Having stopped for a chat with Fantastic Cliff at the old abandoned farmhouse we continued onwards, a lot kilometres still ahead of us. The farmhouse is around 1.5km from the start although it feels further because of the early climb.
From the off the views are sensational; broad peaks encircle the walk and form a layered promontory of silver grey walls that shine under the clear blue skies. On the October morning we chose for our journey the weather was beautiful and despite being so late in the year it was still hot. The Cares Gorge is nothing short of incredible.
Due to the heat we were getting through a lot of water but the scenery was so staggering that I didn’t notice.
Once past the farmhouse and stone arch the path levels off and is a much easier walk but the further you get the more immense the whole experience becomes. Sheer drops plummet hundreds of feet below the path while the walls close in forming a corridor fit for giants to traverse.
In places the walk is narrow and you’ll often find yourself sharing “Hola’s” with other intrepid wanderers.
Dogs are meant to stay on the leash throughout the Cares Gorge walk and at first we questioned the reasoning behind that. Once deeper into the gorge we realised why; the narrow path drops away in places and there are also so many goats around that some dogs could be tempted to chase them. Goats are designed for the environment, as we witnessed, whereas dogs are not.
That said Sweep was quite happy on the lead as he loves being out. We also needed to make sure he didn’t burn off too much energy too quickly as he’s only little and the walk is a huge one for him.
For the most part the walk is fairly easy and as you pass into Leon from Asturias the route becomes more interesting. Signs point you in the right direction and give a rough guide to the time it will take.
The landscape doesn’t change greatly as you meander breathlessly in awe of the surroundings and after crossing two metal bridges the path winds down to a tunnel carved out of the rock where you’ll need a torch or a hard hat to save your cranium from a few days of lumpiness. Cold water drips from the ceiling and puddles splash under foot as you shuffle the few hundred metres towards the little dam.
Emerging from the tunnel there is the small matter of a short walk beside the river which must be crossed to reach Cain; a welcome respite in a natural mountain arena.
If you wish to experience the Cares Gorge walk you can book a hotel in Poncebos by clicking here.
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