Aubrac is an elevated plateau, volcanic and granitic, situated in the middle of southern France, part of the Massif Central. It spreads across 3 departments, Lozere, Aveyron and Cantal. The plateau is very isolated with a rough climate all year round.
Pics displayed in this post have been taken during two visits, first in March 2016 with a group a photographers guided by Lionel Montico from Photographes du Monde and then in July 2016 with Albimage Photo Club. Although snow had disappeared for this second trip, the weather was cold and foggy, not the typical summer weather.
At the end of March 2016, during my first visit, snow was still covering the grounds above 1,300m. We even encountered a short episode of snow fall, enough to whiten the yellow grass and create attractive geometric shapes with the granite stone walls, fences and rare trees.
With Aubrac being positioned on one of the paths of Santiago de Compostela, one can find many isolated crosses on the plateau. Positioned alongside paths or on top of small hills, they adopt different shapes but are mostly made of granite. Here is a short selection.
Streams and cascades
Aubrac is traversed by numerous streams and small rivers that occasionally form scenic cascades.
Mist, fog, dark clouds
They are very frequent in Aubrac all year round. Fog which often spreads in the valleys becomes an element of landscapes captured at higher elevations.
Burons, stone walls and trees
These typical landscapes in Aubrac have been shaped by farmers over the centuries. They showcase the traditional buron, stone walls used to separate parcels of land, fences made of wooden poles and barbed wire to keep the cows away and a few crosses. Trees are rare on the high plateau. A buron is a stone building, situated on elevated pasture, that was used during warm months for the production of local cheese. Nowadays with stricter hygiene regulations, this artisanal production is not allowed any longer, therefore burons which are still in good condition are used for storage or have been transformed into restaurants, guest houses or small museums.
The Aubrac is a French breed of domestic beef cattle. It originated in the early nineteenth century on the Plateau de l’Aubrac, from which it also takes its name. It has a wheat-colored coat and dark hooves, switch, muzzle and eyes. The Aubrac is robust, frugal, fertile and long-lived, and is well adapted to the mountain environment of the Massif Central.
These pics have been shot in July 2017 close to the village of Aubrac.