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Mother of God of Arbolo and Gerri de la Sal

Virgin of Arboló and Gerri de la Sal from Sort


Route record
Difficulty remarkable
Total distance 15.3km
Maximum altitude 817m
Minimum altitude 585m
Total ascent +461m/ -544m
Total time 5h
Starting/arrival Hotel Les Brases / Sort
Nearest town Sort


Linear itinerary (one way) of 15.3 km in length that follows the course of the river Noguera Pallaresa, from Sort to the sanctuary of Arboló and Gerri de la Sal. The route begins in the county capital, crosses the riverside forest of Les Vernedes and goes into the forests of holm oak and pine forests of pine to Baro. Then, cross the Strait of Arboló, visit the shrine of the Virgin of Arboló and, finally, arrive at Gerri de la Sal. It is a signposted route suitable for people accustomed to walking.

This excursion reveals the middle course of the Noguera Pallaresa River as it passes through the towns of Pallars de Sort, Baro and Gerri de la Sal. The route always takes place near the river, through riparian forests, holm oaks and pine forests of wild pine , and also allows us to know one of the architectural jewels of the High Pyrenees, the Romanesque sanctuary of the Virgin of Arboló, patron of Pallars Sobirà.

THE BEST OF THE ROUTE

Walk along the banks of the Noguera Pallaresa river, the backbone of the region.

Discover the fauna and flora of the riparian forest in El Pallars.

Visit the sensational sanctuary of Arboló.

The views we have during the route of the villages of Baix Pallars.

MORE INFORMATION

Duration:

Complete day.

Total effective time (without stops):
5: 00h in total. 3: 15h from Sort to Baro (bridge of Arcalís) and 1: 45h from Baro to Gerri de la Sal.

Elevation gain:

+461m / -544m

Difficulty:

Remarkable.

Season:
All year.
Material:
Nothing special.
Mapping:
· Natural Park of the Alt Pirineu. 1: 50,000. Alpine Editorial.
· Flock of Roads. Eastern flock. 1: 50,000. Alpine Editorial.
· Topographic base of Catalonia 1: 25,000. Cartographic and Geological Institute of Catalonia (ICGC).

Observations:

· The itinerary is marked with yellow continuity paint markings and vertical indicator posts in the detours and crossings. In any case, we must be attentive because some section can be loser.
· To return to Sort from Gerri de la Sal you can take the bus line. Consult schedules at www.alsa.es (the bus also stops at Baro).
HOW TO ARRIVE BY CAR
The starting point of the excursion is located in the Hotel Restaurant Les Brases de Sort. We arrive at Sort by the road C-13. The Hotel Les Brases is located on the same road C-13, just north of the town. In front of the hotel there is space to park without paying.

Travel
DSC09436 senderismo Sort Malmercat i el castell de Arcalis des de Sort(1).JPG
We start the tour at the Hotel Les Brases de Sort (0: 00h - 693m).

DSC09439 senderismo Sort Malmercat i el castell de Arcalis des de Sort.JPG
From the hotel, we are following the course of the Noguera Pallaresa

DSC09440 senderismo Sort Malmercat i el castell de Arcalis des de Sort.JPG
towards the center of the town.

DSC09442 senderismo Sort Malmercat i el castell de Arcalis des de Sort(3).JPG
We reached the bridge of the N-260 road and crossed the river.

DSC09444 senderismo Sort Malmercat i el castell de Arcalis des de Sort.JPG
Just on the other side, we find a sign of the Natural Path of Sort and Valle de Àssua and the starting point of the Les Vernedes circuit.

DSC00081 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We take this path,

DSC00089 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
continuing on the river side, but now on its left bank.

DSC00090 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We are leaving behind the houses of Sort

DSC00106 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and we enter the riverside forest of Les Vernedes by a comfortable and very pleasant path

DSC00092 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
To our right we can observe the aquatic birds that live in the Noguera Pallaresa, such as the gray heron, the aquatic blackbird, the great cormorant and the duck.

DSC00117 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
On our left we see the grass meadows and the poplar plantations

DSC00130 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Path of the Les Vernedes

DSC00129 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Cows grazing in the meadows of the Vernedes.

