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Lagos de Saliencia

Lagos de Saliencia

Lake of the Cave, Lake of the Calabazosa, Lake of the Valley

Lagos de Saliencia

Lake of the Cave, Lake of the Calabazosa, Lake of the Valley

There are no words to describe them. You have to see them. Saliencia lakes are a diamond in the rough, one of the meccas of the Asturian landscape. The fact that you have to walk a good distance to discover them keeps you away from mass tourism. They are the lovers of the senderismo those that take in the retina an unrepeatable image, like a fat prize.


There are more than a hundred lakes and lagoons that dot the Principality of Asturias, but these three - those of Saliencia - may take the cake. Somiedo is one of the five Natural Parks of Asturias and houses a dozen lakesIncluding the biggest and deepest of the Cantabrian mountain range. For the environment in which they register, little or nothing have to envy the legendary Lagos de Covadonga. Somiedo is an abrupt council, dominated by nature in its most genuine state. This excellent degree of conservation of the landscape, the fauna in freedom, the brañas and the friendliness of the countrymen, makes us feel like authentic explorers.

We are going in search of these lakes crossing spectacular enclaves by glacial valleys, through the trail PR AS-15. Lake of the Valley and those of Saliencia, Biosphere Reserve, are the ones that everyone wants to see. For them we ascend to Alto de la Farrapona (1.708 m.), A point that divides the Asturian region of Somiedo from the Leonese region of Babia. We are ready to face 14 kilometers (round trip). You don't have to be an ironman, but you do require a certain state of form and used to walking. Of course, it is best to do the tour in good weather and not try it in winter, unless we are mountain professionals. With good weather conditions, the excursion could be said to be of a medium demand, but the its length does not make it suitable to go with young children. It will take at least six hours to go and return, what you have to take into account when planning the excursion. The route is well signposted with signs and markings for this purpose. Although there are some slopes of certain hardness, the route has rather little difference in height as a whole, about 400 meters.

From the car park we follow the sign for "Lagos de Saliencia". In just 15 minutes, following the itinerary of the old Santa Rita iron track -now abandoned-, we saw the Cueva Lake surrounded by the slopes of the Ubiñas massif. Shortly after we come to a fork (18 min.), We continue to the right and up. The old mining track, which was quite possibly a secondary, or "winter" branch, of the old La Mesa road (Prehistoric route prepared by the Romans), leads us to a viewpoint with views over the Lago de la Cueva, the mountains of Alto de Colladín and the Sierra de los Bígaros in the background. Passing the Laguna de la Mina we reach a ridge (37 min., 1745 m.) From where you get unbeatable views of the Cerveiriz meadow. We follow the arrow that points to the left, towards "Lago de la Calabazosa". Soon we see the Lake of Cerveiriz to our right. Once we reached the end of the crest (45 min.) We discovered a magnificent panoramic view of the Great Calabazosa Lake, the largest of the three, which occupies the depression of a large sinkhole excavated by dissolution of limestone. La Calabazosa or Llanegru can reach 60 meters deep

We return to the track and continue down to the Vega de Cerveiriz. Next to the Cerveiriz lake (57 min.) The track forks. We follow the indication to the "Lago del Valle", on the right, through the plain. At the end of it (1h. 03 min.) (1.685 m.) We ascend to a hill, where we find a wooden landmark. In front of us it stretches the Vega de Camayor with soft subalpine pastures. Continuing along the right bank of the plain, we reach another hill (1h. 41 min.) (1.745 m.), From where the peaks of Peña Llana, Cebolléu and Picos Albos can be seen. To our left we see a sign for the "Lago del Valle". From here we follow the white and yellow milestones along a path that runs downward. We come to a track next to the lake (2 h. 45 min.) (1.570 m).

We return by the same route to the Alto la Farrapona car park (5 h. 20 min.).

Text: © Ramón Molleda for desdeasturias.com


Total distance: 19492 m
Maximum height: 1876 m
Minimum height: 1569 m
Ascent slope: 1878 m
Descent slope: -1789 m
Time spent: 10:19:14

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