The petrifying waterfalls of Roquefort-les-Cascades

Roquefort-les-Cascades
Share The petrifying waterfalls of Roquefort-les-Cascades
The petrifying waterf ...
To the east of Ariège, between wild forests and pastures, the Cathar Pyrenees are a true paradise for hikers. It is a country of gentle mountains, hills and secret valleys, bewitching and divinely beautiful. In the Plantaurel massif, a few kilometers west of Lavelanet, an exceptional site plunges us further into the heart of this abundant and lush nature. Streaming from the rock and gushing from the high walls, water has built its temple in Roquefort-les-Cascades. A real natural geological curiosity to discover!

sponsored content

The petrifying spring of Roquefort-les-Cascades

Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls  Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls

To access the forest of the waterfalls of Turasse from Foix, take the route de l'Herm (D1) towards Lavelanet. After the hamlet of Carol, direction the old village of Roquefort-les-Cascades. An old Michelin terminal points the way! In the center of the village, from the small square with the fountain, follow the signs indicating “ waterfall ”. After 500 m by car, you will arrive at the small car park. Follow the path and let yourself be guided by the melody of the water.

As soon as you arrive on the site, water becomes the common thread of our bucolic walk. We follow the path that goes slightly to the right and start to climb to arrive on a first platform, then a second. In a humid vegetal atmosphere, mosses, lichens and mushrooms dress the trees. The dense vegetation paints a shades of green of bewitching beauty.


Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls

In front of us stands the majestic tufa 30 meters high, a mass of tuff (light porous rock, often friable, formed of limestone deposits) also called a petrifying waterfall. The geological phenomenon is rare and surprising. When rainwater becomes charged with carbon dioxide on contact with the ground, it becomes acidic and thus dissolves the limestone of the massif in which it circulates, forming cracks and galleries. It then emerges into the open air, giving rise to a source. The water from this source, loaded with limestone and sulphate, is deposited in contact with the air, thus creating this very special rock that looks like a green wall. Here, the limestone deposits form large masses in constant expansion, at a rate of 1.6 to 2 meters every 60 years.


Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls  Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls

A magical world to explore all year round

After a contemplative break, we continue our discovery of the place by venturing around the tufa to enjoy the strange and fantastic atmosphere that this forest provides. In places, the peat formations and the inextricable tangle of trees give this place an exotic exoticism. All that's missing are tapirs and howler monkeys...


Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls

sponsored content

Continuing on the path, limestone caves are revealed. The mineral and vegetal world intermingle to create this oasis of greenery that changes with the seasons. During our visit in the middle of summer, the waterfall was reduced to a fine trickle of water that streamed over the tufa, the rains not being abundant enough to feed it. In autumn and spring, during the period of rains and snowmelt, this succession of waterfalls offers a magnificent spectacle. In winter, the waterfalls can freeze over and provide a wonderful frozen picture.


Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls  Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls

The path takes us to a plateau above the waterfalls and we take another path so as to bypass the massif and descend through the undergrowth. With an elevation gain of 104 m, this walk, free and open access, is aimed at all ages. Allow at least one hour to complete the loop. However, do not hesitate to take your time and think outside the box to fully immerse yourself in this extraordinary place.


Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls
Roquefort-les-Cascades waterfalls

sponsored content

Useful information :  

  • Free and open access all year round.  
  • The tufière presents a rare and fragile ecosystem to respect. Do not venture onto its slippery walls as the rock is crumbly and vulnerable.  
  • Good shoes are recommended for climbing the slippery trail in places.  
  • Thank you for respecting the environment and for not leaving any waste there for the greatest happiness of all.

Did you like this report? Find others on the Toulouse Pyrenees Guide Blog. We are on social networks, find the Facebook page of the Toulouse Pyrénées Guide and the Instagram account @guidetoulousepyrenees

 

Report and photos produced by Lesley Williamson for the Toulouse Pyrenees Guide


Back to "Weekend & Holidays"

You will like also

Les Forges de Pyrène: a journey through time to discover the old trades

Les Forges de Pyrène: a journey through time to discover the old trades
Les Forges de Pyrène: a journey through time t ...

10,9 km - Montgailhard

The Devil's Bridge, a legendary place to discover in Ariège

The Devil's Bridge, a legendary place to discover in Ariège
The Devil's Bridge, a legendary place to disco ...

12,2 km - Montoulieu

Bathing in Ariège: all the tips!

Bathing in Ariège: all the tips!
Bathing in Ariège: all the tips!

17,1 km - Mirepoix

A bucolic getaway to Lake Montbel: one of the most beautiful in Ariège

A bucolic getaway to Lake Montbel: one of the most beautiful in Ariège
A bucolic getaway to Lake Montbel: one of the  ...

17,5 km - Montbel

Camon, a medieval fortified village in the heart of the Cathar Country

Camon, a medieval fortified village in the heart of the Cathar Country
Camon, a medieval fortified village in the hea ...

