I don’t know why the smooth golden dome of this summit has taunted me ever since I spotted it on the horizon of Pyrenean peaks in the Ariège. Its distinctive profile seemed to pop up everywhere I went. Rising up smoothly on one side, the dome breaks off abruptly where its eastern side has been chiselled away, no doubt by long-ago ice action. I’ve wanted to stand on that summit for years, although I’d turned back twice. This October, seeing a window of clear, cool days, I was going to do it.
The triple waterfalls of Cascade d'Ars are deservedly well known, but it's possible to escape the crowds and make a detour that takes in the étang de Guzet.
At 1745m Tuc de la Coume is not especially high but you get a 360 degree panorama of both the summit chain and the surrounding valleys.
The Col de Pause is a starting point for some wonderful walks, as well as an up-close view of Mont Valier. This entry describes a walk up to the pastures known by various spellings: Areau, Arreau, Arréou and Areou, and its emerald green lake.
At 2088m, Mont Ceint (also known as Pic de Girantès) gives a superb 360° panorama over the surrounding ridges and valleys. Until recently it bore a poignant reminder of the French Résistance actions in helping escapees flee over the Pyrenees to Spain.