140 – Lagos de Cavadonga

This is a short post to document a quick day trip to the region of Asturias. Lakes of Enol, or Lagos de Covadonga, are possibly the most famous and iconic spot of all Asturias. When you google Picos de Europa, you get this postcard-perfect result. This photograph is obviously heavily photoshopped. Not because it looks like a commercial for natural dairy products, courtesy of happy cows roaming freely through the Asturian meadows, that part corresponds to reality. But because the cows do not come waste-free, so some poor editor must have gone through the hassle of removing tons of excrements from the shot. I am not joking. Every time I go hiking in Spain I admire the amount of mountaineering the local cattle engages in, which is why I always have hard time to pick a turd-free lunch spot and is why I can assure you that image is fake. Otherwise that is one very territorial and very constipated cow.

Lagos de Covadonga. Photo courtesy of turismoasturias.es

Right, Lagos de Covadonga. The above is what it looks like on a normal day (plus the turd). Green meadows, dramatic mountain peaks reflecting in the water of crystal clear lakes. Paradise. The drive alone from Verdiago was stunning. First the Riaño reservoir, then through the mountain pass of Puerto del Pontón to cross from León to Asturias, and through the scenic canyon of river Sella to Cangas de Onís, where you turn for Covadonga. In the low touristic season and before 8 am in the high season (was never gonna happen), you can drive yourself from Covadonga village all the way to the lakes. In any other time, there are 5 parking lots between Cangas and Covadonga, served by tourist buses that will take you up, which is a better option anyway, because it allows you to admire the views rather than concentrating on the winding road. (Note to myself: must come back here with the bike). 

Lago de Enol
Lago de Enol

The only problem that particular day was that over the Puerto del Pontón, there was Scotland. Mist so thick that even though I believe the lakes exist (because there is photographic evidence), I did not really see them. I could guess the shoreline of lake Enol, but when I looked in the direction of lake Ercina, there was just fog. Which, don’t get me wrong, was still a fantastic experince, mystical almost. Hiking through the white void with nothing for company but the ringing of the bells of innumerable cows, whose silhouettes I could sometimes distinguish in the mist. 

Lake Enol

To you a gallery of raindrops and grey photos. I will come back here, hopefully soon. And very soon too, more adventures from León will follow.

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