Wednesday, September 10, 2008

wild wet walking

The Monts d'Arrée are best seen in wild weather. Yesterday the association outing of 14 courageous individuals braved heavy rain to view the neolithic allée couverte at Mougau Bihan, but chickened out of walking the Korrigan trail on planks through the marshes. We went to my house for coffee instead. Once fortified with cake in traditional Brittany Walks style we ventured out again, having a short walk at Le Relec and visiting the 12th century abbey church before going on to meet Dartmoor ponies on the moorland of the Landes de Cragou. The theme of the day was landscape (landes et tourbières, moor and marsh) and man's earliest traces in this distinctive region, the highest hills in Brittany. We finished at the menhirs of Pont-an-Illis. The name ('the bridge of the church') recalls a legend of St-Conven whose followers attempted to build a church between the two menhirs but found their work destroyed during each night. Finally a statue of the saint was put on an ox cart and the beasts allowed to wander where they would. At the final stopping point, the new church was built. They were clearly patient animals, as the current position of Plougonven indicates.

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