From the edge of Vouglans Lake to the balconies overlooking it, this beautiful hike takes you through a site transformed by the dam, where you will also discover vegetation, relics and legends.
Vouglans Lake is the third largest artificial lake in France. This 35 km long snake was created when the Vouglans dam was built in 1968. Its level varies according to the seasons and the needs of EDF. But it always remains at its highest during the summer.
The starting point of the hike is at the entrance of the car park towards the motorhome service area, at the "SURCHAUFFANT" post. You will then walk along the campsite before passing the barrier at the edge of the wood and following the path in the boxwoods which climbs to the "Entreporte" post. Turn right towards "Le Pertis" and cross a lapiaz hidden by the vegetation. 500 m further on, the path runs alongside a viewpoint where a large flat stone welcomes you. There is a view of the part of the lake reserved for motorised vehicles.
You then descend to the water's edge (be careful, the slope is quite steep and has a short section with some steps).
Follow the forest road to the waterfall. Then continue upwards to reach the plateau.
At the post "Les Pertis", follow the direction "Château de la Tour". Once in the village of Saint Christophe, you will go up to reach the church. The village was built around the priory of Saint-Oyend (later Saint-Claude) founded in the 9th century. The houses in the village have a very characteristic architecture.
From the church, go down the Chemin du Meix and turn right after about 150 m. You will go down to the exit of the village and then go up to the hamlet of La Condamine. Continue on the path that leads to the Château de la Tour (be careful, do not approach the remains, there is a risk of falling and landslides). This castle was built in 1166 on the priory's enclosure and was destroyed in 1637 during the Ten Years War led by Louis XIII.
Leave the castle by the staircase which leads you to a steep path. At the post "CHATEAU DE LA TOUR", turn left towards "Entreporte". As you approach the lake, you will cross the dry grasslands (classified Natura 2000). As you reach the top of the lake, you will have a view of the Vouglans lake and the 300 m long Pont de la Pyle, dating from the construction of the dam.
Go back down to "Entreporte" and then to the car park.
- Bring walking shoes and clothes appropriate to the weather conditions.
- Inform your friends and family of your itinerary and your return time.
- Be prepared and do not overestimate your strength.
- Remember that the area is shared by all: farmers, foresters, hunters, walkers, mountain bikers, horse riders.
- Respect crops and private property.
- Do not frighten the herds, do not leave your dogs unattended and close the fences.
- Do not leave the marked paths.
- Do not leave any rubbish in the open.
- Be careful when crossing busy roads.