Thursday, 18 April 2013

Montserrat - The Montserrat mountain

Yesterday I wrote about the Montserrat monastery, you can read it here, if you haven't had a chance yet. Today I’m writing about the mountain itself.

The mountain is 1236m tall so there is much to do and see. From the monastery you can do five different walks but you can also combine them together. At the monastery they can give you maps and help about the walks. There is a supermarket there to arm yourself with food and drinks however it’s very expensive so you are better off bringing stuff with you.

Most of the walks include a journey with a very steep funicular that takes you from 700m to 970m. You can start the walk on the bottom and end it on the top and take the funicular back to the monastery, or the other way round.

We (obviously) chose the most challenging one, the one that is the longest and goes up highest, from San Joan (upper station of the funicular) to San Jeroni (summit of the mountain). It was 7.5 km and took us about 2:05 hours.

The way to the top was a VERY easy walk, more like a stroll, really, the last few meters were a bit steeper.

Here are the guys doing rock climbing. The rock here is ideal as it is full of little dents.

As I said, the walk is VERY easy.

These guys found a great picnic spot.

The paths are very easy to follow and every once in a while there are these poles to help, too.

Due to starting from an already quite high point and to the gentleness of the path I did not have the same self-achievement feeling as I got in the Lake District however the view was still breathtaking. You could see all around the mountain and a good part of Catalonia, too.

The way back was more difficult as we had to make up the length of the funicular as well and due to this the last bit of the walk was a steep ascent.

We found these little cairns. We've added a stone, too, as we always do.

The steep bit comes just before you get the first glimpse (and curiously, hear it at the same time) of the monastery.

All in all it was a short but very enjoyable walk, well worth doing. We were already talking about coming back here to do the rest of the walks. More information about the walks can be found here.

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