Agujas de Santa Águeda is located near the seaside town of Benicassim. It is a route that is arguably more of a scramble than a hike, but still super fun – even on the hottest day of the year!
We started with a drink in Benicassim, already some of the group were considering if the beach was a better option as it was already warm. From there it was a short drive to the starting place. The first few kilometres were along the PR-CV 397 trail. They were relatively easy, with shady forest parts and a gentle incline. Already on this path, we had good views along the coastline and they were only going to get better.
Soon we came to the scramble! The route up to the first Aguja had a variety of ledges and rock formations to climb. Just before the peak, we came to a narrow canyon and had to edge our way around to the rock face for the final ascent.
The first Aguja had stunning views in all directions. Even Eric was allowed out to enjoy them (with Dmitry keeping a tight grip on his hand of course). As well as the views and photos, we had yet more amusement when one member dropped his sunglasses between the rocks. I was able to stretch and get my arm into the gap, however I wasn’t able to see them. A team effort of directions lead to the successful retrieval of the sunglasses.
Sunglasses saved, it was time to go down and make our way along the ridge. After a few wrong turns and a bit of back tracking, we found the right path. We climbed down and whilst it wasn’t the easiest route, it was doable.
The correct route was along the ridge. This was nearly all scrambling. There were yellow spots and circles to follow, however sometimes we just went our own way. Although the scramble does not require any specific climbing equipment, there are no chains or ropes so you have to be a confident scrambler. We used a variety of techniques, climbing, walking like crabs and sliding down rock faces to get to our second Aguja.
We arrived at the most epic spot, The Trampoline. However, it was not obvious that we were on The Trampoline until we traverssed the ridge away from it and looked back. The Trampoline stretches out across air and it is a very long drop down. This lead to feelings of terror in some group members whilst others were thinking of the photo opportunities.
After many epic photos were taken, it was time to descend a little and find a lunch spot. To get to the lunch spot we had to climb up a narrow gorge and then through a hole. This hole wasn’t very big and a bit awkward to climb through. However, the hole group made it and we hole-heartedly agreed that we had earnt our lunch.
Our lunch spot provided welcome shade and great views of the coast. Eric once again made an appearance to enjoy the views and the company.
After lunch, it was time to descend. This time we took the correct path. The first part was steep but it soon became more gentle. The path has lots of loose rocks, sand and switchbacks but unfortunately, it didn’t have any shade. There were some pretty flowers and nice views along the coast to look at though. Towards the end, we were all very hot so Dmitry said we should think of cold beer, as if we hadn’t been thinking about that for the last few kilometres!
We got back to the cars and drove a short distance uphill to a mountain top restaurant with awesome views of Agujas de Santa Águeda and the Costa Blanca coastline. It also had cold drinks which were very appreciated.
Agujas de Santa Águeda is a great scramble, the views are fantastic and if you’re are confident at scrambling, it is a lot of fun. Despite the route only being 9km, it is a tough 9km in the heat so plan accordingly. It was definitely a day that lived up to the motto “Valencia Mountain Enthusiasts: making people tired, but happy.”
Thank you to Dmitry, Lene, Luke and me for the photos.