In the heart of the Natural Regional Park of the Haut-Languedoc, the Caroux (lo Cairosus meaning "The Stone", in Occitan) reveals itself to be, by the imposing character of its needles, the omnipresence of the rock and its very jagged relief, a real mountain, which is crossed by numerous torrents, cut by gorges (Gorges d'Héric, Gorges de Colombières, Gorges de Madale).
Constitued of gneiss (rich in mica flakes), this gigantic natural belvedere with a thousand facets reflects a particular light, which is the reason why it's nicknamed "Mountain of Light".
The legend of the Caroux goes back to the time when Zeus had not yet defeated and struck down the Titans. Among them, lived a beautiful young girl, Cebenna. She made Zeus so envious that he decided out of revenge that she should die of love. The years went by, Cebenna fell in love with a man. But, as Zeus had decided, she couldn't win his heart.
After many long years, in love and despair, she decided to go to the mountains to live her loneliness and mourn her sorrow.
Legend has it that it was here that Cebenna (who left her name to the Cévennes) would eventually lie down to die of grief. And nature, as if to immortalise her, would have composed for her, forever, a mineral casket... (extract from the book "les Gorges d'Héric").
This very steep mountain range lends itself perfectly to the practice of hiking and high altitude climbing.
Find detailed descriptions of the routes in the topo "Caroux Escalades" by Pierre Raynal and David Foissier (27€) and of the hikes in the topo "Caroux Randonnée" of the Alpine Club of Béziers (19.50€). Also find them on the map of the paths 1/10000 (10€, at the Tourist Office reception points).
Among the most famous itineraries, the GR 7 (Vosges-Andorra) Grande Randonnée path crosses the Caroux and Espinouse rivers.
The "PR du Sommet du Caroux": Starting from the hamlet of Douch, reach the summit which culminates at 1091m via the orientation table, an exceptional and above all unforgettable view!
Discover the peat bogs, a discreet living environment:
On your way, you might notice mouflons, the emblems of the Caroux. Introduced in 1956, the Corsican mouflon has acclimatised to this southern medium mountain area which now has the largest population of mouflons in France.
Bivouac is forbidden in the commune of Rosis, in the reserve, on the paths of the Gorges de Colombières.
Dogs must be kept on a leash.
We advise you to spend the night in front of or in the refuge of Font Salesse (commune of Mons).
There is water in Douch.
Fires are forbidden! Respect the place, the fauna, the flora and take your rubbish with you.
Download the map of the nature reserve before going to the Caroux.
Our advice before leaving
- Take some good shoes
- Don't go there alone
- Take a bag with some snacks, water, depending on the season: hat, sunglasses, jumper, windbreaker and your mobile phone.
- Remember to bring your camera.
- Leave with: your hiking guide published by the NRHL Park, on sale at the Tourist Office reception points for only 1€, Topo guides the "Hérault on foot" at 15,20€, IGN Lamalou-les-bains map at 12€80.