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.
And good weather for it
Snow is where you find it these days (10 April 2016), and one place you can still find it is in the forests along the top of the Jura ridgeline near the Col du Marchairuz. We set off on the well-traveled farm road into the interior.
Predicably bored by the farm road, our guide Dr Joe scampers off down a little track into the bewildering combes and ridges of the Bois du Marchairuz.
We're lost already, so there's no harm in following this little forestry track for a while.
The little forestry track's deadended but that's okay.
An expanse of limestone holes in the forest appears before us.
Our guide crosses the expanse of holes balletically . . .
. . . keeping his weight off his feet as much as possible.
Now it's our turn.
Like a honeycomb
Each time we think we've figured out where we are, we haven't.
As usual in the Jura, everything looks familiar but may not be. But after all these years, you'd think . . . well, we'll see.
This well-tracked combe is definitely familiar and we know where we are now, but as it turns out we're wrong.
A new theory intervenes, and we ascend to meet it.
Bingo. It's true, we've been through there a hundred times, but never mind: that is the farm shed on the Mont de Bière ahead of us at last.
The Grand Cunay off to the north, soon to be snowless
The Grand Cunay still off to the north
Mont de Bière 'summit', more or less
Time for a little call-it-lunch, and then we're on our way again.
That's France on the far horizon.
A few hunks of Gruyère cheese, and we're on our way eastward over that ridge.
And down the other side of it
The farm of Mont de Bière Devant is off to the southeast, but we're looking for the little path that winds between the two.
Our guide is experimenting; perhaps he's found it.
And so he has. That little track will lead us back to the carpark at Marchairuz, with a significantly improved 'farmer's tan'.