After leaving Yenne, the GR65 took to the hills, although for the first day it was never far from the Rhône.
We climbed through a high, cool forest and then came down into the sun-baked farmland surrounding St-Genix-sur-Guiers. As we had plenty of time and the weather was so hot, we had a day off there.
Near St-Genix-sur-Guiers, the Rhône turned sharply northwards, heading for its eventual union with the Saône at Lyon, but the GR continued on its steady south-westerly way.
The countryside was only mildly hilly and the walking was easy, punctuated at regular intervals by picturesque villages with bars.
We deviated from the GR to visit the lake of Paladru, where we camped one night at the north end, and the next day walked nine kilometres to camp at the southern end – tantamout to another day off.
For the next two days we traversed the great agricultural plain of Bièvre, bordered to the north by a long forested slope, or côte, to which the town of la Côte-St-André owes its name.
We stayed in a hotel there, for lack of a camping ground, and made the most of its comforts.
After an inauspicious start, we grew to love the place and stayed there an extra night, because we still had time to spare.
Day 6: Yenne to St-Genix-sur-Guiers
Rest day: St-Genix-sur-Guiers
Day 8: Paladru to Charavines
Rest day: Beaurepaire