Cadoles Walk

A unique heritage in Champagne…

Cadoles are dry-stone vineyard lodges found locally only in the south-east of Champagne, around the villages of Les Riceys, Gyé-sur-Seine and Courteron. Where their source material, the Jurassic “Burgundian” flat stone, exists in abundance. The cadoles are distinguished by their vaults formed of superimposed flat stones, positioned in a corbelled manner. Their entrance is often narrow. They thus adopt an igloo shape, which helps to maintain a certain thermal neutrality in the room (cool in summer and temperate in winter). Probably built in large numbers, there are still about 150 of them in the Côte des Bar, unfortunately many of them are in ruins. They can be found on the high ground, on the hillsides and on the plateaus. They are often accompanied by “murgers” (dry stone walls, which can sometimes reach surprising dimensions) and protective windbreaks. The oldest of them could date from the 18th century. These shelters show a variety of shapes in detail, especially their roofing, which can be cone-shaped, dome-shaped, in some cases a Chinese hat, an inverted bell or a sugar loaf. Some types can be very localised: the overhanging roofs between Courteron and Gyé-sur-Seine, the domed roofs very rarely in Les Riceys.

… to shelter the winegrowers

These constructions and their accompanying facilities bear witness to the time when man gained space over nature. The cadoles are more or less occasional shelters for lunching, resting, spending the night if necessary, and storing some tools. They served as a protective cocoon for workers or passers-by. Most of them are nowadays in the undergrowth and are sometimes not easily accessible. The vineyard has declined a lot today, and since the end of the 19th century: phylloxera around 1895, the wine crisis at the beginning of the 20th century, the First World War… the areas under vine are divided by two, then by even more, until the gradual recovery from the Thirty Glorious Years. These constructions, built without shoring, without formwork, without arching, bear witness to the intelligence, the understanding of the use of local stone, the imagination, the skill, the know-how and the human genius. As such, they deserve recognition and protection. To find out more, you can consult the inventory of cadoles carried out by the Unescomission with the aim of restoring and preserving this heritage.


Discover the cadoles!

On foot or by bike, sporty or curious, alone or with others, discover the cadoles in a superb natural setting! Discover the cadoles circuits and the different events that will take you through the green landscapes of the Cote des Bar…

Use the marked trails

Put on your walking shoes or get on your mountain bike (electric assistance is welcome!) and let yourself be guided on the trails of Courteron (9.5km) and Les Riceys (25.3km). These two walking routes will help you discover the winegrowing panoramas of the southern Champagne region. You will come face to face with the cadoles, often hidden under the moss that is gaining ground. Choose your path and discover the cadoles proudly standing on your way.

Cadole at Les Riceys © Olivier Douard
Discover the cadoles of the Cote des Bar!

Raid VTT des cadoles (June)

By mountain bike, cross the forest and vineyards and go from cadole to cadole on a route of varying length (from 20km to 80km) that will suit everyone. Treat yourself to a breath of fresh air in the middle of nature and discover the Cote des Bar and its unique panorama. The raid is now accessible to electrically assisted bikes.

The Cadoles Trail (October)

This trail offers 3 courses of different difficulty: 30km (840mD), 15km (490mD+) and 8km (270mD+). Participants will discover the nature of the Champagne region in the middle of autumn with passages in the forest and on the slopes of the Champagne vineyards.

trail cadoles