With the PoteSport app, finish the sport on your own!

We are already in October, the season is over and the equipment put away until spring 2021 .. It is high time to take over the Verdon Xp blog! What are you going to do now that there is no more rafting in the Verdon? Well you will find friends to play sports without us! And how? With PoteSport app !


The Potesport app

How it works? Do you have to fill out a form? put an ad in the newspaper? Not at all! We are in 2021, use your smartphone! Indeed, PoteSport has developed an application to meet other athletes and share with them. Wherever you are and whatever your level, you will quickly find one or more partners to have fun in your favorite sports.

First of all, PoteSport is an application that you download for free! it helps .. Ultra simple ergonomics. Even those who do not understand it will not need a manual. On weekend vacation or even unemployed, you can meet sports partners and make new discoveries all over France.


Description of the Potesport app

Equipped with a chat device, the application allows you to chat live and quickly organize a next training session. Easy! It’s not over! the PoteSport application also allows geolocation. Indeed, it will be pointless to find partners at the other end of France, the application does it for you. In the notification period, PoteSport keeps you informed of everything that is happening around you at the speed of light, a plus! And then there is also a personal and discreet messaging if you have more things to say to you. PoteSport, the Swiss army knife of applications for sports lovers! And it’s freeeee!


In complete safety

Finally, it is important to note that all your personal data is secured and stored in France by the service provider OVH. None of this data will be used for commercial purposes and outside the PoteSport application.

On your sneakers!


Funny Helmets

Verdon Gorges, the essential road trip

The road trip of the Verdon gorges is particularly appreciated. Indeed, many vehicles travel on these roads in summer. We will see here two courses which complement each other and even form a loop. There is no real order to follow, it is up to you.
On these narrow and winding roads, the traffic is generally quite slow, if not very slow. Everything you need to enjoy the scenery! At least, for the passenger or passengers because the driver will always keep both eyes open on the road. Motorcyclists, campers, cars, cyclists and herds of goats, you can be surprised at every turn.

From Castellane to Aiguines by the D71

Allow around 1 hour 20 minutes by car to cover less than 60 km of road. From Castellane, you take the direction of La Pallud on the D952. Shortly before the Taloire bridge, you already go along the Verdon. At the place of Clue St Jean, the road becomes narrower. A quick feature of the Raft and Kayak routes. You pass two campsites then arrive at the junction of the Pont de Soleil. You have to turn left towards Soleils and La Rive Gauche des Gorges du Verdon (D955). The Soleils bakery is a compulsory stop for gourmets.

You cross Soleils then take a right towards Trigance (D90). The village deserves to be seen. A few bends further, you join the departemental road D71 and take on the right. You then cross a desert plateau. In the distance, the Canjuers military camp. You will soon join the Verdon at the Mescla viewpoint, a compulsory stop! Then the Artuby bridge from where you can bungee jump. The road winds through the forest and then passes through the Fayet tunnel dug in 1950. We then arrive at the Hotel du Grand Canyon, our departure for the Aqua Trekking Day course. Another 15 minutes before arriving at Aiguines. Small village of wood turners. From there you join Moustiers which is also worth the detour.


From Moustiers-Sainte-Marie to Castellane by the D952

Allow around 1 hour by car to cover 45 km of road. You retrace your steps towards Aiguines then take a left at the roundabout towards La Pallud-sur-verdon on the D952. The road rises little by little and offers magnificent views of the largest of the Verdon lakes, Lac Sainte-Croix. This very winding road then crosses the site of Saint Maurin. We arrive a little further at the Col de Olivier from where a few hiking routes depart.

A little further; La Pallud from where the Route des Crêtes leaves, the icing on the cake for this day. You continue towards Castellane and pass by Point Sublime. Above is Rougon and below is the Samson Corridor. You continue and descend on the Verdon which you join at the Carajuan Bridge, park, it’s the beach! You will soon arrive at the Pont de Soleils and the circle is complete. Hoping that this road trip made you have a good day.


Rafting in the Aude Gorges, Pyrénées Orientales

Aude, a varied destination

The Aude is a river located in the Occitanie region. It rises in the Pyrenees Orientales, at 1700 meters above sea level. It flows two hundred kilometers further into the Mediterranean Sea, at the Fleur huts, not far from Narbonne. All along its route, wild parts ideal for fishing will follow one another. But also tumultuous parts, ideal for white water sports. Then quieter parts, ideal for canoeing.

