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A night hanging from the wall

Climb a via ferrata, sit on the wall, dine, contemplate a grandiose, living landscape, take time to dream and sleep there… An immersion in nature and a total kiff. We tell you everything, or almost everything 😉


6pm, we head for the Causse Noir and the Boffi site.
Wow! Ahead of us, the rocky Dourbie Gorges, carved out between Larzac and Causse Noir. The panorama is exceptional! From the edge of the ledge, the emerald-colored Dourbie beckons for a swim and a plunge into the abyss… For now, it’s time for the via ferrata.

Pressure and excitement mount to the rhythm of the clanking of carabiners, pulleys, harnesses being prepared for us by Vincent, our guide on this adventure.

Superman: be careful when you take flight, the walk is high in the Gorges de la Dourbie
Spiderman: use your lanyards, ropes and little hands to tame the cliffs!
Batman: unavailable, the bat is held up on his cave tour: Aven Armand, Dargilan, Bramabiau


Let’s go for 2 hours of via ferrata. First amazing steps: here, everything starts at the top of the cliff and goes into the void!

Two steps and you embrace the high cliffs of the Gorges de la Dourbie.
The route is very aerial and accessible… the impression of walking into the void!!
Progress on the via ferrata is horizontal as well as vertical, from metal rungs to holds or natural steps in the rock, from monkey bridges to footbridges.


For us today, it’s the easy route, with the added bonus of monkey bridges and a footbridge. Never easy when you’re just starting out, but great fun! The giant net on the difficult course, in pirate mode, will be for another time.
The view is vertiginous over the Dourbie canyon all the way to its opening on Millau. It’s even astonishing for climbers climbing the Boffi, 80 m of verticality (routes 4a to 9a, the most interesting in 6, 7, 8 a-c), a famous climbing site, just like the Gorges du Tarn et de la Jonte.
At the end of the day, the limestone rock turns orange, foreshadowing a beautiful sunset to admire…

Accessible to all!
No need to know how to climb. I promise!

The Millau Viaduct in the heart of nature

And then, at the bend of a rock, the Millau Viaduct! It looms in the background of this mineral setting! It’s disconcerting to find yourself here, clinging to the cliff, in the heart of the Parc Naturel des Grands Causses, and facing the Viaduct of all records. From 100% nature to 100% high tech, there’s just one step… or rather 1 rung!”

The Millau Viaduct is like us: suspended in the air, light and airy. There’s gas (vacuum for the uninitiated) beneath our feet!

"THE Millau Viaduct in figures

“THE” Millau Viaduct in figures
– 343m high, 19m more than the Eiffel Tower
– 32m wide for the deck (roadway), the equivalent of 17 men with outstretched arms
– 36000t of steel for the deck, or 5100 African elephants
– 206 000t of concrete, about 5 times the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle…. at full load
– 87m high for the pylons, as much as a 29-storey building
…so, who’s the boss?!

Who's got the portaledge instructions?!

Let’s get down to business! We discover the portaledge, this wall tent that can be hung on cliffs.

Vincent, our guide from the start, explains how it works before setting it up with us. It’s simple, minimalist but very ingenious. He’s benevolent, with just the right words to reassure us about sturdiness, fastening and safety.

The apprehension is palpable as we set up on the portaledge, particularly as Vincent leaves. This is it, we’re there, alone in the world!

It’s a real cosy little nest, perched high above the Gorges de la Dourbie…

Give way to contemplation, meditation, reverie…

An unusual night, suspended from the wall

For me, bivouacking on a rock face was something out of the movies… inaccessible.
Yet here I am, with my daughter, suspended on a rock face for a fantastic, timeless experience.

Like in an eagle’s nest, all our senses are awake:
the view of the rocks cut out in strange silhouettes against the light of the last rays of sunlight
birds chirping as they return to their nests giving way to those of crickets waking up…. the mountain echoes
the evening breeze carries the scent of flowers and minerals
the spit cake doesn’t have the same flavor tonight!!!
have you ever touched the void?!

