Carcassonne. In the saddle to conquer the Corbières and the Cathar country

The essential Alizée Niermans has taken the reins! In fact, Father Michel founded the Plo horse farm in 1966. The daughter continues the activity and therefore brings her personal touch with her. So you can take a one-hour walk or a three- to four-day hike to conquer the Corbières and the Cathar country … to the sea, if your heart tells you to. Gallop, trot, run, depending on your level.

“The idea is to offer themed excursions to the general public, experienced knights as beginners, young or old. We enjoy the joys of horse riding, the incredible beauty of our landscapes and the incredible flavors of local products,” says Alizée Niermans, the young woman with us sparkling eyes.

In fact, visitors have several options: a stroll in the heart of the Val-de-Dagne, on the sublime massifs of La Coque and Lauza, or in the middle of the Alaric.

A little longer trip? Just let go of the lanyard. A hike with a picnic break in the Notre-Dame du Carla chapel or by the river, at the exit of the Alsou Gorge or in the Orbieu Valley via Ribaute and by descent to Lagrasse Abbey (with picnic) on the promenade or in the restaurant and overnight on the Campsite or hotel).

At the age of 35, Sylvain Artuso lived a new life as a shepherd. Photos DDM, GC In the saddle you will conquer the Corbières and the Cathar country

Others will try (be seduced) by crossing all the Corbières to the sea (two days, three nights).

The most daring (not to mention Aude to Heaven) will head up there to visit the Cathar fortresses of Termes (with passage through the Circus of Carus), Villerouge-Termenès, Durfort, Aguilar, Quéribus and finally Peyrepertuse (five Days, four nights).

The greedy ones opt for a walk or a wine tour in the vineyards (from a few hours to three days and two nights) to meet a winemaker either directly at his winery or during a break with panoramic views. On the program: tastings in moderation, of course.

There was already something for everyone including the alternative walks to discover the Corbières ecosystem. However, Alizée recently added a theme to her walks: the discovery of the pastoral profession (see below) on horseback, of course, on the backs of Téquila, Java, Missouila, Chakira or Allegria… It is already a success.

Come on, follow us. Color Pas-de-Soucis!

For all information: 06 25 89 49 78.

Life under the stars of the Shepherd

He grazed everything in 2018 to really live life. His life. His desires. On the green pastures of the Val-de-Dagne.

In the saddle the conquest of the Corbières and the Cathar country In the saddle the conquest of the Corbières and the Cathar country

Sylvain Artuso, 35 years old, was an electrical engineer with a clear career. But it wasn’t like that [son] Thing, “as he says. As a good rugby player that he could have been, he tackled everything. He took a different path.” Quite natural “, specifies this passionate defender of the organic, the green soul, in love with the calm. The GR 36 to be precise. Goodbye office walls. Hello, sublime landscapes as far as the eye can see. And the sky as a ceiling. It It’s getting worse …

In the saddle the conquest of the Corbières and the Cathar country In the saddle the conquest of the Corbières and the Cathar country

He first completed an agricultural training at the Lycée Charlemagne in Carcassonne. Then it was a friend whom he followed to the Alps. There he will experience the true crush … for the profession of shepherd. The click with which you resume your clicks and slaps. Come back to the country. He told us this when we met him that day on the horses of Alizée Niermans, accompanied by his friends Sarah Charpy and Anaïs Barthes.

Sylvain Artuso, a bit of a poet, loves his new job. “Even if everything is not rosy every day, because the sky is not blue every day … We work 10 hours a day, 7 days a week. You don’t have to be crazy about size either.”

It is noticeable his passion. She sees herself. She understands. Even if the bells of his 200 ewes disturb the calm of the garrigue on La Coque at the foot of Pech Lat and La Blanque.

“Come on,” he calls to get her on the right track. It is like it is. There is no “beheh” that lasts.

A whistle and the help of his two Border Collies are enough. “One is called Charlie, in homage to the victims of the attacks; the other is Despé”, for another good reason without a doubt …

Definitely on the menu of the 300 animals (including the males and ewe-lambs): acres and acres of green grass to graze on. Here we neither fatten the lambs (sold between 3 and 7 months old) nor the wolves (a little over a year old)!

The story (s) continues. Sylvain tells you about shearing wool, the only moment these animals are found naked.

He also explains to you that the next transhumance is emerging on the Villemaury military field at the Picou peaks.

When sunny days are announced, the herd leaves the sheepfold where nuns used to live. He will return to this former monastery at the end of autumn.

Such is the life of Sylvain Artuso, the shepherd and his lucky star, who watches over his ewes, ewes, sheep and lambs “under the best possible conditions” from his birth to his death. He also takes care of it.

Next riding excursion to the shepherd today Saturday.