Senda del Oso – Path of the Bear

The villages of Tuñón and Entrago, found south of Oviedo, are connected by the Senda del Oso, a popular trail running through the valley carved by the Trubia River. Formerly a track for mining trains, the trail has been converted for recreational use and has a lot to recommend it: rapids, tunnels, cliffs, fountains, villages and, yes, bears.

We did the 22-kilometer walk on a Sunday morning, when the mist was still covering the tops of the mountains, and were amazed by the scenery. When you think “Spain”, mountainous and verdant Lord-of-the-Rings-landscape isn’t usually what pops into your mind. Although very long, the trail was easy — basically flat and endlessly entertaining.

Paca and Tola – Orphaned Sisters on the Senda del Oso

Just south of Proaza, whose most impressive feature is a massive hydroelectric station, you come upon the enclosure of Paca and Tola — two rescued brown bears, orphaned as babies when a hunter slew their mother. They’ve been living in there since 1996, and are now twenty-one years old. We weren’t able to get too close but, even from afar, the bears were cute — playful and almost human-like in their actions. A male bear, Furaco, has been brought in for mating purposes, but the sisters apparently haven’t shown much interest in him. Poor guy.

By the time we reached Entrago, we were exhausted. We had time for lunch and a long siesta on a park bench, before the bus back to Oviedo. This was our first experience with the bus system in Asturias — it’s pretty good! Just €2,05 to Tuñón, and €3,75 on the way back. The buses are clean and comfortable, although the curvy mountains roads caused the kid next to me to vomit all over himself. Thanks for keeping it off of me, chaval!

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  2. NoSoloWeb

    Next time, in Tuñón instead of going left to the Senda del Oso, after the bridge go to the right – it’s Senda Verde and it couldn’t be more different. Lush vegetation, beautiful small villages and less crowded. We’ve been there on Saturday with our bikes and everybody encouraged us – we probably seemed exhausted after 20km of Senda del Oso and a few on Senda Verde 🙂

  3. Juergen

    @NoSoloWeb Yeah we saw the signs for the Senda Verde (looked tempting) we missed each other by a day 🙂 How was the weather on Saturday?

  4. Carbayón

    In Proaza having lunch at “L’Esbardu” (Bear in Asturian) is quite expensive but good quality asturian food, the “Cachopos” and “Tortu con güevu y pistu”are amazing there, maybe one of the best in Asturias

    Keeping with my recommendations of Oviedo… in the city there are some hidden parks, one of the most populars for the people who loves to explore non-commercial parts of the city is “El Parque del Marqués de la Rodriga”, near the seminario, you can get there on the 23th of Campomanes Street (just google Parque del Marqués de la Rodriga and you can find how to get there)

    On your visit to pre-romanesque structures, you have to visit San Julián de los Prados, the only structure that preserve paintings inside. La fuente de Foncalada is interesting too.

    To continue with “cafés” and “bares”, in Plaza del Paraguas “Pub El Paraguas” has a cozy inside with good spanish music, in “Al fondo hay sitio” there are some good live concerts and in “Clavel 8” is possible to taste some amazing “tostas” with music and some good wine.

    Finally if you enjoyed la Senda del Oso, try out “El Desfiladero de les Xanes”

    Regards and good work!

  5. leldish

    wow, so beautiful!

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