Pico de Vilo from Alfarnate
Country - Spain
Region - Malaga Province (Andalucia)
Author - Peter Bailey
Length - 11.2 km / 7 miles
Ascent - 500 metres / 1650 feet
Descent - 500 metres / 1650 feet
Time - 4.00 hours
Alfarnate is a typical Spanish village in a delightful location which has really not been touched by tourism. This is a linear walk starting and ending in the village. There are very good views throughout.
How to get to the start : Alfarnate is really only accessible by car. Take the motorway going north from Malaga. When you reach Casabermeja, leave the motorway and follow signs for Rio Gordo and Alfarnate.
The walk Start from the municipal sportsground, signed "Polideportivo", from the centre of the village. This is located on the southern edge of the village and close to the mountain. Walk towards the Pico de Vilo mountain along an unsurfaced stony road which is wide enough to drive along in a car. As the path zigzags up the mountain you will have excellent views of Alfarnate in the wide valley below. From time to time you will see the TV tower on the shoulder of the hill in front of you.
When you reach the TV tower, follow the main path round to the left. Gradually climbing parallel to the mountain ridge. On your right you will have spectacular views of the mountains south of Villanueva del Rosario, although the village itself is concealed behind the mountains. Even more impressive are the views of the Tajo del Fraile , Gómer and Do&ncirc;a Ana. You follow the main path practically to the end. Eventually Alfarrnatejo village comes into sight far below on the right.
When you have walked more than 3 km (approx 2 miles) you reach a much narrower path climbing up the hillside to the left. The main path leads down to a farm from here. Our path soon leads through pine woods and when you reach the ridge, you will see a circular threshing area made from stones, "era" in Spanish. From this point on the ridge the path leads upwards towards the right, or generally south. A hundred yards after the threshing area you reach a fence, which you cross and follow the line of another fence to your right. The path is sometimes a little indistinct but you are always going uphill.
Eventually you emerge from the wood. From this point you can see the highest point of El Pico de Vilo and you make for that. You are now in a wide open area and it is clearly possible to find your own path without any danger of getting lost. There are one or two signs indicating where the path is but do not worry if you miss them, you cannot get lost if you bear in mind that you are always heading for the highest ground. Soon you will see another TV or radio mast on the highest point of the Pico. Head towards this and enjoy the view across the valleys over towards Lake Vi&numl;uela and in the distance the sea. The return route is the same as the ascent.
French IGN mapping is available in digital format by area and 'cut your own' maps. For more information and availabilty go to the Anquet website.
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