Crossing Spain on Foot: 1,000 Miles of Epic Terrain

Spain was the second country of the 2PVA adventure and had many surprises for us. For two months we hiked 1,500 kilometers, crossed 8 of the 17 autonomous communities of the country, and discovered unforgettable landscapes.

The second highest country of Europe

We have discovered that Spain is the second highest country in Europe, behind Switzerland. We did not really expect it but it was quickly confirmed by the presence of all these mountains that we did not suspect!

sierra de gredos, spain

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Catalonia, Spain

 

2018 endless winter

The bad surprise of the months of April and May 2018, would be the weather, or rather this interminable winter that we crossed. We found ourselves in the middle of April with snow right up to the waist in the center of Spain at less than 1800 meters high…

marie, 2PVA, sierra de guadarrama 2PVA, sierra de gredos, spain Nil, 2PVA, snow

Spring was late…

The Valle del Jerte in the province of Cáceres is famous for those innumerable cherry trees that bloom at the same time. This year, they bloomed a little later than usual, missed for us for this time!

cherry trees, valle del jerte, spain

Too much snow in April!

With all this snow, we had to adapt our route, especially in the beautiful Sierra de Gredos. Without our snowshoes, we could not climb more than 1,500 high meters without danger.

Nevertheless, we tried to climb to see the Laguna del Barco but the end of the climb was too difficult and thanks to the drone, we could see that the lake was covered with snow too.

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Beautiful wildlife

In the Natural Reserve of the Valle de Iruelas, we came across dozens of vultures. A superb encounter!

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Our last night in the snow

The Sierra de Guadarrama is the most recent National Park of Spain, it was created in 2013. Again the crossing was difficult because of the snow. We spent the night in the Navalcollado refuge: 4 walls, a roof and dry wood to make fire, what else?

After that, we came down from the mountain and did not go back until the French border in the Pyrenees.

navalcollado refuge, spain navalcollado refuge, spain navalcollado refuge, spain

 

Amazing lake

The El Atazar lake is the largest artificial water reservoir in the Community of Madrid. We camped close to the lake, a bit high and the view at sunset was sumptuous. These small rewards give all their flavor to long and difficult days.

el atazar, spain

 

Fields, fields, fields

Arriving in the province of Soria, the least populated of Europe, the change was radical. Fields, without relief, as far as the eye can see!

tractor, fields, spain fields, spain

 

Thank you for your vote!

For each country, we propose a vote between two sections of itinerary on our Facebook page. If the Sierra de Alcarama and del Rio Alhama left us indifferent during the first kilometers, by heading further into the hills, we discovered an extremely wild place where we did not meet anybody!

sierra de alcarama, spain sierra de alcarama, spain

Crossing the largest European desert on foot

The desert of Bardenas Reales is the largest in Europe, it is also known because many films have been shot there. We put a lot of hopes in this place and were clearly not disappointed. At the end of April, after being very cold a few days earlier, we suffered from the suffocating heat of the desert and the lack of shade and water. But it’s no regrets as the scenery was breathtaking! We tell you more in the Logbook that we shot there.

bardenas reales desert, spain bardenas reales desert, spain bardenas reales desert, bivouac, spainbardenas reales desert, spainmarie, 2PVA, bardenas reales desert, spainbardenas reales desert, spainsandals, bardenas reales desert, spainbardenas reales desert, spain

Climber’s Paradise

Going up towards the feet of the Pyrenees, we found ourselves in a place well known by climbers: the Mallos de Riglos. This place, surrounded by legends and other witches stories typical of Aragon, seems indeed full of history. Columns of rocks and pebbles amalgamated by sand and earth, all of ocher and red form an imposing wall.

mallos de riglos, spain

The Sierra de Guarra

We had been recommended to cross the Sierra de Guarra, it was indeed a very nice idea! We loved the snow-capped peaks and the crystalline blue rivers streaked with limestone rock.

sierra de guarra, spain sierra de guarra, spain

 

The Breathtaking Canyon of Congost de Mont Rebei

How to hike in the region without returning to the Congost of Mont Rebei? This canyon that marks the border between Aragon and Catalonia is sumptuous. The path is cut in the rock of this fault between two mountains, in the middle, turquoise water snakes…

canyon, congost de mont rebei, catalonia, spain canyon, congost de mont rebei, catalonia, spain canyon, congost de mont rebei, catalonia, spain canyon, congost de mont rebei, catalonia, spain

Last Peak Before France: The Pedraforca

Last major point of our crossing of Spain, our tour of Pedraforca. With its 2500 meters of altitude and its unique shape, the Pedraforca is one of the most famous mountains of Catalonia. At the end of May there was still too much snow for us to consider climbing but the surroundings were sumptuous!

pedraforca, spain pedraforca, spain pedraforca, spain

 

To find out more about our adventure, read our other articles and follow us on FacebookInstagramYoutube and our website!

Marie & Nil – 2PVA

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