Ascent of Cerro del Lastonar (Sierra de Marbella) on 2010-11-05

Climber: Rob Woodall

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Friday, November 5, 2010
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Cerro del Lastonar (Sierra de Marbella)
    Elevation:1274 m / 4183 ft

Ascent Trip Report

I climbed Marbella late afternoon, after Mijas. A nice varied hike, with some interesting scrambling which can be easily avoided if preferred. For the NE approach, follow the minor road S towards Refugio de Juanar. Approaching the refugio, continue south. The trailhead is at a locked gate, N36.57687 W4.88441, 841m (GPSr).

Hike the unpaved road S from the gate, with views of craggy slopes including the imposing Cruz de Juanar, 1184m straight ahead. In 1km, at some buildings, take the R fork, signposted La Concha. The trail descends a little; there is a L fork then a L turn – both signposted La Concha. A good trail winds upwards through pine forest then deciduous trees, arriving at a saddle, N36.56516 W4.90038, 1076m. Fork R here; in 1 km the trail crosses the ridge at N36.56484 W4.91047, 1179m (GPSr). I instinctively followed a narrow trail L along the ridge, although the main trail descends to miss out the 1229m top – for reasons which soon became apparent! On arriving at this top, I was faced with a vertical-looking descent. On closer inspection, the descent is feasible, keeping a bit L of the direct line, scrambling down a series of steps. There is plenty of scrambling but the rock is generally good, the exposure is relatively minor and the difficulty never exceeds YDS 3. A quick GPS measurement gave 1143m at the saddle, hence a prominence of approx 88m for this NE top. The trail crosses a slope, and a challenging-looking peak appeared ahead. A glance at the 1:50k map soon identified this as La Concha, 1215m. The trail skirts across SE of the main Marbella summit. Easy rocky ground leads to the 1275m summit: a cairn, a steep drop to the NW and excellent views including Torrecilla, Tres Terminos which I’d climbed during my previous visit, Mijas and the sweep of the bay leading out to the abrupt steep block of Gibraltar. Into the last hour or so of daylight, the lighting was excellent – the golden hour.

After a few minutes at the summit I headed back, this time keeping to the main trail which from the 1143m saddle, descends slightly L then contours past the 1229m top to cross the 1179m saddle. I then reversed my outward route, arriving back at the trailhead at 18:15, nicely before dark – no need for the head-torch which I’d taken in anticipation of a late finish. I then drove west past Algeciras ready for tomorrow’s Ojen climb.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:614 m / 2018 ft
    Elevation Loss:614 m / 2018 ft
    Distance:10.4 km / 6.5 mi
    Grade/Class:YDS 2
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Scramble
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:544 m / 1788 ft
    Extra Loss:110 m / 364 ft
    Distance:5.2 km / 3.2 mi
    Route:Olivar de Juanar and NE ridge
    Trailhead:S of Refugio de Juanar  840 m / 2759 ft
    Time Up:1 Hours 45 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Elevation Loss:504 m / 1654 ft
    Extra Gain:70 m / 230 ft
    Distance:5.2 km / 3.2 mi
    Route:Olivar de Juanar and NE ridge
    Trailhead:S of Refugio de Juanar  840 m / 2759 ft
    Time Down:1 Hours 15 Minutes

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