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Hiking the French Pyrenees – GR10 Trail

Two girls, two heavy backpacks, one tent and more than 900km to hike

The GR10  is a hiking trail in the French part of Pyrenees Mountains. It covers more than 900km of hiking paths. The idea of the trail is to cross the Pyrenees from the Atlantic Ocean till Mediterean Sea, or the other way round. Usually, hikers need around 55 days to accomplish the thru-hike. 

Summer 2015


When there was only one semester left for me to get my Bachelor’s degree, I started thinking how I want to spend the next holidays. I wanted to do something different. Something I’ve never done before to end this period of my life. Surfing the net I came across GR10 Trail and I knew – this was it! I love walking but I had no experience in hiking. I had never spent any single night outdoor, in a tent.
One day I told Iwona about my plans and she simply said: “I’m going with you”. Well, it wasn’t going to be a solo hike anymore.
We had few months to buy all the stuff we needed, and get in shape. Well, those were our plans. At the end, working a full-time job, preparing for exams, I had no time. I bought my shoes like one week before our depart. I hadn’t even tried them outdoor ( serious mistake for which I paid!). I packed my stuff night before our depart…and 24th of July at 7:22 am we were on the train heading to Biarritz.

Our plan was to thru-hike, yet, with many rainy days, we decided to stop after 23 days in the mountains. We were going back to Paris exhausted, but happy and full of energy. We promised each other that one day we will finish what we started.

Summer 2016

After 5 years, I decided to leave France and move to Hong Kong. I told myself that I need to finish what we started last year. Some big changes were ahead of me. At the same time, Iwona was immersing herself in a new job. Full of doubts, I made my mind. Since Iwona couldn’t join me, I decided to come back to the Pyrenees by myself. I was surely richer in experience from the previous year, yet the idea of spending more than 20 days by myself in mountains was overwhelming me. As much as I didn’t see myself hiking alone, I couldn’t imagine myself not finishing our hike. I started in Cauterets in order to pass by Hourquette d’Ossou, the highest point of the GR10 trail, and reach Banyuls sur Mer mid-August. I was surely richer in experience from the previous year, yet the idea of spending more than 20 days by myself in mountains was overwhelming me. As much as I didn’t see myself hiking alone, I couldn’t imagine myself not finishing our hike.

Preparations

  • Wondering what to pack for a thru-hike? You can find a full list of my gear here.

 

Sections

Hendaye – Arrens Marsous

Arrens Marsous – Fos

Fos – Mérens-les-Vals

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