La Mussara - camping and overview
Posted by sibylle in Spain, La Mussara (Sunday December 17, 2006 at 10:57 am)


Gabriel on Covallonga

In Barcelona we picked up our rental car from Pepecar and drove to Reus, where we shopped at the Carrefours, a combination Walmart/ Target/mega-grocery store. We found everything we needed here, from Vinaigre de Modena (excellent vinegar), sweetened condensed milk in easy squeeze plastic tubes, to fuel canisters for our Bluet stove. However, they do not carry fuel for other stoves, such as Coleman or REI stoves and white gas is very hard to obtain.

From Reus we headed uphill to La Mussara with its wonderful Refugi where you can either erect a tent in the meadow below the Refugi, in the shade of the pine trees or sleep inside in dormitory style beds. The very helpful and friendly guardians sell guidebooks, chalk, and have up to date route information.

Costs for camping were:
Tent: Euro 3.80 per person per night
Meals: 4.50 – 5.50 each
Showers: 1.80 per shower


Tristan eating breakfast at Refugi
If it’s hot elsewhere in Spain, La Mussara at 1,000 m altitude on a bluff overlooking the Mediterranean stays cool due to sea breezes and frequent fog that rolls in off the ocean. In fact, we often wore our down jackets, hats and gloves during dinner. On days off, we enjoyed running or hiking on the many nearby trails or a quick trip down to Reus for shopping.

We were within an hour’s drive of six other climbing areas, including the famous Siurana and Montsant, as well as lesser known Arboli, El Falco, Margalefs, Mont-Ral and Prades. La Mussara alone offered hundreds of climbs on perfect limestone.

La Mussara
Posted by sibylle in Spain, La Mussara (Saturday December 16, 2006 at 3:55 pm)


Gabriel on Covallonga

Ok, so why haven’t I posted on my blog since June? Tristan and I were climbing in Spain (primarily La Mussara and Siurana in June) and then we were in Switzerland in July. Once we returned I took a quick trip to Ten Sleep, Wyoming, where I became seriously ill with an infected gall bladder (that story later).

The surgeon eventully took out my gall bladder and I spent four days in the hospital on IV antibiotics and IV morphine. After spending much of August in bed recovering, I’ve been trying to catch up on everything I didn’t get done from May through August.

That’s why I’m starting on my Spanish climbing tales several months late.

Tristan and I flew to Barcelona and took the bus to the Plaza Universidad in the town center for only Euro 3.75. The public bus departed directly from the airport, was much cheaper than a taxi and took us to within a few blocks of our hotel. We stayed at the Hostal Centric, the same hotel where we’d stayed two years earlier.

A Dutch woman on the bus, whom I asked about cheap car rentals, referred me to Pepecar, a company cheaper than Eurocar that I hadn’t heard of. From our hotel it was a short walk to the Plaza Catalunya where Pepecar was in a tiny office in the underground parking at the end of a narrow alley by the Hard Rock Café. We would never have found this without directions!

Our room at the Hostal Centric (a Hostal denotes a budget-priced hotel in Spain, not a hostel) was very quiet, in the back and away from the main street, with two comfortable beds but no fridge in the room. The shower, like most European showers, had feeble water pressure and a useless shower curtain. We left our climbing gear in the locked baggage room. The hotel had no restaurant but we were walking distance to a bakery, grocery stores, restaurants, the Metro, and many tourist attractions not far from the Pl. Catalunya, one end of the famous Rambla

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