A tip from Corinne Gourgeonnet: Jean Marc Dumont, a young man of 64 who is also aspiring to do all esfr-markers. He once started as a co-walker along the bordermarkers and now continues on his own with impressive trips on his MTB or by foot.
As a former air traffic controller, he retired at an early age (the ultimate dream of every Frenchman, so it seems) and never regretted that a single moment.
Now he has covered 74% of all esfr-bm’s (using the “parfait” excel-sheet on this page) and he expects to finish next year. That implies that he can well be the first to complete the esfr-bordermarkers after Corinne in 2021 and before Carlos & Conchita Roca, Sébastien Marc and Jérôme Loubière.
So far, only bm425 has given serious problems, getting in rough terrain and in fact in danger.
Special notice: he has his own mini-camper for his bm-outings: the MarKomobile which made me instantaneously jealous.
No blog, no website but you can still follow his adventures and progress on Strava. Good luck Jean Marc and let us know when you are approaching the finish.
The weather is softening, the snow is melting and the days are getting longer. The time has come to plan new Pyrenees-trips along the bordermarkers. Who are the main players in the heroïc field of finding all esfr-markers? A list of the current 9 men/women who did them all, can be found on this page and more elaborate on this webpage.
Let’s start with my friends Carlos and Conchita Roca from Barcelona.
They have made significant progress in the last years including finishing the Pyrénées Orientales and almost the western Pyrenees. But now they are facing the long hikes in the high mountains of the central Pyrenees. We can check their results on this map.
If I import their results in an excel-file, they have still 55 bm’s to go = 92% done
Then we have the two cousins Sébastien Marc and Jérôme Loubière (see this post).
Sébastien (left) has covered 90% of all esfr-bordermarkers and considering his young age and athletic fitness, I think he will finish first.
Finally, Jérôme Loubière (right) has a slower but not necessarily less persistent pace. I estimate his progress at being 60%.
Carlos and Conchita Roca (website) are proceeding steadily on their quest to do all esfr-bordermarkers. They started in the eastern Pyrenees years ago; the only marker missing there was bm602. But yesterday bm602 was finally conquered: see their own story.
Bm602 is a special one: in a cave along the Mediterranean coast, it is only accessible by boat or swimming. But recently Carlos managed to hire a boatsman from Llança to bring them to the cave. The entrance to the cave is too narrow for a regular boat so you have to swim or use a canoe for the last part.
And that was what they did on 13 august: Carlos and Conchita in a canoe and their son David and his ‘novia’ Noelia swimming, making it a family experience to cherish. In this picture, they are close to the inlet which gives access to the cave.
And here they are proudly posing before the plaque of bm602.
And then returning to the boat in the same way.
After the boat trip, reason enough to enjoy a paëlla meal.
Thus Carlos and Conchita have now covered all bordermarkers between Andorra and the Mediterranean. They have also done almost all bordermarkers on the other side of the Pyrenees (Basque country, no. 1-272).
See this new webpage to see who has done all bordermarkers or one or two of the three main subdivisions.
Pleased to announce a new update of my main site, covering the 8 day trips I did in June this year. See for the details this page.
A lot of information and pictures, might be a bit too much for some of you. If so, I suggest these two picks:
– 12 june 2021: together with Carlos and Conchita Roca climbing to bm407 and back
– 18 june 2021: one of my longest border-hikes ever.