Martin on the TGO Challenge 2017

Martin on the TGO Challenge 2017

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Thursday 2 July 2015 - Pyrenees GR11 - Day 18 - Torla to beyond Ordesa Canyon road terminus, via Camping Valle de Bujaruelo

 
 
 
 
Distance: 20 km (Cum: 321 km)

Ascent: 700 metres (Cum: 15100 metres)

Time taken: 5.9 hrs including 1.0 hrs stops (Cum: 115.0 hrs including 21.8 hrs stops)

Weather: very hot, with sunshine and slowly building cloud

Tim and Paula kindly offered us the lift that enabled Sue to enjoy a good walk high in the Ordesa Canyon, whilst I could make a little GR11 progress from last night's stopping point to the Ordesa road head.

Thursday is 'Ordesa Canyon Day' for Collett's, but whilst the others all hopped on a bright blue bus that took them up the valley on an otherwise closed road - a similar system to that operated in Zion National Park - I strolled through the pretty village of Torla, then up the 7 km of road that took me back to the Bujaruelo campground. Back across the sturdy beige bridge and along the lovely woodland path, past a fisherman in the river, to Puen de Santa Elena. Here the path, which doubles as the Camino de Santiago en Sobrarbe pilgrim trail, crossed the gorge and took a splendid high route involving a few cables from time to time. I met a large group of children coming the other way.

Martagon lilies and St John's Wort were among the many plant species that lined the path that was also home to some very tuneful songbirds.

At the junction at the bottom, all paths seemed to lead to either Torla or Goriz. Choosing the latter, I found myself on the other side of the gorge to the bus lane, slowly rising in the wide canyon. Lunch was taken on a balcony with a view across to the much narrower Ara gorge.

By 2.30 I'd reached the road head, so I continued for half an hour before turning round in the face of a threat of rain. That threat came to nought, but I soon met Remy, Ann and Harry, so strolled down to the bus stop with them, enjoying the views either side of the gorge as we went.

They caught the first available bus. I bought a cold drink at the café and waited.

... and waited ...

... they must be with someone from Macclesfield Squash Club!

They were, eventually turning up after 5.30 after about 17 km with 800 metres ascent. Paula, desperate, was somewhat ahead of the pack.

And another jolly good evening was had by all, including James and Alison who have just arrived.

Today's pictures:
Starting out over the beige bridge
Ordesa Canyon views

Next Day - Day 19

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5 comments:

Alan Sloman said...

Absolutely splendid Photographs, Sir.

I love Torla - I spent a very inebriated afternoon there many years ago, talking to a Brit who lived in Romania.

Had to go back there the next day to see the Canyon, as we had spent all day in the bar...

Phreerunner said...

Actually the pictures weren't so good today because of the cloud and the width/height of the views.

Torla is a lovely little town, I agree.

Here's to inebriated afternoons with strangers....

Cheers

blogpackinglight said...

I've always wanted to see the Ordesa gorge.

Tim said...

Paula was, of course, desperate for an icecream...!

Phreerunner said...

I think she managed three ice creams before anyone else arrived!