . . . no photos of Mondion. It
was an arbitrary objective anyway. Like all objectives. So who cares? Mondion's
not going anywhere
and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, .
All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 14 March 2006, revised 10 October 2008, 28 August 2014.