Start: Poncebos de Cabrales Finish: Poncebos de Cabrales
this morning you take the car to Poncebos and park it there. At 9,30 hrs a taxi transfer will pick you up to take you to the start of the route, to Pandebano pass. Today the route is a demanding and long ascent to get to the mountain refuge located at the base of the legendary Naranjo de Bulnes or "Picu Urriellu". Once you gain altitude, you start to enjoy the spectacular moon-like landscape in this limestone paradise where chamoix, vultures and choughs await us. Tonight you will stay at a real mountain refuge at the foot of Picu Urriellu.
Challenge: 3-3.5 hrs, 6.5 km, 750 m ascent, 150 m descent
After spending a night in the heart of the Picos, you return to your starting point yesterday via a small village, Bulnes, that has no road communication. Today you follow the same route back down to Pandébano, then turn west to descend to Bulnes - a tiny hamlet with no road access - and continue on to Poncebos down the beautiful Texu gorge. A long, tough descent that can be shortened by taking the funicular railway down from Bulnes. The funicular railway is 7-minute train journey through a tunnel without views and BE ADVISED: a one-way ticket for adults costs about 18€ per person! Single ticket for children about 4€.
Challenge: 6-7 hrs, 14,5 km, 1650 m descent, 150 m ascent
A mountain refuge located at 1950 m altitude, at the base of the legendary "Picu Urriellu"; a climbers a mountaineers meeting place. With 4 dormitories of 24 beds, shared toilettes and a wide dinnning room.
This 2* hotel offers a great location for those who want to start some of the classic routes in Picos de Europa. At the beginning of the Cares Gorge walk and very close to the Bulnes Funicular train. Nice and comfortable rooms, with a relaxing atmosphere and good traditional dishes offered in their small restaurant.
You can start on any day of the week, subject to availability, between March 1st and December 31st.
Arrival in Poncebos
This trip is programmed as self-drive arrangement and we recommend bringing your own car or renting a car at the nearest airport. If you're travelling by bus, it is possible to the area by public transport in combination with some extra taxi-transfers.
From the airports there are good bus connections to city centre bus stations, where you can catch a connecting bus to your destination (ALSA bus company, see time tables at www.alsa.es).
From Oviedo centre there are direct buses to Arenas de Cabrales, though these services cannot be booked in advance. From Santander and Bilbao, you take a direct bus to Unquera and then continue by taxi to Poncebos.
NOTE: It is wise to book your bus tickets and taxi transfer in advance, especially for arrivals and when travelling in summer or on Friday afternoons. You can buy your bus tickets through the ALSA website www.alsa.es or through your S-cape office in Spain, also responsible for booking your taxi from Unquera to Arenas.
Departure from Poncebos
At the end of your trip, the return journey is by the same route. Our S-cape office in Arenas de Cabrales can help you make the reservations.
This trip is programmed as self-drive arrangement and we recommend bringing your own car or renting a car at the nearest airport.
There is a parking at your accomodation in Poncebos
GPS tracks are available on request.
(*) Although this arrangement is designed to be a self-drive trip, extra transfers from and to the nearest bus stop (in Arenas de Cabrales) or airports (Santander, Oviedo and Bilbao), can be arranged
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