Why Mayen Tours?
'In the springtime, as soon as the snow has melted the cattle are put out onto the rough grazing around the village. The irrigated and fertilised meadows are used exclusively for hay crops ; the essential reserves of fodder for wintering the animals. In May the animals head to the areas known as mayens- the name is derived from the month of May. '
What to Wear?
Gourmet and Ormonts History Tours. No special requirements. Just make sure your footwear is comfortable as we stop and walk around places of interest. A good idea is to have a water bottle. Wear layers as it is often Tshirt weather in the full sun, and a jacket in the shady spots.
Hike and Bike and Alpine Hiking Tours. Hiking shoes or boots. Hiking pants and a waterproof jacket to deal with any unexpected changes in weather. Leysin is at 1500 meters above sea level, so it is a good idea to have a couple of layers, t-shirt, sweater and jacket to cover the changes in temperature, particularly for the Glacier (3000 meters). Definitely bring a water bottle. A hat and sunscreen also.
Where is the Ormonts Valley?
The Ormonts Valley (La vallée des Ormonts) is part of the Pre-Alpes Vaudoises. It extends from Aigle to the foot of the Diablerets massif, a length of 26 kilometres. The tributary of the Rhone, La Grande Eau cascades along its length, fed by melt water. Today, all that remains besides the bones of Tardents buried around the church in Cergnat, are a chalet in Le Sepey with the name and a beautiful inscription in old French over the door, and a place close to Le Sepey still known as Le Scex Tardent (the Tardent clearing).
So much of today's landscape is the result of many centuries of hard work of the mountain families who carved out their existence from the forests, gradually clearing pasturage for the livestock, cattle and goats, into a lifestyle that was, of necessity, in rhythm with the seasons. Winters were especially harsh, and the activities of the whole year were targeted towards the survival of a winter in the mountains.
It runs parallel to the Rhone Valley, the corridor between the Grand St Bernard Pass and Lake Geneva.
It branches off from Aigle and was originally a small glacier parallel to the great glacier that formed the Rhone Valley.
Not far from Montreux, Vevey and Lausanne, it was probably first settled in the late Iron Age as summer pasturage for the Celtic tribe the Nantuaten that lived on the Rhone Plain before the Romans came in 15 BCE.