During the summer months in Javea, it is wise to stay close to a pool, the sea and a cold beer. Once the warm days of October and November had settled in, we decided to ascend the Montgo mountain for the third time in 20 years. It proved a harder challenge than we remembered.
Setting off from the Javea to Denia road, drive from Javea up the winding road and when it levels at the top of La Plana and you can see a lane to your left. Drive a few hundred metres and park the car. We were well equipped with good walking shoes, lots of water, a chicken sandwich and a banana. I joked and proceeded to load rope and tackle and a few spikes and a shovel onto my back, this was met with a surprise from our climbing companions and quickly turned to laughter, as I told them in was a gentle climb, needing only good walking shoes and plenty of water.
We started the walk along a gravel path leading to the base of El Montgo. We named this base camp one. The path soon turns into a stony, rocky surface which could easily snap an ankle or break a leg. We were very careful to watch every step and stopped to catch our breaths and to admire the views towards Denia and the bay of Javea. After around an hour of zig zag climbing, the walk bears south around the trunk of Montgo and starts to turn into a scramble across large rocks and narrow foot holds, using our arms to balance. Another 30 minutes climbing and you reach the 753 metre summit.
All the way up we were blessed with warm breezes and the views just got better. At the summit we could see Denia and north to Valencia, west out to sea and south Javea, Gata and Pedreguer. The Penon de Ifach and the Las Sierra Bernia mountain range stretched further south.
We stood on the peak for 15 minutes, just being amazed at the views, lots of photos and a repair to Anthony’s boots, which had decided to loose the soles, we prepared for the easier decent. We still had to watch every step on the way down, but it was a lot less work coming down. The knees and backs of some of the party, started to take the strain and started to ache.
The thought of a cool drink and the paella mixta, that we had preordered at the Amanecer restaurant, kept us all going. Except our tired legs, a few blisters and soleless boots we made it safely back to the cars.
Within five minutes we were seated in the restaurant and the drinks appeared, bread and alioli and a fresh salad were consumed rapidly.
The paella was marvelous and had lots of flavour, it was a little short of content and could have included green beans, butter beans and a little more chicken, but it still tasted excellent washed down with cool white wine and agua con gas. Needless to say it was a great day out and another one they can’t take away from us, whoever they are.