Picos Trekking Week – Northern Spain

A spectacular traverse of the Picos Mountains in Northern Spain

Picos Trekking Week – Northern Spain

£595.00

Dates: Fri 21st Sept to Fri 28th Sept, 2018

This is a trek of ever changing and spectacular scenery from vertical rock spires which climb skywards to plunging and steep sided gorges which descend into the depths.  It is also quite remote in places and its possible to really feel the quiet of the mountains and experience a lot of wildlife as we get away from the crowds.  We will see a lot of birds of prey, including vultures, eagles and buzzards and wild Chamois and mountain goats while we are trekking.

This is a six day trek, with seven nights accommodation in a mixture of refuges (mountain hostels) and small hotels.  The walking and views are stunning, but it is a demanding trek, with significant ascents and descents on some days over rocky and uneven ground.

The Northern coast of Spain is perfect for combining mountains, coast, beautiful cities and of course wine (Rioja is very near) in a single trip.  The schedule will finish around mid-afternoon in a comfortable hotel near Potes with a swimming pool.  This then gives you the choice of staying on to relax by the coast, explore one of the many fantastic cities, or returning home to the UK.

Read our Blog post for more details of the places to see and visit after our trek.

11 Places Available


SKU: AH210918 Category:

Description

A spectacular Picos Trekking week where we hike across the three main ranges of the Picos mountains in Northern Spain.  In medieval times the Picos were known as the Peaks of Europe because the towering limestone summits could be seen from the coast as ships returned to Spain.  Today they are simply known as the Picos and are one of the most stunning locations in Europe to go hiking.

picos trekking week feature

This is a trek of ever changing and spectacular scenery from vertical rock spires which climb skywards to plunging and steep sided gorges which descend into the depths.  It is also quite remote in places and its possible to really feel the quiet of the mountains and experience a lot of wildlife as we get away from the crowds.  We will see a lot of birds of prey, including vultures, eagles and buzzards and wild Chamois and mountain goats while we are trekking.

Picos Trekking week

This is a six day trek, with seven nights accommodation in a mixture of refuges (mountain hostels) and small hotels.  The walking and views are stunning, but it is a demanding trek, with significant ascents and descents on some days over rocky and uneven ground.  There is also some easy but exposed scrambling on one day, with steep drops to the sides of the path.  So this Picos trekking week is definitely for more experienced hikers with a good head for heights.

We will be carrying all our own kit with us each day, as we travel from hut to hut for this trip.   Some of the refuge locations are quite remote offering simple and basic accommodation (one of the huts does not have showers), but the food and views from the huts are quite amazing and it can be refreshing to get back to a simple way of living.

Refugio vegarronda

Packing up in the morning, while the hut Guardians prepare the horses to head down to the valley for shopping.

Your guide for this trek will be Kevin Blissett, a fully qualified International Mountain Leader and member of BAIML (British Association of International Mountain Leaders).

The trip will end around mid-afternoon on Friday, which gives a great opportunity to either explore some of the fantastic cities on the north coast, relax on the amazing beaches, or enjoy some of the wonderful food and wine available at the many tapas bars and restaurants.
Read our Blog post here for some ideas on how to make the most of your weekend in this wonderful part of Spain.

Picos Trekking week reviews and feedback

We ran our first Picos Trekking week in September 2017, so this is some feedback from that trip and other recent treks we have organised.

Mike (Oct 2017)
“What a great trip this was! The contrast between the initial landscape as we walked up into the mountains and the sudden vistas of the deep gorge, the vertical rock faces the and the sharply defined peaks: Just amazing!! Having completed with you the West Highland Way, your Scafell Pike ascent and the Tour du Mont Blanc, the Picos trail that you have devised is something else again. More people should experience the Picos. The trek highlights? For me, the 3 hours trekking along the side of a rockface, the 2000 metre ascent spread over 12 miles, and the 300 metre scramble out of the “moonscape” were particularly distinctive. As ever, the very basic nature of some of the mountain huts and the usual laughter on your hikes, add to the memorable experience. Thanks again.”

Robin Chan (Oct 2017)
“Well organised hiking trips in the Lake District and also abroad. I just came back from their hiking trips on the Isle of Arran and the Picos de Europa. Superb!”

Gillian (Tour Du Mont Blanc 2016)
“I’m still on a high from completing the Tour du Mont Blanc trek with Kevin and Yen in July. A great challenge and hard going, especially the descent on the last day. Kevin was a fantastic guide and very knowledgeable – ‘slow and steady’ was the climbing mantra. The organisation by Yen was brilliant with a varied and quirky set of refuges. We had an amazing group of fellow trackers and the weather was perfect. Looking forward to doing other treks with Mountain Hikes in the near future. A big thank you again to Kevin and Yen – you made this a trek to remember.”

Donnett (West Highland Way 2016)
“Having done this trek and the Ben Nevis weekend as a follow on, I’m finding it quite difficult to make a comment because it was such a great experience. 
Kevin and Yen were great hosts as always, willing to go the extra mile, to make us safe, comfortable and happy.  Wonderful group of people on the trip and considering the diversity very little tension, in fact some serious bonding took place.
Superb scenery, brilliant weather, scottish hospitality and friendliness, great whisky what more could we ask for. Fantastic trip!  Having withdrawal symptoms.”

