jueves, 5 de octubre de 2017

Tour o'clock.

Ten, eleven, twelve & midday: Las Peñas Diez, Once, Doce & Mediodía - takes all day.

Last year we climbed them. This time, we'll circle them.  But it feels wrong. We should be doing the yearly tresmil (3000m peak) this weekend, because the weather's perfect. But Ricardo is needing something not too complicated.  It's been a very stressful August.  This circuit is perfect, because we already know at least half of it!  But we don't want to be too light on ourselves, so it'll add up to 24 kilometres and a 1300m of height gain.  

Things start in "Camping Los Vives" the day before, and Rufus isn't very impressed with our tent-pitching effort.

After a relatively stress-free night under canvas, we finally set off at 7pm.
The "red-sky-in-the-morning" * worries me a bit, 

but the Rs don't know that English refrain.

* Red sky at night, shepherd's delight
Red sky in the morning, shepherd´s warning. 

We make a short stop. Yes, we could stay here over night if we had to. It's quite cosy.

After a few short-cuts along a long hour or so of track (pista), we finally get onto path (senda) and the route greatly improves from here on.  We're following the yellow and white markings of a "PR" - pequeño recorrido (petit randonée) - a so called "little route".
We pass the Collado de la Cruz (Col of the Cross, though there is no cross to be seen) and head towards the "Clock" peaks.

And soon we're closing-in on the more mountainous terrain, though we won't get above 2300m today.

  (Above and below):  The terrain of today's walk seen from above, when we climbed the Ten, Eleven and Twelve o'clock peaks last year.  The orange dot in the photo below marks the Collado de las Garzas (the cranes' pass or col) which we cross this time.

And from the crest on the excursion a year ago. The orange dot marks the "Collado de la Cruz" that we pass today.

We've completed three quarters of the circuit and I just have to detour to see the "famous" Basa (lake) de la Mora, which is at this time of year is painfully dry (or muddy). My Rs wait for me by the shore to continue the route, is all down hill from here, literaly speaking .. and maybe a bit figuratively. (Last bit, horrible hot and a short sección of "pista").

🐶 Rufus is as tired as I am at the end of this circuit and we still have to get to the campsite, un-pitch the tent in the heat of the afternoon, and drive the 2 hours home.

And remember how I said we were making a mistake...?  Well, the following weekend should be our "holidays".  Our anual 5 or so days at the start of September. We haven't had any time away all summer.   So what happens?   The end-of-August weather suddenly turns into mid-October weather, with snow falling on the "tresmiles" and high winds in the mountains.  Not only that, Ricardo finds a course that starts right in the middle of our dates.  We'll just about manage 3 days in a row.  And bang goes our idea of a vivouac at 2200m followed by our tresmil-of-the-year.  Night temperatures could be as low as -6ºC at that altitude.

🌄 El Perdiguero (3222m) has eluded us twice already - really three times, because last year I didn't think we were ready to head off for the first time with our micro-tent and Rufus and camp in the wild.  The previous two times were some years ago and the less said about them the better. 

🌈But there may still be time this year.  (Famous Last Words).

Rufus makes himself comfortable while we debate which route to take to the Collado de las Garzas - the col of the cranes (winged-type). 


Septiembre 2017
Despite thinking otherwise, we DID manage a tresmil:-

 Spot Ricky and Rufus (orange spot in the almost-middle of the pic), coming down off Culebras - Sept 2017.

 Rufus in Culebras. Sept. 2017.

And finally - after 9 years -  

Pico Perdiguero, ¡Third Time Lucky!

At last, 9 years later, we manage Perdiguero. Rufus and Ricky stayed on the Perdiguero East (here in the photo); I went on to the Perdiguero Central (behind me in the foto).

To date, Rufus has climbed 4 "tresmiles".  

I'm using my old Sony HX5 because this year I've smashed to bits TWO Sony HX60 (with 30x zoom, Wifi, and more megapixels).  I still get fotos that I can enjoy looking at (and bring back good memories of our days out), but not always quite what I got used to with the HX60).