A Few Murky Hours at the Rio Foix Reservoir, Catalunya


The Rio Foix is a haven for rock climbers and fishing types pretty much all year round. Situated at the end of a heavily winding road and roughly 20km from Vilanova I La Geltru on the southern end of the Costa Brava it is a spectacular pocket of marvellous feats of engineering and design mixed with the backdrop of the Catalunyan hills and forests.

Midway through the 1900s a dam was built across the river to serve as a power supply and save excess flooding; the result is a huge reservoir which in my humble opinion is overfished and sullied.

Our walk along its edge was somewhat depressing as the turgid green waters were heavily littered with fishing line and the remnants of discarded picnics which turned the reservoir into a soup of filth and degradation.

For all their wonderful ways, the Spanish are guilty of complete disregard for the environment at times and it’s something that needs to be addressed before a beautiful country becomes a beautiful trash can.



Away from the lack of respect paid by human visitors (because you can be damn sure that visiting wildlife doesn’t leave its unwanted crap everywhere) there is a tiny pueblo at the base of a castle which overlooks the reservoir.

The courtyard is home to a gnarly old tree which has watched the comings and goings of the Rio Foix for over a century, while the walls behind it have done so for centuries more.



We managed to visit on a rare day for Spain, overcast and cold but it lent a presence to the Foix which a sunny day could not. Despite the gloom and the litter I loved the place and have hopes to one day kayak its waters.

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