 

Hiking and Route Each Day

Saturday 22nd Sept
Hike from Covadonga Lakes to Refugio Veggaronda and Mirador Ordiales (altitude 1460m) : 6hrs, 15k, 850m ascent, 450m descent

Sunday 23rd Sept
Hike from Refugio Veggaronda to Refugio Vega de Ario (altitude 1630) : 7hrs, 18k, 850m ascent, 680m descent

Monday 24th Sept
Hike from Refugio Vega de Ario to Cares Gorge and Poncebos (atltitude 209m) : 8hrs, 21k, 290m ascent, 1700m descent

Tuesday 25th Sept
Hike from Poncebos to Bulnes and Refugio Uriellu (altitude 1960m) : 8hrs, 18k, 1900m ascent, 170m descent

Wednesday 26th Sept
Hike from Refugio Uriellu to Aliva (altitude 1660m) : 7hrs, 570m ascent, 800m descent with a steep scramble.

Thurday 27th Sept
Hike from Aliva to Mogrovejo : 4hrs, 13k, 135m ascent, 1160m descent

 

Friday 21st Sept
Cangas de Onis Hotel (TBC) (twin share)

Saturday 22nd Sept
Refugio Veggaronda
Refugio vegarronda

Sunday 23rd Sept
Refugio Vega de Ario
vega de ario

Monday 24th Sept
Poncebos Hotel (twin share)
Poncebos Hotel

Tuesday 25th Sept
Refugio Uriellu
Uriellu Refuge

Wednesday 26th Sept
Hotel Aliva (twin share)
refugio aliva

Thursday 27th Sept
Hotel Infantado, Ojedo near Potes (twin share, swimming pool)

Friday 21st Sept
14:45-17:45 Flight from Stansted to Asturias (Easyjet)
18:30 Transfer to overnight hotel in Cangas Onis

Saturday 22nd Sept
9:30  Group Minibus Transfer to start of trek
10:30 Hike from Covadonga Lakes to Refugio Veggaronda
20:00 Dinner at the Refugio

Sunday 23rd Sept
8:00 Breakfast
9:00 Hike from Refugio Veggaronda to Refugio Vega de Ario
20:00 Dinner at the refugio

Monday 24th Sept
8:00 Breakfast
9:00 Hike from Refugio Vega de Ario to Cares Gorge and Poncebos Hotel
20:00 Dinner at the Hotel

Tuesday 25th Sept
8:00 Breakfast
9:00 Hike from Poncebos to Bulnes and Refugio Uriellu
20:00 Dinner at the Refugio

Wednesday 26th Sept
8:00 Breakfast
9:00 Hike from Refugio Uriellu to Hotel Aliva
20:00 Dinner at the Hotel

Thursday 27th Sept
8:00 Breakfast
9:00 Hike from Aliva to Mogrovejo
15:00 Arrive Mogrovejo for transfer to Potes Hotel
20:00 Dinner at Hotel

Friday 28th Sept
9:00 Breakfast
10:00 Morning to explore the lovely old town of Potes
13:30 Transfer to Asturias airport
16:00 Arrive Asturias airport
18:20 Suggested flight from Asturias to Stansted

Note: We have scheduled the Trek to finish around midday on Friday, as there are so many great places to spend the weekend in this part of Spain.  You are free to head directly home, explore further, or just relaxing on the beach.
See our mini guide blog post here of ideas to spend the weekend to relax after your Picos Trekking week.

Total cost for the week £595

To book, click add to basket now and make payment of a deposit of £145.

Balance is due 8 weeks before the day of departure and should be paid by bank transfer.
Please quote “Picos Trek” plus your name

Bank Account     Mountain Hikes
Sort Code            40 40 01
Account No         02406950

Please note that the deposit is non-refundable and your place is not confirmed until we receive full payment.

Included:

  • 7 nights bed and breakfast accommodation (4 nights hotel & 3 nights refuge/mountain hut)
  • Fully guided route, by a fully qualified International Mountain Leader.
  • Transfer from Asturias airport (set time only) and return transfer to Asturias airport (set group transfer only)

Does not include:

  • Return air travel to Spain (Note we have suggested flights to arrive at Asturias Airport)
  • Lunch and snacks (need to be bought en route)
  • Dinner on 4 nights when we stay in hotels – we can eat as a group and each pays individually

Exchange rate fluctuations:
Our prices are listed in UK pounds and calculated on 1st October 2017 based on the current exchange rates.  However we have to pay for accommodation and food in Euros during the trek.  Therefore we reserve the right to charge a supplement in the event that the exchange rate changes by more than 10% between 1st October 2017 and date of departure.

The nearest airport to the start and finish with convenient flight times is Asturias airport.  Flights are not that frequent either, so we have suggested the following flight times, so that we can then transport you as a group to the start of the trek and then get you to a convenient flight for the return.

Friday 21st Sept
Ryanair 14:45 – 17:45 Stansted Airport to Asturias Airport

Friday 28th Sept
Ryanair 18:20 – 19:10 Asturias Airport to Stansted Airport

We will arrange a group pickup from Asturias airport to transfer you to the hotel in Cangas de Onis for our first night, then at the end of the trek we will transfer you to our hotel in Potes and then transfer to Asturias.

You are of course free to make your own arrangements to the start and finish of the trek as you wish.  There are also lots of options for making the most of a free weekend at the end of the trek in Northern Spain including visiting the beaches and city of Santander, the museums and culture of Bilbao, or the restaurants bars and beaches of San Sebastian.
See our blog post mini guide for some ideas of how to spend the weekend relaxing or exploring after our trek.

 

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