Gas, meths, twigs..?
Am off to the Pyrenees in a couple of weeks and am wrestling with 'the fuel issue'.
I am travelling Eurostar who in the past were OK with a single 250ml gas cannister per person. Their website suggests this may no longer be the case. It also seems to discount meths.
So, I could wing it and see if they notice a cannister inside a metal pan (imprevious to X-rays?)/drink bottle with meths in ('it's fruit juice, honest'), or try to source either whilst in France.
I am gettign the sleeper train and I have used the time in Paris to visit Au Vieux to find gas but this trip coincides with a public holiday and the shops are all closed.
So this means traipsing around Lourdes or Cauterets. From reading up it sounds like meths should be a fairly safe bet but screw gas cannisters much less so. And if I cannot find fuel I am stuffed.
Which brings me to twigs. I have a twig burner but this is not good for cooking in, or frankly anywhere near, the tent. I usually carry solid fuel tabs for non-twiggy camps, but I wonder if the Eurostar folk might steal these from me too, being flammable and all that.
One final slightly mad idea was to *post* fuel to Cauterets and collect it. No idea how this might work (or even where to post it!) but I am clutching at straws.
Anyone got any pearls of wisdom or recent experience to share? I have emailed the Intersport in Cauterets but no reply thus far.
Intersports (IME) in France generally carry screw type gas - generally the 250s; Decathlon is another bet?
But the IS in Cauterests is small and I cannot rely on assuming it will have screw thread gas in stock; and where is the nearest Decathlon..?!
Well try a search.....
Give Cauterets a call...
It's inciteful help like that which makes forums the wonder they are. You should work in a TIC.
You WILL get screw cap canisters in Cauterets. I lived there for 6 years until the end of last year. 2 shops that definitely stock them are the Sherpa near the Post Office and Starski opposite the Aladdin hotel - I knew both the owners well. The Intersport probably does as well. As it is a tourist area the shops will also be open every day even on the public holiday but will be closed for lunch. So don't fret, you will be able to make a cuppa.
Will you be staying in Cauterets or getting off the bus and heading to the hills?
Shops in Cauterets do sell the screw top gas.Try the one opposite the big hotel on the street straight up from the bus station also the one further up on the corner.
Owen Bennett wrote (see)
They sell gas in the sports shop in Gavarnie opposite the tourist information also in the outdoor shop opposite the small supermarket at the t junction .Screw top canisters and camping gaz
Also in shops in Luz st SaveurOutdoor shop[Go Sport] in arcade in Rue Marechal Foche in Lourdes sell them.In Gavarnie the shop opposite the tourist information sells them.
Just beat me to it Phil
Phil & Owen - thank you! This is exaclty what I was after.
Phil - I am planning on arriving in Cauterets, doing a bit of shopping/lunch maybe, then wandering off up the Lutour I think. Are you the guy that runs a hotel in town? If so, please feel free to furnish me with details - I might need something on my way back down.
I used to run a hotel in town but no longer. New fire and security laws were introduced in France which would have cost around 500K for the building which just wasn't feasible so we had to sell up. I am now living in the Basque country. If you are going up the Lutour are you planning on camping near the refuge Estom or going further on for the fiest day? If camping at the refuge go to the opposite side of the lake away from the rest. There are a couple of flat spots and also if you feel like it you can pick the blueberries and wild raspberries nearby.
Was planning on stopping near the refuge so thanks for the info - would rather have some peace and quiet, and the berries sound like the perfect companion to dehydraded slop
Whats your planned route Will and how long will you be there ?.I will probably be starting from Cauterets on 19th August all being well. If your Om messaging is turned on I can let you know a couple good routes from Cauterets if you wish
Will, you should take Owen up on on his offer as he knows loads of routes and wild camps around that area as he and his group used to come to us every year. He's a wealth of information and would know the spanish side better than I would.
An update. I spoke to the Eurostar Despatch people and they confirmed *anything* flammable is now banned. This includes gas cannisters, meths, firelighters (esbits) etc. This is quite obviously silly. I am also intending to carry a great deal of synthetic clothing, paper books, various plastic items - any and all of which could be ignited quite easily.
Another gross overreaction to the terrorist threat?!
Meths = alcohol a bruler, available in any supermarket or corner store. You would be able to get gas cannisters in Gavarnie if not elsewhere, lots of gear stores there. There are good bus connections.
So I suppose a newspaper, box of matches and a bottle of cognac will be banned too.
I once got to Cauteret late one evening when main shops were shut.However managed to get a screw type cannister from a hardware store up a side street on way fron 'station' to the centre of town.
Hi Will. I hope you have a good trip and the problems of cooking implements doesn't hinder your enjoyment. After a similar incident to yourself we were given a jolly useful tip for an emergency cooker - of sorts!A basic meths stove can be assembled by using the screw cap from a bottle of wine - just fill with meths and light. Use anything or your tent pegs as a pot stand, anything not to flamable or foil as a wind shield (the flame is small and doesn't spread far). By leaving 1 - 2 inches between the 'stove' and the pan base this system will boil a large cup of water in about 10mins - dependant on the quality of windshield.
Good luck and I hope you have some great pictures and info to shar e on your return.
If all else fails you can also do it the old fashioned way and follow the title as in "twigs", plenty of wood in the pyrenees and if you are careful it is easy to leave no trace.
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