News from Sierra Nevada Guides

Latest news from the Sierra Nevada Mountains of Southern Spain

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Summer in The Sierra Nevada

Summer in the Sierra Nevada with Sierra Nevada Guides
July is a good time to visit the high peaks and “borreguiles” (wet areas, tarns and springs) of the high Sierra Nevada. As the snow retreats the wildlife blossoms, insects, birds and especially the flowers are all in abundance. The temperature high up rarely exceeds 20 degrees making this a comfortable place for walking and scrambling though not so cold as to need layers of clothing.

Though the Eagles and Vultures are at first glance the most observable birds to watch, Wheatears, Redstarts, Alpine Accentors and Swifts are no less impressive.

The borreguiles are carpeted with Gentians, “Estrella de las Nieves” (a unique woolly plantain), Butterwort’s and many other endemic species. These areas are truly impressive though start to dry out by the end of August.

One of the most noticeable features walking in the high Sierra Nevada are the numbers of beetles. Everywhere underfoot  are a large variety of black beetles (tread carefully).  The fact they are nearly all black is no coincidence having evolved to absorb the summer sun.

Common on the summit of Mulhacen 3482m is the Tortoiseshell butterfly. Though not an uncommon butterfly it’s proliferation at altitude is amazing and may account for the abundance of Swifts and their amazing aerobatics!

Whatever time you visit the Sierra Nevada, there is always wildlife around to observe. Our team of International Mountain Leaders are trained in environmental interpretation and can advise you on the best things to see at any time. We are always happy to advise you or to provide you with a guide.

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