At the start of this stage, you’re plunged back to the start of the 20th century, the mountain-bike route following the former rail line that linked Saulieu to Corbigny via the slow Le Tacot train. Then enjoy a pleasant stretch dotted with hamlets set between patchworks of fields and small portions of hardwood forest. The route also takes you beside Chamboux Lake, the youngest of the Morvan’s great lakes. Stop to observe the many aquatic birds here, including kingfishers, crested grebes and grey herons. Get back on your bike to reach the edge of Settons Lake, cycling via an easy-rolling path, the highlight of this GTMC stage.
Between Saulieu and Alligny-en-Morvan, some of the way takes you beside Chamboux Lakes. There then follows an easy singletrack suddenly bringing you out at Settons Lake.
Take care along the wooden-plank bridges, which can get slippery. Keep the pressure in your tyres low to ensure a good grip.