Enjoyable mountain hike near interesting old town
Trip Start Feb 19, 2010
257Trip End Jan 31, 2012
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Where I stayed
Caught the earliest bus I could to Cazorla and once again lots of olive tree groves along the way. Arrived in the town center. Interesting looking town. Tried the pension in the book but unfortunately it was all booked out. Thankfully the topographical map I git for hiking also had a town map which showed the location of a number of other pensions since the next option in the book was double that of the pension.
Luckily the first place I tried also had rooms for 15Euro. Large room (two beds) with a view of the town and mountains. After dumping my bags headed to the visitor center to find out about buses to Rio ???? Also was looking for a more detailed map since the one I had did not have a nice enough resolution for hiking. No luck but ended up getting a map from a souviner shop
Had about 6hrs before dark which according to the LP Hike book was enough to do a loop from the town over a pass and back again. Given the books enthusiatics judgement about peoples ability decided it was best not to do the loop but still wanted to head up the nearby mountain.
Wander through the village to the start of the trail and decided to use the map rather than the trail notes since I prefer notes that use distance and landmarks rather than giving heaps of instructions based on times that may or may not be accurate for different people doing the same walk.
Ended up making it to the road above the town in good time and decided to keep heading up to the pass until I got to the point where I felt that it would be pushing it to reach the pass. Ended up missing the trail turnoff due to getting distracted by goats (with some wicked horns) and a water troff. Ended up taking the clearer path (not on map) instead of turnoff. Once I got to the top of the hill should have realise I was on the wrong side of the nearby hill but kept going a bit further until I hit the road. At this point decided something was wrong and that I was no longer on the trail shown on the map
Headed back down and had to circumnavigate around a large dog that was guarding some goats and barking at me. Managed to find the trail I had missed, which was more obvious from the direction I was heading in, and decided to see how far I could get in 30mins since spending to much more time would leave me in the dark. Made it to an intersection in the trail and had about 1km to go to the pass but decided against it due to time considerations. Only view I was missing was the view on the other side of mountain. Headed back down and followed the road around and back down the mountain past a number of scenic view points.
Decided to hit a pub and had a nice 3 coarse meal with a decent wine at a reasonable price.
Got up early to catch the bus to Rio Boroso. Weather was raining when I got up and was considering whether or not to go but decided it was better to spend the day in the rain then not go and have it clear up.
Wandered up the gorge which contained a nice river and surrounding cliffs, even if blocked by cloud. Only had to hide from the rang under an overhang once for 20minutes or so. Clouds didnt really clear but at least it didnt rain to hard.
Made it up to the power station and decided to continue on to the first lake even though I knew I would be pushing it to get back. Was making sure I kept track of the time I was spending heading out and how much time I had to get back before the return bus would arrive.
Happy I continued since there were some nice cascades and waterfalls as I made my way further up the valley. Even wandered through some fairly long tunnels, that had been cut high above the valley and which provided the water that went to the power station in order to generate electricity.
Hit the lake and was tempted to continue but since it didnt look like I would get any views except of the nearby hills on my way to the next lake, decided it would be a good idea to head back. Ended up having to walk an extra 30min from the trailhead in order to reach the vistitor cetre where the bus would stop and made it with about 20min to spare.
Went out for dinner again and believe I had venison. Not as nice as I had expected though that might have been a result of the preparation rather than the meat itself.