Tudons, Font de L´Arbre, Forata and Aitana Summit
From 8 to 15 km, 3 to 6 hours, about 350 m of ascent
There are a number of routes available when you drive the 10 km up to the Tudons Pass ( 1020 m) and drop down the other side.
Our favourite is to drive the 5 km along the rough dirt track and park at the isolated Font de l´Arbre picnic site, leaving the car and setting off along well-made tracks which wind past cherry orchards and through pine forests, passing old snow holes now no longer used, to end up at the Font de la Forata.
All these fonts are shepherd´s springs, once used as staging posts for the large herds of goats and sheep the area was well known for. David from Sella was the last one with a substantial herd, some 2 or 3 hundred strong, but he no longer grazes here and has a much smaller flock.
From the Forata we take the direct route straight up the mountain for 300m of slog to the top – you can´t make the actual Aitana summit (1557m), it´s inside the military base – from where the views are spectacular. Good place for sandwiches. Then onward and downward to a series of bizarre natural depressions several hundred feet deep known as the Simas de Partagàs beside which we have to squeeze through the Pas de la Rabosa ( Fox Pass) and scramble back down to reach the botanical trail back to the Font de la Forata. From here we take the higher of the two trails, passing several more snow holes and so back to the car.