“For me it is a very special challenge because I was born in the Pyrenees and it is where I live. Here, my parents taught me to love the mountains. I don’t want to set any record. What I am looking for is to discover the Pyrenees, where I was born and where I learnt to love the mountains, and get to know the people…” These are the words of Kilian Jornet, probably the most famous trail runner in the world, just minutes before the start of the challenge to beat the Transpirenaica record, the route that covers the mountain range in full from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean.
But we are going to focus in what we believe is one of the most spectacular areas for a trail running trip: Aigüestortes and Estany de Sant Maurici National Park, in the Catalan Pyrenees, which is the setting of the famous high level route Carros de Fuego connecting its nine mountain refuges.
Carros de Fuego is a 55km route with a total elevation gain of 9.200 metres and its highest altitude being 2.775 metres. The itinerary goes along landscapes of great beauty like the lake of Sant Maurici, Els Encantats, the spires of Amitges, the cirque of Colomers, the Monestero valley, Besiberris… and an endless list of lakes and summits. The mountain refuges where we will be spending the nights and restocking on energy are located in inspiring settings, and the keepers will make us feel at home. The usual length of time necessary to complete the route walking is 5 days and it can be done any time of the year as long as the weather allows it.
Carros de Fuego is the missing link between walking and running in the mountains. Walk fast and run slowly. Great news for runners that love a challenge in beautiful and true technical mountain routes. It is essential to be in a very good physical condition and to have previous experience. Are you ready?
The National Park of Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici is one of the fourteen national parks of Spain. Located in the Catalan Pyrenees is, together with the National Park of Ordesa and Monteperdido (in the Aragonese Pyrenees) and the Parc National des Pyrénées (in the French departments of Pyrénées-Atlantiques and Hautes-Pyrénées), an excellent representation of the main ecosystems of the Pyrenees.
Its main hallmark is water, which runs through rivers, canyons and waterfalls and stagnates in lakes and peat lands. All this is located between mountains of more than three thousand meters altitude and leafy forests of black pine, spruce, scot pine, birch and beech.
In the park there is an extensive network of sheltered mountain huts that allow mountain lovers to discover all corners with all comfort and at any time of the year. In winter, when the park is covered in white and its more than 200 lakes freeze, it becomes a perfect and beautiful stage for crossings with mountain skis or snowshoes.
Following the trail left in the Middle Ages by Romanesque art in the Boí Valley is another way of approaching this place. The church of Sant Climent de Taüll with its slender square-shaped bell tower is the most well-known image of the eight churches built in the valley under the influence of the Lombard Romanesque and they are declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
It is important to carry a light backpack, so it is recommended to carry just the essential clothes and equipment. If you do not have all the equipment you can rent it, please consult us.