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Scenes of Ensex and the Col de Bretaye

a walk out from the Col de la Croix, 22 June 2014


The Col de Bretaye, and its little lake, nestled in at 1805m between La Chamossaire (2112m), facing Leysin, Switzerland, to the west, and Chaux Ronde (2009m) overlooking the resort of Villars-sur-Ollon to the south. It's a festive jamboree of colorful ski-clothes on a fine day in the winter, but a good scenic destination in the off-season.

You 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.

We're walking out from the Col de la Croix (1776m), the pass between Villars and the village of Les Diablerets, about 5km to the east. Here it is on a quiet day, 22 June 2014.

An embarrassment of hiking opportunities

We commence our walk.

Through a fringe of gentle forest around the Col . . .

. . . and out onto a kind of balcony stretching westward.

The hamlet of Taveyanne (1647m) about 2½ km to the south, the Grand Muveran on the horizon

The farm of La Croix (1747m) 1km to the southeast

Les Diablerets to the east, the summit (3210m) in cloud

Nearer to hand, Culan (2789m) on the same massif

Our way ahead on a fine day

The hamlet of Ensex (the upper part at 1812m, the lower at 1787m) below the Vélards ridgeline with Chaux Ronde in the distance

Ensex suburbs

Upper Ensex, with a trailsign pointing up to the pass at L'Encrene up on the right

Ensex

Some forest near Plan Vaisy (ca.1760m)

Along the southern side of Chaux Ronde

Fancy a round of golf?

The golf course of Villars, on a plateau at ca.1600-1660m above the village: 18 holes, par 70, founded in 1922.

Around the corner, with the Roc-d'Orsay and La Chamossaire coming into view

The rack railway from Villars up to Bretaye

La Chamossaire with its telecommunications tower on top

A view of La Chamossaire just below the summit on the far side, facing Leysin, ca. 1980

Near the Col de Bretaye

The télésiège skilift to the summit

The Restaurant du Col de Bretaye

The télésiège and L'Aiguille

The rack railway station at the restaurant

Down the far side of the Col

The Creux de Bahyse and the Lac de Bretaye at the bottom of the bowl

Another skilift northward along the Chamossaire ridge at 2036m

The Hôtel du Lac

Looking northward, Pic Chaussy (2351m), Châtillon (2478m), Le Tarent (2548m), and La Pare (2540m) in the Préalps

The hamlet of Bretaye

The Hôtel du Lac in a quiet moment

We're starting back the same way, pausing for the afternoon cow parade

Around the corner under the Chaux Ronde

A pleasant hideaway

Les Diablerets in the distance

Welcome shade

Ensex

Lower Ensex

Upper Ensex (1812m), where another path leads up to the pass at L'Encrene

Hikers having lunch at L'Encrene (1936m), which leads down on the far side to the farm of Perche and the beautiful Lac des Chavonnes (1692m)

The same in August 2005

Kristin at the pass of L'Encrene, 2005

The Perche farm, below the pass at L'Encrene

The Lac des Chavonnes, August 2005

Back to 2014

Eastward towards the Col de la Croix

Back down through the woods

The buvette or snack bar at the Col de la Croix, still closed up tight

The Passage of the Wolves, a sculpture by Olivier Estoppey of Ollon (2010)

Kristin and the wolves, a week earlier (15 June 2014)


Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 31 July 2014.


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