The Sálvada/Gorobel Mountain Range

The extensive Sálvada/Gorobel Mountain Range comprises the South/East limit of the region. It is an incredible rocky wall that rises over Ayala Valley featuring an elevation change greater than 300-400 m.

The face opposite the valley (towards the north-northeast) has extremely craggy walls and mountainsides with significant slopes that descend towards the valley, which are full of dense forests. On the other hand, the mountainsides facing the south (province of Burgos) present smooth slopes and are occupied by pastures, bushes and extensive tree stands (mainly beeches). All this results in an asymmetric and sloped profile that has become one of the most characteristic images of Ayala Valley (in fact, this profile is part of Aiaratur's logo).

With these features, one of its most attractive aspects can be sensed: its panoramic views. For this reason, the Sálvada/Garobel Mountain Range one of the main mountaineering references in the Basque Country.

Some of the most visited peaks are Tologorri (1,066 m), Unguino (110 m), Eskutxi (1,185 m), Aro (112 m), Bedarbide (1,041 m), etc. However, there are also other especially attractive areas to visit.

Txarlazo is Orduña's emblematic peak, and leaning over the escarpment raises the Virgen de la Antigua, which is the patron saint of the city. This monument, built in 1904, represents the trunk of a white mulberry tree on whose branches we can see the image of the Virgin (15 m high).

In order to reach this beautiful location, there is an easy route starting at the Sanctuary of the Virgen de la Antigua in the outskirts of Orduña, which passes through "El Portillo" or the Goldetxo path until reaching the summit.

If there is a quintessential image of the Sálvada/Gorobel Mountain Range, it has to be the Délika Canyon or the Source of river Nervión. This location is the head of Ayala Valley. With a drop of around 300 m, river Nervión falls offering a unique sight, which starts from the highest surface of the Gibijo Mountain Range (on the south of the Sálvada Mountain Range). A great amount of people comes to this place, as there is a well-prepared observation point from where to enjoy the incredible panoramic views.

This place can be accessed by car from Orduña, climbing the Orduña Mountain Pass towards Tertanga-Berberana-Burgos.

Further north, several paths lead to the Mountain range from Orduña and Ayala, specifically towards the most well known peaks (Ungino, Eskutxi, Tologorri, Bedarbide...). Several large caves can be found in this area; the famous "Hayal de Ponata" stands out with its over 40 kilometres of galleries. It is a real treasure for speleology enthusiasts.

In addition, the entire Mountain Range has several remains of constructions linked to traditional and pastoral life: bordas —typical constructions of the area, shelters, prehistoric remains, loberas —constructions for hunting wolves, etc.

Probably, the loberas are one of the most interesting and peculiar constructions of the area. A lot of them are very well preserved, and clearly show the old method used for hunting wolves: Gibijo, Monte Santiago and San Miguel are loberas worth mentioning.