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Ascent to Anayet from Formigal (by the mule pen)

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The climb to Anayet, a classic of Formigal and from the southern Pyrenees. It is a beautiful route desenderismo towards a hidden volcano between mountains. It sounds strange to say volcano in the Pyrenees, but this is only its spectacular fireplace. A comfortable route to the foot of the Anayet (at the height of the lakes), but with some difficulty to the top. Something more than 1,000m of slope only suitable for mountain lovers.

Ascent to Anayet by the mule pen

Departure from the Anayet Parking

Next to the Formigal station We have the Anayet Parking (Highway A-135) where the starting point is towards the Anayet ascent. It is a parking lot located a few kilometers from the border of Portalet On the left side. In winter you can access the ski lifts themselves or the parking lot of the station, but in summer when closed it is necessary to leave the car right at the entrance, almost on the road itself.


Map to Anayet (download map on the right)
Departure point to Anayet

When performing in summerwe start from 1,600m high by a asphalt road to the parking lot or the cafeteria at Anayet station. They are 2km, but something you could save if this section were open in summer.


Ascending through the mule pen

Leaving the parking lot and once at the station the real climb begins on a small path next to a stream to the right. Being a part route circular you have to be careful and not take the track on the right, if not on the left, always leaving the main tracks on the right, on the other side of the stream.


Ascent to Anayet
Ascent to Anayet

In summer is usually a busy route so it is convenient to get up early. It is true that in this section we hardly find people, but in the descent, which we saw from the return section, very large groups were seen.

The ibons of Anayet

After a while you have to cross the stream, on the right, to start climbing a series of sections with much more slope until the Ibones del Anayet. It is a path along with a stream along anarrow ravine which prevents seeing the Anayet Peak.


Ascent to Anayet
Ascent to Anayet

As you go up the ravine you will see that it is gradually opening and begins to see the Formigal station and several of the high peaks of the Pyrenees. Before reaching the ibons there is an imposing ramp of about 100m of unevenness, unevenness that disappears from your mind when you see the imposing and colossus Pico del Anayet with the ibons that it has at its feet. We we border the lakes on the right, leaving the official path, to enjoy the reflections of the peak on its waters, something spectacular.


Ascent to Anayet
Ascent to Anayet

It is curious, but at this point you may have doubts about how to climb the Anayet, since it is a rock colossus. He is always facing, until you reach a point that surrounds him on his left to undertake the rise from behind, therefore those doubts are resolved. But before this, when surrounding the lakes on the right, the trail approaches the base of the anayet where you can see the occasional climber ascend or even local fauna, such as a small population of marmots.


Midi d'ossau from the ibons of Anayet
Ascent to Anayet

In our case it was almost impossible mission to take a nice picture of the groundhogs If you do not carry a telephoto lens, which in this case was left in my trunk because of excess weight. It usually happens, you never have it the more you need it ...

Final ascension

At about 200m it returns to retake the official path just before one of the final ramps. This ramp, which ascends to a step of 2,400m, leaves more than one hiker exhausted, as you will see in the end people rested by the overexertion of this section. From here if you go to the left you will see the Anayet vertex with 2,559m and right our destination, the Anayet climb with 2,579m. The Anayet is just over 150m from the slope.


Ascent to Anayet from 2,400m
Final leg of the Anayet climb

Climbing the Anayet on the right you can see the true vertigo of the top. Leave the narrow and safe path to climb to the top next to a dangerous ravine on the left. They are barely 100m, but it has spectacular views of France and the Pyrenees. Once you dodged this section the earth turns red next to a pedrera that opens the way to the most complex section of the route.

In this part of the route it is convenient to go with a helmet (although almost nobody takes it), by frequent rock falls. In my case I did a real dribbling so that one didn't hit me on the head. At least someone from above warned that it was coming :). Also in this section is where accidents usually occur, since there is a very vertical area which is drawn with a long chain. Recommendation, grab always with both hands, don't play it. It is better to go slow, since it does not have to be dangerous, than to go fast and fall into the void.


Final leg of the Anayet climb
Final leg of the Anayet climb

After the chains there is a long tube where small traffic jams form if there are many people, but once this point is over, the top is a few meters away. If you are afraid of the tube, do not climb, the views are almost the same as those of the 2,400m pass, but of course, saying and being on a top like Anayet's is another thing :).


From the top of Anayet
From the top of Anayet

Returning by circular route

Mustget off from the top of Anayet very carefully, since the slope is not only very pronounced, if not very slippery. Once the chains have been drawn and the section has been lowered from 2,400m to 2,200m, the path changes, and it becomes a fairly simple section. After the two lakes we find both mules and horses, almost in a semi-wild state. Just as you pass these, you have to we turn left not to go down the stretch of the ravine where we climbed at the beginning.


Ascent to Anayet
Ascent to Anayet

From the turnoff it is all down a path marked with white and blue lines to the Formigal station. Halfway down the car park, the ski slopes, a section that no longer has any loss. The route is worth it, isn't it?

Practical data

Where to sleep

Campsites in the area
  • Camping Escarra (in Escarrilla)
  • Camping Valle de Tena (Crta. Nacional 260, km 513.6, 22600, Huesca)

Hotels in the area

  • Apartments Solans in Bielsa
  • Apartments Mazcaray in Bielsa
  • Hotel la casueña, with excellent views in the Tena Valley

Seasonal tips

Winter

We recommend you bring the following material in winter:

  • Long pants, thermal shirt and fleece
  • Hat and gloves
  • Primaloft
  • Raincoat or third layer for wind or rain
  • Long boots and winter socks
  • Crampons Y ice ax, the top is always freezing
  • Harness, rope and winter climbing equipment
  • Flashlight or frontal. The Black Diamond for example are excellent
  • Leggings. Here is a good example of Leggings and eye with size.
  • Backpack of at least 35l
  • Trekking sticks
  • Map/GPS. Without this, don't even show up. As GPS our recommendation is the Garmin GPSMAP 64

In winter the routes are usually longer if there is snow, so calculate 1 or 2h more.

Summer

In summer this point of the mountains is usually very dry and very hot. There are hardly any shadows, since except for some large rock there are few shady areas. For the material we recommend:

  • Summer shoes, short if possible
  • Shorts and short sleeve t-shirt
  • Polar lining, on the top it can be cold
  • Raincoat in case of wind or rain
  • Polarized sunglasses and cap
  • Solar protection
  • Water in quantity and food, which will be 6h of crossing

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