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Hiking near Gerberoy in a winter wonderland

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Hello dear Sparkfriends!

The problem with today’s hike was getting there! The weather forecast was very bad for the late afternoon (freezing rain was announced), so I decided to go earlier than planned, in order to be back home before 5pm. It had snowed all evening and part of the night...

At first the driving was easy (it was the motorway), but then, as the roads became smaller, it became more dangerous. I drove slowly! Still, I parked outside Songeons’ church at 12pm, which was what I had hoped for.

Songeons’ castle, built in 1720 for the marchioness Conflans d'Armentières, now a home for elderly people, looked so elegant!

Most of today’s hike was between meadows and woods...

Although I walked in the fresh snow for 3 hours and a half, my feet stayed dry thanks to my great new hiking boots! (Which are also very light, I looove them!)

I am not used to walking in the snow, and it was hard work! But a great exercise and so worth the gorgeous views I saw today... (Not to mention the lovely crunching sound of the snow under my feet!)

In the distance, I saw Gerberoy appear...

After almost getting lost (I couldn’t find the path, which was hidden by the snow!), I reached the cross which shows the end of the village...

As I entered Gerberoy, I passed by a farm. The ducks were cute and so noisy!

The medieval village seemed asleep. Some of the houses belong to people who come here only at weekends or during their vacations, so many shutters were closed: not everybody is as crazy as me, driving all the way from Paris in this snow! :)

I have already shown you Gerberoy a couple of times, and I even took CELLISTA1 and MINIUM there! But that was in the summer... I hope you are enjoying Gerberoy in the winter as much as I did.

There is a house for rent, if you are interested! :)

I didn’t see anybody at all, not even in the village’s square! It was quite a difference compared to last time I was there, back in early August!

This is where I had my lunch break, on the square’s bench: whole wheat sandwich with light philadelphia, smoked salmon and lemon. Served with warm tea right out of my thermos, bliss!

One last view on Gerberoy from the path below as I was walking towards the woods...

The last part of the hike was entirely through the woods... I only saw a man who was pulling his daughter on a slide. But there were a few other prints in the snow, a couple of people had been hiking on this path earlier in the day.

I remembered these dried flowers! I had seen them during a hike in the summer, but I never found what they were. If you have an idea, please let me know!

Thank you so much for sharing my hike in winter wonderland today! And thank you for your patience and kindness, I am not a very good Sparkfriend lately: as I spend many hours on my laptop for work, I try to rest my eyes on the evening (they are red and crying, not very nice!). I have my appraisal on Monday and an important deadline on Wednesday, I hope it will get better after that!

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Post Scriptum: If you want to see Gerberoy in the summer...

Gerberoy in June full of roses:

Hiking around Gerberoy in late July:
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    1059 days ago
    Living on the Gulf Coast of central Florida, I haven't experienced snow in years--back in the 70s when I lived in northern California for a few years--my ex was in the Air Force and stationed out there. Where we lived, it only snowed once, but we did make a couple of trips into winter snow country. Growing up in Florida meant I have only been in snow a few times in my life, but I find it beautiful--just glad I don't live in it. Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful winter wonderland.
    1379 days ago
    Thank you for showing us Gerberoy in winter. The photos are lovely.
    1382 days ago
  • GRACED777
    I love your winter view of this village as much as the summer view! Have a goid week, friend - meetings and all!
    1386 days ago
    Hi Claire........
    There are several of your photos that I wish I could frame and hang on my walls. Now I know that France is equally beautiful in Winter.
    1386 days ago
  • 123ELAINE456
    A very Beautiful Winter Hike. Be very Careful and don't get Lost. Hiking is One of your Great Passions in Life it sounds like. Enjoy hiking and have fun doing it. God Blessings Always. Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Have a Great Week. Take Care.
    1387 days ago
    Thank you for the look back! Now I'll finish reading the blog for this time (late summer, 2014)
    1387 days ago
    Loved seeing the photos and hearing about this village in winter (after having read about your summer hike). We probably each want to fly right over and enjoy it in person with you... any season!! Thank you so much for sharing.
    1387 days ago
    Wow - even in Winter, it is beautiful! Looks like it was a cold gray day when you went on this hike... but a wonderful hike nonetheless! emoticon
    1387 days ago
    My dear Claire:

    You have such a GOOD eye...seriously some of your photos should be in tourist books..have you ever considered that?

