The Natural Park of the Northern Mountain Range of Guadalajara treasures countless natural spots of great beauty, corners that are crossed by a large number of hiking routes. One of these places of incalculable value is undoubtedly the Beech Forest of Tejera Negra, a spectacular forest that stands out, among many other things, for being the southernmost beech forest in Europe. There are several routes through this area, although perhaps the most beautiful of them all, or at least the most travelled, is the Path of Carretas, so called because it runs partly along the path used by the carts to transport the coal produced in the beech forest that we are going to visit.
To get to the Beech Forest of the Tejera Negra we have to go to the town of Cantalojas, which is where the access track to the park's interpretation centre starts. To get to Cantalojas we can follow the road that links Sigüenza with Ayllón, taking the turn-off that leads to Galve de Sorbe, and shortly before arriving follow the signs that take us to Cantalojas and the Beech Forest of Tejera Negra. Of course, from the south there are several options for getting to Galve de Sorbe, crossing it and finding the turn-off to Cantalojas.
Once in Cantalojas we only have to follow the signs that will take us to the park's interpretation centre where we will find the first car park and the access control post. Access to the Beech Forest of Tejera Negra is limited, or rather, access with our vehicle to the second car park can only be done low reservation and upon payment of the corresponding fee, which ranges from €2.5 for motorbikes to €12.15 for minibuses.
The second parking place (0h 00min) in the beech forest, which you reach either by car if you have booked in advance or on foot from the first parking place following the Path of Robledal, is the starting and finishing point of the Path of Carretas. There are several hiking routes that run through this area, but we will follow the white waymarks that mark the Path of Carretas. The river Lillas will accompany us on this first part of the route, as its course goes up this part of the usually dry riverbed. After a while we will come across a stream, which we will cross thanks to a wooden bridge. As soon as we cross it, we change direction, saying goodbye to the Lillas river and starting to go up the ravine formed by the stream. The pine trees that had accompanied us up to this point give way to a beautiful oak grove where you can already see the odd beech tree.
A stream leads us to an old coal mine, which gives us a better understanding of the industry that took place here. The most demanding section of the Path of Carretas awaits us, which takes us up a steep ascent to Meadow of Matarredonda. Once there, the forest allows us to enjoy the landscape that surrounds the beech forest that we have just crossed. After walking a few metres along the shoulder of the hillside of the mountain we have just climbed to the viewpoint that allows us to contemplate the valley formed by the river Lillas, we retrace our steps to resume the route. We leave behind us the path we ascended to go back into the thick beech forest. A beautiful stretch full of informative signs explaining the peculiarities of the Beech Forest of the Tejera Negra Natural Park. But beech trees are not the only protagonists of this hiking route; among other surprises, a spectacular yew tree awaits us, which we reach after fording a couple of streams. Shortly after this forest lord you come to the fork that marks the junction with the Path of Robledal (2h 10min).
Here we have the not bad option of following the route of the Path of Robledal for approximately 1 km until we reach the pass of Hornillo, from where we can enjoy a magnificent view over the area. If we do so, we have to retrace our steps to return to the route of the Path of Carreteras, which from the turn-off begins the fast descent that will take us back to the parking place (2h 30min) from where we started. But not before visiting some traditional beehives while following the markings of the different routes that coincide on this stretch.
|30T 470740 4565003
|2-Robledal Path detour
|30T 469242 4564736
CoordinatesUTM Datúm WGS84
This schematic with the path is approximate and has been created from the derived cartographic base © Instituto Geográfico Nacional "Cuadrante 432-3 y 432-4 1:25.000".
¿Did you know that...
The Beech Forest of Tejera Negra was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 2017 along with other beech forests in Spain and Europe.
Don't miss out...
A visit to the nearby castle of Galve de Sorbe or Zúñiga, whose origins date back to the Andalusian period, although the present castle dates back to the 15th century.
From the commitment of SENDITUR with Nature and the respect to the balance of the environment, SENDITUR urges you to travel in a responsible way, with low environmental impact and respecting at all times the Natural, Cultural and Social environment wherever you go.
Besides sharing with all of us your experience on the route we would be grateful if you could write to us to inform us of any erroneous or outdated information you may have found, or simply to let us know what you think at Thank you.
Route information updated on 22-11-2020. The route may vary greatly depending on the time of year, weather conditions and terrain, as well as the actions of third parties and the evolution suffered in the natural environment where it is located. All opinions, advice and/or assessments made by SENDITUR in their descriptions are for guidance only and are subject to and/or refer to the specific conditions of the specific day of the route, referring to that specific day, taken from trained people, with the appropriate experience and with a high level of physical and technical preparation as a reference, as well as correctly equipped.
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