ADVENTURE SPORTS IN THE PYRENEES

The Spanish school Aula Hispánica is situated in the city of Jaca, in the middle of the Pyrenees, where students have the possibility to do different kind of activities all year round, depending on their interest. In this article we offer a summary of some of these activities.

Climbing: Although the main Pyrenees summits can be reached with basic climbing skills, the mountains have technical routes as demanding as any elsewhere. There are few places in the Pyrenees where you can't climb, but particularly good areas include Aiguestortes, Maladeta, Ordesa, Haute Garonne, Vallee d'Aure, Cirque de Gavarnie and the tops of the Aspe & Ossau. The different rock formations offer a wide of possibilities to develop difficult paths

Cycling: Mountain-biking is also very popular in Pyrenees and many tracks have been created and adapted for all levels. Cycling in the Pyrenees has the necessary ingredients to satisfy all your expectations: peace, enjoyment of the countryside and the possibility of covering considerable distances in one single day.

Horse Riding: Horse-riding, as a modality of green tourism or eco-tourism, is another example of nature leisure. Enjoying riding in a priviliged environment, feeling the strength of the horse and the serenity of the walk are some of the most typical aspects of this sport. The forest tracks,paths, bridle paths and cattle tracks, which cover the Pyrenees mountains are the transit points for horse and rider.

Canyoning: Canyoning is becoming a more and more popular sport. Among the canyons that can be found in the large Pyrenees massifs,Sierra de Guara stands out, in the Pre-Pyrenees, which amsses one of the largest and most spectacular series of canyons in Europe.

Rafting & Kayaking: There are plenty of possibilities, where tuition and equipment are available. These include the Veral, Ara, Gallego, Esera, Noguera Ribagorzana and Segre in the Aragon Pyrenees, and Tet, Aude, Ariege, Salat, Adour, Aure, Louron, Ossau, Aspe and Nive in France.

Mountaineering: There are perfect mountaineering opportunities in view of the villages, valleys and beautiful scenary there. Apart from the attractive heights dominating the valleys of Anso, Hecho and Canfranc, the mountaineer's paradise lies between the valleys of Tena and Benasque where there are many peaks with heights of over 3.300m.

Paragliding and Hang-Gliding: Paragliding and hang-gliding are included within the modality of free flight: the sportpersons can take off and land using their legs. Both the hang-glider, heavier and bulkier, but with better flights characteristics and the light paraglider, due the
simplicity of its mechanisms, provide a direct contact of the sportsperson with the freedom of the open space and flight. Esera Valley in the Aragon Pyrenees is one of the centres where you can practice these sports.

Gliding & Ultralights: Gliding and ultralights permit covering large distances, enjoying a wide variety of landscapes. An aerodrome is required to practice this sport. There are several of these installations in the Alto Aragon: Santa Cilia, near Jaca, Monflorite, near Huesca, Basbastro, Benabarre and Ainsa.

Trekking: Trekking is the best and simplest way of enjoying and getting to know the territory in depth. The calm of the walkers helps him feel part of everything that surrounds him, the countryside, the villages and the people,their way of life, in short, the little details of the path.

High Mountain Trekking: The Pyrenees offer more than 200 mountains of more than three thousand metres above sea level, an enormous number of peaks of more than two thousand metres and the mostsouthtern glaciers in Europe are elements that enable us to get an idea of the magnitude of the Pyrenees mountain range.