    I LOVE your hikes and I love your narratives and the pics that go along with them.

    Friends and I along with my sweet hubs enjoyed Paris some years back but the French countryside of Goudaracq (sure I've got that spelling wrong) was always one of my favorite parts!

    Your hikes remind me of makes my heart long to return. Florida is wonderful and especially nice in the winter..but the landscape is all the same ...low...flat...and sandy. And missing the season changes tugs at my heartstrings also. I'm hoping one day we can again get a second little cabin in the mountains of N. Carolina..we enjoyed ours for 10 years and then decided we were too busy to keep it and maintain'm sorry for the day we sold it! I didn't realize how much peace and job it brought into our lives.'s ALWAYS 20/20 isn't it? emoticon
    1953 days ago
    1960 days ago
    I loved the hike Claire, so fun to see the buildings in winter. Quite a charming village.

    Glad you have your new boots and your feet stayed dry! Hiking in the snow can be hard work and you burn more calories too from all the extra snowflakes you carry!! :)

    1970 days ago
    J'adore absolument les photos de cette randonnée!!!! La neige, les canards, tous!!! Et tes nouvelles bottes! Merci pour partageant les photos avec nous. emoticon
    1971 days ago
    What a gorgeous walk! That snow really does give a different kind of workout! Hope things went well with some of the things you had coming up as I'm a few days behind reading this. And also hope your eyes are better soon. thanks for taking us along!
    1971 days ago
    So stunning! Truly a Winter wonderland!
    Thanks for sharing the rental info, I think I'll take it! emoticon
    Sending you emoticon from SC!
    1972 days ago
    Claire, your pictures are so gorgeous - and what a contrast to your two previous blogs about the same area! Thanks so much for sharing!
    1973 days ago
    thnx for sharing.
    1973 days ago
  • KAREN91
    Thank you for stopping by my blog and giving me your support. I love seeing France in winter. Your blog is beautiful as always. Im glad you have good hiking boots to protect your feet. You are brave to continue your hikes in the cold and to eat lunch outside. I hope you were bundled up. I think your pictures were beautiful, made me wish I could rent that house and move there. What was the temps there? Our wind chills in Iowa today are 19 below zero so Im going to stay in today. You find the beauty in every season and in every place you have the soul of a artist. Thanks for sharing your gifts with us and giving us beauty. emoticon
    1974 days ago
    The transforming power of snowflakes! I absolutely loved Gerberoy in white! Although it must have felt too silent and isolated, I'm sure the real images were as beautiful as they seem in your pictures.
    Thank you for sharing another beautiful hike with us, Claire! Take care of yourself and rest your eyes as much as possible. I hope you feel much better soon.
    1974 days ago
  • BEWELL48
    Thank you for these lovely pictures! Love the house with the pink shutters! How fun to rent for a bit.....and leave my world behind! My work has been very busy as well so can appreciate your time constraints. I need to remember to keep some balance in life and get in some 'me moments'!
    1974 days ago
    Love, love the new boots!! This truly is a winter wonderland! So beautiful. I love to walk in the snow. Everything seems so peaceful and clean in new fallen snow. We finally got some snow here in Tennessee, but I haven't had the opportunity to get out and enjoy it. Your blog is a treat because it gave me a chance to enjoy it through your gorgeous pictures.
    I hope you have a great week at work and things slow down a bit for you. Take care and be careful driving during the bad weather.
    Sending you many, many hugs!!
    1974 days ago
    Very beautiful. Thanks for sharing your hike.
    1974 days ago
    You are really a brave soul, walking by yourself in such remote areas! I see you put some of those duckies on your Spark page! Aren't they the cutest! Loved all your pics. And what a wonderful way to get your exercise.
    1974 days ago
    What a gorgeous hike you had! I love the pictures of the ducks, the elaborate crucifix, the houses... would love to move into the one that's for rent! The snow-covered flower looks like a teasel (? sp), but unfortunately I don't know the proper name. It's a very prickly seed pod which is used for lots of crafts. Many years ago, when I was a Girl Guide leader, we used to make little "men" out of them. Yours may not be the same thing at all, but it's a possibility.

