In addition, there are plenty of walkers' guidebooks to the area in both French and English. The most detailed maps are the French IGN 1:25,000 "TOP 25" series; #1547OT, #1647ET, #1647OT, #1748ET and #1748OT cover the Parc National des Pyrénées. Less demanding walkers can make do with Rando Éditions' Cartes de Randonnées, which covers the range at 1:50,000 in eleven sheets numbered from west to east.
The walking season usually lasts from mid-June until late September; earlier in the year, few staffed refuges function, and you'll find snow even on parts of the GR10. Whatever you intend, bear in mind that these are big mountains and should be treated with respect: to tackle any of the main walks preparation is crucial. Before taking to the hills, check weather forecasts usually posted at the local tourist office and be sure you're properly equipped with water, food, maps, bivvy bag, emergency signalling, whistle and knife, as well as warm, water- and windproof clothing and suitable boots not to mention ice axe and crampons if you're going anywhere near permanent snow, which you shouldn't be doing unless you have experience in high-altitude mountaineering. Above all, don't take any chances: mountain conditions can change very quickly, and sunny, warm weather in the valley doesn't necessarily mean it will be the same higher up, three hours later. If you don't have any mountain-walking experience, it's probably best not to undertake anything more than a well-frequented path unless you're accompanied by someone who does.
One kilometre in twelve minutes (5kph) is a fairly average walking pace for level ground; if you're going uphill, allow an hour for every 500m in elevation gained. If you're out of condition it'll take longer. Work yourself in gently, otherwise you could easily ruin your holiday: if you overdo it on your first day, you'll be plagued by blisters and aching muscles on the second. The best rule of thumb is: if in doubt, don't do it.
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