Nature Published on 03/05/2022
At last, Spring has arrived: slowly flowers and trees are blooming, birds are singing on their branches and the sun is finally shining on us! All this makes us happy; don’t you think?
So much so that all we want to do is go hiking on the peaks of the Jura!
Bye-bye winter and skiing, hello spring and walking.
Backpack, walking sticks, water bottle, cap, and jacket are ready for the mountains.! But wait a little before you start! Do you know the essential hikes in the Pays de Gex region and its Monts Jura resort? If not, this post is for you 😉
We suggest you check out 5 of our flagship hikes that must be tried at least once. Nobody has been left out! 😉 Whether you are a casual or an extreme hiker, there will be a hiking trail made just for you!
#1 Gex – Le Creux de l’Envers
Starting from Gex, this easy hike will take you along the site of the Saracen Gates. A legend dating from the 19th century tells that the Gessians sheltered beyond these stone doors during the Saracen invasions of the 8th and 9th centuries.
Most of the route is in the forest, along the Journans, but some of it is also in the National Nature Reserve of the Haute Chaîne du Jura.
Bonus: discover wooden sculptures near the Saracen doors.
#2 Grilly – Le Mont-Mourex
From this easy loop you will enjoy an exceptional panorama of Lake Geneva, the Alps, the high Jura chain and the Pays de Gex.
Be advised that this trail can also be used by pedestrians and mountain bikers!
Bonus: A stone circle 145 m in circumference and 47 m in diameter can be seen on the ground at the summit of Mont-Mourex. It is thought that the site was once a place dedicated to the worship of the sun.
#3 Chézery-Forens – Following the footsteps of the monks
This is an easy 3-hour loop that varies between forest and village. You will discover the picturesque hamlet of Noirecombe. The route offers magnificent viewpoints, including “le cirque de Roche Franche” and “le Rocher des Hirondelles”. The return journey is via the “Moulin Thomas” bridge along the left bank of the “wild” Valserine (caution: this route has some steep sections).
Bonus: On the path, the Thomas mill can be seen. It was put into service during the 18th century. Its millstones made flour from the cereals produced around the hamlets of Noirecombe, Rosset, La Rivière or around the many isolated houses scattered on the slopes of the valley. The old footbridge was swept away by torrential floods in 1910.
#4 Fort l’Ecluse: On the edge of the Rhône
Starting from Fort l’Ecluse, this fairly difficult loop will allow you to discover this grandiose site, built into the side of the mountain. The diversity of bucolic landscapes on this hike will surprise you!
Please note that the first part of the hike is only possible when the Fort is open!
Bonus: Discover the mills of Condière along the way. In the Middle Ages, a small industry used the hydraulic energy of the “Nans” and the “3 biefs” under the authority of the Count of Savoy.
#5 Lélex-Les hauts sommets
The challenging 17 km loop will allow you to get a great view of the high Jura Mountain range. Here you will reach the highest point of the Crêt de la Neige and admire our famous Croix du Reculet with the Mont Blanc in the background.
Bonus: In the hollow of a valley between Le Reculet and Crêt de la Neige, hikers will be able to see the footprint of an old high-altitude village.
These five hikes will hopefully make you want to put on your hiking boots. If you fancy more, we have several others to recommend! The possibilities are endless 😉 Don’t hesitate to visit one of the Tourist Office branches, one of our advisers will be happy to help you.
We wish you a nice walk in the Pays de Gex and its Monts Jura resort! Be safe and above all enjoy. You are likely to get a great view!