The Els ports Natural Park is a wild and rugged mountain range in southern Catalunya, located to the south of Tarragona. The majority of the rock climbing at Els Ports is all about big wall Trad routes on conglomerate rock, along with some single pitch sport routes on limestone rock.
The big wall routes are located near the villages of Horta de Sant Joan, Arnes and Penaroja de Tastavins as shown on the map opposite. These routes are between 120m and 300m high, climbing on big knobbly conglomerate rock, with deep holes. Generally the crux of these routes are through bulges that need to climbed with decision and power that are separated by easier slabby sections.
Els Ports Rock Climbing Areas
|No||Crag Name||Type of Climbing||Type of Rock||Single or Multi-pitch||Max Height|
|1||La Solana de les Portes||Sport||Limestone||Single||20m|
|2||Comuns de L'Estret||Sport||Limestone||Single||30m|
|5||Roques de Benet||Trad||Conglomerate||Multi-pitch||245m|
|7||Estrets||Trad & Sport||Conglomerate||Multi-pitch||295m|
|9||Roques del Masmut||Trad||Conglomerate||Multi-pitch||215m|
Accessed via the village of Horta de Sant Joan, the crag of Roques de Benet stands out as the true landmark of the Els Ports rugged landscape. The crag is unmistakeable against the skyline, with its big, steep walls. Along with its northern aspect, the climbing here is wild, trad to the core and intimidating. Roques de Benet is also home to the best aid climbing in the Els Ports area.
The crags of Gronses, Estrets, and Les Valls are accessed via the village of Arnes. Due to their easy access, they are the most popular climbing destinations in the Els Ports Natural Park. There are even some bolted multi-pitch routes at Estrets that require very little commitment.
The best climbing area in Els Ports Natural Park is the Roques del Masmut, accessed via the village of Penaroja de Tastavins. The crag is series of steep, big calibre conglomerate spires positioned side by side, similar to that found at Montserrat. The climbing is pure trad across a wide range of grades, with routes up to 215m high.
The best sport climbing in Els Ports is found at Calzada Romana near the village of Beceite, plus there are a couple of sport crags near the village of Prat de Comte. All the sport climbing at Els Ports is on limestone rock and is very close to the road, making it very convenient.
Rock climbing at Els Ports is possible all the year round, though some summer days can be really too hot and windy winter days too cold to climb comfortably.
The above information has been extracted from the Els Ports Rock Climbs Guidebook.
The impressive crag of Roques de Benet dominates the Els Ports rugged landscape.
The steep, big calibre conglomerate spires of Roques del Masmut crag.