Wonderful Hiking In Dinosaur Country, 150 Million Years Old.
Hello everybody, here comes my monthly post.
Last month I wrote a post which was dark and kicked up some dust here and there. There were opinions to suit all tastes. Personally, I think that is good because here at Wealthy Affiliate, we are a huge group of people from all countries in the world with different backgrounds and different world views. That is good and I would not want it any other way. I think the topic is very important and for those who have missed my post here is the link.
View from El Torcal seen from the outside
A special hiking trip to El Torcal
This month, I would like to tell you about a lovely hiking trip we made recently. We picked a wonderful day with nice weather. You never know what you get here because high up in the mountains, it can be quite chilly at this time of the year. El Torcal is only about 80 minutes away from where I live and looking through the window of my workroom I can see this mountain ridge to the North.
2 Andalusian Mountain Goats
150 Million Years back in time
El Torcal is one of the most impressive karst landscapes in Europe and when visiting you really have the impression you go back in time. It is no wonder because the limestone formations have been dated to about 150 million years ago to the middle of the Jurassic period. There are caves in El Torcal and one of them, Cueva del Toro ( Cave of the Bull) is important as Neolithic artifacts have been found there.
The Antequera Dolmens Site, inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list on 15 July 2016, includes the mountains El Torcal de Antequera.
Amazing how trees can grow on these rocks
Unusual plants and animals
El Torcal is heaven for Fauna and Flora. There are many wildflowers like red peonies, wild rose trees, and thirty varieties of orchid. There are nocturnal mammals like badgers, weasels, and rodents. Then you might encounter the Spanish ibex ( Andalusian mountain goat ) snakes and lizards and of course birds like the Golden Eagle.
Lonely tree in El Torcal
Hiking trails for all ages
There are 3 different routes. These are clearly marked color-coded hiking trails and you can choose 1.5 km, 2.5 km, and the longest one of 4.5 km. We took the medium one of 2.5 km, which does not seem much but it took more than 3 hours to complete. You have to climb up and then again down several times. You have several opportunities to take a rest to enjoy the view, take photos and yet have a bigger rest halfway through the hike to have something to drink and eat.
The valley of the Dinosaurs
Take enough water and some food
While sitting down for the little lunch, we looked up and eagles circling above us, slowly letting themselves be guided by the wind current. It was amazing to watch.
The end of our hike
The Astronomical Observatory
I have included some private photos which convey the atmosphere of this special place. You can clearly see the erosion patterns that over millions of years, created these unusual forms. Some special places have curious names like the Sphinx, the Jug, the Camel, and the Screw. As El Torcal is far away from big towns and is at an elevation of more than 1.200 meters above sea level, it is the ideal place for having an Astronomical Observatory. The starlit skies are amazing up here.
I hope you have enjoyed our hike in El Torcal. To tell you the truth my legs did hurt a bit the next day but it was worthwhile for sure to make this trip
Greetings from the south of Spain, Taetske