White water sports

Between Axat and Quillan is the Haute Vallée de l’Aude. A must-see destination for whitewater activities such as rafting, hydrospeed (also called whitewater swimming) or canoraft (hot dog). Nearly fourteen kilometers of wild river are adapted to these practices. They are possible from April to September, for everyone from 6 years old.

Une rivière au débit régulé par l’hydro-électricité

Les lacs de montagne (retenue de Puivalador et de Matemale) servent de réservoir aux différentes usines hydro-électriques présentes le long de l’Aude. Ces derniers régulent le débit de la rivière qui reste suffisant même en été pour la pratique du rafting. En effet, ces lacs ont été construits au départ pour augmenter le débit de l’Aude en période de sécheresse car la rivière est aussi utilisée pour l’irrigation et l’alimentation du canal du midi.


Rafting with Oxygen Aventure

From spring, rafting activities on the Aude are possible until the end of September.

Oxygen Aventure is a group of independent instructors whose base is located in Belvianes and Cavirac, near Quillan, at the arrival of the rafting course, along the river. During the rafting descent, it will be possible to descend the gorges of Saint Georges (upstream of Axat) but also the gorges of Pierre Lys (between Saint Martin Lys and Belvianes and Cavirac).


The Funny Helmets.

Saint Maurin, the regional nature reserve

The regional natural reserve of Saint Maurin

The reserve measures over 25 hectares. It overlooks the right bank of the Verdon, just a few kilometers from the second largest artificial lake in France; Sainte Croix. A site formed on the slopes of several terraces of natural meadows and tuff deposits. Finally, many resurgences emerge from the cliff in spring or in rainy weather. From departmental 952, you can see an imposing fall. You will find there ready the only place for automobile, such as a garage cut in the rock. Another solution is to park your vehicle at the Col de l’Olivier. Then come on foot via the fishermen’s path.


The Riches of Saint Maurin

Geological riches (tuffs, resurgences …), flora (priority habitats of community interest) but also fauna (insect, avifauna, bat), allow an interesting educational approach both overhanging and below the road. Water, plants and animals; A perfect ecosystem for humans. With its dominant position, the site also presents an important defensive asset.


A centuries-old human settlement

In the middle of the Gorges du Verdon, Saint Maurin offers a refreshing and welcoming atmosphere where people came to settle a long time ago. Indeed, the occupation of these places could date back to the 5th century with a religious installation based at the Abbey of LERINS. Later, Saint Maurin appears in the 9th century in acts of the Abbey of St VICTOR. Finally, the troglodyte arrangements of several caves are still visible. They confirm the use of this site until recent times and participate in the magic already present.


Visit The Saint Maurin reserve

Being accompanied by a professional will help you appreciate the riches of this very secret site.
The guides or guides in the middle mountains who operate on the site are approved by the Maison des Gorges du Verdon. Also, they must be declared to the PNRV.
Since October 2009, the Saint Maurin site has been classified as a Regional Nature Reserve and co-managed by the municipality of La Palud sur Verdon and the C.E.E.P (Conservatoire, Etudes des Ecosystèmes de Provence)
Access to the public is free but regulated: Pedestrian traffic is only authorized on marked trails, picking, swimming, bivouac and fire are strictly prohibited.





Stay and sleep in and around the Gorges du Verdon

Where to stay or sleep in and around the Verdon Gorges?

To stay and sleep, here is a list by villages which will allow you to directly request the places that interest you in the Gorges du Verdon.


Our preference obviously goes to the small village of Rougon, perched on its little eagle’s nest, overlooking the Couloir Sanson and Point Sublime.

Bastidon du Baou and Les Griolets

You will stay with Thierry and Nadine in their two 16th century country houses. Clear view, tranquility and isolation.

Auberge du Point Sublime

A family inn that has existed for three generations, it has been there since tourism first appeared in the 1930s. 


Overlooking the lake of Sainte Croix, you are at the end of the Gorges du Verdon, Provence is in full swing.


Breathtaking views of the Grand Canyon from the hotel terrace, unforgettable breakfasts. 20 minutes from Aiguines from Lake Sainte Croix.

Campasun Camping de l’Aigle

Perched above the Lake of Sainte-Croix, superb view from this place 5 minutes walk from the village. 


