Pyrenees 2018

Our trip report of this year is full of news, both for the destination and for the way of traveling. And of course (it couldn’t be otherwise) new gear. If someone is interested in an organized trekking in the Pyrenees, pay attention … We start!

Let’s talk first about the way we’ve travelled this summer. Several personal reasons forced us to choose a shorter trip than usual: two weeks maximum. Our different plans were discarted (Ladakh, postponed once again, then Georgia, then…) and finally we decided to go to the Pyrenees. Among other things, because this year we have not traveled alone. And that has changed everything. We had to adapt our routine to the fact that we have been accompanied by a pair of friends with little experience in the mountains, and that there would also be one of them walking with us in each week of the two we had. Logistically that required looking for two trekkings of about a week each, that were not far from each other and that had a sufficient shelter infrastructure. Fortunately, all over the Pyrenees the offer of trekkings of this type abounds; they have the advantage of greatly facilitating the entire planning process and so on, but they have the disadvantage (it’s must be said) that they are more expensive and you lose flexibility, being closed tours, although with options, as we will explain later . We chose to do the Aneto-Posets Tour and the “Alta Ruta de los Perdidos” (High Route of the Lost… inspiring, isn’t it?). We both liked it a lot. I have fond memories of the Pyrenees when I was a child and it did not disappoint me, and Mony said she was pleasantly surprised by the beauty of the landscapes we have seen. And no wonder, the Pyrenees are spectacular!

X-E1 2018-08-30 14:56:42 f/8 1/800sec ISO-200 16mm

Let’s explore the advantages of this type of trekking. Above all, comfort. You have the route set, which usually runs through particularly beautiful places in the area and is usually well signposted (although it does not always turn out to be that way, we’ll mention it when we do the post of each trek), with the booking in the shelter already made, even with the option of asking for a picnic bag in each one and avoid having to carry any food (which we chose not to do) and thus be able to go lighter and enjoy the journey more. It can be said that it is a more social way of traveling, because you find more people on the trails that you do on your own, and every night, in each shelter, you coincide with people you have seen on the tracks, or who comes from where you are headed the day after… All the environment in the refuge, the availability of booze… invites to the conversation, to the meeting.

Certainly, that can be a disadvantage for someone trying to travel in solitude and seclusion, trying to disconnect. The usual snoring chorus at night is also another drawback. The truth is that we miss the solitude, the special sensations of the bivouac on the mountain, but it is also true that we adapt perfectly to the camaraderie, partly because, as we have said, we went with our friends. That has been a touch of freshness for our trip; we can say that this year we have had a better time, we have had more fun. Not because we two alone do not have a good time, but because more people go, the fun increases (you know… the more, the merrier), and because of that aspect of socialization that we have commented previously. For our friends the experience has been positive (or at least that’s what they told us), so it would not be surprising if they accompanied us in some other adventure … Josito, Antonio, you know it has been a pleasure!

X-E1 2018-08-31 07:44:47 f/8 1/15sec ISO-200 16mm

Another interesting factor has been what I call the “guide effect”. When we have gone on our own, we have alternated in the responsibilities, taking turns to lead the march, and making the decisions between the two of us. This year I (Carlos) have self-imposed greater pressure, greater responsibility and that has made me feel (in the few moments in which there has been a problem) a little overwhelmed. All my respects for those professionals who make this their way of life!

This is resulting already a long post, so I’m not going to digress much more … In the following days we will be commenting on the rest of things we have to tell about this trip, such as the review of our new backpack (Bergans Helium), and our impressions of the trekkings we did. And pictures, of course! So if you’re interested, stay tuned.

X-E1 2018-08-18 14:16:24 f/7.1 1/1200sec ISO-400 32.5mm

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