Route 23: Circular through Andraka, Malgartzagane mountain and Plentzia estuary, returning through Junkera bidea, Gandia and Plentzia.

Route 23

Route published by Pedro Pablo Uriarte “24 Circular hiking routes from Gorliz”

See route map on Wikiloc


Duration: 4 h 54 min
Distance: 17,97 km
Desnivel positivo acumulado:  449 m
Difficulty: Moderate

This is a mostly quite original route, different, running between Andraka and the Plentzia estuary along tracks and paths unknown to me, and even discovering a small peak, the Malgartzagane on which I had never been before, going down to almost the Castle of Butron along beautiful wooded paths. The way back we take the popular route on the edge of the Plentzia estuary to the junction with Mandañu bidea, next to Koala nurseries, to make a detour through Junkera bidea and get to Plentzia by Gandia. By Areatza Kalea we return to Gorliz.

It is eight o’clock in the morning on a beautiful and fresh day when my friend Eduardo and I start walking next to St. Peter’s Square, to climb up Itsasbide to the top roundabout of Gorliz, located above the church. There we turn right and almost immediately left to go up Barberusolo. The street is quite steep and we start to sweat despite the cool morning. Barberusolo continues with Orbeta bidea and we pass by some beautiful chalets until we reach the highest point of Orbeta, next to the beautiful farmhouse Alegría. The road passes now under some beautiful examples of holm oaks until you reach a house on the left that has not been finished for a few years. Just overcoming it, the road ends abruptly to continue on a path that seems to end in a fence, but right there, on the right comes out an almost invisible path that goes through the vegetation and goes a couple of hundred meters with some nettles and bushes next to us. Even if it seems like you can’t go through, you can, I’ve gone through dozens of times both back and forth. We soon reached the junction with the path that descends towards Saratxaga from the road between Orabille and Andraka. In several of the routes published by www. VisitGorliz. eus we go up or down this path, which looks very trodden and is usually quite busy. We go head-on at this junction.

We continue on this path in gentle ascent, always protected by the profuse lateral vegetation, which sometimes makes us a roof of branches and leaves that imprint the path of darkness. Soon we reach the Orabille-Andraka road a little after finishing the fencing of the Larrakoetxea restaurant and farmhouse, we turn right to continue along it to Andraka. This section is part of the GR 280 of Uribe (Gran Route de Uribe-Kosta).

Without any problems and passing in front of the large facilities of the Goikomendi Horse Club we reach Andraca, crossing the main road BI-2120 to the other side. We pass by the restaurant Andraka and behind the cider house of the same name. We leave to the right the deviation of the GR that goes down to the Plentzia estuary and continue on past the hermitage of Andraka and Rufino Arrola square, named after an ancient trikitilari from a nearby hamlet.

The road continues on and immediately we pass another detour to the right, towards Atxutegi, which we do not take. It is another deviation of the GR 280 towards the Plentzia estuary and towards Butrón, but we continue towards Landeta, forward, in front, passing in front of the last chalets of the urbanization of Andraka. Our intention is to reach the estuary of Plentzia very close to the castle of Butron, but we will go by another rather unknown but very attractive route.

The wide road begins to climb a little after passing by the fence of a large estate where some horses are grazing. To our right you can see an enormous matarrasa (massive cutting of a forest) on the side of a mountain. We arrived at a crossroads and chose to go to the right, slowly descending among young eucalyptus trees. We don’t stray from our path at any time. In a few minutes we pass before a detour that starts from our road and continues to the right, to which we do not pay attention following straight ahead, until we reach a junction. At this junction we do turn right, to go straight for a few hundred meters.

Soon we see from the front an antenna at the top of a hill. The road branches off to the right, but we continue straight towards the antenna going up a narrower road, which you can see a little higher. This landscape will change in a short time, because we see that they have just planted eucalyptus trees all over this area, that due to its rapid growth we will not be able to see the antenna in a couple of years or three, so that the most important and interesting reference of the route will be lost.