Stay and sleep in a small town of 2000 inhabitants, calm of Provence, truffles and olive oil.

Campasun Camping International d’Aups 

On the edge of the city, its calm, its swimming pool …


The village enjoys good entertainment in summer, especially on market days, Wednesday and Thursday.

At the Sirènes Campsite and at the Bistrot du Col

It is by arriving from Digne, at the Col des Lèques that Stéphane and his team awaits you. Charming little campsite at 1200 meters above sea level. It is possible to pitch the tent under the larches or enjoy the magnificent view from its brand new bungalows! On the bistro side, Stéphane offers, among other things, an exceptional pork cheek and a mix of Belgian beers.

Bnb Castellane

You will be at home. Petra and Leo are very kind and speak several languages.


At the entrance to the hamlet of La Colle, at Véronique and Edmond’s. You will find peace and nature for real! There is even a small stream, donkeys, ponies …


In the low gorges of Verdon, not far from Gréoux-les-Bains, Mediterranean atmosphere. It’s like being on the coast, the world less.

Cheap and very welcoming family campsite, there are all the services you need to make your vacation a success.


The Mediterranean coast is only an hour from the Verdon!

au paradis des campeurs

Close to Sainte Maxime and Saint Tropez, a 4-star campsite with direct access to one of the most beautiful beaches on the Côte d’Azur; La Gaillarde beach.


The Route des Cretes, Verdon Gorges

A route des Cretes generally offers magnificent views in a mountainous tourist region. The route des cretes des Gorges du Verdon – D23 is one of these and will not leave you indifferent.

The route des Cretes, Verdon Gorges (D23)

It was built and moved in large part by the inhabitants of La Pallud between 1948 and 1972. This road which follows an old mule track at a length of 23 km and a 100% tourist vocation. It has 14 lookouts that overlook the Verdon over a height that can exceed 700 meters above the river. A perfectly safe route but one that remains impressive even for those who are used to grandiose landscapes and alpine roads.

It travels clockwise in a camping-car, car, motorbike, or even bicycle. Although the electric bike is also a great alternative. Verdon E-Bike offers bikes very well adapted to the elevation encountered. It takes between 1:30 and 3:00 to travel the entire route. It is one way on 15 of the 23 km that make it up. From Jas d’Aire to Chalet de la Maline exactly. We will therefore pay close attention to the indications.

From the Escales and Carelle belvederes, you can admire climbers in climbing routes over 300 meters. Rougon scavengers generally spend the afternoon enjoying the rising winds created along the cliffs. We sometimes have the impression that they pass a few meters from us. At the very bottom you may see the “Aqua-Randonneurs” on the half-day route of the Samson corridor. From the Imbut belvedere, you will dominate the impressive chaos or rush into the Verdon and end the Aquatic Day Hike course

Access the D23 from the Alpes de Haute Provence

It is located in the municipality of La Pallud-sur-verdon. From Moustiers-Sainte-Marie; Follow the D952 towards Castellane and allow around 40 minutes for 20 km of road. From Castellane; Also follow the D952 towards Moustiers-Sainte-Marie and allow around 45 minutes for 25 km of road. About 800 meters after leaving La Pallud-sur-Verdon from Moustiers is the start; The Auberge des Crêtes.

It ends 23 km further on at the Hotel de Provence, still in the municipality of La Pallud-sur-Verdon. Please note, because of the risk of ice, the road is only open from April to the end of November. Only access to the Chalet de la Maline and access to the Carelle belvedere remain open all year round.

The Belvederes of the Route des Cretes

You might want to stop at each Belvedere, the view is so splendid. The Belvédère are equipped with barriers but we always pay attention to children. Remember that there may be people downstairs, it is strictly forbidden to throw stones. It is also not recommended to try to jump on the backs of vultures that pass by.

