Hike to Roc des Boeufs

During summer, I went on a hike to Roc des Boeufs in the Bauges mountains near Annecy.

Here is a map of the path I walked (download KML):

In the morning, I took the Sibra summer shuttle (Ligne d’été) from Annecy to the summit of Semnoz, taking my bike with me. From there, I went down to Col de Leschaux then went slightly up on the other side of the pass and parked at La Chapelle-Saint-Maurice. I started walking on the path to Chalets du Sollier, through a paved road at first, then a trail in the forest and finally an access road. The steep ascent to Roc des Boeufs starts at the Chalet. There was a great view from the summit. I then went down using the same path. I returned to Annecy through the Route du Col de Leschaux and the Voie Verte du Lac d’Annecy.

Above, Plateau du Semnoz.

Above, Pays de l’Albanais.

Above, Crêt de Chatillon, the summit of Semnoz.

Above, Bauges mountains.

Above, Mont Colombier on the way down to Col de Leschaux.

Above, Roc des Boeufs.

Above, cross in Leschaux.

Above, at Col de Leschaux.

Above, church at La Chapelle-Saint-Maurice.

Above, the local wildlife.

Above, Semnoz on the other side.

Above, forest trail on the way to Chalets du Sollier.

Above, Chalets in view.

Above, cows huddling together.

Above, at the Chalets, looking towards Mont Julioz.

Above, Mont Trélod.

Above, path to the summit of Roc des Boeufs.

Above, Plateau du Semnoz.

Above, cow on the path.

Above, Montagne de Bange.

Above, Mont Margeriaz.

Above, at the summit of Roc des Boeufs, looking at the other side towards Montagne du Charbon.

Above, Petit Lac and La Tournette.

Above, Mont Trélod.

Above, Mont Blanc.

Above, “Le Grimpeur” sculpture.

Above, Semnoz.

Above, Pointe de Banc Plat.

Above, the true summit, slightly higher than the “Grimpeur” sculpture. It is a bit harder to access.

Above, Bauges valley.

Above, Mont Julioz and Mont Colombier.

Above, Col de Leschaux.

Above, Mont Charvin.

Above, on the way down.

Above, Col du Plane.

Above, back at Chalets du Sollier.

Above, Sun slightly hidden by clouds.

Above, back at La Chapelle-Saint-Maurice.

Above, Roc des Boeufs seen from Route du Col de Leschaux.

Above, La Tournette.

Above, Dents de Lanfon.

Above, at the lake on the Voie Verte.

Above, Parmelan, back in Annecy.

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Hike to Gorges du Chéran, Tours Saint-Jacques & Semnoz

Around the end of spring, I went on a hike to Gorges du Chéran, Tours Saint-Jacques and Semnoz (climbing from the southern flank this time). Here is the path I walked (download KML):

In the morning, I took a train from Annecy to Albens then boarded a LIHSA bus (line 171) to reach Alby-sur-Chéran. I made a quick detour to the medieval quarter but was soon on my way. I had planned to pass through the ruins of the Château de Pierrecharve, a castle in Alby. However, the path was closed because of unstable rocks so I walked along the paved road for some time. I then left the road to take a trail that followed the course of the Chéran river. There was the occasional view of the river but it was mostly in the forest. Once I reached the Passerelle de Cusy / Gruffy, a pedestrian bridge across the river, I walked on the Boucle du Pont de l’Abîme (Pont de l’Abîme loop) to the Chaos du Chéran, a place in the gorge beneath the Pont de l’Abîme bridge. I then walked the trail up to the bridge, where I had already been some time ago (by car). There was a great view from there. The loop continues on the other side of the bridge, but instead, I kept going up, using the paved road to get to Allèves and then a car park below the Tours Saint-Jacques (Saint-Jacques Towers). They are a natural rock formation on the southern flank of Semnoz. I started on the ascent and passed by the Tours, but I didn’t spend much time there since I was behind on my schedule. I arrived at the Plateau du Semnoz after a while. The weather had soured by then: It was very cloudy with a bit of rain. I took the SIBRA summer shuttle (Ligne d’été) to get back to Annecy.

Above, near the train station in Albens.

Above, highway bridge in Alby-sur-Chéran.

Above, Chéran river.

