(0h0min;0km) Refugi de Colomèrs (2.115m). Setting out from the new Colomers refuge, you walk past the old one and cross over the dam. Ignoring the path that descends on the left towards Salardú, you start the climb ahead of you (east), all the while along the same route as the Carros de Foc trail, towards the Long and Redon lakes. At the end of the climb, before reaching the first lake, the Carros de Foc trail peels off and forks left. You leave the lakes (Long and Redon) on your left and continue to climb up to Lac de Obago, a larger lake than the others. Before reaching the lake, on the left, you will see Obago cabin. Walk round the south side of the lake, almost to the end, paying no attention to other paths that climb to the south, up to the Circo de Colomers (a hugely popular route that visits Colomers cirque, dotted with up to 48 lakes). The path twists and turns across the valley en route to Port de Ratera. At the end of the climb, you reach a kind of plain where the GR211-4 and Carros de Foc trails converge on the left (a sign points to Refugi de Saboredo), which you cross (south-east) until you reach the...
(2h30min; 5.6kms) Pòrt de Ràtera (2.534m), hovering between Tuc de Ratera (2,861m) and the Serra de Saborèdo range. The long descent starts here. Right at the beginning you pass Estany del Port de Ratera on your right, followed by a crossing that, on the left, would lead to the Amitges shelter. The way is clearly marked and heads down the left side of the valley across bumpy terrain. Little by little pine trees start to become more prominent, and you soon reach Obagues de Ratera lake, which you pass on your right. You continue downhill, join a tack, then shortly afterwards reach...
(4h10min; 9.7kms) Estany de Ràtera (2.150m). This is a highly popular spot that can even be reached in a 4x4 taxi. Follow the track used by off-road vehicles until you reach...
(4h45min; 11.4kms) Estany de Sant Maurici (1.915m). At the foot of the rocky outcrop of Els Encantats, this is undoubtedly one of the outstanding places of beauty in all the Pyrenees. To get to the refuge, leave the main track and head down to another on that passes below the reservoir dam. Follow it for around 250m to a crossing on the right that points the way to the refuge.
(4h45min; 12.5kms) Refugio Ernest Mallafré (1.950m).
At the beginning of the stage, Refugi de Colomèrs (/). Given that the refuge is accessible from Arán valley (track, taxi service) added to the popularity of the area around the lakes (among the busiest routes in the Pyrenees), we recommend booking at least 1 month in advance during the months of July and August.
During the stage, one hour from Còlomers, lies Obago cabin (it is on 2 floors and although half of the roof is missing, the upper floor acts as a roof for the ground floor). Away from the route (1h from Pòrt de Ràtera) is the Refugi de Amitges (/).Maps:
Parc Nacional d'Aigüestortes i Stany de Sant Maurici
- SUA edizioak: Aigüestortes i estany de Sant Maurici (Scale: 1/25.000).
The quickest Access to the refugio de Colomers is from the track that comes from the north, from Salardú (open only to taxis in summer). There is a road to Estany de Sant Maurici coming from Espot, which is closed to traffic a few kilometres below, at the car park in Prat de Pierró. Taxis are allowed access. To get to Espot from Sort, take the Parque de Aigües Tortes bus (Alsa).Activities in the area:
Around Colomers cirque there are a number of important peaks, such as Creu de Colomers (2,896m) or Gran Tuc de Colomers (2,933m). A very popular walk is the circular route around the Circo de Colomers (waymarked itinerary), and of course the Carros de Foc trail (5-7 days).
|- Prologue: Cabo Higuer - Hondarribia - Irun|
|- Stage 1: Cabo Higuer - Bera|
|- Stage 1v (GR 11.3): Cabo Higuer - Lesaka|
|- Stage 2: Bera - Elizondo|
|- Stage 2v (GR 11.3): Lesaka - Elizondo (Spanish)|
|- Stage 3: Elizondo - Pto de Urkiaga|
|- Stage 4: Puerto de Urkiaga - Burguete|
|- Stage 5: Burguete/Auritz - Villanueva de Aezcoa/Hiriberri (Spanish)|
|Stage 6: Villanueva de Aezcoa/Hiriberri - Ochagavia (Spanish)|
|Stage 7: Ochagavia - Isaba (Spanish)|
|Stage 8: Isaba - Zuriza (via Belabarce)|
|Stage 8v (GR 11.4): Isaba - Zuriza (via Ezkaurre)|
|Stage 9: Zuriza - Aguas Tuertas|
|Stage 10: Aguas Tuertas - Lizara|
|Stage 10 (discontinued): Aguas Tuertas - Candanchú|
|Stage 11: Lizara - Candanchú|
|Stage 12: Candanchú - Sallent de Gallego|
|Stage 9v (GR 11.1): Zuriza - Puente de Santa Ana|
|Stage 10v (GR 11.1): Puente de Santa Ana - Lizara|
|Stage 11v (GR 11.1): Lizara - Canfranc Estación|
|Stage 12v: Canfranc Estación - Sallent de Gallego (via C.Izas)|
|Stage 13: Sallent de Gallego - Refugio de Respomuso|
|Stage 14: Refugio de Respomuso - Balneario de Panticosa|
|Stage 15: Balneario de Panticosa - San Nicolas de Bujaruelo|
|Stage 16: San Nicolas de Bujaruelo - Refugio de Goriz|
|Stage 17: Refugio de Goriz - Circo de Pineta|
|Stage 18: Circo de Pineta - Parzán|
|Stage 19: Parzán - Biadós|
|Stage 20: Biadós - Puente de San Jaime (Spanish)|
|Stage 21: Puente de San Jaime - Refugio de Cap de Llauset (Spanish)|
|Stage 22: Ref. Cap de LLauset - Conangles|
|Stage 23: Conangles - La Restanca|
|Stage 24v (GR11.18): La Restanca - Colomers|
|Stage 25: Colomers - Ernest Mallafré|
|Stage 26: Ernest Mallafré - La Guingueta|
|Stage 27: La Guingueta - Estaón|
|Stage 28: Estaón - Tavascán|
|Stage 29: Tavascán - Areu|
|Stage 30: Areu - Baiau|
|Stage 31: Baiau - Arans|
|Stage 32: Arans - Encamp|
|Stage 33: Encamp - Ref. l'Illa|
|Stage 34: Ref. l'Illa - Malniu|
|Stage 35: Malniu - Puigcerdá|
|Stage 36: Puigcerdá - Planoles|
|Stage 37: Planoles - Santuario de Nuria|
|Stage 38: Santuario de Nuria - Refugio de Ulldeter|
|Stage 39: Refugio de Ulldeter - Molló|
|Stage 40: Molló - Talaixà|
|Stage 41: Talaixà - Albanyà|
|Stage 42: Albanyà - La Vajol|
|Stage 43: La Vajol - Requessens|
|Stage 44: Requessens - Vilamaniscle|
|Stage 45: Vilamaniscle - El Port de la Selva|
|Stage 46: El Port de la Selva - Cap de Creus|