Lovagny is about 10 km away from Annecy, and in the city the gorges called Les Gorges du Fier share the cool with visitors who come here to escape from the summer heat. These gorges were officially recognized as a precious scenic spot in 1943.
Fier is one of the major rivers in Haute-Savoie prefecture, and its source is found on the south edge of Le Mont-Charvin (Mt. Charvin). The water is running 2019m deep under the summit. Then the water flows to the north from a small lake in the Alps, and reaches the alpine pasture basin, which is well moistened by the snow water. Then again it goes on about 70 km and meets Le Rhone (Rhone River) at Chateaufort. The river runs through the valleys called Manigod and Thones, and passes the Annecy plain and finally le chateau de Montrottier (Montrottier Castle). And there you can see the beauty of nature which is created as a result of erosion by the water. It is said to be the most mysterious creation of nature in France.
20,000 years ago, the glacier, which was supposed to become a lake in Annecy later, extended as long as 30 km. When the ice began to melt, a great amount of water was produced, and it is said that the surface of the lake was 15m higher than the present level. The water, then, is directed toward Le chateau de Montrottier (Montrottier Castle), forming a river, and the flow changes its course after it hits soft rocks there. And over thousands of years with the process, Les Gorges du Fier have been formed.
In October 1868, the project to build up a visitors’ gallery was started, bringing it to completion in July 1869. It was dangerous work in which workers had to be hung in a barrel in the air using the system of a pulley in order to drive iron supports for a walk way on the rock. It was built on the left side of the gorge. It is 252m long and 20~30m above the river surface. The gorge itself is 70m deep.
Some photos tell how the construction work was.
People swimming in the nearby river.
It was a thrilling experience, since I’m afraid of heights. The cold of the air and the fear both cooled me a lot. If you seek a cool place in the summer, this could be one of the places.
[GORGES DU FIER]
Location ：GORGES DU FIER 74330 LOVAGNY FRANCE
TEL ： (+33) 04 50 46 23 70
FAX ： (+33) 04 50 09 85 37
Open ： March 15 ~October 15