From Alsace to Franche-Comté

In the last few days, the Way of St. James has led us over about 100 km from Thann via Bellemagny, Belfort, Couthernans and Villersexel to Vallerois-le-Bois.

The route leads from Alsace through the Belfort Gab (Burgundische Pforte) to the region of the Franche-Comté. The Belfort Gab is the name given to the approximately 30-kilometer-wide, flat saddle at an altitude of about 400 meters between the Vosges and the Jura, which connects the Rhine Valley and the foothills of the Saône Valley formed by the Ognon and Doubs.

To this day, this gateway, which runs from southwest to northeast, forms an important transport link and for the flow of warm Mediterranean winds up to  the Middle Rhine Valley. Coming from the lively Alsace, it becomes quieter, the villages smaller and further apart. Small stores to buy food and beverages are sometimes missing throughout the day’s stage. It is a landscape characterized by vast mountainous areas and with large areas of forest.

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