In december, I took an American group of students and their teachers to visit the castles in the Corbières area.
It was the only day when there was a little snow on the roads. It was cold and very windy. During the 2 hour drive from Carcassonne to the castle of Quéribus I talked about the history of this region and of course about the cathars.
We were the only ones who dared to visite these castle ruins. Nearly the whole group went up. The most difficult bit was of course to get through the gate - to go in or out, same battle! It’s a particular windy passage. You have to fix whatever would be likely to fly away: hats, glasses, brochures etc.
But it is always worth climbing up to admire the architecture of this military castle dating from the 13th and 16th century. The most impressive part is the room with the column and its eight archs. Really surprising for a military place.
Finally, everybody came safely back to the bus. And a good meal at the Auberge de Peyrepertuse in Rouffiac rewarded us for having braved the bad weather.
As the acces to the castle of Peyrepertuse was closed because of the snow (road too slippery), we decided to have a quiet walk in the nice little village of Lagrasse on the north side of the Corbières.
I think everybody enjoyed this excusion dispite the special conditions and they will not forget the adventure tour to Quéribus in a hurry.
jane crawford (vendredi, 07 janvier 2011 20:35)
Thanks, Ingrid, for an exhilirating trip to Queribus. Your lecture was great,and your help up those awful steps and rope handrail was invaluable. No wonder Queribus could not be taken by the King's forces--they had to lure the lord into Carcassonne and capture him. The castle was impregnable! The wind tunnel was something, too. Well, I never thought I'd make it, but I did, and it was beautiful up there looking down over the Corbieres. You are right--the Auberge was terrifc, and the dinner thebest (in my estimation) we had in France. Thanks the owner/driver very much--and THANK YOU for a great day. Hope to come back when it's better weather and I train more:) JC
Elizabeth Kovach-Hayes (mardi, 11 janvier 2011 06:32)
Ingrid - this climb was one of the highlights of my trip! By the time we got to the gate, I thought I had made a mistake because of the wind and freezing temperature, but I am so glad I kept going. Thank you for helping us make the climb and for sharing your knowledge and expertise. If I decide to climb any more castles in France, I'll give you a call (in the Summer!) Liz
jane crawford (mardi, 18 décembre 2012 22:19)
Two years after the trip, we still talk about that great--and cold and difficult--trip to Queribus in the snow flurries. Hope you are well, Ingrid, and best wishes for 2013.
ingrid sparbier (mercredi, 19 décembre 2012 10:15)
it's a fascinating country! At every saison, any time of the year!
All the best to you for 2013.