A Walk To Look Forward To After COVID In ‘Las Maravillas’ Cehegin

I am delighted to say that this month’s contribution is from three of our WARM members.

Jane, Allen & Sue have prepared WARM & SWARM walks through a preserved park, with deer (albeit on this particular visit we saw only droppings and evidence of feeding stations). The walk begins a fair drive from the main road along a dusty track.

A good place to start: this structure marks the beginning and the end of our trail. There is a car park next to a refuge hut.

Initially, the landscape appears to be dominated by green, red (actually a dusty pink) and the blue sky. The foliage was in fact a delicate range of greens and greys with white flowers on the wild rosemary. Wild thyme is also strewn beside the initial stretch as the path ascends.

The sandstone is so mottled with lichen in places that it blends with the protruding, bleached vegetation.

The path climbs initially, then winds back down around the undulating hills, exposing views across plains and towards a mountain range to the left. It is broad, dusty and aromatic.

As the walk continues it becomes clear that there is a rainbow of colour in the lichen, the rocks around us and the ground beneath.

While arid land dominates, there are views of grassy plains and cracked riverbeds, even some flamboyant bamboo waves halfway around the trail.

The path for the WARM walkers drops through fields before picking up the dried-out riverbed.

Perhaps the most spectacular part of the walk, at least geologically, is the exposed rock protruding near the riverbed. Gradients of colour leak down the cliffs. We stopped for lunch at the gabion baskets on the riverbed before twisting back up a gentle ascent.

The final stretch is gentle along a mostly flat path, looping back to our starting point. If you are lucky you might spot the deer!

Jane, Allen and Sue are hoping to be able to take all the members on this wonderful walk as soon as the restrictions are lifted.