The Walking Route

STAGE 7 CARABANZO – PENDILLA DE ARBÁS

On the col of Las Cruces, at more than 680 m altitude the track accesses the narrow ridge in which the long cordal of Carracedo ends. Leave a detour to the left that goes down to La Estrada and the valley of the Aller River, and continues with direction S with a path very similar to the primitive. It adapts, in principle, to the axis of the cordal constantly rising and with a sinuous arrangement, but about 600 m leans towards the eastern slope, thus departing from the road that goes straight and somewhat higher. A few hundred meters later, about 1,080 from the las Cruces col, the track leaves on the left a branch that advances more straightly, and begins a steep climb with the help of several zigzags of tight curves that allow to reach 900 m of altitude, overcoming the primitive path that runs lower down the hillside.

After the curved section, the track continues with a fairly straight alignment and in open field by the top of the slope and always in soft but constant ascent. Just over 600 m from the last curve, they depart successively on the right hand two detours of less entity that go to the summit of the Ranero peak. The track advances without changing its style, crosses a small wooded mass and reaches, finally, the meadows of the collate de mayéu (majada) Espines, at almost 1,100 altitude and after having traveled about 4,600 m from Las Cruces.

Cross the short hill, from which a road on the right departs in a steep descent, and begins a new repecho through which it overcomes with a long zigzag the hill located to the S of the es cabaña de Espines. Flipped the hill reaches a short platform at almost 1,200 m altitude that houses several megalithic burial buildings. Always something above the lean preserved remains of the track, the track runs again in slight ascent, along the NE slope at the edge of the dorsal axis and through a dense bender, to flow into La Róbliga, highlight of the itinerary at 1,270 m high. It overcomes the rocky tip by a right angle turn and begins a long descent with pronounced curves by which it must overcome the chain of hills that form a more depressed segment of the cordal, which welcomes the mayéu (majada) Carraceo, before the summit of the peak of Pedro García, which frames by the S the horizon. It reaches the lowest point, less than 1,147 m in height, on the first hill after about 1,320 m from La Róbliga. Then he begins to ascend slowly surrounding, prays on the left, prays on the right, the successive cerretes interpped in the lomera and quite parallel to the course of the track, the remains of whose structure are preserved somewhat higher and wedged between the hills.

Right here the original road, now difficult to recognizable, continued by the start of the dorsal and then moved to the SO slope of the peak of Pedro García. Instead, the track does so on the northern side much umbre colder.

If you continue along the track you advance on marked ascent, immediately passing a crossing that descends to the cabins of Carraceo. After almost 2 km it recovers horizontal and continues quite sinuous and between wooded spots until it flows, after a total of 3,200 m next to the huts of the Acíu on the track that comes from Nembra. From here it is necessary to take the right crossing by the track, which is wider, and takes great elevation to reach the col of the Aciu, after more than 800 in length and a hundred meters higher.

If you want to continue along the original road, since from the junction is closed by the vegetation, you have to follow the previous track about 460 m and then exit towards the jacket that is just above by a path without topographic mark, but in the shape of a path, indicating a subsequent reuse due to the disappearance of the initial structure by a large detachment of the slope that generated a large water trough. Nothing else is an old, eroded configuration that advances with a moderate but constant slope. First, it makes a wide turn that leads to an old jacket. Although the continuation of the path is well perceived from here along the hillside, the link is made by means of a long zigzag – first with a curve to the left and then to the right – today somewhat hidden among the vegetation that carries near the summit axis. The exit of the last turn splices with the well visible trace that continues up the hillside until reaching the col of the Acíu where it links with the mining track from Nembra. In total it represents a stretch of just over 2,500 m once it left the track in which it goes from 1,190 m of altitude to almost 1,460 m.

From Cochá (Collada) El Acíu, at more than 1,460 m altitude, connects with the mining track that goes back from Nembra the Allerana slope. It is a wide and well-steadfast work built in the 1970s and 1971 to facilitate high mountain mining and is today the only passable road that reaches the port. From here most of its route reused that of the primitive Roman road, which was therefore destroyed, retaining small signs and also some sections of great interest, but its difficult traffic today advises following the track to the port of the Cordillera.

From El Acíu the track continues to clear field about 1,500 m with the same dimension by the S slope of the cordal, sometimes retaining remains of the primitive platform above the slope, and reaches the lower part of the hill of La Cava.

From here, leaving on the left a branch to Cuchu Piuyu, begins one of the largest slopes of the entire route, a stretch of almost 1,100 m in length in which ascends 130 m of elevation to reach the Portillo de Buxán, passing halfway through the large trenches of La Cava, mining excavations of Roman times perhaps golden explorers. In Buxán, the road crosses the fortifications of El Homón de Faro, barriers that cut off the Carisa way, probably to stop the Islamic invasion. From this point you can see the entire journey to the divide with Leon on the axis of the Cordillera.

The track regains horizontality and traces a long curve along the slope of Mount Curriechos, where one of the Roman camps erected during the conquest of Asturias is located. In the middle of the curve leaves behind the detour that goes up to portillín de La Boya, and after another 1,500 at the foot of the hill of the Tunelón, which is called a gallery, today covered, that crosses the mountain and through which the cable cables of the cable car that carried the coal from the mines of Climbing to the railroad cargo. At the foot of the tunnel, although it is possible to continue straight through the remains of the original route just over a hundred meters until it connects again with the track, it traces a closed curve that with a length of 140 m allows to ascend a twenty of meters to the hill. In this narrow hill that connects the valleys of Parana (Lena) and El Rasón (Aller) you get one of the best panoramic views of the entire route, reaching by the O Peña Ubiña and the Aramo and by the E the Picos de Europa.

On the col there are three exits, which must be continued by the one that makes the rightmost and unique curve that follows on the western slope. It continues clear along the hillside in gradual ascent and with gentle curves surrounding the peak hills of the mountain range, retaining remains of the original structure. At 975 m of route you approach the hill of La Cruz de Fuentes, where the old road that from here runs at higher altitude to the port is separated on the left. A few meters later it leaves, also on the left, another branch that went up to the front of the Fierros mines, and begins a stretch of about 820 m in length and sharp descent of a hundred meters helped with three zigzag curves to bypass the mining.

From here the track, dominated almost 200 m in altitude by the primitive track, makes a route of 2,900 m to the divide with the province of León, always halfway down the hillside and with predominant horizontality, although there is no shortage of some soft slides, and adapts to the various push-ups generated by the bellows, maintaining a level close to 1,650 m. Halfway through that path it passes at the foot of the huts that form the Maya of Fierros. In the last segment, once the landslides of La Moena have passed, it carries out a descent of half a hundred meters to reach the port of Collado Propinde.

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