With only three days before we had to leave to travel North we had a weather window. That is, we had a â€œgoodâ€ weather window, and in the spirit of adventure we packed rucksacks and headed to Spain. From the door we went over Port de Salau and down to the Fornet Refuge for the first night. From there we trundled down the track to Alos D’Isil before heading up towards Refuge D’Airoto to camp. Then a 12 hour day to get back to the barn via: Col D’Airoto,Tuc de Bonabe, Oic de Moredo, down the valley Cireves and back over the Port de Salau.
We currently have a problem with our camera. It will take snap shots without the zoom, and it will take macro shots. Touch the zoom and take a shot and it comes out white. Hence all photos are broad scenes of mountains or close up shots of flowers. As we were walking in mountains and there were loads of flowers this was not too much of an issue. We have been on the internet and ordered another camera of the same make and model. There is something to be said (something good) about having a gadget you are familiar with and that you like; besides, we have spare batteries for it and a case which fits.
Refuge Fornet is super nice. From Port de Salau it is less than an hour and a half descent and the food is great. Staff are friendly and they have showers. Refuge D’Airoto is a shelter with basic equipment and no showers, let alone a toilet. It would be fine if you had it to yourselves but as it is on a first come first served basis there is no guarantee there will be nobody there or indeed space to sleep. On this occasion we took a tent which was fortunate as the refuge was full of people on the HRP and a group of Spanish who just wanted a party. Our camp spot was idyllic between the two lakes. Food, courtesy of Vesty, was good and we slept very well.
The last day, was a little over ambitious. It was not the distance of the height gain/loss that was the main issue but rather the terrain and disappearing footpaths. Our 1:50,000 map had paths marked on and our 1:25,000 had the detail. Following cairns across rough scree slopes and then 2 km of boulder fields did slow us down. There were however plenty of mountains and flowers, and we got back to the barn an hour before an almighty electrical storm.
What superb flowers – so beautiful