Monday was a beautiful sunny day, and we hiked up Pico Mondoto for views into the Añisclo Canyon and the high peaks of Ordesa, covered with fresh snow from the day before.
It was cold and crisp the air couldn’t have been any clearer which made for particularly spectacular views. The peak of Mondoto (1959m), lies right on the rim of the Añisclo Canyon. The river at the bottom of the canyon is at around 1000 metres of altitude so you have a dizzying drop of over 900 metres below you!
As well as the views into the Añiclo Canyon, you also get views over the three thousand metre peaks of the Treseroles – Cilindro, Monte Perdido and Pico Añisclo (or Soum de Ramond). These were all snow-covered and made for a wonderful line of peaks – we could see right across to Pico Posets, the second-highest peak of the Pyrenees and quite some distance away near Benasque.
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The Ordesa NP
Guide to hiking the spectacular canyons of the Ordesa National Park
The hike starts in the pretty village of Nerin. From there you steadily climb up the south face of Mondoto. The ascent has nice enough views, but during the climb, you’ve no clues to the incredible vistas that are soon going to reveal themselves when you reach the summit.
There were lots of griffon vultures circling around and we saw an Egyptian vulture, which have just arrived back in the Pyrenees again after wintering in North Africa. Our dog Ruby was very pleased to find that the marmots have come out of hibernation and they taunted her relentlessly, whistling and then disappearing down their holes just as she gets close!
As you reach the final climb, the line of snow-capped peaks became visible. Only when you reach the summit, does the Añisclo Canyon suddenly come into view disappearing away beneath you.
It was Florencia’s birthday and we celebrated with birthday cake and a balloon on the summit! You couldn’t ask for a better place to celebrate. We saw one bearded vulture glide past close by, and we looked down onto lots of Griffons circling down below.
After the summit, we headed down to a viewpoint I know closeby, that has a really jaw-dropping vertical drop! We visit this spot on one of the hikes on our Discover Ordesa holidays and it never fails to impress our guests. On that hike, we use a 4×4 taxi to ascend over a thousand metres which enables us to hike along the rims of the Añisclo and Ordesa Canyons on the same day which is really special.
It’s not a long route – we only did 10km and 700 metres of ascent, taking 4 1/2 hours – but the views are simply incredible. None of the others had been here before and it was good to show them a new area, especially for Florencia on her birthday.
Cold but clear weather set to continue in the Pyrenees for a while so this weekend I’ll hopefully get out on another hike. You can see lots more photos of our hikes and adventures in the Pyrenees on our Facebook page or Instagram @Hike-Pyrenees.