Pyrenees 2004: Ordesa
Saturday 26th June
Up at 7, left at 8.20. We walked the 800m back along the road to the mouth of the Ordesa canyon. Once in the canyon the footpath avoided the hairpins of the road, instead taking a steeper route through the forest on the southern side of the canyon. The first few Km were thick forest, which excluded most of the view. The forest thinned and occasionally gave way to clearings which allowed us to see the canyon walls towering above us. The path climbed and joined with the river and the crowds of visitors.
We passed sign after sign advertising waterfalls and viewpoints, great numbers of people milling about. We left the path to side beside the river to cook some lunch. Cous-cous. I couldn’t manage to prime the stove as it was too hot. Everytime I let some fuel into the stove it evaporated before I could get it lit. Cous cous abandoned, we set off again hungry.
Climbing steeply once more we found ourselves at the broad end to the canyon, a large meadow with huge walls to three sides. Pushing through the crowds of day-trippers we crossed the bridge and joined the scree path up to the canyon-side. A steep climb and a couple of hundred metres we were at the top -ish. We followed the path around above cola de caballo waterfall and along the side passage towards Monte Perdido and the Goriz hut. Although the map showed the linear distance from waterfall to hut as about 1Km it seemed interminable. Guarded by two loose scrambling sections and a steep slog the hut sits between Ordesa, Monte Perdido and the Breche de Roland. After almost 8 hours of walking we finally made it!
At a height of 2180m this was our highest camp to date. From where I sit to write this Ordesa is far below, Monte Perdido is behind and above.
The two Brits from last nights camp site made it here a while after us.
We ate dinner twice this evening, to make up for the lack of lunch.
Tomorrow it is through the Breche and back to France
We spent the night camping on a rocky area near to the Goriz hut under the slopes of Monte Perdido.