After spending the night in Nice (perfectly comfortable despite the name of the hotel containing the word ‘budget’), the day started with an early bus from Nice to Auron, where we had finished the walk in 2019. The long 2 1/2 hour bus journey cost the princely sum of €1.50.
Auron is a ski resort and the walk out of it took us under some skeletal ski paraphernalia. In summer one of the chair lifts was being used to transport mountain bikers for downhill runs. Our attractive path led us through forest and largely avoided the cycle trails and ski pistes.
The path eventually climbed to the Col du Blainon, our high point of the day and lunch stop.
The other side of the col was less forested and we had now left the skiing area well behind and it felt a bit more remote and very dry. We were accompanied by thousands of noisy crickets and silent butterflies.
A steep descent brought us to the tiny mountain hamlet of Roya, where we have a bed for the night. A good first day carrying the packs. A shortish walk, but feeling hot in the middle of the day.