Station to station in the Forest of Fontainebleau: ponds and boulders

A Fontainebleau walk posted on 01/09/12 by shapiro. Update : 22/01/19

Long but very nice hike station to station in the Forest of Fontainebleau. It goes through several viewpoints, ponds, little known corners, stunning scenery.

Technical sheet
Calculated time Calculated time: 7h20[?]
Distance Distance : 14.93mi
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 682ft
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 712ft
Highest point Highest point : 482ft
Lowest point Lowest point : 259ft
Difficult Difficulty : Difficult
Back to starting point Back to starting point : No
Walking Walking
Area Area : Forest of Fontainebleau
Location Location : Fontainebleau (77300)
Starting point Starting point : N 48.448264° / E 2.729396°
Arrival Arrival : N 48.475285° / E 2.691888°
Map IGN Map (Click to buy) : Ref. M2417OT
Download : -

Description

  • Start: Stop at Fontainebleau-Foret (train from Paris-Gare-de-Lyon on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays; departures from Gare de Lyon at 08:19, 09:19, 10:19 and 11:19). D + 0:00.
  • Upon alighting from the train, head backwards 200 m in order to go under the railway.
  • Take the underpass (to your left) and continue straight ahead (south-west on Route d’Aumale) for 1.5 km.
  • At the intersection with the Route du Rocher Cassepot (1), take trail 14/15 on your right (north-west, Yellow-Blue markings).
  • Trails 14/15 zigzags a lot towards the west. After about 2 km (2), in a flat area (signs), trail 15 turns right but stick to the trail 14. The trail makes a large turn and progressively in the east.
  • At first the ascent is gently then becomes increasingly steep, with a rocky finish. At the top (3), take Denecourt trail 3 (Blue markings) left to the Grand Panorama du Rocher Cassepot (4) (marker 135 on the IGN map). D+0h25
  • Make a 90 degree turn to the right (south), onto a wide driveway marked in yellow. When it has curved most of the way to the left, cut right between the rocks for about ten metres to the Denecourt 3 trail (Blue), which will resume to the right as if to close the circle.

Soon afterwards, reach the junction with Denecourt trail 3-4 (5), and take it to the left (west). N.B. If you come across the crossing with the trail 14 (3) again, this is because you cut over too soon; in this case, turn back on yourself to trail 3 to the junction with trail 3-4 (5) that you take to the right (west).

