Rouges Truites lake discovery circuit
The common snipe
Although several species of water birds can be seen in this area, the common snipe is one of the most emblematic. This migratory bird loves humid environments where it can hide and feed. Its long, thin beak has a flexible end enabling it to feel for its prey in water or mud, close to the high vegetation on the shore. This allows it to feed mostly on invertebrates. Today, the common snipe is one of the rarest and most endangered nesting species in France. But here, a keen ear may still be lucky enough the hear its “drumming”, the sound that it makes during its courtship display flights, usually at dusk during the spring months.
The peat bog
This fragile environment is quite exceptional. Formed as a result of vegetation that has badly decomposed due to a lack of oxygen, this water-logged soil offers a unique habitat to the species living here. Such species are well adapted to this environment and most could not survive elsewhere. The Lac-des-Rouges-Truites peat bog is home to many species. Examples are rare species such as sphagnum obtusum: a sphagnum, peat moss, which only exists in France in a peat bog in the Cantal and here; and the round-mouthed whorl snail, a very small snail that was once believe to be extinct in France, before being found only here in 2014.
A widespread conifer in Europe, this tree is the ultimate tree of mountainous regions. Some high-quality wood can be used for lutherie to make soundboards for various instruments (violins, guitars, etc.). However, most of production is used for lumber (construction and woodwork).
It is often confused with fir. However, a keen eye will be able to notice a difference in the needles, which are pointed on the spruce and flat and rounded on the fir, or in the position of the cones (fir cones). The spruce’s cones direct downwards at the end of drooping branches, whilst the fir’s cones point upwards at the end of upright branches.
The exploitation of peat bogs
The lack of oxygen in a peat bog prevents dead plants from decomposing. This results in an accumulation of organic matter, creating a sort of spongy earth that is referred to as peat moss. This peat moss was once extracted in bricks and dried during good weather. It was used as fuel, in wood burners when wood was sparse in the Jura. This exploitation continued for many centuries. Deep trenches are still visible in the Jura peat bogs, ensuring that the peat that has not been exploited dries out.
The common buzzard
They use meadows and marshes as hunting grounds. Its diet is mainly comprised of small mammals, but also of reptiles, amphibians and insects. When hunting, it must first locate its prey: either by circling overhead - up to 100 metres above ground - or by perching in wait for long periods of time.
Although well known, the mallard is good at being discreet and hiding between the reeds when necessary. This bird has an excellent ability to adapt and is a specialist in quickly taking flight if it feels threatened. It can even reach speeds of up to 80km/h!
Found in all types of humid environments, it favours reedbeds as they provide vital shelter to the mallard and its family. It generally feeds on seeds and plants, but it sometimes hunts small invertebrate molluscs on the water surface. It is worth noting that males and females have different plumage.
Under certain conditions, reeds can become “invasive”, and spread in the peat bog, “suffocating” the other lower plants. Climate change and air pollution seem to encourage this.
The Tram Line
The tram line you are on was opened in 1907. It passed through Lac des Rouges Truites and linked Clairvaux-les-Lacs to Foncine-le-Haut and served Saint-Laurent-en-Grandvaux.
Like all Jura tram lines, due to lack of profit and competition from the development of bus services and automobiles, it closed in 1938.
Will you be able to find the old station in the hamlet of Thévenins on returning to Bugnon?
Here, the peripheries of peat bogs are still grazed on. These wet meadows, which are characterised by the presence of a large amount of water in the soil, are also very rich for biodiversity. Some flowers, such as the bird’s-eye primrose, particularly flourish here.These are also areas of transition between the rest of the valley and the peat bog, and between the lake and the river. They filter water through the soil, eliminating nitrate, which limits the pollution of groundwater. Their presence is therefore vital to properly maintain a peat bog.
The mystery of Les Rouges Truites
The High-Jura is a land of many legends that likes to keep its secrets.
Rumour has resulted in four different version relating the origin of the name Lac des Rouges Truites:
- Poetic: every evening, when the sun sets, trout take on a crimson hue due to the rays’ reflection on the lake.
- Practical: the trout are salmon trout.
- Physical: the water is said to contain iron oxide.
- Military: the lake is said to have been the site of a bloody battle.
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 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.
This trail passes through pastures with livestock. For the security of livestock and wild fauna, we ask that you remain on the waymarked paths.
Use the adapted passageways to get across fencing and be sure to close gateways behind you.
Please keep your dog on a lead if you have one.
Wild flowers are beautiful, they may be rare and protected and often wilt quickly. Do not pick them! They will delight the next hikers.
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
6 km from Saint-Laurent-en-Grandvaux via the D 437 until Thévenins, then 200 m after the church, turn right on the road that leads to the Domaine du Bugnon.
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