Noguera Pallaresa and Vall d'Àssua from Sort

Route record

  • Difficulty:
  • Minimum altitude: 692
  • Starting/arrival: sort
  • Total distance: 18.7
  • Total ascent: 605
  • Nearest town: sort
  • Maximum altitude: 1099
  • Total time: 4:45


Nice route that allows us to enter the lower valley of Àssua following the ancient bridle paths that connect the various villages in the area. We started the tour in Sort, culd capital, and sailed up the river Noguera Pallaresa to Rialp. A steep climb takes us to the quiet village of Surp, which still retains its charm. From Surp descend to the valley of the river Pamano, we visited the runes of the Mola de Sall and up to Altron. A long panoramic flanking leads to the hermitage of Sant Josep de Olp, essential vantage point from where we enjoy magnificent views across the valley. Sort through back to the core of Olp. 

This route it is a wonderful heart culd trip. We began the journey up the river Noguera Pallaresa, the backbone of the whole territory. The spectacular entrance to Rialp by the magnificent suspension bridge Santa Caterina (nineteenth century), as well as the visit to the ruins of the medieval castle of Rialp, prepare us for the short but steep climb to the beautiful village of Surp. Then we visited the old Mola Sall, which is located in the so-called river of a thousand names; and it is that in its lower course is called Sant Antoni, in its middle course river Altron, and its high course Pamano. A nice outflanking from the picturesque village of Altron leads to the hermitage of Sant Josep panoramic Olp, lovely place that offers sweeping views across the valley and Batlliu Noguera Pallaresa Sort. From Olp marveling down through an old oak forest, well guarded by beautiful stone margins seca.


Duration: Full day

Total time cash (no stops): 4: 45h in total: 2: 15h from the start point to Surp and 2: 30h from this village to Sort through the Mola de Sall, Altron and Olp.

Total ascent: 605m

Difficulty: Remarkable. The route presents no technical difficulty.

Season: All year.

Material: We recommend bringing binoculars to observe large and small prey (griffon vulture, golden eagle, red kite, buzzard, kestrel, ...) and other birds.


Alt Pirineu. Parc Natural de l'Alt Pirineu. 1: 50.000. Editorial Alpina.

Observations: If we are a large group, we monitor across the bridge of Santa Caterina. It should be done in small groups.


Starting point of the tour is located at the Hotel Restaurant Les Brases Sort. Sort we arrived at the C-13. Les Brases The hotel is situated on the same road C-13, just outside the town at its end N. The C-13 is the main road that links and crosses all the people from end to end. Opposite the hotel is free public parking spaces where we can park the vehicle.


At the entrance of the village we cross the river Noguera Pallaresa by the bridge of the N-260 road (in the direction of "La Seu d'Urgell").

If you are lucky you can see some duck ;-)

We pass a restaurant and take a road that goes on the left (N).

We see a red sign of the Natural Way of Sort and the Valley of Ássua, where Rialp is indicated, our next objective. During the whole tour we will alternate these red vertical signs with those of the routes proposed by the Generalitat de Catalunya (vertical green signs). Both vertical signs will be complemented by yellow paint marks and some metal plates.

We advance along a track leaving both sides several detours until we arrive at a landing where the entrance to a private house is located.

We continue towards Rialp.

We start the route in front of the  Hotel Les Brases de Sort (0: 00h - 692m). We walk along the C-13 road and cross the town of Sort in the direction of Tremp (S).

Sort views from across the river

We continue straight and leave a path to the left.

We arrive at the landing of a private house and continue on the left direction Rialp.

We continue towards the left

We enter a path that has a wooden railing that protects us from falling to the slope

We started a beautiful stretch by the so-called Camí de Triago. We continue with the Noguera Pallaresa river on our left.

We passed by an old lime kiln

We enjoyed this pleasant riverside path surrounded by magnificent almonds.

The leaves of the stalks with their fruits.

Nice riverside road next to the river Noguera Pallaresa.

Later the terrain becomes more abrupt and the road goes up a little buttress.

We continue advancing and we link with a track that takes us back to the bottom of the valley.

We continue along a protected trail with railing that follows the incidents of the terrain, now more marked by the cliffs that fall to the river.

We continue straight on towards Rialp.

We pass by the side of the viewpoint of the Colomar d'en Martí, from where we enjoy good views of the entrance of the Ássua Valley, with the Montsent de Pallars in the background.

The ruined building is an old dovecote of medieval origin that served to raise pigeons and pigeons.
Ruins of the Colomar d'en Marti.

We pass by the side of the viewpoint of the Colomar d'en Martí, from where we enjoy good views of the entrance of the Ássua Valley, with the Montsent de Pallars in the background.

Here we can rest for a moment and enjoy the views offered by the viewpoint of the Colomar d'en Martí.

We continue towards Rialp towards the bridge of Santa Caterina.

We continue along the eastern side of the river until we reach the spectacular  suspension bridge of Santa Caterina (1: 15h - 692m), gateway to Rialp.
The spectacular suspension bridge of Santa Caterina, rebuilt in 2007.

