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Scenic trekking in Pyrenees

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Offline paula

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« on: May 30, 2010, 17:52 PM »
The Spanish Pyrenees in Aragon is an ideal summer vacation target for those who appreciate traditional villages and scenic trekking. Above 2,000 meters, the air stays fresh and fly-free even during the hottest spells of July and August.
On your walks along the well marked tracks and paths, you encounter gorgeus lagoons and waterfalls accompanied with cool views to the glaciers of the mountain ranges of Posets, Maladeta and Monte Perdido.
Both parks, the national park of Ordesa and Monte Perdido and the nature park Posets-Maladeta, have a great variety of walks, short and long, linear and circuit, easy and heavy, all with something unique. My two favourites with an easy access and good signposting start from the valleys of Benasque and Ordesa. For both of them, you find detailed descriptions, slide shows, photos, maps, GPS-waypoints etc. on the topwalks.net.
If you want to do both of these walks and stay in one place, the best choice is Ainsa, a lovely town with a medieval look.

Pass of Benas with French lagoons

This route starts from the plains of Hospital, some 12 km from the village of Benasque on an asphalt road.
First you walk along a lovely path, through the plain dotted with myriads of flowers, crossing bridges over small brooks, to the slope of La Costera. During the climb you enjoy magnificent views to the glaciers. Higher up, you look down to the gorge of Renclusa and the plain of Besurta.
The high point of this route is the pass of Benas with an extensive view to the Spanish and French Pyrenees. From the pass descends a path to a lake on the French side of the border. You can visit it without any formalities. The pass offers also an easy access to the top of Salbaguardia, a rewarding climb with a great lake and mountain view.
On your return route, you pass a number of lagoons and interesting rock formations, encountering, without doubt, marmots, peeking curiously at you from their rock holes.

Great "Fajas" and Waterfalls of Ordesa

This route starts from the Pradera de Ordesa, some 9 km from the village of Torla on an asphalt road.
You follow the vertiginous Hunters Path (Sendero de los Cazadores) through a leafy forest to the lookout spot of Calcilarruego above the Ordesa valley with stunning views to the unique rock formations of the Tobacor, Gallinero and Mondarruego with their fajas.
Next comes the "Faja de Pelay" a protruding terrace in the rock wall of the Sierra de las Cutas. Walking along it you can have a closer look at rock formations of Tobacor including its highest peak, the Punta Tobacor. Also the views over the valley get more extensive.
The route leads to the Circo de Soaso, the northeast end of the valley closed by semicircular rock walls, where you encounter the impressive waterfall of Cola de Caballo (Tail of a Horse). The mountain views encompass also Cilindro de Marboré and Monte Perdido.
The return route follows a swift flowing stream forming rapids and pools on its way. Once you have walked through the plain, the track enters a forest with handsome beech trees and oaks. On your way back to Pradera de Ordesa, you can visit a couple of magnificent waterfalls, those of Estrecho and Cueva.