Friday, 20 April 2018

One week later
Just a week later, working 24 hours a day, they've reopened the mountain pass. It's a temporary solution but looks useable.
The alternative route is so long!

Sunday, 15 April 2018

Broken road, floods

On Friday morning we set off for Jaca. Arriving at the top of the Monrepos mountain pass at about 11.30, we were made to turn round and go back to Huesca. They closed the road to traffic and 15 minutes later part of that road fell off; yes, fell off!

Here are some photos from the Heraldo de Aragón

This one is before, going south
As you can see, there is snow on the ground and it's very wet. There have been roadworks here for years, and we had hoped that part of the new motorway would be ready soon. However, it looks further off than ever. The mountain pass will be closed for at least ten days until they rig up an alternative lane.
In the meantime our route in and out of the Pyrenees is the pass of Santa Barbara. Rather narrow and wiggly, but al long as it isn't raining rather pretty. Only, in the last four days, Santa Barbara has been closed by rockfalls twice. There has been a lot of rain this week, and there will be a lot of melting snow. It seeps through the rocks and earth and causes these avalanches of rocks. We went back to Zaragoza that way this afternoon. It was clear, but you could see where the rocks had fallen and there was a waterfall over the road.  It's worrying, because it's not a good road and the traffic  will be far too heavy. It takes an extra half-hour to get from Jaca to Huesca, with no heavy vehicles.

The mountain roads have suffered, but down in the valley, there are worse floods than 2015

Wednesday, 21 March 2018


What a joke! Officially it's spring, but the weather is extreme. In Jaca:

In Senegüé, near Saniñánigo:

(this one, taken by my friend Elena, is perfect!)
Meanwhile, in Zaragoza, the wind is blowing. Opposite our flat an aerial got blown over by a gust of wind and the fire brigade had to come and take it down. They were there for at least 45 minutes.

Excitement for Tuesday dinnertime!

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Tarazona revisited

Yesterday we had a day trip from Zaragoza to Tarazona. It's just over an hour's drive, first on a toll motorway and then a winding country road with quite a lot of lorries on it.
Since our last visit in 2013 they have done a bit more work on the cathedral restoration. Everything looked clean and well-cared for.

Mudejar tower with stork's nest

you can just see the stork in this one

the well in the cloister

Tarazona has a bullring which is made of an octagon of 32 homes. It was built in the 1790s and used as a bullring until 1870. The first time I saw it, it was being used as a car park, but now you can see the elegant structure perfectly.

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Where in Zaragoza?

Here are some snaps of things in Zaragoza.
by the Imperial Canal in Casablanca.

Independencia, modernist building.

another modernist building in Independencia.

palm trees at the end of Goya. Plaza De Los Zagries.
Here's another one of the elegant Modernist buildings in Independencia.

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Larrés Castle, museum of drawing Julio Gavin

Saturday 13th January turned out fine so we went on a short excursion to a place we hadn't been for 20 years; the drawing collection in a 14-16th century castle in the Serrablo near Sabiñánigo. It was pretty much as cold inside thee stone building as out, and as we were moving slowly to look at the drawings, after the hour it took us to see everything we were chilled through.
We enjoyed the drawings, which ranged from Dali to Beulas to Juan Gris, Penagós and the museum's founder, Julio Gavin.
We also enjoyed the castle itself-a simple two-storied set of rooms surrounding a central patio and two towers, one with the narrowest stone staircase imaginable leading to an exhibition of cartoons, and the other a viewing platform from which you can see the snowy mountains. (although the dirty windows made it impossible to take photos). All-in-all a good trip.
Here's a link for the museum:

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Autumn in the Selva de Oza

 From Jaca you drive to the village of Puente la Reina on the main N-260 national road. they are building a motorway, but as a national road-it links Jaca with Pamplona-it's a disgrace. Puente la Reina, as the name says has a bridge which crosses the river Aragón, after which you turn right and drive next to the river Subordan, a tributary of the Aragón. Past Javierregay, Embún and round the edge of Hecho. Past Siresa with its spectacular Romanesque church-all that's left of the monastery that once housed 150 monks. Here the road gets narrower, you drive through a quite narrow ravine called Hell's Mouth- la Boca del Infierno and into the area of the Selva de Oza. In the past 20 years Oza has come along! It was an area with two derelict campsites and some empty buildings with spectacular scenery and now the campsites have reopened, freshly painted and refurbished; there's a café-restaurant, a restaurant, an adventure playground with wires running from tree to tree as well as spectacular scenery.
We had a lovely walk along the steep gorge side on a warm autumn morning. Here are a few photos:
an amazing collection of mushrooms on a treestump

you can see the wires on the treewalks

more autumn mushrooms on a fallen tree

autumn colours on the Boca del Infierno

On the way back we stopped in Hecho and had a rather expensive but exquisite meal in a restaurant called Cantere. Lovely, very fine food.