Amazing Gorge Charco de la Trucha in Geopark Villuercas

Have you ever touched a 450 million-year-old tree?

I did it recently and you too can experience such an unforgettable experience by visiting the Villuercas-Ibores-Jara UNESCO Global Geopark. Just along the Valley of Guadarranque – an hour drive by 4×4 from Alía – we find “Cancheras de la Trucha” and  hidden there “La lorera de la Trucha”, a forest dated from the Tertiary, after the dinosaurs extinction.

Lorera de la Trucha
Lorera de la Trucha forest, the richest area of Loros (Prunus Lusitanica) in Europe

It´s high time I visit this natural wonder within Villuercas Geopark. Even though Alía is my home village, I had never been to La Lorera de la Trucha before.

Luckily, two childhood friends Abel Moyano and David Álvarez joined me in the adventure. They know the Valley of Guadarranque River quite well. Abel, in particular, has fully scrutinized every corner to catch superb photos of birds to show them on his  blog about birdwatching that I strongly recommend.

Sierra de la Palomera
Valley of Guadarranque from Sierra de la Palomera. Photo Abel Moyano

The route started in Alía. We got up early, met at 8 am and got in Abel´s 4×4.

After a 15 minute drive we had to stop to shoot an astonishing sunrise we came across just before getting the Matallana hunting area at Sierra de la Palomera. As it had been raining the day before, a thick bank of fog partly had covered de valley leaving an amazing landscape to film. All of this, along with the large number of deers and vultures we came accross, made the trip unforgettable.

“Lorera de la Trucha”

Once at “La lorera de la Trucha”, what grabbed most my attention was both its darkness – due to the density of leaves in the cups of the Loro trees touching each another-  and the pure sound of nature.  Fortunately, we were alone there, with the pleasant running river water sound as our only company.

For the first time in the countryside I had the feeling that everything surrounding me was actually breathing; absolutely magical, inspiring.

Loro roots at Geopark Villuercas-Ibores-Jara. Extremadura
Loro roots at La Lorera de la Trucha. Photo Abel Moyano

“Charco de la Trucha”

After marveling the Loros, we walked over 300 meters downriver to get to El Charco de la Trucha. It is a fantastic waterfall located along a deep gorge. It is a bit dangerous, so you should walk very carefully across the stones to avoid falling into water. I recommend not comming here with little kids or at least not trying to reach the pool situated at the bottom of the gorge with them.

I will never tire of visiting this geosite.

Charco de la Trucha

Mapa lorera

More photos:

Get fit in the Geopark

The Geopark Villuercas-Ibores-Jara is an ideal place for enthusiastic about sports such as cycling, running and hiking. However, its geosites can also delight those who are addicted to fitness. Noelia Pérez and Tirso Rodríguez are two of them. They run one of the more successful blogs of this year in Extremadura (Spain) whose engaging videos are receiving hundreds of visits. One of their latest posts shows how to get fit in the Geopark.


Noelia and Tirso are journalists and got the official certificate of bodybuilding and fitness trainers years ago. Apart from many proper training recommendations at the gym, on we can find practical tips of “street workout”, the way of doing exercise outside getting the same results than at the gym. They wanted to film in the Geopark and I suggested they should do it at the top of La Villuerca at 1.600 metres high.

Doing sport at 1.600 metres high.

Our athletic guests performed one “Tabata” session to explain the enormous impact of doing exercise at high elevation. According to some researches, the main advantage is the considerable increase of red blood cells, that means more oxygen throughout the body and therefore more strength.


The geosite “Risco de La Villuerca”

La Villuerca is one of the jewel crown of the Geopark Villuercas-Ibores-Jara. The top of this geosite (1.600 metres high) is the perfect viewpoint to watch all the territory of the Geopark, part of the Cáceres province and the Appalachian relief, akin to the Appalachians of North America.

To get there by car, I recommend driving from Navezuelas. It is a narrow winding road, though far better than the impracticable road from Guadalupe.