Above, medieval quarter (bourg médiéval) of Alby-sur-Chéran. The town was renowned for its expertise in leatherwork and shoe making.

Above, blocked trail to the castle.

Above, poppy field.

Above, cows.

Above, Montagne de Bange.

Above, leaving the paved road.

Above, more cows.

Above, Chéran river at the Moulin Janin.

Above, lilium martagon.

Above, first view of the Tours Saint-Jacques.

Above, Passerelle de Cusy / Gruffy.

Above, at the Chaos du Chéran, looking at the Pont de l’Abîme.

Above, steep trail to the bridge.

Above, Pont de l’Abîme.

Above, Chaos du Chéran from the bridge.

Above, on the way to Allèves.

Above, Tours Saint-Jacques.

Above, beneath the Tours.

Above, cows on the path at La Figlia.

Above, Chapelle Notre-Dame de la Vie.

Above, on the final part of the ascent to Plateau du Semnoz.

Above, Chalets de Gruffy on the Plateau.

Above, Crêt de l’Aigle.

Above, Roc des Boeufs.

Above, Chalets de Leschaux.

Above, Bauges.

Above, Crêt de Chatillon.

Hike to Croix de Sainte-Catherine & Tour de Branchy

A few months ago, I went on a short hike to Vallon de Sainte-Catherine, a small hill on the west flank of Semnoz, and walked a loop in Seynod after that. Here is the path I followed (download KML):

I went by bike to the Zone Industrielle de Vovray, in the Seynod neighbourhood of Annecy. I started on the nearby forest path to the Vallon de Sainte-Catherine and soon reached the ruins of a former convent (Couvent de Sainte-Catherine) and the trail to Croix de Sainte-Catherine. There was a good view on the Pays de l’Albanais from the cross. Then I kept walking in the Vallon: The trail was very muddy so I walked instead in a glade for a while. At La Boverie, I found a trail to get down to Vieugy in the valley. Instead of looping back directly, I went on a walk in the area. I made a detour to have a look at the Tour de Branchy, a tower located near the road between Annecy and Aix-les-Bains. Then I passed Val Semnoz, a large shopping strip mall, on the way to Parc de la Maison de Malaz. Finally, I went back to the Zone Industrielle to pick up my bike.

Above, oil tanks in the Zone Industrielle.

Above, at the car park before the start of the forest trail.

Above, in the Vallon, at the place where the convent used to be.

Above, Croix de Sainte-Catherine.

Above, view on Pays de l’Albanais.

Above, Montagne de la Mandallaz.

Above, Val Semnoz and Parc de la Maison de Malaz.

Above, Tour de Branchy is visible in the background.

Above, La Boverie.

Above, the path goes up for a little bit above the ruin.

Above, I lost the trail at some point but I kept on the ridge until I found the path again.

Above, on the way down to Vieugy.

Above, out of the forest in Vieugy.

Above, Semnoz.

Above, old Eglise Saint-Martin de Vieugy.

Above, new church.

Above, Mont Veyrier and Parmelan.

Above, near a horse riding school and stables.

Above, Tour de Branchy.

Above, road to Aix-les-Bains.

Above, on the way to Val Semnoz.

Above, more horses.

Above, La Grande Mouette at a round-about.

Above, in Val Semnoz.

Above, Parc de la Maison de Malaz.

Above, Basilique de la Visitation.

Above, back at the Zone Industrielle.

Above, lake on the way home.

Hike to Semnoz: From Basilique de la Visitation to Crêt de Châtillon

In mid-Spring, I went back to Semnoz: Starting from Basilique de la Visitation in Annecy, I took a series of trails to the summit of the mountain, the Crêt de Châtillon. Here is the path I walked (download KML):

I had already been to Semnoz in the past: I climbed to the summit from Saint-Jorioz, walked on the plateau at the top a couple of times and also went through some trails at the foot of the mountain near Annecy. Many years ago, I even went there by bike. This time, starting from the old town of Annecy near the lake, I hiked the Semnoz along its length, all the way to Crêt de Châtillon. On the way up, I first took the Circuit Central, which passes by a few viewpoints. Then it was mostly forest paths on a mild but long slope, up until I crossed the paved road for the final part. The trail became steeper after that and started to be covered with snow, which was a slog to get through. Finally, I reached “Les Rochers Blancs”, a restaurant near the summit. Then, it was just a short walk to the cross at the summit of Crêt de Châtillon. There was a great view from there, even though it was really cloudy. On the way down, I had planned to start on the same path as on the way up and then keep on the GRP Tour du Lac d’Annecy to pass through some viewpoints on Crêt du Maure. However, it was late in the day and a storm was approaching so instead I had my father pick me up. During summer, it is also possible to take the shuttle (SIBRA Ligne d’été) to Annecy.

