Where we decided to camp in the Cevennes we were up in the mountains. The campsite was 900m altitude, high for us, nothing I know for some mountain ranges. With neither of us being familiar with mountain life, we were taken by surprise at the cool air, especially at night and first thing in the mornings. I was glad I’d taken some blankets for night-time, although Michel had said he’d be fine with a light sheet – he wasn’t and was pleased I’d ignored him as I shared the blankets.
One major benefit to being in cooler mountain air was it made it a lot more bearable to hike up to some of the remote swim spots that we were keen on hunting out and the girls certainly appreciated not being in hot, blazing sun. A lot of the walks we took passed through the cool shade of deep forests and involved a lot of scrambling up narrow, rocky paths rarely touched by human feet.
Our last hike of the trip was the trickiest and took in a very tight, stony path that ran up alongside a narrow gorge, a bit too close for comfort to the edge for me at times. We decided it was safest to keep the girls on-lead as we led them up towards the cascade and pool we’d been told by a local woman was hidden way up high and worth the scramble. Once we arrived at the pool and waterfall, we were thankful for the tip-off and the awkward, slightly scary scramble all seemed worthwhile.
While we swam and cooled off from the hiking exertions, the girls sat on rocks and watched, dozing off eventually, tired after the excitement of the day. Of course, once we’d enjoyed the tranquillity and refreshing peace of having such a beautiful place to ourselves for the afternoon, we had to make our way down the rocky path. It was a lot harder staggering down than scrambling up for some reason, although the girls seemed to make easier work of it on their four feet than us on our two. Despite the difficulty involved in getting to the swim, it was a glorious way to spend a few hours high in the Cevennes and was a magical end to our stay in the region.