The 6 most beautiful hikes in Aubrac

Aubrac

Would you like to know which are the best walks in Aubrac? Here’s our selection of the most galvanizing trails!

Straddling three départements (Aveyron, Cantal, Lozère), the Parc naturel régional de l’Aubrac is a true gem of the French terroir. With its rich heritage and culture, it has stood out from the crowd over the years. But what interests us today, of course, is its natural dimension!

How do you discover these 220,000 hectares of pure nature, wedged between the Parc naturel régional des Volcans and the Parc naturel régional des Grandes Causses? We suggest you do it on foot! Discover our selection of the best hikes in Aubrac and set off on an adventure!

1. La Picade, Lac des Salhiens and the Déroc waterfall

Aubrac

Photo credit: Shutterstock – CELINE NAEGELEN

  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Distance: 4.3 km
  • Height difference: 109 m
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • See the route

Not far from Saint-Urcize, on the emblematic Aubrac plateau, you’ll find the village of Nasbinals. To the south, you’ll find La Picade, Lac des Salhiens and the Déroc waterfall. This is a fairly easy, family-friendly hike. It’s also very popular, so you’re bound to come across other hikers. First follow the path to the east, towards the waterfall, before retracing your steps. Then continue west towards the lake.

You’ll arrive near the Déroc waterfall from above, so you’ll be able to observe it from the top. You can also approach the Grotte de Déroc without any problem, provided you follow the signs. Then turn around and head for Lac des Salhiens and Picade. A natural lake, it is fed by the same stream as the waterfall and is bordered by dense vegetation that seems to watch over it: the Picade forest.

In fact, it’s waiting for you, and although the path through it has a slight gradient, it’s no less pleasant to discover its entire ecosystem!

2. Lassouts and the Castelnau-Lassouts dam

Aubrac

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Running time: 3h20
  • Distance: 13 km
  • Ascent: 458 m
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • See the route

Lassouts is a quaint village in the Aveyron region. Small stone houses, narrow streets and a church make up this isolated village in the Aubrac region. It’s bordered by a widening of the river Lot, caused by the EDF dam at Castelnau-Lassouts. Before reaching the dam, drive through a beautiful, dense forest, bordered by a few fields. You can’t miss the dam.

This imposing structure retains a huge quantity of water and helps generate renewable electricity for 35,000 people. A permanent exhibition on the dam allows you to learn more about the structure. You’ll then follow the banks of the Lot, from where you can observe the opposite banks. In particular, you’ll see the pretty village of Mandailles sinking into the lake.

3. Le Pendouliou de la Fabregue

aubrac

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: 3h
  • Distance: 11.7 km
  • Height difference: 324 m
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • See the route

Aubrac hikes are always guaranteed to take place in very natural surroundings. Such is the case with this route starting from the town of Aubrac. Indeed, you begin by following a path that leads you to the Boralde de Saint-Chély valley. For a few moments, you’ll follow the course of the stream of the same name.

You’ll then round the Puech du Pommier, a high hill culminating at 1,302 metres. The rest of the trail takes you to the Tourbières de l’Aubrac Biological Reserve. This is your chance to observe the flora and fauna all around you!

Then you cross the pretty plateau known as Pendouliou de la Fabregue. Magnificent panoramas await you, with an undulating horizon dotted with ancient shepherd’s huts. Finally, you return to the village of Aubrac.

4. From Aubrac to Abri de la Vaysse

Aubrac

Photo credit: Shutterstock – wuthrich didier

  • Running time: 1h40
  • Distance: 6.3 km
  • Height difference: 226 m
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • See the route

First of all, what is the Abri de la Vaysse? It’s actually an unguarded hut on the border of the Tourbières Biological Reserve. So, from the town of Aubrac, discover this out-and-back trail that takes you there. To begin with, you’ll descend the valley before climbing up to the shelter.

Along the way, you’ll cross two streams: the Aubrac stream and the Boralde de Saint-Chély stream. All along the trail, you’ll be plunged into the undergrowth or forest of Aubrac, alternating dense cover with open passages. Once you’ve reached the Abri de la Vaysse, there’s nothing better than to rest for a while and enjoy the surroundings.

5. Castelnau-Lassouts lake

aubrac

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: 2 days
  • Distance: 32.2 km
  • Height difference: 801 m
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • See the route

The Lot is a river that flows through the Aubrac Regional Nature Park from the south. It is a tributary of the Garonne River. North of Lassouts, it widens due to the EDF dam, which retains part of its flow to generate electricity. The result is the Lac de Castelnau-Lassouts. This hike takes you around the lake, simply following its banks.

So set off from Cabanac, a small lakeside village, to discover it all. Numerous other villages line the lakeshore, giving you the opportunity to explore the architectural heritage of the Aubrac region. You can even spend a night here, before heading back out on the trails.

And what’s more, it’s all about nature! With its exceptional flora and fauna, the trail is a veritable observatory of nature.

A final note: this route is one of the Aubrac hikes best done by bike. More than 30 kilometers of it await you!

6. The Déroc waterfall loop

Cascade du Déroc

Photo credit: Wikipedia – BUFO88

  • Running time: 2 hours 10 minutes
  • Distance: 8.7 km
  • Height difference: 156 m
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • See the route

This hike takes you on a long loop through the heart of the Aubrac plateau. From Nasbinals, climb towards the Déroc cave, across plains, between fields and fallow land. You’ll first reach the waterfall from where the Ruisseau des Salhiens flows. This gives you another perspective on waterfalls, usually visible from the ground.

You can then descend to the grotto for a more classic view of the Déroc waterfall. Next, continue across the plains to the village of Montgros, where a short stop is in order. Finally, you’ll find your way back to Nasbinals.