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Transhumance

Outings Rachel By Rachel, the 30 May 2018

Transhumance, organised by the Pastoral Land Association of Luzech-Labastide-du-Vert and the Transhumance in Quercy association, with the support the departmental council of the Lot, is the symbol of the recapture of landscapes. The 8th edition took place from 12 to 16 April 2016.

We interviewed Jean-Louis Issaly, president of the association Transhumance in Quercy.

 

You are the one who initiated the Transhumance from Rocamadour to Luzech. How did you come up with this idea?

"I am the first to have suggested the departure of the herd from Rocamadour, using the easiest and most logical mean of transport, walking. Until then we have always managed to move the animals thanks to cattle trucks and trailers. It was complicated!

We even achieved something one year, we brought the animals to Sauzet thanks to a cattle truck, to end up bringing them back to Luzech on foot... It is supposed to be the other way around. So, I suggested to Abdon Calvo, because it is a co-organisation between Transhumance in Quercy and the Pastoral Land Association of Luzech-Labastide-du-Vert, and to the farmers concerned by the formation of the herd to stop bringing the animals south to bring them back north. Let's stop bothering ourselves with cattle trucks! Let us gather the animals to Rocamadour, because, at the time, most of the farmers were near Rocamadour (Lavace, Gramat). It clicked in my head right away! Let's start from Rocamadour and then we go on foot to Luzech! At the time, my idea was considered as iconoclastic. Some farmers even told me: "But you are crazy! We will not make it; the ewes will not make it!".

Historically, ewes have always walked, and they will arrive in Luzech without any problem. Finally, the farmers accepted the first time, without being too confident and mostly to make me happy...

Now it is our 8th edition. If we were to stop now, farmers would be frustrated and discontent."

 

In 2016, the ewes travelled 70 kilometres in 5 days, always following the same itinerary with stages in Carlucet, Frayssinet, Gigouzac, Crayssac and the arrival was in Luzech. The 600 ewes or so remained on the summer pasture in Luzech, from April to June, then went to Bélaye on 11 June.

Transhumance is a good way to discover or rediscover the Lot, alone, with your family or with friends, everyone can walk part of the way with the herd.

We hope to meet you on the way...

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