/ Pyrenees - Gavarnie, Cauterets area - and recent snow/flooding

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nickw1 - on 24 Jun 2013
Hi,

I am planning on going to the Pyrenees (Gavarnie/Cauterets area) next month July 11th to 26th however I have heard that they have had huge amounts of snow and last week, devastating and fatal flooding.

Specific plans were to try and climb some of the easier peaks - e.g. Le Taillon and Monte Perdido - and trek over to Torla in Spain.

In view of the situation down there I'm wondering whether it would be a sensible idea to call it off. I have heard reports that the GR10 - which doesn't even go that high - is unlikely to be passable for another 4 weeks which takes us to July 22nd.

Anyone know more about the situation down there at the moment?

Thanks,
Nick
Rich D - on 24 Jun 2013
In reply to nickw1: might be worth liking cauterets on facebook. Regular updates, the road was shut last week due to flooding damage here's a link http://www.facebook.com/Luz.Ardiden/posts/542720965763618
Pyreneenemec - on 24 Jun 2013
In reply to nickw1:


Indeed , there has been awful flooding in that area. Cauterets was isolated for a number of days and Bareges was evacuated as road access has been cut and no guarantee when it will be re-established. Todays 1 o'clock news showed the terrible damage done to the pastures in and around Luz St Sauveur .What was once green and pleasant now looks like the surface of Mars, with caravans and other remains scattered all over the place.

The weather, although much improved remains cold. I don't think you will have any problems with popular peaks such as the Taillon, or Monte
Perdido. I would, however, check well in advance if you intend camping in the valleys as many camp-sites have been completely devastated and are unlikely to open this season.
drolex - on 25 Jun 2013
In reply to nickw1: The snow is definitely an issue this year, you normally don't expect these amounts in June. Friends had to put on snow shoes 2 weeks ago at 2000 meters, which was unexpected.

Also heard more stories of avalanches for this time of the year than normal. So I would recommend you check the weather twice before going out.

Flooding shouldn't affect the climbs directly, but the logistics can be a bit chaotic...
nickw1 - on 26 Jun 2013
In reply to drolex:

Thanks for the replies.

I am half thinking of changing my trip to September, around the 11th-20th - in the hope that things will have picked up after the flooding and the snow will have finally gone by then, but it will still be too early for next winter's snow.

Does anyone have any comments on what conditions are typically like in mid September?

Thanks.
Pyreneenemec - on 26 Jun 2013
In reply to nickw1:
> (In reply to drolex)
>
>
> Does anyone have any comments on what conditions are typically like in mid September?
>

Usually very pleasant ! Significantly less thunderstorms, but a first sprinkling of snow cannot be ruled-out above 2500m. Definitely my favorite time of the year.

Ken Applegate - on 26 Jun 2013
In reply to nickw1: I can only really comment on the Spanish side, but things are pretty good here. I was on the Ordesa rim last week, and whilst there is quite a bit of snow, with a pair of crampons it will be fine. Plans for the next couple of days are to head up to Refugio Goriz and ascend either Marbore or Monte Perdido.
La Shamster on 26 Jun 2013
Pyreneenemec - on 26 Jun 2013
In reply to La Shamster:

The English owner of the Hotel de Tourmalet was interviewed for France 2 television news today.

The hotel has suffered terrible damage to the foundations and will probably have to be demolished.
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Don'tTellHim Pike - on 26 Jun 2013
In reply to Pyreneenemec:
> (In reply to La Shamster)
>
> The English owner of the Hotel de Tourmalet was interviewed for France 2 television news today.
>
> The hotel has suffered terrible damage to the foundations and will probably have to be demolished.
That's Emma and Rob Mason, have met them and exchanged emails a few times.

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