Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Le Bettex and Mont D'Arbois

Mont Blanc from a low angle

We are in France for a short visit to our friends John and Anne. This wonderful walk took place under the shadow of Mont Blanc, so it seems only right to head the post with an attempt at an arty photo of it. We parked at the Le Bettex cable car stop and took it up to Mont D'Arbois at 1800. This was the quite open view to the west and Megeve.

 We followed a climbing path with great view to the left of the mountains near Mont Blanc.

 Mont Blanc itself lay in front of us at this point.

We reached Mont Joux at 1958m and paused at a picnic table. This was the view back to the cable car.

 And this was the view down into St-Gervais-les-Bains in the valley below.

The path had twisted on the way up and we were now looking directly ahead to Mont Blanc (the highest point on the massif on the left).

Before we set out in that direction I was very pleased to capture a picture of this Queen of Spain Fritillary.

We reached a junction and turned left heading downhill on a wide grassy track. At the bottom we diverted into a beautiful flowery grassy meadow and enjoyed a lovely picnic looking up towards Mont Blanc.

Restored, we followed a winding track underneath Mont Joux. There continued to be lots of flowers, but I especially liked this drift of Common Bistort and an unknown white flower.

Now we followed a slippery, shaly track downhill. This led to a lovely trail through woodland, with occasional grassy banks where we saw but failed to photograph several different fritillaries. I did however finally get a decent picture this dark little Ringlet which we had seen many examples. It turned out to be an Eriphyle Ringlet - a first for me.

Finally we approached Le Bettex where we enjoyed a much-needed cold drink.

Conditions: 27 degrees and not a cloud in the sky.

Distance: about 4.5 miles.

Rating: five stars. Simply amazing. I am not sure if the pictures do it justice.

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