Belvédère de Trescaire – Belvédère de la Carelle – Belvédère de l’Escales – Belvédère de la dent d’Aire – Belvédère du Pas de la Baou – Belvédère – Belvédère du Tilleul – Belvédère de la gorge de Guegues – Belvédère des Glacières – Belvédère d ‘ Eycharme – Belvédère de Guegues – Chalet de la Maline – Belvédère de Maugué – Belvédère de l’Imbut – Belvédère Armanet – Belvédère de Baou Beni

Getaway to Castellane: outdoor sports to be favored

Travel to Castellane: outdoor sports to try

Want to experience new things for the next vacation, direction Castellane. This peaceful town has the distinction of being the least populated sub-prefecture in France. It is part of the PACA or Provence-Alpes-Côte d´Azur region. It has received the label “village and city of character”. Being in the regional natural park of Verdon, Castellane invites you to participate in different activities on the Verdon. Discover in this section the outdoor sports to do absolutely on this river.

Trip to Castellane: indulge in rafting on the Verdon

Indeed, located at the northeast end of the Gorges du Verdon, Castellane is a destination to be privileged for living a new adventure. In the heart of this locality, you can do many outdoor sports on the Verdon. One of the most unmissable of them is rafting. This activity will allow you to know all the joys of white water. However, before participating in this adventure and thrill sport, a few criteria must be met. To be able to fully enjoy this hobby, you must be in good physical condition. Knowing how to swim is also imperative. This is one of the most important criteria to be met.

Also, a minimum age must be respected. Participants must be at least eight years old. Equipment allowing to raft in all serenity is also to envisage. Take with you a swimsuit as well as closed shoes like sneakers for example. As for the life jackets and helmets, they are generally provided by the agencies offering the activity. Also, don’t forget to bring a towel and bag with a change of clothes for the return.

Getaway to Castellane: go for an aqua-hike on the Verdon

We don’t just raft on the Verdon. You can also practice aqua-hiking. This fun activity is a way to fully admire the beautiful landscapes of the Gorges du Verdon. It will allow anyone not afraid of white water to discover a river more horizontal than vertical. Lying on your back, lifted by a life jacket, follow the course of the water while swimming or floating. The course on the Verdon can be punctuated by several jumps which are not compulsory. To practice aqua-hiking safely, it is advisable to be accompanied by a guide. The latter will show you the way to go and show you the most remote corners of the Verdon. The guide will not fail to inform you of the fragility of the site’s environment and will ask you to respect it.

Circuit in Castellane: indulge in airboat kayaking on the Verdon

In the range of outdoor sports that can be done on the Verdon, we find the airboat kayaking. The latter is particularly recommended during a trip to Costa Rica. This activity is much more sporty than rafting. Alone or in pairs, discover the river aboard your inflatable boat. The airboat is generally operated with a double paddle. Its inflated structure and its self-draining bottom give it great stability. This will allow novices to easily cross the river. On the Verdon, you can follow different routes. Your guide will not fail to point them out to you. It should be noted that to be able to do this activity, you must absolutely know how to swim.

The Funny Helmets.

Hiking and legends; Robion Mountain

Hiking and legends

Robion, one of the most characteristic mountains of Verdon. It rises to 1,660 meters, 950 meters above Castellane. A characteristic massif since rafting and canoe route from Castellane and ending at Pont de Soleil. Practically goes around the mountain of Robion on the right. In other thermal baths, one could say that the mountain of Robion is located on the left bank of the course … From Castellane, behind the swimming pool, you take the small departmental road in the direction of Bourguet. You quickly come across the small yellow signs that mark the path to the summit of Robion. Allow around 4 hours to make the round trip.

In summer, it is recommended to start early to climb before the heat. From the summit a bright day, you can see the Mediterranean! Personally, I have never had this chance. It is also possible to make a loop by borrowing the ascent or the descent, the route known as “Tour de Robion”. From the village of Robion, on the route du Bourguet, you will also discover the chapel of Saint Trophime. An 18th century troglodyte chapel hanging on the mountain and dedicated to the first bishop of Arles.

Robion and the Knights Templar

Unless the legend has endured over the centuries in some secret circles. It was at the beginning of the twentieth century that the discovery of a parchment in Siberia awakened curiosity about the past “Templar” of the Verdon. Nevertheless, you can read this article on the legend of the treasure of the Knights Templar in the Verdon. The persecuted Templars carried their treasure from the east to the Verdon and hid it in the greatest secrecy. We then searched in the subfields of the castle of Valcros without success. It is also believed that the treasure can be found in an immense underground lake contained in Robion Mountain also called The Island of the Watchers.

Stop at the Moulin de Soleils Bakery on the road to Draguignan, the boss, passionate about this story is inexhaustible on the subject.