DSC09521 senderismo Sort Malmercat i el castell de Arcalis des de Sort.JPG
We arrived at the confluence of the Noguera Pallaresa and the Cantó rivers.

DSC00147 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
At this point the road turns to the left and, without crossing the River del Cantó,

DSC00148 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla(1).JPG
we trace it a few meters up.

DSC00152 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We came to a detour to the left, which would take us back to Sort, we left it behind and we continued up.

DSC00154 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Then, we reach the detour to Soriguera and Llagunes, which we also left aside.

DSC00155 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We continue in the direction of Tornafort - Malmercat - Baro.

DSC00156 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We crossed the Cantó River  by a bridge

DSC00161 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and we continue along a path that passes between a row of trees and dry stone walls.

DSC00163 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We surrounded the back of Savarneda's house (0: 50h - 693m) and started to gain altitude.

DSC00164 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We leave behind a path to the left towards Tornafort and continue towards Malmercat - Baro. We climb through a sparse forest, enjoying extensive panoramic views of the valley of the Noguera Pallaresa river,

DSC00170 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
with the town of Arcalís and the silhouette of the Giant Asleep.

DSC00168 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We passed through  an area of boxwood and meadows  and arrived at the crossing of Malmercat.

DSC00249 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We have a wide view of the valley, with the meadows on both sides of the river, the village of Montardit de Baix and, above, the nuclei of Montardit de Dalt, Llarvén and Enviny, under the peak of the Comet (2,445m).

DSC00202 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Views of Savarneda and Sort

DSC00178 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Enjoying the views

DSC00186 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We continue to gain height.

DSC00206 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
At this junction we leave Malmercat road and follow the indications of Baro.
We go down a grassy slope where the path fades. Pay attention to the worn yellow paint marks on rocks and logs.

DSC00219 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Montardit

DSC00225 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Later, when we enter the forest, the path becomes more evident again. We go down, first through the interior of a forest of red pine with boxwood and, later, we go into an oak grove

DSC00231 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We follow a dry stone wall and, just under a farm,

DSC00243 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
we end up on the paved road.

DSC00246 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We continue on this road a few meters up, until a curve,

DSC00251 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
where we connect with a dirt track.

DSC00252 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We cross a torrent and go down the ravine leaving behind several detours.

DSC00253 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Next, we go around grass meadows and, before arriving at the Soriguer farmhouse, we leave the track behind and take a path to the right that goes down to a torrent, where small birds live.

DSC00255 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Meadows of grass in the farmhouse of Soriguer.

DSC00262 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Nice muscari that we met.

DSC00283 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Plunged torrent

DSC00285 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
After crossing the stream, we take a path to the left

DSC00286 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
that climbs on a reddish rock floor

DSC00287 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and through a sparse oak holm oak forest.

DSC00310 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Little by little, the road becomes more evident and goes flanking the slope, going up and down and adapting to the relief of the mountain.

DSC00314 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Path through the forest

DSC00316 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We crossed two ravines,

DSC00326 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
one of which equipped with stairs and a wooden railing.

DSC00328 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We continue advancing

DSC00329 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and we arrive at a new crossroads, where we take the path that goes down towards Baro and Gerri de la Sal.

DSC00330 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We descend through a shady oak grove

DSC00331 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
until we come to some meadows

DSC00334 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and, after overcoming the ravine of Big Rock,

DSC00335 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
we follow a path between dry stone walls

DSC00338 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
to the beautiful farmhouse of Menal (2: 50h - 648m).

DSC00345 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We continue our itinerary in direction S, while we enjoy the postcard landscape that make up the meadows that surround the farmhouse.

DSC00352 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We arrive at a dirt track, cross it, and continue along a path that goes under the track and along the river side.

DSC00353 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We passed a couple of doors

DSC00361 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and finally we connect with the track,

DSC00370 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
that we follow until the connection with the  Arcalis road.

DSC00375 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We make a few meters on the road

DSC00377 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and we reach the bridge of Arcalís - Baro (3: 15h - 637m).
Just across the river is the small village of Baro.

DSC00378 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We do not cross it and continue our itinerary on the left side of the mountain, following the directions of Arboló and Gerri de la Sal.

