Towards the Mills
Shaded or sunny, these paths are well suited for an introduction to mountain biking, and highlight the many facets of the Grandvallier heritage: peat bog, old mill, tram track, cheese dairy, etc.
View over the lac des Rouges Truites peat bog
Inherited from the icebergs which covered the Jura ten thousand years ago and left behind moraines with water-tight bottoms, a peat bog formed from the accumulation of stagnant water full of cold-resistant plants. The moving soil in peat bogs are made up of a thick carpet of peat moss, on which a few well-adjusted plants are able to grow (cranberry, cottongrass, andromeda, drosera, mountain pine, etc.) These fragile environments are of biological interest and must therefore be preserved.
Mont Noir forest
Spread across 1873 hectares, the Mont Noir massif is one of the largest Jura forests. It is currently made up of dark-leaved trees, such as fir, spruce and beechwood, hence its name. Stags, boar and roe deer live here alongside the lynx and the western capercaillie. Wood exploitation is an important economic activity for our mountains. However, the forest also accommodates hikers wishing to take long works on the waymarked paths, both during summer and winter. Share this area and be careful if you come across forest works.
View over the old cheese dairy
As from the 18th century, cheese specialisation and the pooling of milk in cooperative structures - “fruitières” - brought farmers out of a self-subsistence economy. Cheese production, which became more and more organised, also became more profitable thanks to the trade networks promoted by “rollers” (road hauliers) in particular. Traders would deliver cheeses to the main French cities, including Lyon.
The red kite
This raptor is easily recognisable due to its long, indented tail. With its impressive size, this bird is a wonderful glider. It looks for its food in-flight. An opportunist, it watches the ground attentively to find rodents, lizards or the carcasses of other dead animals. Small prey (insects, earthworm or reptiles) can be hunted by walking through the meadows. Therefore, you will often see the red kite above freshly-cut meadows.
Mills with a history
First appearing in the Middle Ages, mills were initially used to grind grain. They were later progressively used to extract oil, run the smithy, hammer iron, saw wood and tan leather. Using a vertical driving wheel became more widespread and gear systems multiplied their power and their production. To operate, mills only needed a waterway and soon set up along the smallest rivers such as here and along the Lemme. (PNRHJ - Collection patrimoine, “Heritage collection”)
Belvedere of Le Chatelet
Here, the Lemme and its tributaries were subject to major ecological restoration works in 2012 to allow the marsh in Le Chatelet to regain its role as a natural waterway regulator.
An interpretive sign explains which malfunctions had appeared due to previous developments, presents which restoration works were carried out and their advantages, and lists a few wildlife and plant species that live in this environment.
At the start of the 20th century, the Jura mountain was equipped with 400 kilometres of metric railway lines completing the main general interest lines such as the Andelot-La-Cluse line.
Winding between the rivers, chasms, precipices and ridges, the tram lines marked the Jura’s history and its landscape with their often-spectacular developments and infrastructures such as the Douanets viaduct in Foncine-le-Bas.
Carefully cross the D 437, and continue straight on a tarmac road up to Le Crêt.
Take the stony path to the left that heads down towards The Well (le Puits), crossing through a forest and pastures.
Continue straight on the descending forest path (take care during humid weather) to reach the Moulin d'Hylarion (mill).
(You can also discover the La Lemme marsh and the meanderings of the river from the Chatelet belvedere, in a 1.2 km linear out-and-back by following the road to the right, yellow waymarking)
Turn left and head up the small tarmac road that runs along the Lemme. Head past la Maréchette, join up with the D 437, then turn right to LA HALTE DES MARTINS.
Carefully cross the road to take the stony path (a former tram track) that heads into the forest and exits at Sous le Goulet.
Continue straight on this path, which soon joins up with a tarmac road. Follow this road to the right up to les Quatre Chemins , before descending once again to your point of departure, LE BUGNON.
The forest paths between Le Crêt and the Moulin d’Hylarion can be slippery during humid weather.
For an MTB outing, wear a helmet and bring enough water.
Paths are shared with pedestrians and horse riders, who have priority, therefore, please adapt and control your speed.
To use MTB paths, do not hesitate to get down from your bike.
This trail passes through pastures and forest paths. To respect the owners and farmers granting you passage, and for the security of livestock and wild fauna, we ask that you remain on the waymarked paths and close gates behind you where there are no MTB paths.
Wild flowers are beautiful, they may be rare and protected and often wilt quickly. Do not pick them! They will delight the next admirers.
In case of forest works (felling, skidding, etc.), for your safety, know when to stop and turn around.
To visit and get about in the High-Jura, visit www.reshaut-jura.fr, the eco-mobility portal listing all means of transport within the Park.
Access and parking
5 km northeast of Saint-Laurent-en-Grandvaux via the D 437. From Les Thévenins, a hamlet of the Lac des Rouges Truites, head to the domaine du Bugnon to your right.
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