The Aiguestortes and Estany de Sant Maurici National Park covers an area of 40,000Ha in an area of the Pyrenees, north west Catalunya.
The heart of the national park extends to 14,000Ha devided into 2 zones, the Aiguestortes to the west and the Sant Mauricito the east. The Estany de Sant Maurici is a large lake in a truely beatiful setting.
Ranging in altititude from 1,600 to 3,000m, the substrate is mostly granite and slate that has been shaped byu the action of quaternary (in the last 1.8 million years) ice sheets.
The erosion of the ice age created the typical features of U-shaped valleys, cirques, hanging valleys and over a hundred lakes of varying shape, size and with a depth of upto 50m, some being fed by waterfalls.
Some of the lakes have become filled with silt from the rivers resulting flat areas with meandering streams giving the area its name of Aiguestortes (twisted waters).
These lakes constitute the most important lake region in the Pyrenees.
The forests include hooked pine, fir, wild pine, birch and beech trees while the birdlife includes golden eagles.
This is serous walking country - you will need suitable equipment, maps food and water but the rewards are there to be seen.
Further information is obtainable from the tourist office at Espot, the nearest town.
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