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Le 12th January 2022
Discover one of the most beautiful valleys of Charente classified as a "site of European interest" because of its ecological richness. With its limestone cliffs and its Mediterranean vegetation you will find false airs of "Causses".
To the south, the limestone lands and the shallow soil favor the presence of Mediterranean plants, often rare, which form what are called dry lawns. This vegetation exposed to the sun contrasts with the cooler land on the northern slopes and the bottom of the humid valley where the Eaux Claires stream flows.
Natural climbing site world famous, the Vallée des Eaux-Claires attracts visitors from all walks of life to discover its walls, while others come for a real pilgrimage in the Vallée des Eaux-Claires, home to the famous mill at the heart of the saga "Le moulin du wolf" by the author from Charente Marie-Bernadette DUPUY.
From geological times to human occupation
The Vallée des Eaux Claires is a 13 km tributary on the left bank of the Charente river. Together with its neighbors Anguienne, Boëme and Charraud, they form the Peri-Angoumois limestone valleys. These valleys cut into a wide plateau formed of hard limestone, dating from the Turonian and resulting from successive deposits of marine animals when the sea covered the Charente in the Cretaceous. Subsequently, the alternating freezing and thawing of the Quaternary dug the rock shelters on the rocky slopes.
In the Middle Paleolithic, people found in these valleys favorable conditions for their settlement: water, game, cave, raw material for making tools. The traces of this occupation are numerous
A picturesque valley, a source of biodiversity
The site was classified in 1941 under the Landscape Law of 1930, for the quality of its landscapes, in particular its monumental chalky cliffs and its rock shelters on the right bank, and must therefore be preserved from "any serious damage".
At the top of the cliffs, a draining subsoil and a southern exposure have favored the installation of specific vegetation, shaved and made up of annual and perennial plants: limestone lawns. Also called culms, they shelter rare flowers of southern or mountain affinity.
Discovery Trails and Awareness
In 2006, Greater Angoulême set up the “Eaux Claires du Temps” interpretive trail which offers an original discovery of the valley to the rhythm of time, through 9 stations.