HU-631 (Cañon del Añisclo)

Road HU-631 (Cañon del Añisclo), a Spanish balcony road

HU-631 is a challenging high mountain road located in the Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park, in the Sobrarbe region, province of Huesca, in Aragon, Spain. During some periods of the year, the road is just one direction. It is narrow, so keep the speed down and be ready to move over and make room for oncoming vehicles. It’s one of the most scenic canyon roads of Spain.

The road is 34.3km long. It's asphalted but in very poor conditions, especially after rains. It's pretty slippery. The road is in dreadful condition and requires strong nerves to negotiate it. It’s certainly breathtaking and it has a fearsome reputation.
The drive is pretty steep. It links Escalona, a small town in the municipality of Puértolas, province of Huesca, at an elevation of 613 meters above the sea level, and Sarvisé, at 893masl. Its highest elevation is 1.360m above the sea level. This road has humbled many egos. It’s not for the sissies and shouldn’t be attempted by novice drivers. Some sections of the road are extremely narrow. During some periods of the year, the road is just one direction. It follows the river Bellos and runs through the Valle de Añisclo, los Sestrales and Desfiladero de las Cambras. There are some narrow sections -scarcely wide enough for two cars- where if two vehicles have to pass each other, one might have to reverse for some kilometers of winding narrow road to get to a place wide enough to pass. It shouldn’t be attempted by those who don't know how to reverse.  

The road is difficult and it’s a nightmare in the wet or dark (or both). The experience of using this road is very impressive. The most stunning part is along the Cañon de Añisclo. Añisclo is an awesome canyon. From the bottom of the canyon, looking upwards, you may feel dizzy, overwhelmed by its high walls. The road includes several unlit tunnels. This road tests the skill, and courage, of any driver. It’s definitely not for anyone suffering from vertigo or a fear of landslides. There is little room for error on this road. 

Starting from Escalona, at about 2 kilometers there is a crossroad: 1 road directs you via the HU-631 to the famous gorges, the other circumvents the core-part (the most beautiful part) of the canyon by a small, bumpy and winding street south of the HU-631. This can be easily seen on
The road can be closed anytime for safety reasons by a barrier (without notice), to vehicles and pedestrians, because the geology of this area is rather instable. All hills around there are not of stable rocks but are just a heap of rubble. The road is always paved but really bumpy. If you do not have enough clearance between your engine and the pavement (e.g. when you a driving a kind of chopper or a fast sports car), think carefully if you really want to drive this road. There are nowhere fuel stations, you have only partly a mobile phone connection and if your vehicle breaks – help yourself – you are far away from any repair station. Despite all of this – the look towards the surrounding mountains is absolutely great. If you are the type of motorbike drive who is not a speed freak but wants to discover the world on 2 wheels – then this is a road for you. The whole region is a fantastic place for hiking, canyoning, rafting and taking a bath when summer is high.
Road suggested by Michael Spannlang


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