Route 22: : Circulate from Gorliz to Butron Castle, returning to Mount Isuskitza and Gandia


Route 22

Route 22 : Route published by Pedro Pablo Uriarte ”24 circular walking routes around Gorliz”

*Map of the route:* 


Total time: 4 h 40 min
Distance: 17,18 km
Cumulative elevation gain:  356m
Difficulty: Moderada

We leave Ibarreta square in Gorliz, and through the roundabout of the boat we pass in front of the cemetery and the industrial park Sagastikoetxe, arriving at the roundabout of the road of Mungia. Continue ahead and, going down through Kautela bidea, turn immediately to the left, to get halfway down through Iturri bidea to a roundabout where you turn left again and then right again to go down to the road to Gandia. We continue along it to the left to its end, at the height of a stone fountain.

Go ahead along the uphill road, called Mandañu bidea, passing in front of a bending workshop to its highest point, taking the detour to Butrón Castle (there are signs GR) (33 min).

After a short stretch downhill almost entirely under trees, we reach the estuary of Plentzia, which from now on, closer or farther away, will always be on our right until we reach the castle of Butron. We, for the moment, continue for a while along the wide path under the trees next to the estuary until we reach the first signposted detour of the GR 280 which goes up to Andraka (1 hour). Continue ahead, and in a few more minutes you reach the second detour of the GR towards Andraka (see route 12) (1 h and 10 min).

The track continues a few meters downhill and, almost immediately, leads to a wider one that, first with gravel and then asphalted, will lead us to the castle of Butrón.

We enter a quiet and completely flat stretch, mostly wooded and pleasant to walk on the road, with the nearby and quiet estuary to our right. Immediately the estuary, until now called the Plentzia estuary, becomes the Butron river, not affected by the tides at the level of the Arbina dam, which we can see at an entrance to the estuary on our right. The salinity of the water decreases as the estuary approaches the dam where it becomes the Butrón River.

Rio above Arbina sometimes the waters turn green due to the number of microplants that grow on its surface favored by the stagnation caused by the dam. We will see how, in imitation of tropical and jungle rivers, the branches of riparian trees graze and almost rest on the waters. The environment is very relaxing, helped by the tricks of the birds.

Almost without realizing it, when we are admiring the forest, after a bend to our right and a little bridge, we arrive at the impressive castle of Butrón which seems to have been taken from a fairy tale, although its origins are not fairy tales, but rather from ardent warriors, as were the Butrón, and which was solar from its east. type (1 h 40 min).

We pass the bridge and approach the facade of the castle, which we pass on our right. Behind him we have a crossroads. If we go left we would go towards Urduliz (route 13), but our goal today is another one, so we take the road on the right, which continues forward until it becomes a track.

We always go under the trees and for a wide earthy and flat track with wide and frequent puddles (it had rained abundantly the previous day). In the middle of summer we imagine there won’t be so much water on the road.

Immediately we pass by an abandoned house with large blue graffiti, and a little further on, a little more secluded, another brick house next to some curious abandoned buildings, which surely had something to do with the Arbina dam, located a little further on.

Walking about 2 km from the castle we almost reach the aforementioned dam of Arbina, but now we see it on the other side and a bit in bird’s eye view. It is located a little further down the road. Arriving at the crossroads we took the road on the left, on the right we would go to the dam itself.

The road is now always uphill, sometimes with harder ramps and sometimes less, but always uphill. The floor is earthy, clay, and with large grooves created by the water and the tires of some motorcycles that have pierced the ground. We always go under the mantle of native leafy species that form a closed Cantabrian rainforest. We find several fallen trees on the road that we must pass under or jump over them. It is a great pleasure to walk under the native trees of a Cantabrian forest, and we find a big difference compared to walking on tracks under the numerous eucalyptus forests that unfortunately populate our coastline. We’ll do this later, and we’ll get fed up.

