WALKING – CYCLING – MOUNTAIN BIKING – SWIMMING – FISHING – TENNIS – ROCK CLIMBING – SAILING – WINSURFING – WATER SKIING – CANOEING – SHOPPING – TABLE TENNIS – NOT DOING MUCH – ACCRO BUESCH – DOWNHILL SCOOTERING – HOT AIR BALLOONING – FLYING – GLIDING – MARKETS – HORSE RIDING
There are miles and miles of marked walks which you can access straight from the chalet or further afield by car or bike. With gentle inclines, you can walk through forest trails, along river beds or, slightly steeper, to the top of the Chamousset or the lake on top of the mountain and just about anywhere else that you might want to go. Maps are available from the village tourist office and quite a few have now been translated into English
CYCLING & MOUNTAIN BIKING
Whether mountain biking or road cycling, you will be spoilt for choice. As you might expect in France it is a popular pastime and there are many tracks and routes with comprehensive directions/signs. Jerome Payot runs a cycling business in Lus La Croix Haute, where you can rent bikes as well as taking advantage of guided tours to suit all ability levels.
SWIMMING & RELAXING
The village open air swimming pool (10 minute walk from the chalet – open from mid June – end August dates vary from year to year) very clean, large and heated to around 25 degrees the last time we were there. It closes for lunch and on Mondays (typically French) so you only pay for a morning or afternoon session. Afternoons are our favourite, as we never seem to be up in time to make the most of the morning times…If you are a little more adventurous, there is a plunge pool 5 minutes walk from the chalet (on the road to La Jarjatte) fed by fresh mountain spring water, very refreshing…!
There is also a large lake in Veynes (Plan D’eau) which we like. You can swim, hire pedallos, generally relax, have a picnic and the swimming area is patrolled by lifeguards in July and August. There is plenty of space and trees to provide shade if you need it. Best of all, it is completely free.
A little further away in Serres, about a 40 minute drive there is a huge reservoir and part of it has been cordoned off to form a large swimming area.
Once again there is plenty of space for picnics etc. although not as much shade, so, best to take a sun shade/parasol. There is a restaurant and from memory the entrance fee was not overly expensive.
FISHING – TENNIS – ROCK CLIMMING – DOWNHILL SCOOTERS
You can fly fish on the river Buech which you can walk to from the end of the garden (5 minutes)
There is a tennis court in the village which you book at the Marie in the village unless it’s closed, in which case you book via the tourist office. (seems the wrong way round to us, but it is very quaint) There are four rackets and tennis balls at the chalet. edit.
Via Ferrata – rock climbing, but for some of the time, fastened to permanently fixed steel cables. There are lots of local (within 5 minutes of the village) rock climbing areas and they can be accessed independently or via the local village guide Yannick who also runs Accro Buech at La Jarjatte. You can rent climbing equipment from Camping La Condamine which is the campsite on the road out of the village (if you were going north to Grenoble) where it meets the N75.
The downhill scooters and bikes use the drag lifts at La Jarjatte (5 minutes from the chalet by car) to pull you uphill, then gravity brings you down. There are also duo scooters available so that young children can be accompanied by an adult. Open during July and August from 13.00 – 18.00 (except Saturdays)
Accro Buech is also at La Jarjatte and is described as a ‘playground in the trees’. Basically this is an assault course on wires that are strung between the trees in the forest about 50 ft up…! You are permanently attached via a harness and 2 safety ropes and the best part are the zip wires that get you back down…!
HORSE RIDING – CANOEING
Horse riding is available in the village during July and August and at other times by request. Not something we have ever done as horses don’t have any brakes, so, full details from the tourist office.
There is canoeing on the river at Saillans. We have done this several times and it is good fun. You can choose from a two hour gentle meander up to a day trip. The organisers take you from the centre for the two hour (approx) route with the longer trips starting from the centre. The organisers then collect you and bring you back. They provide water tight containers, so you can take a picnic and stop off on the way, have a swim and paddle back to the centre (2 hour trip) as fast or as slow as you like. The water is not deep in the summer and it is well organised. You need to book in advance, but Louise will help with this if needed.
It takes about 80 minutes to drive to Saillans which is just on from Die (very good market and worth going). The route from Lus takes you over the Col de Grimond which has some spectacular views. A little bit further away, but a really good day out.
SAILING – WINDSURFING – KITE SURFING – WALKING
Lac du Monteynard is a huge reservoir and is home to any number of watersports including windsurfing, kite surfing and sailing.
You can rent windsurfers and sailing boats and take a boat trip around the lake. Lac du Monteynard is close to Monestier-de -Clermont which is a 45 minute drive from the Chalet back towards Grenoble on the N75. There are walking and cycling trails around the lake together with 2 spectacular pedestrian bridges that span the water allowing unrestricted access.
If you get a chance, take a look at the dam and hydro electric station itself from the viewing platform, it is an impressive piece of construction work..!
The videos below give a good overview. The last one goes on a bit, so you might want to cut it short once you have the general idea.
In the summer, there are two markets a week in Lus, on Wednesday and Sunday mornings. Nearly always something different to have a look at, from food to clothes to jewellery.
The village has a huit a huit general store, butcher, bakery, post office, doctors and you can buy regional produce and wine at la Cave. In addition to the markets, you could get everything you needed without leaving the village. However, if you want a wider choice, head to Veynes.
There are three restaurants in the village, although we think that the best one is Les Pervenches. It is a 5 minute walk from the chalet. Most of the ingredients are grown in their garden and it is just very good, home cooked food at very reasonable prices.
We also have two BBQ’s at the chalet and a proper, fully equipped kitchen with just about everything that you would need to prepare, just about anything…..should the mood take you…
Veynes is the nearest town which is about 20 minutes drive and has two good sized supermarkets. There is also a large lake in Veynes (Plan D’eau) which we like. You can swim, hire pedallos, generally relax, have a picnic and the swimming area is patrolled by lifeguards in July and August. There is plenty of space and trees to provide shade if you need it. Best of all, it is completely free…..
If retail therapy is needed then head to Gap which is about a 50 minute drive. Just drive through Veynes and keep going. Sarah, Lucy and Emma have spent many hours here wondering around the shops (most of which are independently owned). I tend to find that a coffee or two and a good book works for me…There is also a large Decathlon (sports equipment/clothes etc) which I am sure we must have bought shares in by now. Several large supermarkets and all sorts of other shops, garages, builders merchants etc etc. completes the line up. There is also an ice skating rink which is good fun and the weekly market is well worth a visit.
The local train station is also just outside Lus. You can catch a train to Grenoble or Gap or head down to the Med coast (you will need to change trains for the south coast in Veynes, I think)
There are lots of other things to do from hot air ballooning to hang gliding (haven’t tried these yet) but hopefully the above will give you some idea of the range of activities available.
Although Lus la Croix Haute has everything that you would need, it is not commercialised, it is typically French, hence the charm of the village and the local people.
Louise, (English but lives permanently in the village and speaks fluent French) who looks after the chalet for us, is on hand to help with any questions or advice about local events, attractions etc.