We crossed the bridge and climbed a few meters up the road, which we also crossed.

The river Noguera Pallaresa, embraced by a beautiful forest of riverside.

We enter the village and turn left by an alley, following the marks.
Street that crosses Rialp.

Main road of Rialp.

We headed towards the church and climbed to the ruins of the 13th century Rialp castle, which dominated the whole area and controlled the entrance to the Ássua Valley.

We continue climbing towards the ruins of the castle of Rialp.

Ruins of the castle of Rialp, eighteenth century.

We left Rialp behind and took the Camí Vell from Rialp to Surp.

We climb steeply up the slope of the mountain, between fields of mowing and cultivation and walls of dry stone, which delimit each plot.

Views of the Ássua Valley from the road from Rialp to Surp.

Some section of the road preserves remains of the old cobblestone.

We make a last effort and we arrive at  Surp (2: 15h - 1,055m), where it emphasizes the Romanesque church of Sant Iscle and Santa Victòria, of century XI.

Campanile of Sant Iscle and Santa Victòria.

It is worth spending a few minutes exploring the narrow alleys of this picturesque village, which still retains its authenticity.

Inside alley of Surp.

Inner Square of Surp.

We left Surp by its O-end.
Here we can see the imposing oak of Surp, a monumental tree.

We continue until the road that goes down towards Rialp and we follow it.

We continue along this road until after the third sharp curve.

A calf lying in a meadow of mowing.

Shortly after this curve we take a path that goes to the right and that goes down shortcut until the road of Escàs and Caregue.

We take the detour to the Mola de Sall.

We continue for a few meters along the road until we reach the turnoff of the old  Mola de Sall (2: 50h - 843m). (We see a half-collapsed roof just below us).

Views of the Ássua Valley.

A last detour to the left takes us to the bottom of the valley.
Here we can see this beautiful riverside forest in the depths of the valley.

La Mola de Sall was a small hydroelectric power plant that stopped operating in the 1960s. It was built in 1924 by promoters Joaquim Moner de Altron and Josep Bertran de Surp and supplied electricity to all surrounding towns (Sorre, Caregue, Escàs, Rhodes and Altron). Next to the central was the remains of a flour mill, which was also built in 1924.

The building of the Mola de Sall

We continue the route and cross the river Pamano - called Sant Antoni river in this section - by a cemented pontoon.

We enjoy the freshness of the water course and the shade of the alders and poplars until we reach a recreation area, ideal to rest and / or have a picnic.

The fresh river of Sant Antoni.

Leisure area on the banks of the river.

We start a uphill section in the direction of Altron.

The road overcomes the slope by making two detours.

We arrive at a detour, we continue to the right and we board the last section of ascent until   Altron (3: 05h - 956m).

We continue towards Altron.

Remains of a cobbled section on the road leading up to Altron.

Alley that gives access to Altron.

Church of Sant Serni de Altron.

Take the LV-5223 road in the direction of Sort. We continue along this road 500m until we turn right and take the old Olp road (signposted).

We follow the path of Olp.

We now start a nice stretch that goes along the profile of the skirt of the mountain.

The road passes by several mowing yards and, therefore, we find a few closures that we must leave as we have found (closed or open).

We cross a couple of ravines that offer interesting chiaroscuro.

Leaving momentarily from the road we can climb to the top of a hill where stands the small hermitage of  Sant Josep d'Olp (3: 40h - 1099m).

Hermitage of Sant Josep d'Olp, at the top of the hill of Sant Josep.

This hill is the highest point of our excursion and a fantastic vantage point of the Ássua Valley, the Montsent de Pallars, the Montorroio, the Cap d'Arquer, the valley of the Noguera Pallaresa, the Batlliu of Sort and the great umbrías of the Turret of the Orri.

Below the hermitage there are picnic tables.

Views of Rialp and Noguera Pallaresa from Sant Josep.

In the background, the summits of Montsent de Pallars and Montorroio.

We return to Olp road and continue the route in direction S.

Nice flat stretch that runs along the eastern mountain slope.

Soon we see the roofs and bell tower of the cozy town of  Olp (4: 00h - 1,095m). The main street leads to the church of Mare de Déu de la Candelera.

Nice balcony full of flowers and life, in the main square of Olp.

Church of the Mare de Déu de la Candelera, in Olp.

We went down an alley (signage of Sort, our destination) and we passed by some beautiful orchards.

We go down, we leave Olp and soon we pass by the abandoned chapel of Sant Pere.

Abandoned chapel of Sant Pere.

Between walls and margins of dry stone we arrive at the source of the ravine of Les Lleres, a small oasis that will allow us to cool if it is very hot.

Beautiful white maple leaves in autumn.

Further on we connect with a paved track that we take to the right.

We followed it for almost 1 km until we turned left onto a path.

We go through oaks and maples.

We arrived at this new crossroads. We follow the indications of Sort and finally we arrive at the town

We walked a few more meters to the  Hotel Les Brases (4: 45h - 692m), point and end of our route.

We have already reached our destination.