  • (6) Cross the D606, then the plains of Cabaret Masson. Reach the sign at the start of Denecourt trail 4 (Blue). D+0h55 Keep right at the fork, at the sign that reads “Carrefour de Belle-Croix, 1h"; the two branches meet at the Grotte aux Cristaux/Carrefour de Belle-Croix.
  • Trail No. 4 climbs and follows the contours, zigzagging for 45 minutes in a generally westerly direction. It then curves to the south, to the Grotte aux Cristaux cave (7). D+1h30
  • After your visit to the Grotte aux Cristaux cave, take Denecourt trail 4-5 heading south.
  • You pass Fontaine Maria.
  • Trail 4-5 continues in a straight line due south for about 1.5 km (the noisy D142 gradually distances itself). Then the trail heads to the left, to the beautiful Mare aux Ligueurs (8) D+1h55. Head around and go to Fontaine Sanguinède, D+2h05
  • Continue on the Blue-marked trail. Arrive at a paved path (9), take it to the right (west) to the D607. The cross (busy road, caution!). Continue slightly right on a poorly marked path (west) to the D301 (10). Cross it.
  • A large pine tree with a blue mark indicates Denecourt trail 6. D+2h15 Follow the track to the right (west).
  • The path ascends to the left hillside. At an intersection on a slope that is fairly poorly indicated, turn right on the Blue trail 6-6. D+2h25
  • (11) Head back down (north) to the valley bottom, then rise steeply on the other side.
  • Almost at the top of the climb, a chasm has a sign that reads "Danger", then, immediately after is the Mare aux Sangliers (12). D+2h30 It's beautiful, both the pool on the top of the plateau, and its rocks and valley views.
  • Continue on trail 6-6 turning right (north-east) following the edge of the plateau. Although trail 6-6 continues on the level, turn in a hairpin bend to the left (west) into an unmarked path down to the bottom of a thalweg.
  • Back in the plains, cross trail No. 6 that goes to the right (13) D+2h45. Continue straight (south-west of Route du Chaos d’Apremont).
  • After a climb that becomes increasingly steep, you reach trail No. 6 (14) D+2h55. Take it to the right (west).
  • Magnificent panoramas of the Gorges of Apremont. D+3h05
  • At the crossroads (15) +D 3h15, take No. 6-6 to the right (north), then (D+3h20) No. 6 to the left (north and then west).
  • Mare aux Biches. D+3h35
  • Continue on No. 6, passing the Brigands’ Cave (D+3h40) and then down the stairs to the Carrefour du Bas-Bréau (D+3h40).
  • Turn right on Route des Artistes (towards the right; various markings) to Carrefour de l'Épine (17).
  • Go under the road by the underpass.
  • Admire the rocks (and climbers in season) of Cuvier Châtillon. D+4h05
  • Follow the north loop of the Denecourt trail 5 (Blue), which zigzags between the rocks and moves up and down generally to the east. The path descends to a sandy plain with an isolated rock marked with a B. D+4h35. Turn to the left. A steep climb, then a relatively flat walk on a plateau.
  • Pass by Mare aux Canards (D+4h45). 3-5 minutes later in a clearing surrounded by pines, a rocky cliff edge, curved Blue markings in the wrong direction (towards the right when the path goes to the left), take an unmarked path (18) that goes left at a right angle (north) D+4h50. This path leads to the magnificent Mare à Dagneau D+4h55.
  • Go around the pond on the right. Arrive at a crossroads of several roads (19). In front of you, straight ahead (north-east), Route du Ragot. Come on, one last effort: turn right (south-east), not on the main path but a little to the right on Route de la Mare in Piat.
  • 300 m further on, find the beautiful Piat pool (D+5:00), with its water lilies and frog... Head around it and return to the crossroads (19) by the main road (Route du Cuvier Châtillon, towards the left, i.e. north-west).
  • At the intersection, turn right onto Route du Ragot (north north-east).
  • After about a kilometre (20), the road makes a 90° turn to the left: we turn right (east) on route de la Table du Grand Maître.
  • Cross the D142. Here it is, the famous table: a real table, with carved legs and seats, all in stone.
  • Follow the Blue trail 12 straight ahead (north-east).
  • After a few hundred metres, where trail 12 bends to the left we continue straight (Route du Limier, north-east).
  • (21) Once again we find the Blue markings of trail No. 12, which we will follow to the right (east).
  • Cross the D606 (22). Continue straight (north-east). One more stretch and the Bois-le-Roi railway station is 2 km straight ahead ! D+6:00

Waypoints :
D : mi 0 - alt. mi 0 - Halte de Fontainebleau-Forêt
1 : mi 0.99 - alt. mi 0.99 - Intersection with Route du Rocher Cassepot
2 : mi 2.21 - alt. mi 2.21 - Separation between Denecourt trails 14 and 15
3 : mi 2.45 - alt. mi 2.45 - Denecourt trail 3
4 : mi 2.81 - alt. mi 2.81 - Rocher Cassepot (viewpoint)
5 : mi 3.2 - alt. mi 3.2 - Denecourt trail 4-3
6 : mi 3.75 - alt. mi 3.75 - D606 - Cabaret Masson
7 : mi 4.92 - alt. mi 4.92 - Grotte aux Cristaux
8 : mi 5.97 - alt. mi 5.97 - Mare aux Liqueurs
9 : mi 6.19 - alt. mi 6.19 - Carrefour des Liqueurs
10 : mi 6.5 - alt. mi 6.5 - D301
11 : mi 6.86 - alt. mi 6.86 - Descent
12 : mi 6.99 - alt. mi 6.99 - Mare aux Sangliers
13 : mi 7.56 - alt. mi 7.56 - Crossroads
14 : mi 7.8 - alt. mi 7.8 - Junction with the Denecourt trail No. 6
15 : mi 8.13 - alt. mi 8.13 - Crossing of Denecourt trails 6 and 6-6 - Caverne des Brigands
16 : mi 9.38 - alt. mi 9.38 - Bas-Breau crossroads - Carrefour du Bas-Bréau, Auberge de la Caverne
17 : mi 10.02 - alt. mi 10.02 - Carrefour de l'Epine
18 : mi 11.55 - alt. mi 11.55 - Path to the Mare Dagneau
19 : mi 11.9 - alt. mi 11.9 - Crossroads
20 : mi 12.82 - alt. mi 12.82 - Crossroads
21 : mi 13.46 - alt. mi 13.46 - Junction with the Denecourt trail No. 12
22 : mi 13.75 - alt. mi 13.75 - D606
A : mi 14.93 - alt. mi 14.93 - Bois-le-Roi, gare