The road comes a moment that becomes a path and traces several curves and revolts. We see to the right of the path numerous tutors with small oaks inside of which almost none has progressed. We come to a clearing that has a concrete structure to our right and that looks like a water reservoir. We took the opportunity to sit down and take a break to taste some fruit and drink some water.

Once the snack is over, as a precaution, we put on a long-sleeved garment to protect us from the pricks of the bushes and the side plants of the road. We already had our legs protected with long pants. To tell the truth, plant aggression was hardly problematic. I do not consider that the profuse lateral vegetation, at the moment, is a big problem to come here, in fact, we recommend it. However, since no one even thinks of putting a brush cutter on the side of the road, the bushes are going to eat it, literally.

Just starting from the water tank we immediately took the path to the left. On the right, where there is a wooden fence, we would go down to the first houses of the urbanization of El Abanico and we would have to do the rest of the route by road, which we do not want.

We therefore take the path on the left, on which we walk a couple of hundred meters and again take the left at another fork. You see a fence on the road to the right a few meters. Not that way, we’re taking the path to the left.

Now the road, very visible, climbs little by little and for a while enclosed between the lateral vegetation and the threatening bushes that do not disturb too much. In a short time we reach a clearer area, with some trees and a few guardians that protect some planted trees. There is a table and a kind of mailbox under an oak tree in the shape of a small castle. We are on Mount Isuskitza, 216 meters high.

After taking a couple of pictures we continue a few meters ahead without detours, immediately seeing a path to the left, which we do not take. This path would reach the road from Butrón to Urduliz. But we keep going straight ahead, to get to another crossroads where we take a right. Going down a little we reach in a few hundred meters the high road of the Fan called the Isuskitza Way.

Now we have to be very careful. We cross the road in front and go a few meters to the left. And there, to our right, we see an almost invisible entrance that goes up a small slope between some trees. Let’s go that way. And as soon as we get past it we see a path that goes to the left and that divides. We choose the one on the left, which goes into the eucalyptus forest. From now on, up to the main road, everything will be walking under a huge forest of eucalyptus trees.

There is one vitally important detail: from now on, we must look at signs indicating the turning points of the road. They are a kind of red paint spots that are seen from time to time, especially on crosses, on some trunks of eucalyptus trees or on stones on the ground. We have to be vigilant because they tell us that we are doing well. Apparently the bikers put them on.

We continue for a while without any deviation or twist, except for a small detour to our right to save a waterlogged area that immediately leads us back to the road.

In a while we came to a left turn, and we went on. In fact, the trend is always downwards in a slight decrease. We soon reached another turn to the right and, from now on, the road (we continue to look at the red points) is quite obvious, arriving shortly at another turn to the right (the red point is located in a eucalyptus to the right as we go down, indicating the direction).

We continue for a while on a relatively flat path with plenty of weeds and brambles on the sides that we have to get around, although it is done quite simply and without too many problems. There are quite muddy sections. I am sure that this situation will change depending on the time of year, the rains and the weather it has made, and I mean both the vegetation and the condition of the paths. I repeat about the brush cutter to keep the roads relatively clean of weeds.

We arrive at another intersection and turn left, and the path now becomes a small earthy canal that in frank descends into the low road of the Abanico. We leave the forest and after about two hundred meters walking to the left we are on the main road between Plentzia and Urduliz. Through it we go to Plentzia. Beware!, there are sections without scaffolding and the cars pass very close

As I say, we take the road towards Plentzia until we reach the new bridge, which we cross to the roundabout of Gandia. We go up the sidewalk of Kautela Bidea to the next roundabout and from now on we have to walk the morning trail to the starting point, on Iberre Street.

In short, and as a summary, it is a very nice circular route, mostly protected by the varied trees, that in less than five hours (4 h 40 min in total) going very quiet, we travel a little more than 17 km but with a discrete positive accumulated elevation difference: only 356 meters.

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