Distance: 38.0 km – Elevation +880 m -850 m
Weather: Sunny. Temperature: High 31 degrees
The stay last night at the Auberge de Jeunesse, although relatively expensive, was comfortable and clean. Jean Pierre had without prior discussion with me arranged for the VF representative, Jacques Guy, to collect us from the hostel this morning and to drive us to Mamirolle some 15 kilometres from Besancon to commence walking from that point. I was disappointed with Jean Pierre’s lack of discussion but felt I had no real alternative but to accept the situation. In any event, it was a generous gesture by Jacques Guy. So after saying goodbye to Jacques we started walking around 8.15 am. It was a steady climb as we walked out of the small village and the path took us along wooded tracks past the Arboretum du Bois de Saint-Paul and the Foret communale de Foucherans. On the way to Foucherons we passed the Chapel Saint-Maximin located in Tarcenenay-Foucherans. See the following from Wikipedia:
“From 292, there would have been a pilgrimage in honor of Saint-Maximin 2, protector of the village. A chapel is consecrated to Saint Maximin of Trèves, by an auxiliary bishop of Besançon in 1410.
The church having judged that the pilgrimages had lost, over the centuries, their primary vocation, the bishop of Besançon 3 had the chapel demolished in 1777, after having transferred the relics to the parish church of Foucherans. Despite this, the pilgrims continue to come to the ruins.
During the Revolution, the site of the chapel became a gathering point for Catholics. In the XIX th century, the cult of Saint-Maximin is revived: local notables are reconstructing the building from 1865 to 1867 following the plans of architect Edward Vella. On May 29, 1866, the first pilgrimage takes place in the reconstructed chapel. The canon Besson, the future bishop of Nîmes recalls that “critics have disputed these relics pith; she wanted to transfer the honor, name, and worship of a bishop of Besançon to a bishop of Treves; she called for force to her help, she demolished this church ”. The chapel is dedicated to Saint Maximin de Vesontio. With the help of an association, the municipality of Foucherans carried out rehabilitation in 1995.”
We reached the village of Tarcenay-Foucherans around 11.00 am and stopped for a break with coffee in the delightful village bar and restaurant. After the path continued through pasture and woodland to reach Bonnevaux-le-Prieuré in the Bremen Valley. This small community was originally built around a priory of which there remains today a beautiful small chapel, with a listed 12th-century bell tower. The church is dedicated to Saint Marcellin celebrated the 1st Sunday of June.
Continuing on, we had two alternative routes, over or around the hill that would take us to Ouhans. We opted for the shorter over route. After a substantial climb through woodlands, we reached the higher ground just before 3.00 pm.
Later we arrived at the remains of the medieval Le Chateau a Ornanss with its magnificent views of Ornans below. Today, only the Saint-Georges Chapel remains, the only building spared during the destruction of the castle by the troops of Louis XIV. On our way to the town of Ouhans, we passed a memorial to the renowned painter, Gustav Courbet.
We reached Ornans around 5.00 pm and went straight to the Tourist Office where they arranged our accommodation for the night. It was some distance out of town and we had difficulty in following the given directions. Eventually, Jean Pierre spoke directly with our host who came to collect us with his car. It was a somewhat ramshackle but idyllic location and our accommodation was for me an outhouse with no electricity and for Jean Pierre an old camper van. Our hosts were kind and attentive and invited two of their friends to join us for supper which we enjoyed outside on the terrace. An unusual but convivial evening.
The name of the accommodation is Au Sanglier Qui Fume (The Smoking Wild Boar) located at Chemin de la Tuilerie Ornans.