    Glad you're happy with the boots, and looking forward to sharing many of your hikes. emoticon
    1974 days ago
  • NAN041
    ´¨¨)) ..Love it... the home with all the blue accents, stands out!
    Hope all is going well, and you are safely back in your home.
    ¸.•´ .•´¨¨)) ..Nan..
    ((¸¸.•´ ..•´ ( -:¦:- )
    -:¦:- ((¸¸.•´*
    1974 days ago
    What beautiful pictures! How incredibly different the landscape can be, under the snow. It's hard to recognize lovely Gerberoy and still, I recognize the different sights you took us to. What a good time I had there! Thanks for virtually taking me back there again!
    I like your new boots - they look comfy and trendy!
    The ducks looked very cute indeed - do you think they'd like to get some kind of boots like yours? I feel cold for them with only feathers... emoticon
    Good luck with your oncoming appraisal! Take care of your eyes and see you soon,

    1974 days ago
    I remember your Gerberoy blog in the summer. Gerberoy looks even more charming in the winter! Snow walking must have burned a lot of calories. I know that when it snows here; it's like walking in the sand.

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    1975 days ago
  • DNRAE1
    Lovely hike, Claire, and beautiful pictures. Thank goodness for good boots! Good luck on meeting your deadline, and have a great week.
    1975 days ago
    Thank you for sharing your adventures and the wonderful pictures. I love reading your blogs, I feel like I'm there!
    1975 days ago
    That was quite a hike! The snow looks so pristine and the village is postcard perfect with all that covering of snow. Love your new boots, too! Thanks so much for sharing the story and beautiful photos of your walk with us, Claire!

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    1975 days ago
    thank you for sharing, claire - we usually say that walking in snow is just as heavy as walking on the sandy beach here in molokai - only colder:-) your photos are wonderful - france is soo beautiful!
    1975 days ago
    I can't imagine hiking in the snow but I'm very glad that you did and that you shared your experience with us. The photos are so beautiful. I love the line-up of ducks!
    1975 days ago
  • TIPPY211
    Thank you for sharing your hike. Beautiful pictures emoticon emoticon
    1975 days ago
    What an amazing winter wonderland. Thank you for
    taking me along on this beautifilu hike. Love your neat
    boots too. emoticon
    1975 days ago
    Claire, how stunningly beautiful! really gorgeous pictures!
    (and great boots)
    1975 days ago
    I like your new boots. So glad they keep your feet warm, since you walked a ways. Your pictures are beautiful. I love the snow. We don't get it as often here anymore. I love the wooded areas. It's amazing how trees can still be pretty when they are bare.
    The Ducks are adorable. That must have been fun walking up on them. Looks like they had their own path to walk.
    1975 days ago
    I have missed you and our walks together, it must have been relaxing to wander through the snow covered paths.

    Your work schedule sounds gruelling at the moment hope you do well in the coming days.

    What beautiful places you visit, I would love to rent the house and be the only one in town.

    Love the waterproof hiking boots, I wondered if you had a waterproof cushion to sit on the bench with????.

