Day 1 : Poujol-sur-Orb/Vieussan
You navigate progressively between gravel pits and sandy beaches. The Orb takes its time, at least at the beginning.
Arrival at the Colombières dam, at the foot of the Caroux, first sensations down the river full of adrenaline, with a 30 meter slide !
4 kilometres later, you will see the blue and yellow suspension bridge of Tarassac, you arrive on the most technical rapids. Stay attentive as you pass these rapids of the gate and the mill (Rapide de la Grille et rapide du Moulin), you will lose 10 meters of height difference.
300m later the rapids of the campsite on the right bank could surprise you, on the left bank watch out for the swimmers on the beach of the Tarassac campsite.
200m later, on the right bank, you will pass the mouth of the Jaur, it is from the Jaur that EDF releases water.
After a 200 meters stretch of water, the river splits, pass in the left rapids, on the right the rapids can be in water in case of releasing EDF……. but you will end up on foot.
2 km after you will pass under the footbridge of Drouille.
3 km later after a nice rapid, you will arrive on a large body of water where the river splits in two, with a minor branch on the right. The major arm is on the left, you enter it but after 50m you will stop on the left on a small beach. It is the place of your bivouac. Bring paddles and life jackets back up to Le Mazet and get back to your car.
Day 2 : Vieussan/Cessenon
On the second day, we advise you to be on the water by 9 am at the latest, enjoy the awakening nature.
The mountainous landscapes, with large green trees, give way to vineyards and olive trees but the Orb river will be punctuated by rapids.
3 kilometers later you will cross the village of Vieussan by passing under its bridge and then its footbridge.
On the left bank, you will notice the water level scale which indicates its submersibility at a height of 5 meters of water, i.e. 600M3/S. Impressive, isn’t it?
You will admire the Gorges de Vieussan with the cliffs of Camps, climbing site and inhabited by beautiful raptors. Pay attention and respect the signs !
At the exit of the Gorges, watch out for the rapid on the left, you will see on the right bank the domain of the Razégue, goat breeding, respect the herds.
2km later you arrive at the village of Ceps with a first rapid to negotiate under the bridge on the left.
The course becomes more pastoral but some rapids could surprise you, the rapid of Aqualand and the S followed by the rapid of the hole !
Arrival at Roquebrun, the southern gateway to the Parc naturel du Haut Languedoc. You will avoid the beach on the right bank reserved for swimmers. After the bridge, tighten left bank to pass between the two mills, delicate rapid do not hesitate to carry.
A series of small rapids will take you to the “trou du curé”, follow the signs and turn left. Do not go to the right because this rapid is reserved for the initiated and accustomed.
You will arrive after a nice stretch of water at the Maynard dam, turn right to cross the canoe slide, on the left, this is the turbine canal.
After the slide, there are some nice rapids until the difficult “rapide de l’équerre”, don’t hesitate to carry according to the water level and you can even surf the small wave at the exit, at the foot of the dam.
On the last few kilometres, on the left bank, the Foulon waterfall which supplies Cessenon with drinking water and which sometimes flows in the spring. Then two large bodies of water punctuated by a rapid, the Baous.
You will slide down to Cessenon and you will cross grey heron, egret, mink and small beaches…
When you see the tower of Cessenon, you are almost there, the river turns left and at the end of the stretch of water you will see the metal bridge of Cessenon.
You stop 50m before the bridge on the left on the beach of the campsite. Watch out for swimmers.