In the hollow of the paths
In the hollow of the paths
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The 12th-century church watches over you as you go off to the hamlets of La Chaumotte and Chassac-Haut. Via sunken paths lined with low dry stone walls, through woods or along the edge of meadows, via the footbridge over the Artaude at Pont d’Atoir, you will arrive at Chassagnol and the historic "tacot" station. After Chaumerliac and its old mill, you can see wild boar wallows, unusual plants and flowers, a water trough, a beautiful pond and, just before arriving there, the village fountain.
3 points of interest
- Heritage site
Chirac-BellevueThe 300 residents of Chirac enjoy the peace and quiet of this corner of the countryside and, as easy to see, its "belle vue". As for the toponym "Chirac", it has nothing to do with the politician (who was certainly a deputy for this constituency). Instead, the origin of the name is likely to be a corruption of a landowner's name or to refer to the Occitan Chèir, literally "heap of stones".
The church dates from the 12th century and is listed as a Historic Monument (note the depth of its porch).
The ArtaudeThe Artaude is a small stream characteristic of the plateau. It rises at 662 m. in the commune of St-Angel and, after a journey of about fifteen kilometres, it flows into the Dordogne at the Marèges dam. The Atoir bridge is a delightfully cool spot, ideal for a picnic break on this walk
- Heritage site
The Tacot railway stationThe Tacot station stands out in the middle of this peaceful countryside. Beautifully restored, one expects to see the train passing by soon. Between 1913 and 1959, a tramway called the Tacot operated on a secondary line between Tulle, Neuvic and Ussel, serving these villages near the Dordogne isolated from the main lines.
Depart from the town hall. Go towards the church and then straight on towards Neuvic.
- Before the cross, turn left towards La Chaumotte and continue on the track. At the next crossroads, turn left onto a track to reach Chassac-Haut. Take the road to the left and continue into the village.
- At the crossroads, take the path opposite. Walk alongside the shed and continue to the beech forest. At the crossroads, continue into the woods, taking a path almost opposite that joins the road.
- Follow it for 200 m. then go up to the right by the path in the copse. Go down the path straight ahead to the bottom of the valley. Turn left to reach the Pont d’Atoir footbridge. Cross to the left to follow the river. The trail suddenly leaves the river and climbs into the woods.
- At Chaumerliac, take the road on the left for 150 m and take the path on the right. At the road, turn left. Go past the first road on the right and, just after, take the road on the right leading to the old Chirac station (round trip: 15 m).
- Returning to this crossroads, turn right onto a forest track that leads to a meadow. Go around it to the right and slightly into the wood; this path runs along the edge of the meadow, continues into the woods (follow the signs carefully), and joins an old path which continues onto a track.
- In the village of Chaumerliac, take the road to the left for 50 m. then take the one on the right for 200 m. Turn right and immediately left onto a path that leads down to a footbridge near an old mill. Cross the river and go up the small path.
- Take the road to the left; it rises for 500 m. Take the path to the right and continue through the woods for about 800 m. until you reach a path bordered by low walls. At a fork in the road, turn right and continue past the pond. At the road, turn left.
- Before entering the village, take the path on the right, then the road on the left. Pass in front of the hotel-restaurant. Continue to the fountain on the left and climb the steps to return to the start
- Departure : Town Hall Square, Chirac-Bellevue
- Arrival : Town Hall Suare, Chirac-Bellevue
- Towns crossed : Chirac-Bellevue and Mestes
Access and parking
From Ussel or Neuvic, follow the D982 then the D108: Chirac-Bellevue is about ten kilometres from these two towns.
Town Hall Square, Chirac-Bellevue
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