Yesterday we experienced an extreme change in the weather while out walking on the waterfront. Strange clouds formed over the Pyrenees, the wind switched dramatically from onshore to offshore in a matter of minutes, and the resulting gale whipped the palm trees and waves crashed into the pier with renewed ferocity.
One result of this weather switch was that today dawned bright and clear with no wind. This was the day to visit Les Orgues, a site we learned about from brochures in our apartment. When the Pyrenees were first formed (30-40 million years ago) they stretched all the way to Provence. However, millions of years later the east central portion collapsed, creating an inland sea that flooded, silted, and created sandstone. When that was uplifted the erosion began. (That’s the abbreviated version of the geologic history in the guidebook.) The result is a unique area of hoodoos and slot canyons carved into this very soft rock. Who would have thought such a place would exist in Mediterranean France?
We spent two hours walking the trails and taking in the views. The Pyrenees loomed in the background. The trail into the site passes through private land. One of the landowners has decorated the byway with metal sculptures. Here’s one of them.
A great day!