WALKING THE PICOS DE EUROPA

What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

The best moment was standing on the summit of Mancondiu at 2000 metres. The last two hundred feet or so were fun as they were a bit of a scramble, and the views from the top were magnicificent  The walk up the The Cares Gorge  was a delight - the mountains around the long limestone gorge are breathtaking, and the fast running Cares River far below and the clear water in the canal at the level of the path provide a  spectacular contrast to the mountains.  I went canoeing on the day off. The river is just right for novice canoeists, being easy enough to be safe but providing enough excitement to be interesting, and the day made a good contrast to walking.

What did you think of your group leader?

Our group leader was Alberro. He is a local young man who has an seemingly inexhaustible knowledge of the local ecology, flora and fauna and he cares passionatley about the local environment. He was always willing to share this knowledge and enthusiam with us. He knows all the footpaths like the back of his hand and so I always felt that we were doing the best possible option on the day, bearing in mind the weather and any other variables. He was always friendly helpful and good humoured and was a joy to be with for the week.

Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Go there!

Is there anything else you would like to add?

We were lucky with the weather and the flowers were beautiful. There was a good view of the highest peaks from the hotel. Jim and Pilar made us very welcome in the hotel and the food was often local, always tasty and was plentiful and varied.  All in all, a wonderful week.