Volcano hiking in the Costa Brava

Caution: this post is about an extreme hiking adventure.

The brave, daring, valiant, hardcore adrenalin thrill seeker Covetotop is visiting the Croscat Volcano and its dangerous surroundings.

Read at your own risk.

The adventure starts just now.

10:30 a.m.- Covetotop arrives at the Croscat Volcano (La Garrotxa, Girona). The beast rests just in front of him …

La Garrotxa Croscat

The Croscat Volcano is very recent (from the Quaternary period). Consequently, for safety reasons, before starting the hike, the brave Covetotop checks the soil’s temperature with his bare hand. He finds it normal and suffers no damage (in his bare hand)

Croscat volcano 2This side of the volcano (and almost the whole Natural Park to which it belongs) is covered by lush vegetation.

As far as animals are concerned, according to the Park’s official brochure, “in terms of vertebrates, up to the year 2004 a total of 261 species had been recorded, of which 9 were fish, 11 amphibians, 17 reptiles, 177 birds and 47 were mammals”

Ok. That means that the intrepid Covetotop is dangerously surrounded, at the very least, by 9 fishes, 11 amphibians, 17 reptiles, 177 birds and 47 mammals. Wow!

Green volcano CroscatCovetotop managed to cross the green side of the volcano safe and alive.

Path to the volcanoApart from valiant, Covetotop is sensitive. This is an added problem, because sensitive people are prone to suffer attacks of melancholy whenever they see a wonderful landscape.

Volcanic GarrotxaThe Croscat Volcano is surrounded by a wonderful lanscape.

La Garrotxa by CroscatThe snow covered Pyrenees range makes the perfect background.

Garrotxa and PyreneesFarms with horses are elegiac.

La GarrotxaNotwithstanding the beautiful landscape that surrounds the Croscat Volcano, the valiant and sensitive Covetotop didn’t suffer the slightest attack of melancholy. Moreover, he enjoyed the walk very much.

Volcano border11:15 a.m.- The brave, valiant, sensitive, etc., Covetotop reaches the crater’s heart:

Croscat's craterThere was volcanic activity in this area over hundreds of thousands of years.

Graderes CroscatThe Croscat is a Strombolian volcano, which means a brutal expulsion of ash, lapilli, slag and volcanic bombs.

Volcanic ashesThe last eruption took place some 11,500 years ago, but … who guarantees to Covetotop that he is safe just now? Is it theoretically impossible that the volcano may re-erupt during his pleasant hike? No! Our hero is running a serious theoretical risk!

Volcano surroundingsTwo fearless girls -volcanologists, no doubt- are studying the dormant beast.

Volcanologist girls12:30 p.m.- It is time to abandon this inferno.

Crater CroscatGood bye, Croscat Volcano.

Croscat from afar01.00 p.m.- Covetotop the daring explorer is very hungry.

Restaurants, like volcanoes, can be dangerous places too. Usually they don’t erupt, but they may offer overpriced menus.

Skilled explorers like Covetotop know where the good and inexpensive restaurants are hidden.

Keep calm and follow him.

La Garrotxa landscapeTarget: Restaurant Hostal del Ossos (not far away from the Croscat Volcano)

Soil’s temperature at the restaurant: suitable for human life.

Price of the daily menu: 12 Euros, suitable for Covetotop’s economy.

Menu: three courses plus dessert plus drink. Here they are:

Restaurant Els Ossos 1Els Ossos 2Els Ossos 3Els Ossos 402:30 p.m.- Yum!

Now the adventure can go on. Covetotop, the hardcore adrenalin thrill seeker, is thinking about bungee jumping or something like that.

The first thing he needs is a bridge …

03:00 p.m.– Covetotop arrives at the Campmajor Valley (a 15 minutes drive from the Croscat Volcano) in search of a suitable bridge.

He visits some tiny medieval villages of this charming and little known valley.

La Vall de CampmajorMedieval villages mean rural Romanesque churches.

Sant Miquel de CampmajorThe church of Sant Miquel de Campmajor is Romanesque, but its façade was modified in the Baroque period.

Sant Miquel de Campmajor façadeLet’s go on.

Paths in the Campmajor valley are wonderful and surprising.

Glorious pathCovetotop is looking for a suitable bridge.

Ordinary people think that a suitable bridge (for bungee jumping) is a modern and tall bridge, made of iron and concrete, able to resist the weight of an idiot hanging by an elasticized cord.

That is bullshit.

Covetotop doesn’t need elasticized cords. He prefers real ultra-high-risk sports, like MBC.