18,0 km - Camon

Events nearby

Festival estival / Amel Bent et La Nuit du Rap

Festival estival / Amel Bent et La Nuit du Rap
Festival estival / Amel Bent et La Nuit du Rap

26/08/2022 to 27/08/2022

21,5 km - Pamiers

Concerts

Amel Bent

Amel Bent
Amel Bent

27/08/2022

21,5 km - Pamiers

Concerts

Le Chioula fête sa Montagne !

Le Chioula fête sa Montagne !
Le Chioula fête sa Montagne !

03/07/2022

25,9 km - Ignaux

Fêtes populaires

EXPOSITION PHOTOS DE BLUESMEN

EXPOSITION PHOTOS DE BLUESMEN
EXPOSITION PHOTOS DE BLUESMEN

03/06/2022 to 02/07/2022

37,9 km - Calmont

Expositions

EXPOSITION ARTS PLASTIQUES & ARTISANAT D'ART

EXPOSITION ARTS PLASTIQUES & ARTISANAT D'ART
EXPOSITION ARTS PLASTIQUES & ARTISANAT D'ART

14/05/2022 to 03/07/2022

44,2 km - Avignonet-Lauragais

Expositions

EXPOSITION PHOTOS « L'AFRIQUE NOMADE » PAR MANDÉMORY ET SAKHANOKHO

EXPOSITION PHOTOS « L'AFRIQUE NOMADE » PAR MANDÉMORY ET SAKHANOKHO
EXPOSITION PHOTOS « L'AFRIQUE NOMADE » PAR MAN ...

09/06/2022 to 24/07/2022

50,4 km - Montesquieu-Volvestre

Expositions

Nouvelles peintures de Christine Garuet dans sa Galerie l'Atelier

Nouvelles peintures de Christine Garuet dans sa Galerie l'Atelier
Nouvelles peintures de Christine Garuet dans s ...

01/07/2022 to 08/09/2022

51,3 km - Saint-Lizier

Expositions

L'ECRIT DE LA RUE

L'ECRIT DE LA RUE
L'ECRIT DE LA RUE

01/07/2022 to 02/07/2022

51,7 km - Montesquieu-Volvestre

Festivals

CONCERT LE TANGO EST UNE PENSÉE TRISTE QUI SE DANSE

CONCERT LE TANGO EST UNE PENSÉE TRISTE QUI SE DANSE
CONCERT LE TANGO EST UNE PENSÉE TRISTE QUI SE  ...

08/07/2022

51,8 km - Montesquieu-Volvestre

Concerts

EXPOSITION " MULTIPLE DE 1"

EXPOSITION " MULTIPLE DE 1"
EXPOSITION " MULTIPLE DE 1"

02/06/2022 to 07/07/2022

56,4 km - Rieux-Volvestre

Expositions

You will like also

ROQUEFORT-LES-CASCADES Waterfall

ROQUEFORT-LES-CASCADES Waterfall
ROQUEFORT-LES-CASCADES Waterfall

Discover the petrifying waterfalls, made of Tuff, a fragile and very crumbly limestone. To admire these waterfalls ...

285 m - Roquefort-les-Cascades

Les Forges des Pyrénées

Les Forges des Pyrénées
Les Forges des Pyrénées

In the heart of the Forges de Pyrène village , the smell of bread, the sound of the anvil, the hammer and the ...

11,0 km - Montgailhard

MONTSÉGUR

MONTSÉGUR
MONTSÉGUR

11,2 km - Montségur

Station de Ski Les Monts d'Olmes

Station de Ski Les Monts d'Olmes
Station de Ski Les Monts d'Olmes

Attached to the municipality of Montferrier , the Mont d'Olmes winter sports resort rises to more than 1955 meters ...

12,5 km - Montferrier

FOIX

FOIX
FOIX

The city prefecture is spread out at the foot of its feudal castle built on a rocky outcrop in the 10th century and ...

12,8 km - Foix

Ride around

Les Orris et le château de Roquefixade

Les Orris et le château de Roquefixade
Les Orris et le château de Roquefixade

2,2 km - Ilhat

Walking Mountain bike Horse

Sentier Cathare et des Bonshommes

Sentier Cathare et des Bonshommes
Sentier Cathare et des Bonshommes

3,2 km - Leychert

Walking Mountain bike Horse

Tour du Pays d’Olmes sud

Tour du Pays d’Olmes sud
Tour du Pays d’Olmes sud

3,3 km - Leychert

Walking Mountain bike

La vallée du Douctouyre

La vallée du Douctouyre
La vallée du Douctouyre

3,4 km - Lieurac

Walking Mountain bike Horse

Les Coteaux

Les Coteaux
Les Coteaux

3,4 km - Lieurac

Walking Mountain bike Horse