Picos de Europa, 3 - 10 October 2015 (grade 5)
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?
Lunch above the Col de Pandebano with stunning views across to Naranja with a distant accompaniment of cow bells. Scrambling up and down a limestone cone that I never thought I would manage on the last day. Mugs of tea at Jim's (hotel owners) house after muddy descent through meadows and woods on second day!
What did you think of your group leader?
Excellent! Knowledgeable, enthusiastic, patient and a great sense of humour. Skilled at keeping the group together enough for reasons of safety but not too restricting. All the benefits of a local guide but with fluent English. Marked our hikes on several of the group's maps and sent us all his photos afterwards.
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?
Just go! Think of the Lake District, but less manicured and crowded, plus Alpine meadows and jaw dropping limestone peaks. For grade 5 you need to be fit, we trained for 3 or so weeks beforehand (mid 60s).
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Jim, Pilar and all the staff very welcoming and helpful, producing a birthday cake for one of the group, hotel comfortable. Food very good, including packed lunches. Perhaps a lack of salads and vegetables for my taste. Enjoyed trip to Llanes on day off and the coastal walk, but everything shuts between 1.30 and 4.00 so unable to visit exhibition about whaling or art gallery.