Sunday 20 May 2012

Mont Sec, Congost de Mont-rebei, Ermita de la Pertusa

A blog inspired me to add the Congost de Mont-rebei to our Spain travel destinations map.  We ended up only staying one night in the area, so we foolishly set off at 4 pm to squeeze in the hike before sunset at 9 pm.  We didn't realise just how difficult a drive we were in for.

You can approach the Congost (gorge) from Corça, which is 5 hours walking return, or from Alsamora which is 2 hours return.  We opted for the 2 hour version, but we didn't realise we were going to be spending an hour and a half driving over the giant Montsec mountain range through a series of endless gut-churning switchbacks.  I'd definitely recommend driving to Corça and doing the walk from there since you get to see the spectacular Ermita de la Pertusa as well (we ended up going to see it the next day).  Here's the 1.5 hour drive we did:

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Compare that to the 12min drive to Corça:

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On the plus side we got a great view from Mont Sec, which is a very popular paragliding launch point.

The gorge didn't disappoint, it is a spectacular, and well worth the trip.  We basically had it to ourselves since it was late in the day and there was a thunderstorm threatening.  Apparently there is also climbing, caving and canyoning in and around the gorge.  There is a tour company in Àger that offers guides.

Wildflowers in the foreground and the storm in the background that produced torrential rain for our drive back to the hotel

The next day we drove out to Corça and walked to the Ermita de la Pertusa, built in the 11th and 12th centuries.  I just found out there is a via ferrata that climbs the rock face, which looks like it would be a lot of fun.

The Ermita de la Pertusa, a ridiculous place to build a church

We also checked out the Terradets gorge, a super-popular climbing area.  Visually it is not quite as cool as Mont-rebei since it has a dirty great road and power lines through it, but impressive nonetheless.

Terradets gorge

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