From Núria to Queralbs through pasture fields and old mining roads. Route 20 Ripollès

Itinerary that runs largely through high mountain terrain with spectacular views of the mountains that surround Núria and the Alt Freser valley and, to the south, the Taga and Serra Cavallera. The last section passes through old mining roads.

  • Modality
    • By foot
  • Region
    • Ripollès
  • Towns
    • Queralbs
  • Time
    • More than 4 hours
  • Difficulty
    • Very high
  • Estimated duration
    • 6h 30min
  • Distance
    • 17,4km
  • Hide elevation maximum
    • 2.148m
  • Hide elevation minimum
    • 1.205m
  • Ascent
    • 438m
  • Descent
    • 1.193m

The route begins in the valley of Núria. From its Sanctuary head towards the lake going along its right bank and passing by the chapel of Sant Gil. Once you arrive at the R113 Itinerànnia sign Creu d'en Riba turn to your right towards Queralbs through Fontalba and Collet de les Barraques. From here the zigzag path steeply climbs up to afterwards get flatter above the valley. You will pass along the Coma de les Perdius and Coma de Gombrèn, where you will see the remains of old shepherd's huts.

After a short climb you will leave Núria´s valley behind to enter into Fontalba's valley. You are now on the hillside of the Puigmal peak, and the path goes along its width glacial valley while crossing the Puigmal stream. All over the hillside you can see many water springs. Once on the other side of the valley and after crossing the stream, the path climbs gently towards Collada de Fontalba. Shortly before the car park in crossroads R225, the path turns uphill to your right taking you above the river Freser valley. From this point the views are jaw-dropping, towards the East, the twin Torreneules peaks and Balandrau peak dominate the Freser's gorges. Towards the South, Serra Cavallera range, the Taga peak, Sant Amand and the Serra d'Estremera range.

The path gently starts going downhill while surrounding the southern slopes of Puig de la Dou mountain. In summer it is usual to find livestock in this area. You must be careful and follow the yellow and white and red marks, this part of path is also the GR11.8 . You have to cross the Collet d'Estevenís pass, then pass by the Mantegosa hut and finally descend rapidly to the Estremera stream. Cross the stream by a wooden lever and you will arrive at the Font de l'Home Mort spring, crossroad Q2.

On the other side of the stream you will see the end of a track. From here, the route mostly follows the same path that followed the extracted ore in the old busy days from Saragossa mine. Leave the track to rapidly descend towards the bottom of the valley following a windy little path. Cross the stream by a metal bridge and on the other side you will arrive at the end of the wagons road that coincided with the lower station of the aerial cable. Follow the wagons road gradually narrowing above the valley. Little by little the valley opens up and the path widens. You find the R146 Collet de les Barraques crossing, you must follow the yellow and white and red marks, in this section is the GR11, you have to follow the marks until Queralbs. The track keeps descending, we find the intersections Q3 Roc Punxegut, Q1 Prat del Barló and R221 Sota la Cabanya del Pintor and we enter Queralbs passing by its Romanesque church of Sant Jaume de Queralbs, R115 sign. Go down by the church street passing by the main square and finally following Pla street you will arrive at the Plaça del Raig, R114 sign, the end of the route. You can optionally return to Núria with the rack railway from Queralbs.