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.
Watching the leaves turn in mid-October
We're near the top of the mountain road up from Le Vaud in the Swiss Jura, where it meets the road up from Marchissy at 1365m asl and leads on to the farm of Perroude du Vaud, 12 October 2018. The panel includes helpful advice on what to do if attacked by a cow (seriously). Especially a nursing mother cow.
Basically, stay calm, don't look it in the eye, and don't turn your back on it.
The leaves are turning color.
This is a mossy little knob at 1400m with cliffs round three sides. This is nostalic; quite a few years ago one of us was here at nightfall on snowshoes and suddenly got migrained, with the dreaded visual 'aura'. Quite an adventure after that.
No way down in that direction
Nor in that one
And certainly not in that one
But Dr Joe has spotted the only way out.
Back out onto the pastures, at the southwestern end of the kilometre and a half pastures leading to the farm of Les Echadex at the far end
Admiring the foliage
A new version of the old shed and cistern
The long Les Echadex pastures. We're going to seek out a way onto that ridge in the background.
Turning down into a little side combe leading into the forest
Up into the forest. We're looking for an unmarked trail that used to be here through a steep part of the forested ridge, but memory is no more helpful today than usual.
Dr Joe is patiently trying out all of our ideas about where the bottom end of that old trail (if it's still there at all) might be.
It's possible that all of these little traily-sort of dead ends are still too low down the ridge.
Another likely possibility a little higher up the hill
A handsome wood anthill, presumably preparing for winter down inside there
At long length, rather than give up entirely, Dr Joe adopts the radical solution of clambering straight up.
Not pleasant walking round here . . .
. . . but his instinct was correct (and my memory was hopelessly incorrect). This is the upper part of the unmarked trail that does appear on the topographical map and leads us, about 1400m asl, towards the paved road past Les Echadex to the Perroude de Marchissy.
We're verifying that theory now, but our way is blocked by a villainous tree.
We managed to get under it, but it was neither easy nor dignified.
Retracing our steps along the trail, this is (we recall) the stone wall at the end of the trail as it appears on the topographical map. But from here on, there's no sign of any further trailishness.
Unless this might be called a vestigial trail of sorts
And this. We choose to consider this the last remains of the unmarked trail that we remember was once roundabout here somewhere.
And correctly so . . . we're emerging at last out into known territory.
Now on a known and obvious trail, we're approaching the Chemin des Crêtes long-distance hiking trail where it passes the farm of Perroude du Vaud.
The Chemin des Crêtes passes right along that track.
And there is the farm of the Perroude du Vaud, at 1380m asl.
No more unmarked former trails for today
A classic Swiss scene, and less than a kilometre back to the car. Nice day.