The mountain is beautiful, it's a huge and almost infinite playground! And she brings us a feeling of freedom so strong... We don't know about you but us, the mountain has definitely won our ❤️!

It should not however be forgotten that it is a place of life for the local fauna and the endemic flora but also a place of work for the shepherds and the cowherds. And there are more than 100 in summer in Ariège Pyrénées!

The mountain is an ecosystem made up of links as essential as each other. Each element has its place, its role to play. This millennial balance is fragile and we have our full part to play in its preservation.

Basically, it's a bit as if we were guests of the mountain. Do you see the picture? 

So before setting off to hike and scramble on the summits, we thought that a little recap of the bonnes pratiques could always be useful to approach your next outing with serenity? Going to the mountains, instructions for use!

Back to basics

  • Nature is too beautiful to be covered with plastics of all kinds, don't throw anything : neither your food waste (not even a banana peel or hard-boiled egg peeling! This disturbs the fauna. The best thing is to always have a small garbage bag in your backpack), nor your packaging.
    In short, leave no trace of your passage. For this, nothing better than the explanation of the Canadian program "Leave no trace", inspiring and intelligent? To read and share without moderation here.
  • Let the flora grow quietly. We also find it sublime bouquets of wild flowers but to preserve the local flora, it is better to avoid. However, we can take pictures of them and watch them as much as we want 😍
  • Groundhogs don't like chocolate, we would have been lied to… Feeding marmots and any other wild animal means impacting the famous millennial balance we were talking about above. It's making these animals dependent and giving them foods that don't go into their diet, so the best thing is to watch them from afar with a good pair of binoculars.

share space

The mountain does not belong to us and we are not the only ones to walk its paths. In effect, you are in the land of shepherds and cowherds. You will therefore probably come across herds in the summer pastures or guard dogs (the famous Pyrenean patous). What behavior to adopt in this situation, what to do?

The basic rules:

  • Take care of the huts if you sleep there or if you stay there for a picnic.
  • Close the fences behind you.
  • Faced with patous: stay calm! Don't shout, don't try to threaten him, don't throw stones...he would take these gestures as aggression. Stop and walk around the herd wide.
  • Leave the animals alone and do not cross the herds. As cute and touching as they are, it is difficult to understand their possible reactions. If they feel threatened, they can easily charge. Better to bypass them 🙂
  • Respect waterways and lakes. Their purity is the guarantee of the quality of the surrounding ecosystem. Use environmentally friendly, non-impact sunscreen whenever possible.

For the little touch of humor, here is the excellent awareness campaign of the Pyrénées Orientales department 👇

where are we going?

Do not panic, the markings are there to help you find your way and get your bearings ! Here is a small table to be ready to decipher the signs:


If you are already at the top of the basic rules and want to increase the level a little, why not try the bivouac? Come on, we tell you everything?

You may also like...