Saturday, 11 October 2014

8 October 2014 – Caballo Verde Ridge

Our second walk with CBMW in a week was our old favourite The Green Horse, but with an extension.   The exact extension was unclear, but it was only 3km longer and 150m higher than our Wednesday walk.   Also some of our Monday  Group were joining the walk.
There were 30 plus on the walk, more than we are used to, but not unusual for CBMW
The walk started at Benimaurell and followed our usual route at the start.  But this joined the path we usually return on just outside the village to walk the ridge anti clockwise
It was immediately obvious that the pace would be much quicker than last Saturday, and indeed faster than our usual Monday Group pace.   
It was also much hotter than our last walk, with temperatures on, or very near 30c.   Despite this we managed to keep up with the group without any trouble.
I prefer our usual clockwise route to climb the mountain.  But I must admit that the views are more impressive walking the ridge anti clockwise.
There is no path on the ridge, and the going can be rough.  But the advantage of the recent dry spell is that the rocky surface was very dry and provided good grip.
So the walk was pretty uneventful until we reached the point where we would normally reach the ridge if we were walking clockwise.   I believe some walkers did take this path back to the start.   But the walk was to continue over the ridge.
This is always a good location for a group photograph.   Over the years I must have taken at least two dozen similar shots of different groups at this same spot.
This was not a lunch stop and after a short break we started on the extension
The first part was easy going on good terrain, though by now the temperature was quite high and with no shade it was very hot.
We soon came to the first of two obstacles.   Both required a little scramble, and seemed more difficult than it looks in the photo.   It was not unsafe in any way, but it would take a little time for each walker to cross each obstacle and this led to gaps in the group.
We were relieved to reach the end of the ridge and start to descend.   We had been warned that the path was difficult, but in fact was not too bad.
As we returned to the village we passed this font.   Most of the group filled up with cool water, which was delicious and very welcome
We found the walk to be quite difficult.   It was only 12 km and with 450m of ascent, which we have done many times before.   But the heat, and the pace of the walk, made it a challenging 5 hour walk for us.   I would like to do it again, but at a slightly slower pace.   An extra half hour would have made it much more enjoyable for us.

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