/ El Chorro Access

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UKC News - on 21 Jun 2005
A story has appeared on the Desnivel web site - http://desnivel.com/deportes/escalada_en_roca/object.php?o=13747 - stating that access to the main gorge at El Chorro is now in jeopardy. The National Park was involved in a law suit after a train operator objected to people walking along the track (apparently a family with a pram had been spotted) and the National Park have reacted to this by banning access along the railway tracks. Police have been preventing access and notices claiming large fines of more than 6000 Euros for anyone found on the railway line have been put in place.

This all happened a few weeks ago and after initial police diligence, the situation seems to be back as it always was. If you are concerned then all the major areas can be reached by safe routes by walking around the initial tunnels and then using the walkway, or approaching from above Makinodromo.

UKC News - http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/
mo on 21 Jun 2005
In reply to UKC News:

this was also the situation last year (the signs and the police). the police tend to only check at the weekend/bank holidays and only at the first tunnel.

would be a real shame if it was closed altogether because the camino del rey had become very dodgy last year, so the closing of the tunnels would effectively turn out to closure of some excellent climbing sectors.
Boy - on 22 Jun 2005
In reply to UKC News: Access to the gorge via the walkway looks rather tricky now as the first 20 ft has been removed. It looks like access could still be gained, but it might require roping up and traversing over, with slings on sawn off girders for gear.
In reply to Boy:
> (In reply to UKC News) Access to the gorge via the walkway looks rather tricky now as the first 20 ft has been removed. It looks like access could still be gained, but it might require roping up and traversing over, with slings on sawn off girders for gear.

This has been the case for several years now. You can access it via an easy route which restricts the walkway to climbers only. More information here - http://www.rockfax.com/areas/el-chorro/access.html
mo on 22 Jun 2005
In reply to Alan James - UKC:

does anyone know if they finished the via ferata yet? last year they were sort of half way with it, they left it, just before the really bad bit.
Manstey on 22 Jun 2005 - cpc2-warw3-4-0-cust121.brhm.cable.ntl.com [brhm-cache-7.server.ntli.net]
In reply to UKC News:

June 22nd

I have just returned from a weekend in El Chorro.

There are indeed signs on the tunnel entrance in the Albercones car park. These signs do state the a 6000 Euro fine is possible.

We took the long route over the top of the Albercones ridge and then made our way back to the railway track. At the large bridge looking over the Gorge, it is possible to abseil down the storm drain and make your way down to the Gorge.
This gave us access to many excellent climbs.

There were many people walking through the tunnels and they had no trouble, so if you are feeling energetic, I would recommend that you take the long route. If not, take the tunnel route, but be vigilant as the Police tend to hide behind the wall of the first tunnel.


In reply to Manstey:
> We took the long route over the top of the Albercones ridge and then made our way back to the railway track.

Can't you walk around the outside of the Albercones tunnel any more? Or is this in fact the way you went only my memory has shrunk this into a 'nip around the outside' as opposed to a 'slog over the ridge'.
mo on 22 Jun 2005
In reply to Alan James - UKC:

albercone tunnel being the one before the camino starts? the path around that one is hard to miss, would suprise me very much if they've blocked that one.
oh to be there again!
Pedro50 on 22 Jun 2005
In reply to mo: Yes surely it's the one the Germans used to try and cut off Ron Ryan while they were repairing the track after the Messchersmitt 109 rocket attack.
Paz - on 22 Jun 2005
Does anyone know anything about the rumoured approach over the top of the hill to El Makinodromo?
Pedro50 on 22 Jun 2005
In reply to Paz: Well I've walked there from the Spanish Steps on a rest day, but its a hell of a way for a days cragging.
Paz - on 22 Jun 2005
In reply to Pedro50:

Do you mean the Arab Steps? It's a hell of a way anyway, dossing seemed fairly popular and not a bad idea either.
Pedro50 on 22 Jun 2005
In reply to Paz: Yes sorry Arab Steps. Yes we were knackered, I failed on Lourdes the day after.
alexf on 24 Jun 2005 - 159.134.94.21 whois?
In reply to Alan James - UKC:

