to visit the castle on the peak of Montgrí for a few years now,
but having found the only way up is on foot have always found something
less strenuous to do instead. However, we finally decided to do it following
an article in La Vanguardia and set out with our sandwiches in a backpack.
The start of the climb impressed us by its steepness, walking on mud
paths partially washed away by torrents of rain, which have carved
great fissures into them, but we were also impressed by our rate of assent,
the ground disappearing quickly and the castle seemingly no closer.
Our first landmark was a small chapel, no larger than 2m square followed
shortly by two others and after 30 minutes up a sloping path to a cross
on our first peak. The castle still seemed no nearer, but the ground
further than ever.
It was around 25 minutes more before we entered the castle, started at
the end of the 12th century by the Barcelona barons to oversee the local
rivals but never finished. It comprises of the outer wall and four cylindrical
towers and is in good condition despite a few repairs. You can walk up
one of the towers to the top of the wall, from where the view is spectacular.
You can see to l´Escala, l´Estartit and the Medes islands in the sea, the plains with smoke rising from some fire, the
mountains in the background layered on each other as they disappear into
the distance and the snow capped Pyrenees.
We had lunch sat on the ground with our backs to the castle wall and
looked to the horizon. Afterwards we descended, the castle rapidly disappearing
and the ground becoming no closer. Eventually we returned to ground level
and learned from a sign that the peak is 306 metres high. We got back
in the car and made our way home.
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