The presence of the invisible landscape ojáncano puts a magic note. Literary paths through the valley of the River Saja Cantabria, inspiration for the writer José María Pereda. These peaks and valleys are part of the Natural Park of Saja-Besaya nearly 25,000 acres with the village of Barcena Mayor in the municipality of Los Tojos as the only inhabited place. In this village of stone houses, galleries open to the south and recent masonry esquinales, the paved road ends.
However, thanks to the two forest roads that climb up hill from here we can reach the port of Palombera. The call comes from Old Road and the village, leaving the right hand side chapel of Carmen, the river valley back to the eastern side wanted. After nine miles of ascent that can be covered in about four and a half hours, you reach the hill of Ozcaba, from whose pastures in Cantabria, Brañas bypass are peaks and valleys.
The first kilometer of the route along the river begins to rise Argoza by a red asphalt road soon becomes dirt track. At the call of Braña Castrillo is a recreational area of the park, later loose some houses on Mount Mazorguero and finally, a warning that indicates the extent to which allows free access to vehicles.
From here the road winds through the hillside of Mount between oak and beech which, although not enough, carefully spread the field for the oaks, southern slopes, for you, targeted to the north. And in the shadow of each other, blankets of ferns, moss-covered rocks and blueberry bushes that bear fruit in June, as the tiny wild strawberry bushes that grow on the sides of the road.
The natural park is located within another larger protected area, the national reserve of Sakha, which was protected in 1948 to protect the species from poaching wild animals, and we do not mean the slugs that invade the track. The reserve was formally created in 1966 to protect wolves and brown bears, deer, roe deer and wild boar, which by then were in danger. Today in the ecosystem of the reserve are also otters and becadas, partridges and grouse, and other domesticated species.
In the Well of Arbencia confluence Hormigas rivers and fountains, giving rise to the Argoza, as we have followed since Bárcena Mayor. To reach the Pozu from the road you have to cross the bridge over the River Sources and descend a short trail that is marked in the forest on your left. Those who go down to the valley can see the waterfalls from the two rivers and a dip in the icy waters of this well of dreams.
Hedges and thickets
And from here to Port Palombera is the steepest stretch of the trip. Gradually the heath replacing the oaks and beeches, and brooms, and some pines make their appearance as hedges and thickets the scattered Brañas. Charles V passed through here on their first trip to Spain on the way to the center of the peninsula, and then contemplate the kingdom he had inherited from his mother, Juana la Loca.