Serella Pinnacles - "The Lost World"
Distance 8kms - Visit the amazing pinnacles of Pena Yedra. Although the full circuit involves some easy scrambling it is possble to do a return walk to visit this superb area of rock scenery. Can be extended into a longer walk with different approaches.
Possibly the best walk in the Costa Blanca for rock scenery. This little known route takes you through a "forest" of bizzarely sculptured limestone pinnacles, and arches high on the hillside of the Penya Creus (The Lost World). The full circuit involves some scrambling, but it is possible to visit the pinnacles on an easy return route.
Access: By making use of the well maintained forestry tracks in the South side of the Serella ridges it can be made into a shorter walk with less ascent. If you wish to extend the walk you can approach it via the forestry track or via any of the "Serella Approach" routes shown on our walks page.
The easy drive up the well maintained tracks starts at the highest point of the CV70 - turn right next to a large house with a windmill. Go past an open barrier and after about 3km park at the large green water tank. Now follow the continuation of the track in a NE direction, dropping down slightly with Penya Creus ahead and the craggy North face of Les Bardals to your right. After 1km you come to a slight col on the track (junction with the approach via Paseo Comptadores) and the track starts to drop more steeply. At an obvious junction take the left turn and follow the rougher track down into the head of a gully (Barranc Hondo), passing a P.R.V sign for Pla de La Casa and Benasau. Keep heading down until you come to Font Roja, with it's tap and water trough it is an ideal place to rest on a hot day.
Our route now takes the path on the left side of the gully (signposted Quatretondeta). Gradually this well worn track leaves the Barranc Hondo and heads around onto the Northern slopes of Penya Creus. After descending a well constructed section of track (this would have been a mule track connecting villages on either side of the mountain) you reach a rock that has been "decorated" with many crosses. At this point the main track continues down to Quatretondeta, our route starts contouring along on a reasonable path on scree under some impressively smooth rock walls. In the valley below you lie Quatretondeta and and Gorga, whilst further away the hill and castle at Cocentaina are clearly visible. After a few hundred metres you come to bigger rock wall with a small scoop or "natural rock shelter" in it's base - quite a common feature of rock walls in the area.
The track heads onto more scree and the first section of pinnacles comes into clearer view. The next section of track takes you past a large rock arch and then you climb towards the pinnacles and start to see in more detail the bizarre variation in shapes. Some are almost perfect slices of thin rock, others are more cone shaped, some are connected by curtains of rock with holes in them. You may even see some strange silhouettes and "faces" in some of the rocks!Next you pass between two pinnacles which almost form a "gateway" as you climb up to a notch in a rock wall that allows a good view down onto the other side of one of the first sections you passed. Ahead lie many more bizarre spires of rock and the path takes you to a wooded section and a climb up behind a feature we called "Tornado Rock" (picture X). At this point our route starts to climb up the vague ridge behind Tornado Rock and comes to a short section of scrambling (marked with some faded red dots). If you wish to avoid this section you need to return back the way you came. The short scramble leads on to further steep tracks, a bit feint in places, with the odd cairn up the continuation ridge and eventually to another obvious rock shelter. Above this you now need to locate the route carefully as it takes a steep loose track to the right of a rock face. Further ascent gives you a view over to the fire watch on Serella Peak and brings you onto a wooded hillside. Follow the red dots through the forested hillside and to a track on the far side.
Choice of routes back to the water tank.
1) Penya Creus Summit - open hillside, no tracks and steep in places.
Turn left up the track and follow it to it's end. Then follow across open ground to a col with views of the summit of Pla de La Casa. You can turn right (south) and head for the summit of Penya Creus, then from the summit retrace your steps for a couple of hundred metres but then keep to the East edge of the summit "ridge" with views down to a couple of large terraces and a hut. You will see a very little used track heading East down towards the terraces. Pick the best route you can, using some scree runs until you come the the last section of rocks just above the terraces. Here it is best to skirt along the top edge in a Southerly direction to eventually meet up with the track. Turn right and follow the track for about 1km back to the water tank.
2) Forestry track loop - easy forest tracks
Turn right and follow the track along the hillside onto a flatter area in the woods where you come to a junction. Turn left here and follow down the concreted section (water collection system) to the water tank.