When we climbed at Lo Soterrani, one of the cliffs at La Mussara, we met Jordy and Heidi climbing there. Both are surgeons; Heidi is American and Jordy grew up in nearby Tarragona with British parents. They were taking six months off between surgery positions. Their last one had been in Maine, which proved much colder than expected, and their next posting would be to Phoenix, In between, they were staying with Jordy’s parents in Tarragona (about an hour away) and climbing as much as possible.
Since in their six-month’s vacation, they could climb anywhere they wanted, and had still chosen to come to La Mussara, that reinforced my impression that we’d ended up in a pretty cool location.
At Lo Soterrani, Tristan led the climb shown, which I was able to follow until the roof, at which point I fell a few times and struggled to surmount the overhanging section. Luckily several the cliff sorted several easier routes within a few 100 feet, one called Diedre de Pi and another called Elegocentric. A diedre is a corner in French, so perhaps these terms are Catalan, not Spanish. We both wondered if by “pi” they meant the mathematical term.
Getting there: We flew to Barcelona, stayed at the Hostal Centric and rented a cheap car from Pepe car. We drove from Barcelona toward Reus (inland from Tarragona, in Catalonia) and then uphill to the Sierra des Prades.
Where to stay: Camp at the campground outside the Refugio, or stay in the Refugio in a shared room with bunk beds (a mountain or climber’s hostel)
Best time of year: We came here in April on our first trip and experienced lots of rain and cold weather. Our second trip, from May 25 to June 21 had perfect weather. The climbs are at about 1,000 meters in altitude, so definitely colder than coastal Spain.
Where to eat: The couple who were hut keepers also cook meals for both guests lodging there and for hikers passing through. One of the local specialties are called “tortillas”, but they resemble an omelet. They’re made with eggs, potatoes, cheese, onions, and vegetables. They’re round, plate- sized, and over a half inch thick. We loved these. They also serve various ham dishes that I didn’t try.
Guidebooks: We bought ours from RockFax.