Dwight Peck's personal Web site

Gorges de Moinsel and La Dunanche, 2008

The winter that began with good snow and then lost its concentration -- and then found it


The snow's been crap since New Year's, we gave up hope, and at the end of March, just before the swimmingpools were opening for the summer, God got beneficent.

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.

A four-day Easter weekend of big snowstorms, and something's wrong with my car -- that's not important, forget about that -- suffice it that we've departed on foot from Bassins village, whilst privately celebrating the Easter holiness each in our own way, and now we're plodding up the Chemin Magnin forestry road into the Gorges de Moinsel with a light heart and an irrelevant conscience.

Having passed over the steepest parts of the gorge, we are persisting up a forestry track between steep-sided alternatives.

Cute little nests for somebody

The track leads us through cliffs riddled with caves and holes, called the "Tanné à l'Ours", something fanciful about the Bears.

Dr Pirri digs his mittens out but finds that he's got only one, can't decide which hand to put it on, and stows it away again.

Most of this snow is new this weekend, and the springtime creeks are still running freely.

Like this one.

Dr Pirri seeking the continuation of the path

Dr Pirri rejoining the continuation of the path

Limestone features along the way, with trees growing out of them

The sun is retiring, but we're still heading uphill. Dr Pirri is rushing us along here, to get home before classes start tomorrow.

Dr Pirri pausing to take an important telephone call

We continue.

Dr Pirri, after another important telephone call, rejoins our hike again.

Passing Dunanche

Past the farm of La Dunanche, about 17:00 (5 p.m.) on 23 March 2008

We're placing bets on how long it will take us to get back down to the village.

Dr Pirri hurries us along.

La Dunanche, just after 5 p.m. in late March 2008

With the Fuji zoom on.

And again, as we get out of the chilly wind and back into the forest, the Bois au Ministre

Dr Pirri continues to hasten.

A moment of concern, as I can't remember what I did with the car keys. Luckily, we don't have the car today.

Passing by La Chaumette farm.

Now we're back at my house, as the twilight deepens, and Joe goes home to Nyon to prepare his classes for tomorrow.

The twilight deepens.
You have done well.
Home, then. Home.

Those lines from Virgil's Eclogues or Georgics reassure us at the end of nearly every day.
We love those reassuring lines so much that we don't care if, in the original, they were addressed to goats.


Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 23 March 2008, revised 18 August 2014.


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