The Forest of Hellet (copy)
Pays de Bray
A favourite hiking trail partly shaded by the splendid trees of the forest of Hellet to the north of Mesnières-en-Bray.
The "Forest of Hellet” route starts at the level crossing PN82 of Avenue Verte London-Paris, a major European cycle route located opposite the Château. This greenway section of the route is popular with tourists as well as locals. Before you leave, take time to admire or even visit the Château de Mesnières-en-Bray, an outstanding example of Renaissance architecture, which seems to come straight from the Loire Valley. But no, you are not dreaming, you are in the heart of the Pays de Bray!
After a few pedal strokes along the Avenue Verte London-Paris, which acts as a warm-up, and a quick ride through the streets of Mesnières, you will follow a path through fields. It will lead you to Saint Amador Hill, which overlooks the Béthune valley and reaches 202 metres high. While you are climbing up the hill, don't forget to look back to admire the view over the village and catch your breath. Before you reach the top of the Hill, you will follow a pleasant path on the edge of a woodland.
The hillside is home to a wide variety of exceptional flora. The educational trail and its information panels will allow you to learn more about it. Depending on the season when you are lucky to explore this emblematic area of the Pays de Bray, you might be able to admire orchids, branched St Bernard's-lily or even Gentianaceae.
After climbing to the top of the hill and reaching the viewpoint indicator, you will enjoy a well-deserved reward: you will have a breathtaking view over the "buttonhole" of the Pays de Bray and its typical bocage landscapes. A range of yellows, greens and ochres... You will be amazed by this exceptional landscapes and its vibrant colours!
You will then ride back down Saint Amador hill to reach the Forest of Hellet. First on the edge of the forest, you will then go deeper and deeper into the forest for a big circular ride lulled by the birds singing. Let the magic of the place lead the way and look up at the majestic trees that have been growing there! Once you have finished walking in the forest, you will arrive at the hamlet Hameau de la Gâte where a new panoramic view over the "buttonhole" awaits you.
You will start going back down towards Mesnerettes on a path through fields and rolling landscapes. In Mesnières-en-Bray, you can choose between two options to reach the destination: picking up the Avenue Verte again or following the route "Ceres and the Little Photographer", which will take you to explore the village streets filled with flowers, its public gardens and rural heritage: bread oven, dovecote, well, wash house, half-timbered country houses, etc. This little village boasts plenty of heritage attractions!
Be careful, this route is not recommended when it has been raining. Indeed, the slopes can become muddy and slippery when it is wet.
Type of tour : Mountain bike
It lasts : 01h 15
Difficulty : Medium
Distance : 10 km
Waymark : Base FFCT, GRP
Leaves from : MESNIERES-EN-BRAY, Avenue Verte : PN82
Arrives at : MESNIERES-EN-BRAY, Avenue Verte : PN 82
Entretien : OFFICE DE TOURISME BRAY EAWY - 02 35 93 22 96 - tourisme@brayeawy
Facilities : Picnic area
Tarred path : 87%
Facilities : Green way