Monday, 16 July 2018


Walk Summary
Second of four summits planned from base at Prados Abiertos, Mombeltran. Cerro del Cabezo two days ago, leaving La Serota and the highest most prominent peak of the trip Pico Almanzor during the next three of four days allowing from this very comfortable and reasonably priced campsite. 
Spotted on drive to walk start point. La Iglesia de
Navamorcuende dedicated to Santa Maria de la Nava.
About an hours drive to walk start point west of Navamorcuende near Convento del Pel Piélago where there is convenient off road parking at track entrance to Cruces radio mast and fire watch tower.
This road is drivable all the way to the summit however a no entry sign "Excepto Vehiculos Autorizado" pricked my conscience sufficiently to walk.
Not a lot to say about the walk other than the summit is visible very early on and it is a straight forward bimble all the way to the summit staying on the access track and resisting shortcut temptations. Highest point pretty close to the trig pillar that is enclosed within the radio mast compound but close enough to touch reaching through the fence.
I had another chance to practice my Spanish chatting with Alfredo the 'Alcaide fuego'. Worked quite well as his English was about as good as my Spanish.
One of those 'macho' trig pillars again,
just inside fence boundary with high point on fence corner.
After photos it was an easy walk back to the van following the ascent route and drive back through Navamorcuende where I was tempted to stop off and investigate the eye catching La Iglesia de Navamorcuende (toledo) dedicated to Santa Maria de la Nava. Dates back to 1327 or even 1276.
Decided to save it and explore it when I return with Gina. Can pull in Segovia on the same trip. Little did I realise this would be the penultimate P600 of this trip despite staying at Prados Abiertos for one more week.
Apart from there being an excellent good sized pool with plenty of lawn, a very friendly and welcoming bar/restaurant, ably manned by Hosé and Adriano, not to mention the very reasonable €17.00 daily pitch fee I had also booked return Eurotunnel slot for Friday 27 July, about 2 weeks sooner than originally planned.
Last look at summit from obscured footpath sign.
Very close to walk start/finish point
I could have managed Almanzor from here and even La Serota but complications like not being able to leave campsite due to much appreciated security gates not opening until 08:00am it was also likely I could break the walk up by having a night in Refugio Elola.
All complications I did not try very hard to over come. I put it down to deciding I would sooner lay in the sun for my last week, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Seems once again if it is a choice between sun and mountains sun wins again. Maybe that is why Spain seems to be taking priority over GB and in particular Scottish hills - it has abundant quantities of both. Well as they say all the hills will be there another day.
The one uncertainty, though I realise it is unlikely, is that access to Spain for extended unplanned periods post Brexit may not be so straight forward. Hence why I have booked ferry ticket back to Spain for 14 September later this year.

Walk Statistics
Walk Date - 16 July 2018
Walkers - Steve Smith
Accommodation - Prados Abiertos, Mombeltran 
Start Point - Track entrance to Cruces radio masts off TO-4045-V just east of Convento del Piélago (N40°08'16.320" W4°43'30.428")
Start Time - 11:01
Finish Point - Track entrance to Cruces radio masts off TO-4045-V just east of Convento del Piélago (N40°08'16.320" W4°43'30.428")
Finish Time- 12:56
Total Duration - 1hrs 55mins 
Overall Average pace - 2.63mph
Total Distance Walked - 5.04 miles
Total Height Ascended - 210.40metres

Peaks visited
Spain/Portugal 600m Prominence Peaks (168S - 185S&P - 2165E)
Cruces (14S - 17S&P - 44E)
Spain/Portugal 300m - 599m Prominence Peaks (1000+)
Spain/Portugal 150m - 299m Prominence Peaks (3000+)
Spain Autonomous Community High Points (19)
Spain Province High Points (52)
S: Spain
P: Portugal

Other walks on this trip
28th Eretza
29th Mortillano
03rd El Cueto
05th La Cotorra
05th Cerro San Lorenzo
06th Campiña
09th Lobo
12th Pico de Peñalara
16th Cruces
25th La Rhune


More Photographs
Early site of Cruces summit only 10 minutes in to walk
Click on photograph to view slide-show