Time: 2.5h. Up: 105m. Down: 290m.
Distance: 9km. Difficulty: easy.

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Stage 87: Viens (600m) to Rustrel (415m)

Click and drag on map above to see area around trail. Click here for large zoomable map.

Judging by the summary above, you might think that today's hike is short. Well, yes, it is, but you'll probably spend most of the day walking despite this. Your next stop, Rustrel, isn't far, but I strongly recommend that after leaving your packs there you spend a few hours walking around multi-coloured landscape of the Colorado Provençal.

The orange and yellow colours typically associated with Provence come from ochre: brightly coloured, fine-grained clay that is common in this part of the Luberon. The area you'll walk through once produced 40,000 tons of ochre a year and would probably continue to do so today if cheaper and more consistent artificial colours had not wiped out demand for natural ochre in the 20th Century.

The old quarries and natural erosion have created a jumbled, colourful landscape of small canyons, cliffs, bowls, and the odd hoodoo that is quite different from anything else you'll see on the H2H. Wandering through them is a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon.

Today's hike is identical with the GR6/GR97. From Viens head north-west along trails and minor roads to Rustrel.

Alternatives: unnecessary.
Map: IGN-3242OT Apt.

The House to House blog... stage 87.

<A couple of representative photos from this stage will be added here after the hike>
In the meantime, click here to go to all of the H2H photos on Flickr.

GPS Track
<To be added during or after hike>

Room and Board Options
Lunch: either eat in a restaurant in Rustrel, or picnic in the Colorado.
Dinner and overnight: there are a number of places to stay and eat at in and around Rustrel (for a complete list, see here).

Getting There and Back
Viens: buses go several times a day to Apt from Avignon, Digne, and Marseille, where there are railway stations, and from Apt you can take a taxi the 15km to Viens (for taxi and bus information, see here, and for train schedule information, see the SNCF). Alternatively you could take a taxi the 25km from Manosque, where there is also a railway station (taxi information here (search for taxi)).
Rustrel: take a taxi the 10km to Apt.
ViaMichelin Road Map and Driving Directions: centered on Viens, centered on Rustrel.

Background Information and Links
Many and various...

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