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Strange bedfellows counting sheep… then dreaming of hunting them

New Mexico Bighorn Sheep
New Mexico Bighorn Sheep. Photo by Jwanamaker https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=28291925

The debate on the reintroduction of carnivores (think wolves) and omnivores (bears) usually focusses on the polarised views of livestock breeders on the one hand and conservationists on the other. But what about hunters? I’ve just been reading an article in the New York Times about hunting sheep which adds a whole new dimension to the discussion. In the US, receipts from sheep hunting permits are used to finance more sheep reintroductions. Could this idea be applied to the Pyrenees? Continue reading Strange bedfellows counting sheep… then dreaming of hunting them

Pyrenean Haute Route 2016. Days 20–27 Gavarnie to Bagnères-de-Luchon

France

Louis went home from Gavarnie. I would be on my own for the rest of the hike.

Day 20. Cirque de Gavarnie with the Brèche de Roland, seen from the Espuguettes hostel.
Day 20. Cirque de Gavarnie with the Brèche de Roland, seen from the Espuguettes hostel.

The HRP heads over a pass to the Cirque d’Estaubé and then to the lower reaches of the Cirque de Troumouse, two lesser-known cirques. Continue reading Pyrenean Haute Route 2016. Days 20–27 Gavarnie to Bagnères-de-Luchon

Goiat has crossed the border

Goiat, the Slovenian bear released near Isil in Pallars Sobirà on 6 June has been travelling fast. He has already crossed into France and by-passed the town of Bagnères-de-Luchon to be seen by a gardener in Cazaux-Leyrisse 45km NW of Isil. That’s 45 km as the vulture flys but he will have avoided contact so his trek will have been much longer.

Meanwhile a bear has been captured on video in Bonac-Irazein, Ariège with an unusually large litter of three cubs born last winter. Two other bears are known to have had cubs this year – detected on the Spanish side of the Pyrenees. Source: Brown Bear Network

New train service into the Central Pyrenees

Canfranc Station - semi-derelict for 40 years but the prospects are brighter
Canfranc Station – semi-derelict for 40 years but the prospects are brighter

After 40 years of neglect the famous (infamous?) railway line from Pau to Canfranc is being renovated. At present the trains all stop at Oloron and a bus takes passengers across the border to Canfranc. But the French SNCF is in the process of testing the line as far as Bedous and a regular service will be inaugurated on 3 July 2016 (SNCF reservations are now possible).

Source: Vue sur les Pyrénées