Last Tuesday, our leisure club met in Vitrac Saint Vincent for a short walk along the banks of La Rivaillon, the small stream which runs through the village. We walked south east along a country path, with the stream on our right, until we turned right to cross it, via an ancient narrow stone footbridge; soon thereafter we climbed uphill and turned right again, to follow a hillside contour, through oak woodland, back to Vitrac. You can see our route below and read a bit more about Vitrac HERE.
Meeting in Vitrac next to the church.
The route we walked on each side of the river.
The small village of Vitrac Saint Vincent. The old epicerie (grocery) on the corner has been for sale for several years, as has the little local bar, three doors up the road. Sad, as it would be a lovely place to go and have a drink!!
La Rivaillon, now somewhat narrower here than it used to be, flowing under the road bridge on the D60.
We walked past the local junior school as we left the village.
Soon we saw this donkey, who greeted me very noisily!!
Walking on past the trees in their autumn colours...
Our route took us back to a point very close to the stream. The water level is quite low at the moment, but to see what it looked like in flood in 2011 see HERE
A couple of cows watched us walk by....
and these mushrooms, Gymnopus fusipes, were gathered by one of the walkers with much relish; she was telling us how delicious they are when young and fresh! We are very wary of collecting wild mushrooms, but the French seem to know just what they are doing!
Three huge oak trunks seasoning by the side of the road...
or, as you can see, it really is just a farm track.
I was fascinated by these unusually shaped berries, but I have no idea what they are.
Thanks to both Nadege and the Fly, I now know this is Euonymus europaeus commonly known as a spindle tree. The berries are very toxic. European spindle wood is very hard, and can be cut to a sharp point; it was used in the past for making wool spindles.
Crossing the river by the ancient stone footbridge. The ground on either side was pretty wet and muddy, so I ended up with wet socks!
Golden leaves litter the woodland path on our way back to Vitrac....
and in the wood too.
Then the rain started to come down; luckily we both had waterproofs with us!
Despite the rain, it was not a terribly cold day, so we much enjoyed a very pleasant walk in good company!