DSC00383 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We walk now through a track that goes over the Noguera Pallaresa

DSC00392 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
until we reach a point where the track forks: we take the road on the right, slightly downhill, and that brings us closer to the riverbank.

DSC00394 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Baro

DSC00400 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Noguera Pallaresa

DSC00406 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We passed some poplars plantations

DSC00414 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and we cross a pleasant area of meadows.

DSC00421 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We left a detour on the right and, right after, we found a crossroads.

DSC00422 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We leave behind the road that climbs towards Arcalís and continue towards the Sanctuary of Arboló.

DSC00428 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Little by little, the valley becomes narrower

DSC00429 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and the track becomes a path.

DSC00431 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We went through a gloomy pine forest of red pine with boxwood and, suddenly, after a turn of the road,

DSC00434 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
The silhouette of the Punxeguda Rock appears before us.

DSC00439 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We advance without losing or gaining height with the pyramidal shape in front and the river on the right.

DSC00447 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
The gorge is still narrower and the path climbs a few meters to overcome the narrow passage.

DSC00449 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG

DSC00467 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We continue on our path

DSC00471 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Noguera Pallaresa

DSC00477 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We go back down

DSC00483 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and we overcome a section equipped with a railing that passes just below a rocky wall and next to the water.

DSC00486 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Arboló Bridge

DSC00489 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Finally we reached the crossing of the Arboló bridge, where we left the bridge to the right and we climbed towards the sanctuary.

DSC00493 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Now the road is wide and presents no difficulty,

DSC00501senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Pallar.JPG
We quickly arrived at the place where the sensational sanctuary of the Virgin of Arboló rises (4: 15h - 641m).

DSC00525 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Mother of God of Arboló

DSC00504 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We visited the sanctuary and enjoyed the views of the surroundings.

DSC00509 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
On the other side of the valley we see a set of vertical risks where it is easy to observe flying vultures.

DSC00517 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Paragliding

DSC00521 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
El Soc d'Arboló.

DSC00527 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
After recovering strength, we will take the last section of the route, which will take us to the village of Gerri de la Sal.

DSC00534 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
From the sanctuary we take a path

DSC00544 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
that goes down the rocky hillside between brambles and thickets of rosemary.

DSC00545 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Suddenly, the landscape changes radically and becomes more arid,

DSC00554 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
the green of the meadows contrasts with the red color of the rocks in this area.

DSC00555 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We are going down gently to the shore of the Noguera Pallaresa river

DSC00559 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
and we passed by some walls and some orchards.

DSC00570 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Rocks of red color of the zone.

DSC00612 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We continue along our path along the banks of the Noguera Pallaresa river, closer and closer to Gerri de la Sal.

DSC00614 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Romanesque bridge of Gerri de la Sal.

DSC00617 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We left behind the path that would take us to the nearby monastery of Santa Maria de Gerri and we entered the nucleus of Gerri de la Sal crossing the monumental Romanesque bridge.

DSC00622 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Views from the bridge.

DSC00624 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Views from the bridge towards the nucleus of Gerri de la Sal

DSC00633 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We arrive at the Plaza Sant Felip and continue along a narrow alley on the left that leads us to the C-13 road, the road that connects La Pobla de Segur and Sort.

DSC00635 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
Narrow alley.

DSC00639 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
C-13 Road

DSC00642 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
We cross the road with great caution and go up some stairs to the Mercadal square in Gerri de la Sal (5: 00h - 615m), the final point of this beautiful itinerary.

DSC00650 senderismo Mare de Deu de Arbolo i Gerri de la Sal des de Sort seguint la Noguera Palla.JPG
THE WHITE GOLD OF GERRI DE LA SAL

For centuries, the exploitation of the salt source was the main economic engine of Gerri de la Sal and its surroundings. Witness to this important economic activity are the salinas -where the water remained stagnant until it evaporated, leaving the salt deposited on the terraces- and the Real Alfolí, which was the large warehouse where the salt was later treated and stored. This building, which currently houses the Gerri de la Sal Museum, is considered the largest medieval civil construction in the entire Pallars.



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