EDURNE PASABAN, BIG FAN OF GOIERRI!
In the village of Ataun in Goierri, there are many areas with rocks and crags that are suitable for practising sport climbing. You will find several schools with training courses. There are 250 climbing routes with varying levels of difficulty.
You will find climbing schools in Jentilbaratza, Aizkorrandi, Haitzartea and Lizarrusti. In Aizkorrandi, climbing is only allowed from July to November because the area is also where vultures and some other protected birds come to find shelter and mate.
This small school is located in the village of Zaldibia in a privileged environment: a great place -south-facing- to climb in spring and autumn. To get to Zaldibia you need to take the road leading to Olakosail Picnic Area (Akapulko). From here, make your way to the deposits where the driving path ends. Follow the route that takes you to the dam and the water channel, and in 10 minutes you will be in Haizartea. In this type of climbing, two different sectors can be distinguished: you will find old gear like nails and lines… It started with three climbing routes, but these routes needed renovation. After that, four more routes were equipped at the bottom and one at the top. This area may be better equipped in the future.
This school is in Ataun. The top still has the remains of an old tower. According to history, they used to control the arrival of soldiers from Navarre from that tower. Myth says many gentiles bodies were buried in that area. This school starts in the 80s, when a crew of friends from Goierri -cuadrilla- decided to implement and adapt climbing routes from the bottom of the mountain. In the 90s, a different group of friends -more inclined towards sport climbing- started doing it from the top. That’s when the best job started getting done. Nowadays, you will find a low-level school.
This new climbing school has a parking area nearby to you to leave your car. They have good quality rock and an easy cliff base. A lot could still can be done in terms of equipping the area.
Leave your car in the parking area next to Lizarrusti’s Interpretation Centre and you’ll get to the school in no more than 15 minutes through a beautiful path. This school is great in summer, not too hot!
In Ataun, you have an extra feature: their dome-shaped rock, formed when a low-density rock locally breaks through the crests or penetrates along and faults the surrounding rocks. It takes place along the resulting plateau around mounts Jentilbaratza, Aizkoate, Aizkorrandi, Arastortz, Agautz, Leizadi, Asundi, Loibideko Mailoak and Ikarandieta, popularly known as Aitzarte.
If you want to get a great view, go to the top of mount Arantzazumendi, located in the border between Ataun and Idiazabal.
To preserve the area’s unique flora and fauna, climbing is restricted to certain months and certain places. Climbing is not allowed in Sastarri, Aizkoate, Intzartzu, Artzateaitza nor Ataun’s Dome, except in the surroundings of Aitzarte’s Climbing school.