    Stay well and have a lovely week. emoticon
    1975 days ago
  • GAMMY98
    Thanks for such beautiful pictures. I felt like I went on the hike with you. I am like you an love walking in the snow and seeing the beauty it gives when it clings to things. We are suppose to get snow the next couple of day not sure how much.
    I am not sure if have seen any were the Barker1009 had her baby or not. I am only allowed to let people know she had the baby and that everyone is doing good.
    She wants to be the one to let you all know what the sex is and the weight. She has sent me 3 pictures so far.I can't wait to get to see the baby.
    1975 days ago
    Breathtaking views of your special winter wonderland! I love the pictures of the tree lined paths through the woods...I can imagine the crunch of your boots in the silence. What a pretty little village, both with roses and with snow! I am happy you safely made the journey to and fro ...happy also that you were able to get those fabulous boots to keep your feet warm and dry.

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    1975 days ago
    Another wonderful hike with gorgeous pictures. At this time of year, I love reading the blogs from people who have snow. I grew up in Washington state and spent most of my adult life in Chicago, so I know snow. I never thought I would say, "I miss those pristine moments of white beauty," but I do. Living now in Scottsdale, AZ, I don't see snow very often, so thanks again for a fabulous pictorial blog. Oh, and the picture of the ducks gives new meaning to "get all your ducks in a row." emoticon

    Hope your week goes well.
    1975 days ago
    Thanks Claire, snow is lovely . We had a heavy storm the day DH was supposed to go home from Portland around 70 miles to our home. I was very nervous so I booked an extra day in the hotel and I decided to take him there.
    He was still under the influence of the anesthetic so he stayed an extra day, I was so happy it worked out like that. My neighbours did our driveway I just had to leave DH in the car till I cleared the path. Getting him in up the steps was hard but we did it. Today we have more snow and tomorrow we will have another storm.
    It always looks lovely but thank goodness for anti lock brakes and front wheel drive.
    I was happy to read your friend feed at the hotel and today I enjoyed your lovely walk in the snow. What kind of boots did you buy. They look like easy walkers do they have good tread in the snow. I wear cleats because we do get a lot of ice too. We are below zero this week. HUGS :Pat in Maine, THANK SO MUCH FOR THAT wonderful blog. I really loved it. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1975 days ago
    Beautiful, beautiful pictures! I love the crucifix. Astoundingly beautiful.

    Poor ducks! I just put myself in their place and SHIVER!

    HUGS and good luck w/your appraisal and upcoming deadline.
    1975 days ago
    God has given you eyes to see the tres belle of the earth. Thank you so much for posting. What a lovely place to see!!! Be blessed and keep Sparking!!!
    1975 days ago
  • DOODIE59
    Does it always snow there? Is it higher altitude? Thanks for sharing your lovely hike. Yes, there is a lovely peace that comes with walking through snow. Enjoy!
    And glad the new boots were good, too;)
    1975 days ago
    Thank you for the winter wonderland walk. A good friend is a friend that even though you don't have allot of time for each other you know that you can always go there for support.
    1975 days ago
  • JACKIE542
    It is very beautiful, It really is amazing how peaceful everything is after a good snowfall.
    I would love to rent that house, I remember all the beautiful flowers in Gerberoy in Spring and I would love to see that.

    I bet you were so happy to get out and hike, glad you got the snow you wished for. emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1975 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/19/2013 9:36:38 PM
    Thanks for sharing your hike. Beautiful pictures.
    And good looking hiking boots. I love the waterproof kind.
    1975 days ago
    A real winter wonderland! Beautiful! Beautiful! You are so adventuresome, I wish I were but I think I am a sissy. I would have to walk with you or I would get lost! Thank you for taking the time to take us all with you on your hike, it was so beautiful, so serene, so wonderful.

    I have really missed you, it has been 2 weeks and seemed like 2 years! I hope things settle down with your job.

    Take care dear friend. emoticon
    1975 days ago
    WOW, fantastic! I want to live in Songeons’ castle when I get old!
    1975 days ago
    Beautiful,looks like a great hike!
    1975 days ago
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