La montagne de Lure

La montagne de Lure

Geography and geology

Located in haute Provence, two hours from Marseille and an hour and a half from Aix en Provence, the montange de Lure is a ridge which stretches over 50 kms from East to West. The geological sister of Mont Ventoux, it reaches a height of 1826m. Its summit is 40 km east of the Ventoux summit and 40 km north of the Luberon.

With these two other massifs, it is part of the great Pyreneo-Provencal chains which rise before the Alps. It is made up mainly of limestone and marly-limestone soils which belong to the Cretaceous era. Because of its composition, it lacks water as its springs disappear into the depths.

History

In XIIth century, Chalaisian monks founded the Abbey of Notre Dame de Lure there. It was a key location for religious pilgrimages.

In XVIIth century, the Belgian Godefroid Wendelin, the forerunner of modern astronomy, watched and explored its pure skies. Today there is a memorial stone in his memory.

In XVIIIth century, herbalists wandered the slopes of Lure to pick the many aromatic and medicinal plants from which they made their « drugs », traditional remedies that they sold across the land and beyond.

In the following century, the Peidmontese found shelter in its coombs to use the wood for charcoal using the traditional « charcoal-burning » technique of which some remains can still be seen today.

More recently, in the 1930s, the writer Jean Giono received his thinking friends (philosopher friends ?) in a sheepfold on the Contadour, one of the famous dry-stone sheepfolds, and loved to draw inspiration from the landscapes and inhabitants of Lure.

Today

A mountain for all seasons and passions !
All year round, it is a meeting place for hikers, riders or cyclists: in the spring to make the most of the awakening and blossoming of the subalpine vegetation and exceptional plant life, in summer to enjoy the fresh air in the altitude, in autumn for its mildness and seasonal colours, and in winter for snowshoeing !

Winter snow also allows you to enjoy the pleasures of tobogganning or skiing in the family resort which is open to all.

But to share the pleasures of Lure, you must remember that it is a sensitive natural area: along with the mountain pastures still alive with pastoralism, it is home to protected species such as the lys martagon or the meadow viper.

Lastly, with its gentle, regular climb, the route départementale 113 is perfect for a cycling ascent. So what about trying the challenge de Lure? You can do it and be rewarded with the most magnificent views!

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More than 250kms of marked paths for Road or VTT await you on the Territory of Forcalquier Mountain of Lure.
Maps are available for sale at the tourist office of Forcalquier and Saint Etienne les Orgues.