Hiking: Estany Negre
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The estany Negre has a surface area of 1.5 ha and is found at an altitude of 2,628 m, in the centre of the valleys of Comapedrosa, in the parish of La Massana.
To access this itinerary, we will travel by car to the car park at the ski slopes of the Pal Arinsal resort, in the Arinsal sector, and we will take CS-530, cross the tunnel and turn right, reaching the residential area of Prats Sobirans, at 1,575 meters. From here, we will have to continue the route on foot: following the GR11 path or the hiking route that takes us to the Comapedrosa refuge.
We will take the hiking route in the North-east direction, following the red and white marks of the GR11 path, and we will reach an information panel, which will indicate the two route options that we can take: follow the hiking route to the refuge (indicated with yellow and red marks) or take the GR11 path (marked with white and red strips). In our case, we will take the GR11 path and travel deep into a red pine and fir tree forest.
Then we will reach a cattle grid (1,735 m), where we will continue straight, following the indications of the route which takes us to the Comapedrosa refuge, always using the GR11 marks as our guide.
In this section we will pass through two fir tree forests and over 2 wooden bridges, among others. We will continue in the direction of Collet de Comapedrosa (2,206 m), leaving the refuge behind us on our left, and the herders' huts on our right, and we will continue to climb until we reach where the GR11 crosses the other path (the initial hiking route indicated in red and yellow marks) which also takes us to the refuge.
Here, we will continue to the right, in the North-east direction, and we will cross slopes and reach the first glacier lakes of the valley: “les basses de l’Estany Negre” (2,600 m). From this point along the path, you will have to take great care and be very cautious, as it is the most dangerous part of the entire journey: you will find lots of rocks and stones in the middle of the path and you must be well equipped as at these heights, the weather is very unstable and temperatures can suddenly drop several degrees below zero.
Lastly, we will walk a few metres more along the valley and take just a few more steps upwards, until we finally reach Lago Negro. In this last leg of the route, we may see some rock lizards, white partridges or stoats.
A special thing about this itinerary is that the snow remains in many places until mid-July.
Ascent time: 3 h
Descent time: 2 h 10 min
You will find further details of this and other routes in the Hiking guide Trails of Andorra.