Montgrí


     

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I´ve wanted 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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