We go up the shortcut to the antenna and turn left. If we continue on we will see a large water raft nearby that will surely supply the greenhouses, but as we say, when we get to the antenna, we do not have to go straight ahead, we have to turn left and immediately see a geodesic vertex on top of a concrete pillar a few meters to our left. Next to it is a box in the shape of a little house indicating the summit of Mount Maldartzagane, 232 meters high.

We take the photo of rigour and follow our path to the left. Now we flatten for a while through open space on a wide road that in a while becomes a path that begins to descend. There are plenty of thorny or red retama on the sides of the trail. Soon we drew a sharp curve to the right. There is no possibility of mistake because the path is perfectly visible and there is no deviation.

We enter, on a gentle descent, a beautiful Cantabrian forest with native tree species: alders and oaks above all, although sometimes we see some eucalyptus trees. There’s a spring of ferruginous water by the side of the road. We don’t see it as we go down, but to our right there are vast nurseries on the hillside. At one point, at a bend in the road, we see in the distance the majestic castle of Butron. At all times we sense that this path has been used and walked for many years.

We continue going down under the trees and, going down, we reach the road of Butrón, passing a little before next to some gates that close the entrance to some house or hamlet. Curiously and paradoxically, just before connecting with the Butron road there is a sign at the entrance of the road we are going on that reads: “No passage. Camino Particular. ” When we see something like this, we always say that this thing of opening doors to the countryside must cease to exist, and the municipal authorities, and even the Diputación, would have a lot to say about it. Also, because there is almost certainly a “freedom of way” here, and people will have walked this path, alone or with pack animals, since time immemorial.

Once on the road we continue along it to our right. The route is well-known enough to comment on it in detail, but at least let’s do it briefly.

After about a kilometer we reach the Arbina dam, where the Butron River becomes the Plentzia estuary, and we stop to drink and eat some fruit. We are at it when almost a hundred boys and girls of about ten appear on the road with their monitors from summer camps, who seem to be resting here to eat something. We finish the refreshment and let them walk the wooden walkway.

About another kilometer further on the road becomes a concrete track, leaving the entrance to a farm on the left. Soon, we pass by another entrance to another house or hamlet. Continue ahead and immediately finishes the cemented track, to take the right on a mud road, leaving the entrance to the Butrón farmhouse on the left.

The road goes up for a while, but not too much, and a few meters from the crossroads we leave to the right the climb towards Andraka, which would reach the crossroads we have passed before. We have permanently to our left a barbed wire with an endless line of Lawson cypresses closing the boundaries of a large estate or private property. The road goes up on clay ground at the beginning, to descend after a while on quite stony ground and reach the crossroads with the other climb towards Andraka, which you leave on the right. We continue walking for a while to the edge of the Plentzia estuary seeing on the other side several chalets of the lower part of the Abanico.

In a while we arrived, after a slight climb, at the crossroads with Mandañu bidea, near Koala nurseries. We turn left and instead of immediately turning right again and going down the aforementioned road, we continue straight ahead, next to a fence of a farm. The road is now upholstered with small bricks, leftovers from the construction that have been done here a long time ago. Immediately we leave the entrance of another estate to the right and continue forward. Soon the road goes down between eucalyptus trees and comes to a small road that we follow to the right. We pass by some chalets or houses that are on the banks of the estuary. Continuing along the road, now called Junkera bidea, we reach the highest part of this stretch, having a beautiful view of Plentzia with its bridge and its estuary. We pass some beautiful chalets and descend to Gandia bidea very close to a stone fountain. We continue to the left and without deviating we reach the roundabout that directs the traffic towards Gorliz and Mungia. We cross the traffic lights and go down Erribera Street past the pediment and some paddle courts towards the town of Plentzia.

We go along the edge of the estuary along the Promenade del Astillero to the Town Hall square. We turn right, towards Areatza Street and along it we go to Gorliz Beach, passing previously by the port of Plentzia and, at the end, next to the PIE.

We return to Gorliz going up by Itasbide kalea to the side of St. Peter’s Square, from where we left almost 5 hours ago. Of course, doing the almost 18 km with all the tranquility in the world.

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