Report about a two day hiking trip into the Tabernas Deserts, Almeria, Spain
"Good job that lot didn't fall down 56 years earlier", I thought as I stood looking across to the the place where Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach had stood whilst dishing out the loot from a bank raid as Blondie and Tuco in The Good the Bad and the Ugly. A recent rockfall had wiped away theWe don't like up and down the same way so we plumped for a circular route which meant getting into less travelled terrain with less defined paths. Utmost concentration was the order of the day as it was steep and loose. All Nomads managed to survive the experience without falls.
A walk back along the old road back to the car was enlivened by the hoot from a lorry driver warning us of a car arriving at over 60 kph towards our backsides. We just waved back stance. Looking up I noticed the cracks in the overhanging wall above me. Do you feel lucky, punk? The answer was "no", so I beat a rather hasty retreat down to the dry and dusty Rambla below.
We followed these Ramblas into "injun" country for another hour or so before we headed east up into a small valley lined with dinosaur back ridges. I found out later they are not Dinosaurs they are in fact, Dragons. And they are not "backs" after all, they are "tails". Doh! Silly me.
For the geologist amongst you this is a remarkable place. For the uninitiated, like me, you just stand and stare. What strange and preposterous forces of nature happened here? Perhaps the strangest phenomenon was the existence of "knobbly bits". OK, I know that "knobbly bits" may not be the correct terminology here, but I can't be arsed finding out the real name. Anyway, thing is, the "knobbly bits" are just an incredible sight.
Then it was onto the salt flats, within sight of the Repsol Petrol Station where our cars were parked. Here we saw the place where the tank went over the cliff in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. The tank was a miniature as any full sized tank wouldn't have got onto the small plateau that formed the escarpment. Next to the place where the said tank went for it's last ride is a small gully that Indiana, (Harrison Ford) climbs up the cliff.
Needless to say, the views towards Cerro Alfaro were magnificent.
"Away days" are a complete joy for us Nomads. A chance to leave our hard working normal lives behind for just a moment and become kids again. There was only one bar open in Tabernas that night, the cute "El Rinconillo" run by a lovely Colombian couple. They could hardly fit the 10 of us in there and it looked like it was going to be a night in watching TV for the locals.
Anyway Juan, the owner made us feel very at home. No choice with the menu, in fact there was no menu. Egg, chips, pork, sausage, salad. All washed down by huggings of beer, wine and finally, mojitos. We liked it so much we returned next morning for breakfast, a simple fare of coffee and tostadas.
It was a beautiful day. Cold and clear. The clarity in the air was amazing. We headed for the reigning peak of the desert, Cerry Alfaro.
Cerro Alfaro may be a mere diminutive 744m above sea level. In mountain terms it can hardly be called a "mountain" can it? Anyway don't let that fact put you off, this is in fact a real mountain in anybody's language. It starts at 200m so the ascent to it's lofty summit means 550m+ of ascent. Steep and loose in places.
It's a good path up there though and a couple of hours later saw us crouching behind a fore-summit hiding away from a group of school kids who had come up another way. Miserable gits us Nomads eh?
We don't like up and down the same way so we plumped for a circular route which meant getting into less travelled terrain with less defined paths. Utmost concentration was the order of the day as it was steep and loose. All Nomads managed to survive the experience without falls.
A walk back along the old road back to the car was enlivened by the hoot from a lorry driver warning us of a car arriving at over 60 kph towards our backsides. We just waved back
Published 5 days ago