The Funny Helmets.

Days of rafting and water levels on the Verdon

Rafting days and water levels on the verdon? You mean there are days for rafting and days without rafting on the Verdon? Is the river closed or is it? No, the flow is regulated by a dam.

Operation of the dam outside July-August

It is the Chaudanne dam which has this role, it regulates the flow from the Verdon from Castellane to Lake Sainte Croix. In the spring, EDF provides us with its information on water flows the day before for the next day. Saturday-Sunday in May and June are not normally turbined (dam closed). Indeed, this measure serves to secure the most abundant attendance of weekends. Over this period, you will therefore need to be patient. During the week, the next day’s activity cannot be confirmed until the evening before. For fans of rafting and canoeing, it is always possible to go sailing on Haut Verdon for an additional hour’s drive from Castellane.

Operation of the dam in July-August

In summer, this is somewhat different … Indeed, EDF assures us two days of releases per week in the months of July and August, which lets a little see coming … These days are Tuesday and Friday for rafting and canoeing. The remaining five days are open to the Aqua Treking activity, day and half day.

Now, from year to year, there can be big changes as evidenced by an article published this fall on the blog. Indeed, the accumulated snow reserves during the winter play an extremely important role. In fact, with a lot of snow, there is more days of water in summer. Heavy snowfall and cool weather in the spring play a large part in increasing the number of turbined days in summer.

Reserved flow

The days of “closure” correspond to what is called the “reserved debit”. In fact, EDF ensures the survival of the river by maintaining a minimum flow on closing days. The reserved flow is 3 cubic meters seconds all year round but increases to 1.5 cubic meters seconds from June 15 to September 1.

So, “Rafting days and water levels on the verdon” have no more secrets for you.
The Funny Helmets.

Canoe-kayak, Canoe-Raft in the Verdon Gorges

Canoe-Kayak, several names for the same discipline

Canoe, Canoe-Kayak, Canoe-Raft, Kayak-raft … Once again, several terms that designate the same activity. Before describing it in more details, we will linger on its ancestor; the kayak, in order to understand the advantages that this new activity offers us.


The disadvantages of the rigid kayak

Kayaks and canoes are boats that have been made and used since the dawn of time. The canoe as well as the dugout canoes propelled by a simple paddle are found in most of the civilizations that have developed on the coastline or along the waterways. The kayak, on the other hand, comes directly from the Inuit of the Arctic. Indeed, seal hunting and whaling have always been the main resources of these peoples. They therefore needed an efficient boat. The kayak was made of animal skins assembled on a wooden or whale bone structure. Sitting inside the boat and not kneeling, the paddler uses a double paddle, which has a blade on each side.

The “rigid” kayak, the “queen” boat on the river, requires several days of learning before being able to descend a river with a level of difficulty equal to or greater than that of the Verdon. Indeed, a beginner must learn to “heel” his boat. This is to be able to go from a current area to a counter-current area without capsizing the kayak. Once turned around, you have to get out of the kayak, swim back to the shore, empty it… A very tiring operation that leaves everyone exhausted after the third repetition. In case of overturn, on board their kayak, the Inuits had a way to recover. A technique called “eskimo roll”. This technique requires several hours of learning. It is not easy to perform in the moment in the river. This is why it is a technique used by experienced practitioners.

It is not possible to esquimauter with an inflatable kayak, a little swimming in the Verdon, it is always good!


The advantages of inflatable kayaks

The Cano-Raft has shattered this technical barrier. Indeed, this boat is practically unaffected by the current-counter-current passages and therefore does not need to “heel” or very little. Moreover, in case of “desalination”, it is very easy to get back into this boat, sometimes even in the middle of the river. The kayak-raft now allows any beginner to evolve on a course of medium difficulty having never paddled before.


Canoe-Kayak in the Gorges du Verdon

Single or two-seater, these boats are built on the same model as rafts; inflatable, light and resistant to all tests. Equipped with a self-bailing system, you will not be encumbered by the excess water accumulated while crossing the rapids. In short, this is the boat you need to travel the river in a sporty way. After having given you your equipment, your guide will explain to you with pedagogy how to succeed in your first descent of the Verdon in cano-raft. Don’t worry, you won’t be alone, your guide will accompany you all along the course and will also ensure your safety. Come and try this superb activity from April to October on the Verdon.