Above, in the morning, near a canal in the old town.

Above, Basilique de la Visitation.

Above, start of the trail behind the Basilique.

Above, first viewpoint.

Above, Montagne de la Mandallaz.

Above, Belvédère du Pas de l’Echelle.

Above, I made a short detour to Parc Animalier de la Grande Jeanne, a small deer park (with a few goats as well).

Above, Salève seen from Belvédère du Crêt des Bruyères.

Above, walking on the paved road for a little while.

Above, the weather started to sour.

Above, remnant of snow.

Above, Chalet de Bénévent.

Above, from there, the trail mostly follows cross-country skiing tracks.

Above, more snow.

Above, summit in view.

Above, Les Rochers Blancs.

Above, Crêt de Châtillon.

Above, cross at the summit.

Above, La Tournette.

Above, Bauges.

Above, Plateau du Semnoz.

Above, Lac du Bourget in the distance.

Above, Montagne de la Mandallaz.

Above, I walked down the road for a bit.

Above, Lake Annecy from a viewpoint near the summit.

Above, summer luge track.

Above, storm approaching.

Above, back in the old town.

Hike to Pointe de Vélan

In spring, I went on a hike to Pointe de Vélan, in the Bauges mountains. Here is the trail I followed (download KML):

I took an early LIHSA bus from Annecy to Faverges. I then started towards the trailhead in the village of Glaise, walking on paved roads and sometimes cutting through paths in the forest. Once on the trail, the first part along the cliffs was very steep but I reached the Chalets du Gros Tilleul after a while and then the tomb of the Falcy family (Caveau de la Famille Falcy). After the tomb, the path was pretty flat until the Chalet de la Servaz, where the trail to Pointe de Vélan proper starts. I ate lunch then started on the final ascent. At the summit of the Pointe, there was a great view on the Bauges, as well as the Bornes and Aravis on the other side. On the way down, I first reached the Chalet de l’Eau Froide, where I had already been a few years ago. I then took forest roads to Giez in the valley, a very tedious moment. Finally, I took a LIHSA bus back to Annecy.

Above, bus station in Annecy.

Above, in Faverges.

Above, La Glière river.

Above, Bornes mountains on the other side of the Valley.

Above, Dent de Cons.

Above, arriving in Glaise, with La Sambuy in the background.

Above, trailhead.

Above, steep path.

Above, Montriond.

Above, lizard.

Above, in La Motte.

Above, La Tournette.

Above, Lake Annecy to the north.

Above, Chalets du Gros Tilleul.

Above, tomb of the Falcy family.

Above, La Sambuy ski resort.

Above, Pointe d’Arcalod in the clouds.

Above, Pointe de la Sambuy.

Above, arriving at Chalet de la Servaz below Pointe de Vélan.

Above, Notre-Dame de la Source.

Above, Col d’Orgeval.

Above, on the trail to the summit of Pointe de Vélan.

Above, Chalet de la Servaz and La Sambuy ski resort.

Above, Croix de Vélan.

Above, ridge to the summit of Pointe de Vélan.

Above, Pointe de Banc Plat on the other side of the Combe d’Ire.

Above, Montagne du Charbon.

Above, at the summit of Pointe de Vélan.

Above, Vallon de Saint-Ruph.

Above, Dent de Cons.

Above, Chalets de l’Eau Froide.

Above, Belle Etoile.

Above, Mont Trélod.

Above, on the way down.

Above, Chalet des Barbus.

Above, Chalet des Replens Dessus.

Above, La Tournette.

Above, Faverges.

Above, Mont Charvin.

Above, in Giez.

Above, Pointe de Vélan seen from the valley.

Above, at the bus stop in Giez.