Picos de Europa – Ian Monro’s spring holiday

Casas regular Ian Monro has graciously allowed us to share his photo’s and memories of his holiday in the Picos in May 2011 – Many thanks Ian!

Common Blue Butterfly on a Pink Butterfly Orchid

Our house in Ojedo was a perfect centre from which we could explore the Cantabrian end of the Picos de Europa. It was in a quiet area just a comfortable walk to shops and restaurants and a five minute drive to bustling Potes, which is the heart of the area and the junction of roads to all quarters of it.

We expected magnificent mountain scenery and it was always around us and with a cable ride at Fuente De we were up amongst the snowy peaks. But there was much more. Just up the road the Centro de Visitantes Sotama provided a fascinating explanation of the geology and history of the Picos de Europa National Park and revealed the riches of wildlife the wide range of environments supported.

The valleys and foothills around us were peppered with picturesque villages and historic monuments like the Monastery of Toribio and the charming pre-Romanesque church of Santa Maria de Lebana.

A highlight of our stay was a day out with Teresa Farino of Iberian Wildlife Tours, a local naturalist with an encyclopaedic knowledge of flowers, butterflies and other insects. Teresa organises regular excursions and there are walks of varying lengths and difficulties in her informative Sunflower Guide.

The weather was better than expected. We had rain and even thunder but it changed quickly and no day was without a spell of sunshine.

There was no lack of photo opportunities. We have many lovely images to remind us of the joys of the Picos de Europa.

Fuente DéWalk from CucayoFrom Cucayo 2Fuente Dé 2Between Espinama & MogrovejoMogrovejo
IMG_0512Near Espinama with TeresaWalking with TeresaIg. de Sta María de LebeñaSta María 2Sta María 3
Potes 2Potes - riverside walkIan MonroPiascaIMG_0854 AVada
Near Cahecho

Liebana Ian Monro’s springtime holiday, see the full set set on Flickr.

Ian’s wildlife gallery – with thanks to Teresa farino for inspiration and her help with identification…

Adonis Blue againWhite CampionUpright VetchTeaselTrumpet GentianTitanio Pollinalis
Tassle HyacinthSheep's bit speciesSpeedwell varietySpeckled WoodScrambling VetchSpreading Bellflower
Sawfly OrchidShining Crane's BillPyramidal OrchidPyrenean Spiked GrampianPurple Shot CopperProvencal Fritillary
Pink Butterfly OrchidMystery catterpillarMeadow Brown on Greater NapweedMeadow Brown on Creeping ThistleLady's smockMarsh Orchid

Ian Monro – Picos Flora and Fauna, see the full set on Flickr.

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