Useful Information

  • Start: Fontainebleau-Forêt station (train from Paris-Gare-de-Lyon on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays; departures from Gare de Lyon at 08:19, 09:19, 10:19 and 11:19). Stop for descent only.
  • Return: Bois-le-Roi station. Trains to Paris every 30 minutes, at 07 and 37 minutes past the hour.
  • No water or food supplies available on the route, except possibly at the Auberge du Bas-Breau
  • Route can not be followed in reverse because there is no train from the Fontainebleau-Forêt station.
  • Not accessible by mountain bike (they are forbidden on the blue paths).

The indication “D+1h15" means: expect to be here approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes after departure, not including breaks. The full route, without variants ends at D+6h00. With breaks, set aside a good 8 hours.

We advise taking IGN maps with you on this walk. Click here to buy : M2417OT.

Hikideas and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

A succession of beautiful, breathtaking views:

  • Panorama of Rocher Cassepot. D+0h25
  • Plaine du Cabaret Masson. D+0h55
  • Landscape and rocks of Rocher Saint-Germain
  • Grotte aux Cristaux cave. D+1h30
  • Maria fountain.
  • Mare aux Ligueurs, D+1h55. Fontaine Sanguinède, D+2h05.
  • on alternative route: Mont Chauvet fountain.
  • Mare aux Sangliers (panoramic view). D+2h30
  • Panorama of the rocky formations and landscapes of the Platières d’Apremont D+3h05.
  • Mare aux Biches, D+3h35.
  • Caverne des Brigands, D+3h40.
  • The rocks of Cuvier Châtillon, D+4h05.
  • Mare aux Canards, D+4h45.
  • Mare à Dagneau, D+4h55.
  • Mare à Piat, D+5:00.
  • Table of the Grand Master.

Possible variants:

  • From the start at point (2), follow trail No. 15 marked in Blue-Yellow. Time saver: 10 minutes. Easier but a bit noisy; beautiful landscapes of mixed forest with deciduous and pine trees and ferns; several remarkable trees. After passing under the railway line, make a 90 degree turn to the right, then follow the blue-yellow markings to the left (west). After two paved roads, count the number of forest roads that cut across the marked path. At the eighth, turn left at a right angle (blue-yellow faded markings). 300 m further, after cutting Route du Rocher Cassepot, the blue-yellow-marked path turns left between the rocks and heads back. Falling back onto the Route du Rocher Cassepot (point (2)) take the main path on the path marked as No. 14.
  • In the Cabaret Masson plains (6), take left branch of the Denecourt trail 4, signposted as “Carrefour de Belle-Croix, 0h50”. Time saver: 10 minutes.
  • After Fontaine Sanguinède at point (9), make a round trip to the Mont Chauvet fountain. Plan for 30 extra minutes. Take the paved road to the left and follow it. After about 10 minutes, after a major intersection, it makes two large zigzags followed by a straight path. Almost at the end of this alley, the Fontaine du Mont Chauvet is below to the left of the road. Little interest.
  • After the Mare au Sangliers (12), instead of descending into the unmarked thalweg, stay on the Blue-marked route 6-6 (beautiful view). Time saver: 15 minutes. This route joins the Blue-marked trail No. 6, and reaches the main route to the junction with No. 6-6 shortly before the Mare aux Biches.

Opinions and comments

Average

Global average : 4.36/5
Number of opinions : 30
Description quality : 4.03/5
Routemap quality : 4.37/5
Walk interest : 4.67/5


Moderator hiker
on Wed 26 Sep 2018 13:49:22 CEST

Really glad to hear you enjoyed it


Walker
on Wed 26 Sep 2018 11:34:51 CEST

Global average : 5 / 5

Date of walk : 22/09/18
Description quality : Very good
Routemap quality : Very good
Walk interest : Very good

I wanted to do an autumn equinox walk and was not disappointed! It was beautiful and the directions are pretty clear and concise. I have a great time and am so grateful to this website for providing the map and directions! Don't think I'd have found the walk on my own!

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