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GR 249. Stage 33: Mijas - Benalmádena

GR 249. Stage 33: Mijas - Benalmádena
Trail Type Lineal
Full length in metres 18000 m.
Estimated Time 6:15 h.
Net Head in Metres 1750 m.
Cumulative Elevation Gain 750 m.
Cumulative Elevation Loss 1000 m.
Difficulty Assessment according to MIDE
2

Medium

2

Itinerary

2

Movement

4

Stretch

General information

Itinerary

This path goes uphill along a rather steep terrain, and extends through pine woods of Mijas up to Moro Hill, characterized by its ‘wood of antennas’. Behind it, there is your destination, Calamorro Peak. You can go down it on foot or by a cable car to Benalmadena.

 

Summary
Description
How to Access
Spots along the trail
Accessibility
Characteristics
Ways to tour
Cartography
Towns
  • Characteristics

    Type of Section Length % of total
    Longitud Total 18000
    Asphalt or Cement Sections of the Path 300 2 %
    Track or Forest Track Sections 6700 37 %
    Footpath Sections 11000 61 %
  • Ways to tour

    Regarding the kind of transport which can be used along different stages of the path, these are divided in those that can be crossed on foot, on a mountain bike, or on a horse. Nevertheless, there is to know that you can walk along the entire stage when this class of routes is indicated, but if you decide to travel on a mountain bike or horse, there is to check that there are no temporary restrictions or town regulations that do not allow their use at some parts of a stage, and then choose alternative way. We also underline that riding a mountain bike on some stages may include travelling by uneven or steep road surface, which requires some or a lot of effort.
    • On foot
  • Cartography

    All of this Stage is on map 1066-II (Alhaurín el Grande).

  • Towns

    Mijas

    Where to eat

    Clikc here

    Where to stay

    Click here.

    Benalmádena

    Where to eat
    Where to stay

    Click here

Environmental Information

Rivers and Waters
  • Rivers and Waters

    The limestone nature of the Sierra de Mijas, which as mentioned includes the municipal districts of Alhaurin de la Torre, Alhaurín el Grande, Benalmádena and Torremolinos, ensures that there is no permanent flow in a large part of this vast domain of the mountain.

    While the rains are not uncommon, surface circulation is hindered by the process of karsification of dolomites. This phenomenon results in the underground transport of water to a number of subterranean hollows that are characterized primarily by their vertical development. They don’t tend to be too deep, or to be more precise, the part that has been explored rarely exceeds thirty metres in depth. Those close to the walk are at Puerto de la Media Luna, Zagalurrera, and Arenales and that of Repetidor, approximately following the ridge line.

    Moreover, the sierra is the divide between the watersheds, Guadalhorce, towards the north, the rivers Alaminos or Pasadas to the west, and a series of gullies drainind southwards directly into the sea, and which you will see during this stage. Their general aspect is that of dry gullies, as is the case of the Arroyos de la Seda, Hondo, del Nacimiento or de las Presas at the beginning of the stage. 

    A different case is the Regajo del QuejigalThis ravine is located at the foot of the Tajo del Quejigal gorge and it begins at higher altitude. Although in general, when crossing you encounter only a bit of damp earth, the upwelling of water is significant, and used to be more so for Benalmádena in the past, as testified by the 9 level registration boxes that dot the last part of the walk. You can still see the rubber tubing as well as lime crusts left by the water on the pipes and on the walls. 

    The sierra, on the other hand, is responsible for dispensing water which rises in hundreds of small sources all around, distant enough not to affect the walk, to the point that the capital of Málaga in a not-too-distant past looked towards here to alleviate the shortage of urban water supply through a project that did not materialize and will be shown in the last stage of the Great Málaga Path.

Animal Life
  • Animal Life

    Birds

    The birdlife of Stage 33 is influenced by the high altitude of the major part of the stage and the type of plant formations it covers. These include pine woods and some holm oaks which are gaining more territory. As a result, there is a mix of mountain species, woodland birds, and birds characteristic to partially degraded areas (due to past forest fires).

     

    Highlighted Species

    This stage also shows effects of the fires which have devastated the Sierra de Mijas. First part of the walk leads through an area with dwarf palm and esparto grass where Crested Lark, Stonechat and Sardinian Warbler are the main feathered characters. However, the different pine formations you will come across during Stage 33 (maritime, stone and Aleppo pines) also hold such birds as Common Wood Pigeon, European Turtle Dove, Pallid and Common Swifts, Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Common Blackbird, Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush,  Spotted Flycatcher, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Crested Tit, Short-toed Treecreeper, Eurasian Jay, Common Chaffinch, Common Linnet, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Serin, Crossbill, and Rock Bunting.

    Very soon you will be passing by one of the quarries and here it is relatively easy to see Booted and Short-toed Eagle and Common Kestrel. Other birds of prey present along the stage are Common Buzzard, Eurasian Sparrowhawk and Northern Goshawk, associated with the woodland. The first stone pine wood is becoming more and more valuable as other woods are being consumed by fires at quite a fast pace. In winter, the vegetation supports Meadow Pipit, White Wagtail, European Robin, Song Thrush, Redwing, Dunnock, Blackcap, Common Chiffchaff, and Eurasian Siskin, birds which come from Central and Northern Europe.

    Similarly to previous stages, the number of species to see at Stage 33 increases significantly during migration passages. Worthy of a mention here are the passerines which settle along the Sierra de Mijas and remain there for a few days at a time. These include Black-eared and Northern Wheatear, Common Blackstart, Subalpine, Melodious and Western Orphean Warbler and Pied Flycatcher. It is also possible to find the Common Rock Thrush. Moreover, when there is a prevailing westerly wind in August, September and October, you can see raptors on migration, mainly Booted Eagle and Black Kite, although the assortment of birds could include any of the migrants which use the Strait of Gibraltar to cross over to Africa. Nocturnal birds of prey present at Stage 33 are Barn Owl, Eagle Owl, Tawny Owl, Little Owl and Scops Owl, which, along with the Red-necked Nightjar, add ambient sounds to the walk as soon as the sun goes down. Once you reach the higher altitudes of this stage, Thekla Lark can be added to the previously named species. This is also an area where Blue Rock Thrush appears, around the most prominent rocks and it almost always perches on the small rocks on top of the steepest outcrops. Here you can also find Crag Martin, Black Wheatear, Raven and Rock Bunting. As soon as there are holm oaks around, You are likely to see Melodious Warbler, Nuthatch, Short-toed Treecreeper and Blue Tit, which are also present along Stage 33.

    The highlight of the stage is the last section, the area of Tajo del Quejigal where the high ground allows for generous views and where you can admire the gorge with well-preserved vegetation and the cliffs which hold an outstanding sample of rock-dwelling bird species. Around this area you can see, among other species, the Bonelli´s Eagle, Golden Eagle and Peregrine Falcon.

    Along the final section of Stage 33, similarly to the first section, there are species accustomed to living in human environment, mainly Swifts, Rock Dove, var. domestica, Collared Dove, Barn Swallow, Spotless and Common Starling, House Sparrow.