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Information of interest
ROUTE: 4 River Vero Rock Art Route I
LOCATION (COMARCA): Somontano de Barbastro
SUITABLE TIME AND/OR CONDITIONS: All year, no snow
DIFFICULTY ACCORDING TO THE 5-POINT MIDE SCALE (SYSTEM DEVISED BY THE GOVERNMENT OF ARAGON TO MEASURE DIFFICULTY) M (level of risk) = 3; I (signposting) = 2; D (difficulty) = 2; E (duration of effort) = 4
LENGTH: 19 km
POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE ALTITUDE CHANGE: +/800 m
Mountain bike: No
COMBINATION WITH CARS RECOMMENDED: No
3 La Fuente del Trucho cave
4- Abrigos de Arpán caves
5- Abrigos de Mallata caves
9 - Suspended walkways
10 La Fuente Ravine/Alquézar
1- Our route begins in Alquézar where we take the path leading to the San Lucas ridge, near the main square (Plaza Mayor). The trail begins on flat land before sloping upwards to the top of the hill.
2- Once at the top, we take the path that slopes down to the river. This is very easy to spot as it is fenced off. This path takes us to the Villacanta Bridge, which we cross and continue on until we come to a crossroads (signposted).
3- We take the road on the left leading to the caves of Arpán/ Fuente del Trucho and a little further on we turn right to go over the Lumos Hill. We will go past the path leading up to the top and take the one that goes down on the left, to the bottom of the ravine and then up to the Fuente del Trucho.
4- After reaching the cave at the spring known as the Fuente del Trucho, we continue until we come to a rocky clearing with two information boards. Arpán is on the left, and straight ahead the Mallata paintings.
5- After visiting Arpán, we will continue on to Mallata. A little further on, we turn left, coming to a path and then taking another left turn and continuing along the trail until we come to the paintings.
6- We now have to go back to the path and return to the crossroads along the road going up to Arpán. We continue straight ahead and come out onto the road. A few yards further along, we turn right on to a trail leading to Asque, keeping parallel to the road.
7- The trail crosses over the road, and then turns into a path and goes down to the Asque intersection close by a wall.
8-When we get to the church, we take the path (signposted) that leads into a path at the end, which we will go down to Fuentebaños. We cross the bridge and go on up towards Alquézar along another path.
9- When the path subsides into a gentle slope there is an intersection (signposted), where we turn right and descend towards the old power station. Now we only have to continue above the walkways, go over the dam and on to the final walkways, before turning left.
10- The wooden steps will lead the way and take us back to Alquézar.
History and culture
This route is a journey through time. We will discover the original settlers of this region, learn of stories and legends from the Middle Ages, see the first developments of modern engineering and finally the new tourist attractions in the Vero River basin.
If we are a bit observant along the way we will be able to see a large number of marine fossils, proving that these lands were once submerged under the sea.
We will take a stroll through prehistoric times featuring in three artistic exhibitions. The La Fuente del Trucho Cave 22,000 years B.C. (Paleolithic Art), the Arpán Caves, between 8,000 and 6,000 B.C. (Levantine Art) and the Mallata Caves, dating back to 5,000 B.C. (schematic art).
We shall also see traces of Islamic civilisation, the frontiers of which were in this area, with Alquézar Castle as an example of this.
The Romanesque bridges we will cross are from the Middle Ages. The modern era ushered in the Alquézar dam, the electric power station and the mill.
And now in the times in which we are living the improvements made to cater to the tourist trade bring us into contact with some stunning scenery by means of walkways over the River Vero, steps and railings in the ravine known as Barranco de la Fuente, and the clearing and preparation of old paths or information boards at various points of interest.