Cougnaguet Water Mill
The Cougnaguet water mill near Rocamadour is a diamond in the rough. Not many people know about this picturesque mill although it is a documented historical monument. Additionally, there are far fewer tourists frequenting this location, which is beneficial to us. Construction started in 1292 and took an astounding 60 years to finish. The mill dams a tributary of the Dordogne, which only flows above ground for 11km before joining the much larger Dordogne at Lacave.
As with most places in this region, the Cougnaguet Water Mill has seen its fair share of battle. During times of famine in the medieval era, the mill was often attacked by the local populace. During which times, the owners would close the front door and open the conduits inside the mill – allowing a flood of water over the ford and thus making it impassable. Such is the care taken over the preservation of the mill, it is still in excellent working order today although of course most if not all of the property has been renovated over the years. That’s almost 700 years of work. Similar to Rocamadour, the water mill received it fair share of visitors passing along the trail of Santiago de Compostela.
From a painting perspective, there is more than enough space for our groups to find a unique spot and paint. For those who prefer the shade, you’ll be pleased to know that the mature trees and buildings provide ample shade. Alternatively, we are just as capable of taking a thousand photos to paint at home in your own time. If you get bored of looking around the mill, you can look up and see hikers climbing the steep backdrop.