Among ancient towers, lords and heroic farmers

From the Torre de l’Espanyol to the hermitage of Sant Antoni, in La Mina, ascent to the Tormo and return along the Camino Real de Garcia

Technical data

Technical data

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Introduction to the route

Alboçalaz was the name of the Saracen owner of the tower that in the 12th century was built on the other side of the Ebro, in front of the castle of Ascó. The great river had already seen the arrival of the Iberians, Roman Phoenicians and Visigoths. He was now witnessing the new conquests of the Christian lords and how the old tower was again caviaring. In 1175, Alfonso I of Barcelona donated it to the Spanish knight of Prades, in payment for his services in the conquest of these territories.

Only seven years later the king himself gave it again, this time to the Knights Templar, along with Ascó and his baths. It would later pass to the Hospitallers and remain in the hands of the church until the 19th century. In their shelter, generations of farmers have left their backs to raise margins and worked the surrounding lands to bring bread home. Today, around this, they show an enviable agricultural mosaic.

At the foot of the Sierra del Tormo, anjubs and water mines speak of the good work of these generations to manage a resource as precious as water. They are examples of effort, savings, prudence and wisdom that can surely continue to inspire us in the face of the momentous changes that the climate emergency is beginning to bring about.

Map and tracks


Recommended map

La Picossa. Ribera d’Ebre 1:20.000 Ed. Piolet

Route description

Balmes Street is the starting point for the Camino de Sant Antoni (1). Continue south, towards the Sierra del Tormo. A fork is reached (2). Both paths lead to the hermitage. The one on the left allows you to leave the asphalt and go up to the Font de les Hortes stops (3) to go back down to find the main road (4). The hermitage of Sant Antoni is a small, very harmonious construction, built at the foot of the shadows of the mountain range and surrounded by large cypress trees (5).

We continue up some stairs that connect with a recently opened path, taking advantage of old paths, and that runs through the shadows in mid-air. After 1.5 km, on the left, there is the turnoff (6) that leads to the Sacaries reservoir (7). The place is well worth the little roundabout. The work of the peasants who came to cultivate these steep slopes is truly titanic.

We return to the road to reach the Mine (8), an area of ​​olive trees that has been the subject of an ambitious intervention to recover agricultural heritage. Very well, dry stone walls and constructions have been restored, as well as the maset, the adjacent pond and the water mine that gives the place its name.

At the end of the upper stop is the beginning of the path (9) to go up to the Tormo. This is an interesting horseshoe path that first gives access to several terraces of cultivation and that climbs resolutely until you reach the ridge (10). To the right is the Tormo which offers fantastic views. It recedes a little and continues to the geodesic vertex of the Pylon, (11).

To save the cliff from the summit, descend a few meters until you find the path that leads to the airy ridge of Lo Piló (12). The step is not complicated, but caution must be exercised. After the ridge, the path goes up first and then descends gently to the Dellà de la Serra pass (13) where the old royal road from Torre de l’Espanyol to Garcia is located. Go left. After a while, a few meters to the right of the path, you will find the Pla de la Mola reservoir (14) and not far away, the turnoff (15) of the path that also allows you to reach the Tormo by another path that passes next to a large, well-preserved lime kiln and the Planxat reservoir.

Continue downhill and immediately find a fork (16). Both roads lead to the village. The described route goes to the right, following the route of the old royal road.


The aerial section of the ridge of the Piló is not recommended for apprehensive people or with little experience of walking in the mountains. The easiest alternative is to go back down from the top along the same path to the first crossroads (5). From there you can reconnect with the proposal. The excellent signposting of the roads in this area provides many alternatives (the ICGC county map, however, contains some errors regarding the location of the toponymy, as in the case of Lo Piló).

To be able to follow the route correctly, you need to download the track. On this route, however, the whole route runs along signposted paths in the network, indicating the different nodes with time and distances and offering an orderly and optimal infrastructure for carrying out routes with proposed itineraries such as this one.

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