MBC (Medieval Bridge Crossing) consists on crossing a medieval bridge from one side to the other.

Medieval bridges are very old, and you never know if they can support your weight without collapsing.

MBC is the ultimate adrenaline pumper.

Here is our goal: the 12th century bridge of Can Prat.

Can Prat bridgeCovetotop barely can breath. No doubt: MBC is by far the most exciting extreme sport.

Here we go, from one side …

Can Prat bridge 1Crossing the bridge… to the other side …

Can Prat 3Wonderful Medieval bridgeBravo Covetotop!

04:30 p.m.- An exhausted Covetotop takes a break by Sant Martí de Campmajor.

Sant Martí de CampmajorSant Martí is just another microvillage with a very old church.

Sant Martí de Campmajor churchThe church’s façade is simple.

Preromanesque façadeThe curch’s door is peculiar.

Ancient doorJust behind the church there is a little farm where they sell honey.

Mel de Sant Martí de CampmajorThe brave Covetotop doesn’t need honey, but he cannot resist the charming smile of the pretty girl who sells it and buys 2 pots.

La Vall de Campmajor honey05:15 p.m.- It is time to go back to base camp.

06:30 p.m.- Arrival in base camp, somewhere in the Costa Brava, facing the Mediterranean Sea.

Covetotop, like any other Mediterranean hero, always drinks a glass of cold horchata after his epic adventures.

Horchata by the sea06:35 p.m.- Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz





About Covetotop

A Mediterranean blogger
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15 Responses to Volcano hiking in the Costa Brava

  1. a ferreira says:

    It’s very rewarding to follow the brave, valiant, sensitive, etc., – and funny 🙂 – Covetotop!
    Love the volcanoes, landscapes and villages, but especially this new real ultra-high-risk sport – the MBC… 😉

  2. From the live volcanoes and hanging bridges of Costa Rica very interesting to see and to read of your adventures.
    I enjoy your blog posts very much indeed…and only wish that my Spanish was half as good as your English.

  3. Muy bien Covetotop, hace mucho tiempo desde tu ultima blog post. Tambien me encanta MBC 😀

  4. Christina says:

    You volcano hike looks like it was a lot of fun! I probably would have stopped a lot to enjoy that gorgeous view. It doesn’t seem melancholy at all, rather quite peaceful in its grandness.

    I’ve never heard of MBC (Medieval Bridge Crossing) but this sounds exciting! 🙂 I’ve been looking for a new extreme adventure sport to start up and this sound super extreme! Thanks for teaching your readers the basics and taking us on such a beautiful walk around Girona!

    • Covetotop says:

      MBC is really exciting, but take into account that it is an especially dangerous sport for Art lovers. As you know, most medieval bridges are not only insecure, but charming and wonderful as well. Hence, sensitive people are likely to get disoriented in the middle of the bridge (more or less) and fall if they don’t pay extraordinary attention to their steps 😉 Added adrenaline and more fun!!!

      • Christina says:

        I will need to do some extra MBC training so that I don’t succumb to the charm of medieval so easily! (I still probably will but I must keep practicing 😉 )

  5. Simon Jones says:

    Was this a recent excursion? Is there still so very much snow in the Pyranees? Always look forward to your travelogue, gives me ideas for my own hikes and cycles. Thank you

    • Covetotop says:

      I took these pics just one month ago. The problem is that I am very lazy writting and editing posts … La Garrotxa, in general, is a really wonderful area, and it is full of interesting places to visit and to hike and to cycle. Thanks for your nice comment, Mr. Jones!

  6. Excellent post, as ever. I particularly enjoy your narrative style, which makes the reader feel in the driver’s seat, so to speak. And, that is one beautiful beast of a crater you conquered,…

    • Covetotop says:

      Thank you Alessandro. What you say about the driver’s seat is a huge responsibility for me. I’ll try to drive slowly and carefully in future posts. No more high-risk sports! 🙂

  7. harri8here says:

    C2T, your humour always makes me erupt … my guffawing is louder than a flock of seagulls fighting for their supper, louder than Big Ben’s toll. Scary. So you shouldn’t make me laugh so much.
    Seriously, this is such an evocative gallery of photographs (the yellow over pont de can prat is particularly poetic). Thank you valiant, sensitive, oh so humorous one.

    • Covetotop says:

      Mmm … guffawing? humour? I don’t understand this. My post was very serious. It was the account of a brave, heroical adventure. I undertook incredible risks just to prepare this post and you laugh. This is not fair.

      HR8, your comments always make me happy … Thank you!

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