Costa Blanca, Spain 2014 ... (January 16th-23rd)

Puig Campana from the house at Sella

Thursday 16th: Landing in a rainy Alicante at around midday we stopped off at the Decathalon on the way to Sella. Then a quick trip for supplies to Carrefour.

The via ferrata on the Ponoch with the Bernia Ridge & the Penon d'Ifach

Friday 17th: A nice sunny day so we headed off to have a quick look at the via ferrata on the Ponoch before heading off on a walk up the valley towards the Puig Campana. Reaching the col at the head of the valley we had a splendid view of the Puig Campana and also back down the valley.

Looking down the valley on the east side of the Ponoch

Monday 20th: After a weekend of torrential rain we eagerly set off for Guadalest to climb the Pena Aixorta from the reservoir, however incredibly strong winds forced us to abandon the attempt and seek refuge in the nearest bar/cafe. The winds were so strong & gusty it made negotiating the twisting mountain roads quite challenging... some great views however:

The Bernia Ridge from the Guadalest road

Tuesday 21st: A sunny day and no wind! We headed down to Toix West and did 3 nice climbs in blazing sunshine - at times it was even nearly 'too hot'!

Paraglider above Lower Toix Placa

Wednesday 22nd: Quite a dull day with some sunshine but at least it wasn't windy! Determined to climb the Pena Aixorta we parked in Guadalest and walked down to the reservoir (past the Refugio). A racing team of about 30 cyclists passed us on the way and we caught up with them on the dam road as they were having a 'photo-shoot'  (something to do with the 'Tour de France'?)  However we then discovered that all of the paths up the hillside from the road have now been 'closed off' by the landowners and having wasted too much time trying to find a feasible route we abandoned the idea...

Guadalest from the road out

Walking back up to Guadalest we took the opportunity of looking at the roadside climbing.

(see the Desnivel topo's here)

The Refugio at Guadalest

Back in Guadalest we discovered that there is a lovely fortified village hidden on the crest of the ridge!

The hilltop part of Guadalest

Thursday 23rd:  Departure day (very sunny of course...) so we packed and sorted out the 'bunkhouse'. We'd had it all to ourselves so it was just like the 'good old days' in 1999 when we'd had 'Casa Roc' for £100 and room for 8 climbers (6 beds & 2 on the floor!) Pricier now but with beds for all and much improved facilities!

Puig Campana from Sella

Calling at Decathalon on the way to the airport to spend some Euro's we dropped off the car and had a pleasant trip back to a very wintry England!

The view across the Mascarat Gorge to "Via UBSA"

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