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Mentioned since the 15th century, the imposing château of Saint-Germain Lavolps should delight lovers of old stones and historical heritage (private - cannot be visited). While the spring and fountain at Imbort is more discreet, the one in La Bachellerie is one of the prettiest "Good Fountains of the Limousin", these Christianised water sources, placed under the protection of a saint, to which virtues were ascribed, notably healing and protection.
6 points of interest
- Heritage site
The châteauThis château is mentioned as early as the 15th century, and the building has had a tumultuous history. The building grew over the centuries, but the misfortune of the owners led to the fragmentation of the agricultural estate; the château later became a public house and then the school canteen. Threatened with ruin, it was not until 1990 that a new owner started restoration work. This private château can only be visited virtually: http://mapage.noos.fr/lavolps
The Diège ValleyOn the way back from the circuit, there is a beautiful view of the Plateau de Millevaches and, below, the château of Saint-Germain which dominates the Diège valley. Domination or protection, the peaceful river indeed meanders through magnificent meadows at the foot of the château before taking flight again through wild gorges. Rising a few kilometres upstream towards St-Setiers, it flows into the Dordogne at the Marèges dam reservoir.
- Small patrimony
The Fountain of ImbortThe villages of Limousin were all heavily involved in agriculture. Walking through these hamlets always produces interesting discoveries during a hike: barns, mansions, crosses and monuments, traditional local architecture... Don't miss the short round trip to the Fountain of Imbort.
Le Massif du SancyAfter the village of Imbort, on the right in the descent, don't miss a remarkable viewpoint overlooking the highest volcano in mainland France, the Puy de Sancy. At 1885 metres above sea level, this summit is the highest point of the Massif Central. The two streams, the Dore and the Dogne, originate there, and their confluence forms the Dordogne.
- Small patrimony
The Fountain of La BachellerieBeyond its domestic use, water has had symbolic and spiritual values attributed to it. You can imagine the questions that the sources raise: the water seems to come out of the ground for no reason. Many sources are linked to healing virtues and are called in Limousin the Good Fountains. There is little information about the La Bachellerie spring: the cross perhaps allows us to classify it among these Good Fountains. Was it the object of a pilgrimage? What virtues were attributed to it?
The commemorative plaqueBefore Imbort, on the door of an isolated barn on the right, notice the plaque in homage to Paul Sirieix. Resistance fighters took over this barn during the Second World War, and it was used as a withdrawal base and training camp for a detachment of the 236th Company of the Francs Tireurs et Partisans (who participated in the liberation of Ussel).
During training with a machine gun, a mistake in handling the weapon led to the accidental death of the resistance fighter Paul Sirieix.
Departure from the esplanade in front of the church. Take the uphill path to the transformer; continue through the woodland.
- At the crossroads, take the road on the left towards Imbort. At the entrance of the village, you can take a short round trip of 500 metres to visit the spring. Go through the hamlet and turn left in the middle of the village. The alleyway becomes a path; turn right at the crossroads to go down on the RD 104.
- Take the departmental road on the right for about 100 metres and then take the trail on the left which runs alongside a small stream. Take a path on the left and then go up to the right as far as the village of "La Bachellerie".
- When you arrive at the esplanade, turn left and follow the road for one kilometre to the spring. Turn right again to rejoin the D 104, which you follow on the right.
- After the meadow, when you reach the remains of an old mill, take the track on the left. At the next intersection, turn right to go up to the track that you follow to the right.
- Ahead of you, take the slightly hidden downward path you took on the outward journey and go back down to the starting point.
- Departure : Church, Saint-Germain
- Arrival : Church, Saint-Germain
- Towns crossed : Saint-Germain-Lavolps
Access and parking
From Sornac, follow the D 21 towards Millevaches then at the exit of the village follow the D172 and the D.30 towards St. Germain. From Ussel, take the D982 towards La Courtine then the 104 towards St. Germain.
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