Trekking to Mount Pico – following the goats’ path

Pedro has recently written about our trip to the Azores in the post “4 islands in 5 days in the Azores”. One of our highlights was the trekking to Mount Pico – the highest mountain in Portugal with an altitude of 2351 meters.

The mountain is situated in the island of Pico. We started our climb after lunch, equipped with the most important gear: a “Quechua Quickhiker Ultralight” tent for 2 people, that weighs 2 kg, two “Forlaz 0° Ultralight Hiking Sleeping Bag” (our sleeping bags are no longer available in “Decathlon”, but they have similar options available), warm clothes, dry food for dinner and breakfast.

I won’t lie, it was my hardest trekking. Sometimes it seemed that we’re going on a goats’ paths. We got the notion that the trek is not an easy one right at the beginning, when we checked-in at the Visitors Centre (Casa da Montanha) which was our starting point in Cabeço das Cabras. We were given a GPS and paid 10€ each for the climbing. Prices have changed but visitors with an official guide still pay way less (2,50€ when we went), although you need to pay the guide as well but don’t need to haul all the gear with you.

The path is marked with the poles, so it was easy not to be off the track. I was very happy that we were carrying ultra light gear because, man, it wasn’t an easy trek. When you reach the top you have an opportunity to climb to Piquinho and back. But we, more me, didn’t have the energy to do it. The top was enough; I couldn’t think that moment about the top of the top.

Even it was the beginning of June but at night it was quite cold even with warm clothes and the sleeping bag.

In the morning we woke up very early to see the sunrise and the fantastic views. After enjoying them we started to go down. If I thought that climbing up was difficult, climbing down, for me, was even worse. We reached the bottom around lunchtime. At the Visitors Centre we received our certificates and drank a well-deserved beer in the cafeteria.

Our climb up lasted around 4 hours and climbing down took us around 6 hours.

When we were planning the trip, we had planned to do some other treks after this one, but we cancelled them after hiking to Pico.

In general, the amazing views made it well worth it to do this trek!

Have you hiked to Pico? What was your experience?

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