4½ hours; climb: 700m
A magnificent ridge walk, steep at first but worth the effort. At the highest point is a restored medieval watchtower. The return section of the circuit passes an animal park in Casteil.
1 - THE START (Place République). We descend a stone staircase, and we follow red-and-yellow waymarks... We cross the river ('Pont Kipling'). We go to the right, then to the left (Rue du Temple), and then to the right... We climb towards a campsite ('Les Cerisiers').
2 - Campsite entrance (on the left). We go straight ahead and we follow a path which enters a forest... At a first bifurcation we go straight ahead.
3 - Bifurcation. We go to the left (yellow waymarks).
4 - Bifurcation. We go to the right... The climb becomes steeper. We follow carefully the yellow waymarks.
5 - Bifurcation. We go to the right... The path becomes rocky.
6 - Pic de la Pena. An unrestricted view over Vernet and its surroundings. We go to the right and we follow the path along the ridge... It descends a little... Then it climbs.
7 - Pic de la Falguerosa. We go to the left and we follow the path along the ridge... The path (still with yellow waymarks) climbs and descends several times.
8 - Small col. We go straight ahead and we climb towards the tower.
9 - Tour de Goa and (beyond) a magnificent viewpoint. We descend to the left and we join a track which turns to the left... The track takes us to the Col de Jou.
10 - Col de Jou. On the left we go through a small gate. We follow a path which descends the valley... We pass a staircase and a second gate.
11 - Road, which we cross. We follow a grassy track.
12 - Bifurcation, a few metres ahead of the road. We descend, on a path on the left... We pass alongside an animal park... We climb a little.
13 - Road junction. We go straight ahead and we pass through the village of Casteil.
14 - Car park (on the right). We follow a short-cut path... We cross the road and we continue on the short-cut path... We rejoin the road, which we follow towards Vernet.
15 - Bridge (on the left). We go straight ahead, towards the town centre and our starting point.