Day 10: Brunissard to Ceillac
Breakfast was pains aux raisins in the morning sun! We said goodbye to our friendly neighbours and headed off on another longish GR5 day. There was a bit of road-walking at first, but most of the first stretch to Château-Queyras was along beautiful forest paths. We were both pleasantly surprised by the Queyras. Despite the wild mountains and rock formations the landscape is very green and pretty. Kind of like a Midsomer Murders episode but with mountains instead of murder. Lac de Roue was a good example of this.
Château-Queyras itself is tiny, but there’s a nice fort and a shop selling delicious tomme de Queyras cheese. It was still fairly early so we decided to push on to Ceillac. The first bit is a long but straightforward climb of nearly 1000 m. On the first stretch my ankle randomly started to hurt like hell. A short rest and some stretching later it was mostly ok for the rest of the day, and the pain didn’t return luckily. The hike up to the Col Fromage was excellent although the other hikers we met questioned our decision to head to Ceillac. They were going to camp at Fontaine Rouge. Before reaching the Col we hiked along the Ravin de Ruine Blanche, where they used to mine gypsum. From the Col itself there is a spectacular view over the Queyras.
The descent was easy but gravelly. As we got closer to Ceillac we began to notice the cairns along the way. These were not just your average piles of rocks, but in the shapes of animals including penguins!
In Ceillac we were just in time to buy some fruit and ice cream before the shops closed. While Jasper was inside buying this I once again displayed my gift of getting spoken to by the weirdest person in a 10 km radius. The woman in question saw me doing some stretching and decided to tell me her trick for avoiding sore muscles, which was some homeopathic stuff. Unfortunately I couldn’t remember the French word for “quackery”.
We pitched our tent at the closest of Ceillac’s two campsites. It had a sign saying the reception was closed and they were full but there was plenty of space.