Yes, that's the route we took. Thinking back, it was a short route. We only took the route after climbing for four hours at Albercones, so it probably felt like a slog when it was only a short cut. You know how you feel when you want to squeeze one more climb in even though you know you shouldn't.
The tunnels are still the shortest route though.
balmybaldwin - on 25 Jun 2005
In reply to UKC News:

Was in El Chorro Last week. Whilst there are signs up saying that you will be fined (6,000 euros!) for walking through the tunnel, according to the guys at finca el campanga (sp?) as long as you keep an eye out for the police, it is easy to get in & out. We went in there without any problems, however when the area is a bit busier there may be more police around.

There is also a route into the back of the gorge from a tunnel near the Mirabel, although again el camino del rey has been destroyed, there are some good bolts in place to allow you to climb up and around the destroyed area. Unfortunately they appear to have done a really good job blowing up the walkway at the village end of the gorge.

Although we didn't, we did see a few people camping inside the gorge which looked like a great spot (private beach, swimming in the gorge) and at least if you do this you don't need to go in and out so often.

In terms of why these restrictions are in place, we were told that a big school party were caught in the tunnels, and a couple of kids killed.
mo on 25 Jun 2005
In reply to balmybaldwin:

??? last year they were putting a wire up around the camino (they being the guys from the climbing shop) to keep access to the gorge routes open for climbers, they were sort of half way. you're saying all that's destroyed again? as for the village access: are you talking about the original access (that was destroyed ages ago) or the alternative via ferrata access??? (slightly lower than the original one). hmmm would be a real shame!
NDD - on 26 Jun 2005
In reply to UKC News:
Hi im going to el chorro in october. Is it going to be worth going? Will i still be able to get to crags like makinadro?

Also is a 70m rope worth having or will a 60m be fine?
Is my first time going there.
Paz - on 27 Jun 2005
In reply to Nicolas Duboust:

From the above yes still possible, and even if the tunnels are closed it's possible with a big(ger) hike.

The rockfax makinodromo classics we did, (the 6cs) are doable with a 60 but there are some newer awesome looking extensions that it'd be nice to have a 70 for, I even heard someone mention bringing an 80 next time. If you're planning on spending days on one of these (especially if you want to top rope) then I guess it's easier to get a longer rope but you won't be short of routes to do with just a 60 and I think I'd have managed to bodge it OK on the longer ones I saw - the extra rope length is only there to get you down and there's the odd intermediate lower off about as well as some of the other bolts being ecos or staples.
Paz - on 27 Jun 2005
P.S. Put a knot in the end.
Stu Tyrrell on 27 Jun 2005
In reply to Nicolas Duboust: Take 2x 50 9mm, safe then!

Stu
ads.ukclimbing.com
NDD - on 28 Jun 2005
In reply to Paz and Stu Tyrrell:
Thanks. Yeh i might take two 50's can't go wrong that way, good idea.
andi_e - on 29 Jun 2005
In reply to UKC News: I was there at easter, and you were alright if you carried your passport, there were police on two of the 8 days. i was seriously shitting myself when a freight train came thorugh the tunnel when we were in it, but the tunnel is very wide. that said i'd rather there was a safe route round...
balmybaldwin - on 01 Jul 2005
In reply to Nicolas Duboust:

Definately still worth going, there are plenty of great crags still easily accessible. For some of the routes a 70 would be needed e.g. for some of the routes where you ab down from the camino, but for most a 50 or 60 would do - it really depends on the routes you choose.
balmybaldwin - on 01 Jul 2005
In reply to mo:

As I wasn't there last year, can't comment on any changes since then. It seems though that what ever they do the local climbers sort something out. Certainly there were a few Via ferrata set up to cross gaps (especially at the village end), and in other areas there are bolted climb-around routes.
Anonymous on 07 Jul 2005 - 10.30.4.81 [tangier.marrakech.com]
In reply to mo: I was there in April and large sections of the camino had the via ferrata up - from the pipe bridge to the cave entrance was fully equipped and from the pipe bridge back in the direction of the first rail bridge was mostly complete (it runs out on the last bit of path before the abseil point but it's there when it's needed).

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