On Friday, June, 22nd of 2012, with Leeloo, Nico and Virginie we had a small trek in the Champsaur, close to the village of La Coche, a part of Saint-Jean-Saint-Nicolas.
|Itinerary||Round of La Coche|
The small village of La Coche, hometown of my regretted grand-parents, is located at 1507 meters above the sea level (4944 feet) on the slopes of the Drac Valley which ends a bit further East with the ski station of Orcierre-Merlette. Only a handful of inhabitants are still living there, although the surroundings are incredible, in the limits of the National parc of Les Écrins, lands of Larches forests and fields of mountain flowers.
Our tour didn’t last more than 2 hours. We crossed part of the plateau of La Coche then climbed a bit toward the pike of La Pousterle, which is dominating the village with its summit at 2401 meters (7877 feet). June is a perfect time to enjoy all kinds of mountain flowers, most of them are blooming. Globe-flowers, bird’s-foot trefoils, buttercups and dandelions are coloring the fields into yellow; aquilegias, forget-me-nots, phyteumas and wild geraniums into blue and mauve. We were lucky enough to see an orange lilium flower, now quite rare. And I must forget a lot of them, clover, daisies, plantin, scabiosa, I only know so few of all the Alp flowers!
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Half of the path we took was passable with a car, and the part going down to Les Richards wasn’t difficult at all. The small path from Les Richards to La Coche, that we took a week before when we did our round of the Palastre is also straightforward.
With more time (we had to come back for lunch) it would be interesting to continue toward La Pousterle in the North and cross the ridge coming from it to join a small pond hidden behind. There is no clear path to go there, but with some attention and good shoes, this mountain is fairly easy when the summer softens it.
Keeping only the small tour around La Coche, this is a easy trek, accessible to children and anyone able to work for two hours.