Since 2017, the Cantal and more specifically the Grand Site de France Puy Mary - Volcan du Cantal have regularly welcomed the French trail-running team as part of their preparation for sporting events.
In May 2018, the Espace Trail Puy Mary - Volcan du Cantal was created and developed on the Cantalien massif, offering more than 370 km for trail-running divided into 26 routes. In November 2018, the EspaceTrail was the first Espace Trail to be awarded the "Univers trail" label by the French Athletics Federation. In 2019, the Espace Trail became the Espace Nature Puy Mary - Volcan du Cantal to bring together all the outdoor activities of the Grand Site de France Puy Mary - Volcan du Cantal: hiking (370 km of PR), mountain biking, horse riding, canyoning, etc.
For more than 4 years, the French Trail Team has continued to come to the Cantal twice a year for training and preparation sessions. One of the two takes place each time at their "base camp" in Mandailles-Saint-Julien in the heart of the Grand Site de France Puy Mary - Volcan du Cantal. After several training courses, the athletes and the staff have become familiar with the area and know it well so that they can use it to their best advantage for their training needs.
Before each major international event, if the French trail team chooses to come and prepare in the Cantal department, and more particularly in the commune of Mandailles-Saint-Juilen, it is quite simply because we have found here a natural area which corresponds perfectly to our expectations, whether it be on the sporting level with courses completely adapted to our needs, but also in the exceptional welcome, both in the facilities and in the human warmth felt around our athletes. This is what allows us to prepare in the best possible conditions. Moreover, the results that we have obtained afterwards attest to this, several world titles both individually and collectively. The partnership between the Department and the FFA seals a common desire to put the French teams in the best possible position to continue to perform at the highest level. As the popular saying goes: you don't change a winning team!Philippe Propage - Coach of the French Trail Team
To orient you during your run, routes of the Espace Trail Puy Mary Volcan du Cantal are equipped with trail directional markers. Each marker is printed with the number(s) of the itinerary(s) to be followed with their colour of difficulty (green - blue - red - black) or their particularity (orange = vertical). The trail markers are placed in a regular way, at each directional change. Between two trail directional markers, follow the existing hiking markers.