Monday, November 28, 2011

Rock Art around Paris - and a modern cairn

Bruce McAleer writes from Paris:

...just by accident a few weeks ago I stumbled on a website talking about the prehistoric rock art in the Île-de-France region and started poking around. Turns out the area around Paris is loaded with the stuff. It can't be found everywhere but as you would expect it is found where there is an abundance of rocky outcrops, usually inside rock shelters. I don't have a car (or license) and the area closest to me where it is found in abundance (relatively speaking) is about a 1 hour train journey. I have to take my bike on the train and then ride to the areas where I want to look. I've only been out once so far but I had success on my first hunt. There is a rock art association which I plan on joining and I'm hoping to go out on a field trip with them in a couple of weeks.

As you might imagine, the locations of these sites aren't publicized so you're on your own if you want to find them. The websites I've found do mention some general locations so I bought a topo map of the area I wanted to search and went out to see what I could find. I spent a while in one area and found nothing and moved on to another area. The next area had the telltale signs of a former rock quarry. Interestingly enough, on an outcrop at the top of the quarried area was a well constructed cairn.Obviously modern but interesting nonetheless. I'm attaching some photos of what I found. I'll send them in a few e-mails so they're not too heavy. I think I told you that I started my own company doing bike tours into the countryside near Paris and for the upcoming season I'm going to offer a combo biking/hiking tour to see some of these sites. If you're interested here is a link to one of the websites that talks about the rock art in the area.
And if you know anyone coming to Paris who might be interested in one of my tours my website is

A few more:


pwax said...

Looks like plenty of Oggam (Ogham?) examples.

Megan Payne said...

Whenever I see big rocks, I remember James Franco's film 127 Hours. Yeah, I know it was in the grand canyon but I just can't take away the thought of having to survive being stuck in a ravine with your limb crushed stuck on it.