Paradise and Hell
A little while ago we showed you Martiri Bridge and the delightful gorge that ran underneath it. We recently returned to the area to see why the locals call it Paradise and Hell, and had some great fun off-roading through the beautiful scenery.
We shall start this blog in the vineyards beyond Martiri Bridge. It was an interesting drive to get here - a steep decent down a well surfaced road gave way to the more familiar dirt and gravel. The vineyard here is like an oasis in the middle of the forest.
I figured a map would help you locate where I was. You can see where Martiri Bridge is. If you remember the film we made of the drive to the bridge, you follow the same route but turn left before you get to the pylons. I have also marked on the map the location we went to take pictures for a blog on orchids we made back in 2018. There are some shots of the area from there too, and I remember thinking at the time that the area looked like it needed more investigation. Well, I am finally back.
The Approaching Storm
I am laying a small geocaching trail in the area, so this journey was all about working out a nice loop. According to the map, I should be able to drive down to the valley floor and up the other side. I had to rely on satellite images though, because most of the tracks aren't shown on the map.
From across the valley I could see this rather large dry-stone wall which must have been constructed a long time ago. Presumably when there were watermills in the area, there would have been a lot more human activity here.
I was a bit concerned because from a distance that track looks a bit flaky. The problem with tracks like this is that in the winter they often turn into rivers, and deep channels can appear making them impassable. This is normally rectified each Spring when they send in bulldozers to repair them. I have often been impressed in the past how even the remotest track seems to get a bit of TLC.
In this case, if the track hasn't been cleared, it could be tricky.