Brief description of the walk
These routes which take in the Pierre Haina and the Devil’s Bed explore the wonderfully varied scenery of the forest and the plants, birds and creatures that inhabit it.
The Pierre Haina
From the starting point, walk up Rue du Mont. After 1 km, you will see the Pierre Haina on the right, at the top of the ridge. Several legends are attached to this stone. It is said to be a disbelieving priest whom God punished by turning him to stone – hence its alternative name, ‘Le Boussu Curé’ (‘The Hunchback Priest’). Another legend describes the stone as the lid of a hole leading to the centre of the Earth; the devil raises it sometimes in order to come out and perform mischief of one kind or another. After doing so, he has a lie-down on the Lit du Diable (Devil’s Bed), another curious stone that you will see a little further on, at the edge of the path on the left.
Shhh … the birds are singing
Pay attention: this semi-open environment between the forest and the open fields is home to a multitude of birds. If you don’t make too much noise, you will be able to observe them.
Song thrushes, whose song is characterised by two or three identical notes followed by a change of pitch, are particularly fond of young beech plantations. You are especially likely to hear them in the breeding season in spring. You can also see most of the tit family (blue, great, marsh, coal, crested and long-tailed tits) and the chaffinch.
The end of the forest walk takes you past some young plantations of spruces. These are sometimes mixed with Douglas firs, whose needles are more flexible and have a lighter-coloured line on the underside; the young trees’ bark is covered with small balls of resin with the scent of lemongrass. This kind of tree cover is the perfect place to encounter the wren. This tiny, plump, ruffled bird with its delicate tail and beak weaves its way acrobatically through the branches.
From June to August, you can inhale the heady fragrance of honeysuckle. This creeper with its sweet-smelling trumpet-like flowers, which later form bright red berries, is also typical of limestone soils.
Throughout the walk, you will notice numerous puddingstone boulders. You will even pass near a place called ‘The Quarry’, where huge sections of this rock lie in jumbled heaps.
Start: Wéris (Place Arsène Soreil)
Waymarker: blue or green cross depending on the distance
Distance: 5 and 7.5 km
Approximate duration: 1 hour 40 minutes and 2 hours 30 minutes
Level of difficulty: moderate
Defining features: forest – open country – boots in wet weather
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