Report sent in from Pepe Badaje of his first ascent of Mulhacen in July 2011. Done in a long day from the Hoya del Portillo to the south above Capileira.
We leave Lanjarón at seven in the morning from the petrol station, arriving at the Hoya del Portillo above Capileira, where no vehicles can continue at 8am. From this point begins a trek of more than four hours to the summit of Mulhacen, the highest point in mainland Spain.
Continuing along the trail we reached the Mirador de Trevélez, indicated by a sign. We can peek down to see these alpujarreño people at our feet. After the Mirador, we reached the Alta de Chorrillo, from where leaves a track to the left to the Refugio Poqueira. We follow the main track, a little further and take a track on the right, the remains of the old track up to Mulhacén
We take various shortcuts up the trail. To the left of it the marvellous vista of the Caldera, Mulhacén River Valley, Loma Pelada, Rio Seco, Cerro de los Machos, Veleta and Tajo de los Machos .
Once on top we see a vast panorama, including the coast of Africa, much of the Andalusian mountains. At our feet to the north and under the impressive face the Mulhacén , you see the pass of the Mosca and the entire upper basin of the Genil. To the east we see the valley of Siete Lagunas, of which Laguna Hondera is the only one to be seen. The Alcazaba and the entire eastern Sierra Nevada chain to it’s end in Almeria. For the west and in the foreground we see the Laguna de Caldera, and after this the Cerro de los Machos and Veleta. Also, along the top, we can see the remains of the buildings that were used to perform geodetic link between Spain and Morocco in the last century.
The way return is back down the steep west face of Mulhacén looking for Hoya de La Caldera, to cross before getting there with the old road coming from the ski resort from the Carihuela, to turn left, direction back up to the Alto del Chorrillo.
Read more from Pepe Badaje at his blog (in spanish). Also videos and more photos from the trip.