|Fontainebleau useful tips and travel ideas
By Car: Try to avoid Paris inner ring road the pereferique, that really jams up with traffic, take the wider ring road N86 or N104; this is not always well marked so take a good atlas with you. Dropping straight down to Melun can be a very good way to get direct to the Canon area of Fontainebleau. Sundays coming into Paris after 4 in the afternoon gets very bad, so if you have a ferry aim to be heading through Paris by 3pm. Always head back north in the early morning via Melun, very bad traffic heading into Paris.
You need a car for Fontainebleau, but if you don't have one, you can get there by train and then walk to a lot of climbing areas. Take the Train from (London St. Pancras) to Paris Gare du Nord. Then you have to get the Metro which is a single journey ticket to Gare de Lyon. From there you can catch a train to Fontainebleau (usually every half an hour). The Station is to the NE of town in the Avon district. From here you are best hiring a taxi to get to the campsite at Musardiere, just outside Milly la Foret. From this campsite you can walk to a lot of climbing areas. Just down from the station 400m at Avon is a shop Champion, if you need food before going to the campsite, since there isn't a shop there, and the village is 3km away.
If you are only going for the day from Paris, you can take the train to the stop before Fontainebleau and use these directions to go to Rocher Canon: However fast it takes you to walk 4km:
Take the train from Paris that goes to Fontainebleau via Melun. Get off at the stop before Fontainebleau called Bois-le-Roi. Exit the station to the South side and after 100 metres, head directly south on Avenue de la Foret (Directly away from the D115 that crosses the Seine River to Chartrettes). In 100 metres pass Rue Pasteur on your right and Rue Georges Mathieu on your left. Then in 30 metres, fork right on Chemin des Coureurs [You go now on this direction for the rest of the way]. Follow this for 150 metres - where it becomes Chemin de Chailly. (This is acutually the GR1 footpath). In a further 300 metres, cross directly over the main D138 and continue in the same direction on the GR1 track. In another 200 metres, you have to cross the main fast road D606, doing a dog leg left then right. Carry on the GR1 for 750 metres. Then cross the smaller road of the D142E and follow the road going into the parking as for Rocher Canon. The total distance from the train station is 4km, and virtually in a straight line all the way, heading 240 degress (south west).
GPS Co-ordinates: We use gps in our book for locations. You need to be set up WGS84 - which is the standard set up. In Fontainebleau Magique we use the French Grid (not lat long). This is also found on all of the local IGN maps, and can be useful if you don't have a gps with you.
If you need a good bookshop in Fontainebleau, and one that sells our guidebook, try Reelbooks; 9, rue de Ferrare, 77300 Fontainebleau. Tel : 01 64 22 85 85 Fax : 01 64 22 69 69 opening hours : tues - sat 11.00 - 19.00
Our Fontainebleau Magique book is usually available in Milly-La-Fôret at the book shop, directly next to the big market house in the village centre.
ACCOMODATION: Don't forget MAISON BLEAU
Apart from campsites, there is a very good venue near Malesherbes in the South of the area called Maison Bleau (not bleu). This is run by a very nifty and talented climber Neil Hart (and family), who has 4 gites that can be rented - ring for availability. Nice chap and always willing to help where possible. Best contact is most probably via his website www.maisonbleau.com
He's a genuine good climber/boulderer, and has sponsored a page in our new edition of the Magique book - he is pretty clued up on all of the latest things happening in the forest, and is one of the top operators too.
Page is always to be further updated