Dare to eat at 60m!

Organization! Space is limited on the portaledge and it’s picnic time, facing the void and the sunset. You’ve got to dare to have your meal, 60m up!

On the menu this evening: dry roquefort sausage, walnut bread, cured lamb ham, farçous, ewe’s tomme, spit-roasted cake, cherry nectar… short circuits and Aveyron delicacies.

The first stars are already here… the tête à tête becomes a candlelit dinner!!

Falling asleep with your head in the stars

The chill is falling fast. Fortunately, Vincent has provided us with 2 very warm sleeping bags. So cocooning! As comfortable as camping or a bivouac.

No need for smartphone or TV, the show is all around us. Let’s brush up on our astronomy classics. Where are Cassiopeia, the Big Dipper, the North Star, the Milky Way, Sirius? Here, 1 shooting star, 2, 3… Here, 1 satellite, 2, 3… It’s a pleasant plunge into childhood, a lovely lullaby before falling asleep with your head in the stars.

Total letting go. Good night.

If the legend is true, your wishes might just come true tonight! Expect to feast your eyes on an incredible starry sky.
You’re at the gateway to the Réserve Internationale de Ciel Etoilé (RICE), only the 2nd largest in France and the largest in Europe.

The 2 V's of awakening: vertigo and vultures

We wake up early, at first light, to the sound of birdsong. They’re all here: from titmice to red-billed choughs, robins to majestic griffon vultures and lammergeiers. The location is ideal for observing these birds of prey.

Waking up perched like a vulture in its nest is quite dizzying, as if the night had made us forget where we were!

Vincent arrives (out of nowhere!) to offer us a piping hot tea/coffee and some pastries. We’ve met up again with Ricoré, our breakfast friend!

The first rays of sunshine are most welcome. Natural stove essential to start this day.

500 pairs of griffon vultures nest in the Tarn, Jonte and Dourbie gorges.
Between 2.40 and 2.70m wingspan for 7 to 11kg.
Other vultures: Egyptian vultures, bearded vultures, black vultures…

Cliff sliding - abseiling!

It’s time for us to dismantle the portaledge, brimming with pride at having done so. Yes, we said it!”

Before returning to the cow floor, a little abseiling beautifully completes this magical experience.

A deep breath, we lean back into the void and above all we trust the rope! In this challenge, we’re swept away by the breathtaking views of the Gorges de la Dourbie. What a feeling of freedom and aerobatics!

After this immersion in the vertical world, we extended the pleasure with a swim in the crystal-clear (and invigorating!) waters of the Dourbie, a way of peering at the Boffi cliffs from below this time!

A river, a pebble beach… It’s too tempting! Let’s make some ricochets!

Beware beautiful trout, beavers, kingfishers… it’s going to be a splash!

Here’s an unforgettable adventure between mother and daughter (it must be unique as a couple too)! A truly unusual night, sleeping suspended on a wall, on a portaledge. A via-ferrata and abseiling experience to boot. All in the sublime scenery of the Gorges de la Dourbie. What else?

Ideal for a couple or parent-child duo.

On reservation only

From Millau, head for Montpellier-le-Vieux on the D110. The road winds its way up the Causse Noir. In this elevator, each floor (or bend) offers a different view of Millau, the Tarn Valley and the Millau Viaduct. At x km from the summit, a track on the right leads to the via-ferrata du Boffi.

Away from the summit, a small road on the right leads to the Pouncho d’Agast, a take-off area for paragliders, hang-gliders… and sometimes vultures too! You’re on top of the world… of Millau and the Millau Viaduct.





  • Equipment provided :

    – climbing equipment, via ferrata, abseiling

    – portaledge wall tent

    – supervision by a qualified guide

    – hot drink in the morning

  • Extra charge:

    – very warm sleeping bag

  • Over to you:

    – your picnic for the evening

    – water

    – sleeping bags

    – closed shoes

    – comforter

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