Lac du Salagou

From ruffe to limestone

For lovers of beautiful landscape the Clermontais is really worth the detour. It’s just a stone’s throw away from the incredible geological patchwork reserved for you over here.

A geological patchwork…
  
 
When you are on the shores of the lake surrounded by the ruffe*, it’s difficult to imagine that behind the mountain of Liausson which overlooks it is an exceptional chaos of dolomitic rock. Keep your eyes open wide, depending on the season and the time of the day, the show is stunning!

Forward on to discover these two very different worlds.

As you take the small roads and pathways that go around the lake Salagou, you will appreciate the diversity of the canyons, the troughs and the streams …

And while you are adventuring along, you’ll find vestiges of the volcanoes all over. Necks* and dykes* and the well-known basaltic columns which are witnesses of the past,  not far from the dam.

The only thing left to look for now is the undulating imprint of the raindrops. The paleontological slab of la Lieude near Mérifons has fossil imprints left by pre-mammals, but not only. To understand more about the evolution of this fabulous countryside, visit the museum of Lodève, a neighbouring town.

The Cirque de Mourèze is a completely different world.
  
 
This chaos of dolomitic rock * is an invitation for further exploration. To find out more about how fantastic it is, hiking is the best way.

The marked trails make it easy to stroll around in such an unusual place of standing stones.

With enough imagination everyone can try to find “the sphinx”, “Quasimodo”, or the Divine Spirit. With more than 70 shapes listed, right in the heart of the dolomites, over to you!

And then a visit to look out over the belvedere of the park Courtinals shouldn’t be missed if you want to appreciate all the aspects of the Cirque.

There are also some clues here to understanding how man (that is our Gallic ancestors) transformed this chaos into a place for living.


*Ruffe: clayey or sandstone sediments loaded with iron oxide
*Neck: the remains of a volcanic chimney
*Dyke: vestiges of a magmatic rock
* Chaos of dolomitic rock: a sea of ruin-shaped rocks
* Talweg: a small valley with water

Mourèze
Lac du Salagou