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The lost villages of Senez

So drive down all the way you came up and continue at point 056 N43°52,425 S6°17,823 to your right. Soon you will arrive at the small village of Majastres at point 058, N43°54,730 S6°17,432 where tarmac starts again.

Inside the village is somewhere the turnoff to the right to the old track network but I didn't find it. So I continued about 1,5 km further on the only road until the roadsign pictured left at point 059, N43°55,218 S6°16,452. Turn onto the dirt track to your right.

What follows is a quite bad and overgrown stretch. Some deep washouts helped to keep the speed low. Luckily this is only for a short distance.


  At point 060 you come to the main track you missed in Majastres, running from right to left. Turn left. N43°55,120 S6°16,766.

The track turns uphill and on a saddle you come to the crossing pictured left at point 061 N43°55,016 S6°17,416.

Straight on brings you to Blieux on a good gravel road and back to tarmac.

Right shows Majastres where you came from. Looks more like a mule track to me.

So turn left.

The track runs down to the bottom of a valley where you find a wonderful picknick/camping spot.(point 062, N43°55,646, S6°17,288). If you want to stay overnight try to ask permission. I believe there's a farm if you cross the ford and turn left twice.

At the ford you have now 3 choices:

1. Turn left and soon left again. May lead you to a farmer. Not explored.


2. Turn left and soon right. Brings you to the ruins of the village of Le Poil. They are NOT abondoned. You will be surprised by the cars you see on the parking spot at the old cemetary. This is a dead end and you must turn around. Point 064, N43°56,200 S6°17,088

3. Or you go slightly to your right after the ford. The track immediately climbs up the mountain and soon shows deep washouts. Those get so deep a 4x2 will no longer be able to pass.

After a while you see the ruins of Le Poil from above on the other side of the valley.

Soon after this comes a track from the right at 065, N43°56,404 S6°17,629. Go on straight on the main track.

Now comes an important part. If you don't have asked for permission to use the road to the observatory from Barrème you must persuade one of the shepherds here to allow you the use of the track down to Barrème. This is easiest done by buying some fresh cheese from them. I met one of them and he was an exceptionally friendly man, pushing an old Patrol over the tracks. The car was only held together by rust and bailing wire. If you see him give him greetings from my part.

It's important to have at least an excuse for driving the track as it soon will pass an "closed" sign.

At point 066 you turn off to your right. The track straight on dead ends soon.

At 067 N43°56,615 S6°17,942 you will run into this interdiction sign. This again was put up by the ONF. Ignore it at your own risk. But you will enjoy the travel more if you know that you're allowed on it. Also remember the looong way you drove and how tiring it'd be to backtrack.

Now always keep to the main track as it winds its way down the forested mountain slopes. At point 070 N43°56,157 S6°21,394 turn right and downhill.

Just when you think it's finally over you will run into a closed gate at point 071 N 43°56,008 S6°21,618.

This gate however is seldom locked although it doesn't look like. It takes some pushing and pulling on the locking mechanism to open it. Carefully close the gate behind you.

A last look back...

At the crossing only 100 metres after the gate you can turn left or straight on. Left leads you directly to Barrème, straight takes you to the main road N85.

If you want to go back to Moustiers St. Marie I strongly recommend you drive to Barrème and take the long loop northeast and then south. This will take only a good hour's drive.