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Its not often you get signs as clear as this.

This walk starts at Panderrueda which is probably the closest point to the hotel to start a walk on the southern side of the Picos de Europa.  Despite its height, 1450 m Panderrueda is a gentle mountain pass with a large open grassy field, barbeques and picnic area. I arrived at nine o’clock in the morning, the temperature had been dropping continually since I left home and the car thermometer now marked 2ºC, definitely too early to wear shorts! I realised I hadn’t done this walk (with good visibility) for over four years and with a brilliant blue sky and not a cloud in sight it looked like I was going to have another good day walking.

Piedrashitas view point with a memorial to the Darleks

500 meters from the picnic area you come to the Piedrashita viewing point with its two concrete statues which look like a memorial to Dr Who and the Darleks. It was built in 1967 obviously with the mentality that laying concrete shows mans ability to dominate nature, but I think in this part of the world it’s very definitely nature that dominates.

Lichen covered conglemerate

With so much photographic material I was walking slower than normal. There is a short section of beech trees covered in long beard like lichens and after climbing up a small valley you come to an amazing outcrop of conglomerate rock. It looks like someone took a mass of rounded beach pebbles and glued them all together and then the lichens decided to paint them green; impressive natural art and an unusual geological feature for the Picos.

Southern side of the Western Massif

Next is a relatively flat section with spectacular views towards the Ponga Mountain, and then you get a change in perspective your jaw drops again as you get a stunning view of the southern side of the western massif. I hadn’t taken our own self guided walking notes and was following the map which I soon discovered had the route marked incorrectly. The map shows the route passing on the north side of Pico Samaya when actually the path goes on the southern side. It gave me an excuse to climb this slightly awkward and bouldery peak before joining the proper path at the lower coll (Colladinas de Somaya). From here the path is easy to follow, the views just get better and better and you’re soon comfortably on the Jarrio Peak.

Summit of the Jario peak in the foreground

We include this route in our self guided notes as there can be times when there is cloud cover in Asturias and this area can be above the clouds. Its 60 km from the hotel and a 75 minute drive but the route is lovely and gives the chance to see a different type of vegetation marked by a slightly more continental climate.

Peña Santa the highest peak in the western massif as seen on the way up to the Jario peak


Technical Information

Profile Panderrueda Pico Jario

Map Jario from Panderuedas

Download GPS trail from wikiloc

Self guided walking notes and GPS trail available for guests from the hotel

Type of walk There and back
Starting Point Puerto de Panderruedas 6km before Posada de Valdeon
Finishing Point Puerto de Panderruedas
Acces 62km from hotel 75 minutes by car
Public transport options None
Grading Difficult
Total Length 12 km
Total Ascent 620m
Altitude 1450 – 1913 – 1450
Total Walking time 4 ½ hours
Terrain Mountain paths
Navigation Easy to start with slightly more difficult at end
Refreshments Bar at Oseja de Sajambre
Map Adrados Western Massif Picos de Europa

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