Placed at the spot where the Sistema Ibérico joins the coastal catalan mountains, Mont Caro is rather a low mountain, even by spanish standards. The summit is heavily built and partly occupied by big buildings and huge antenna masts, and a rather good road reaches the top starting from the nearby village of Roquetes. So, why even bother in working on a page for this Monte Caro?. Well… first of all, it’s the highest summit in the Spanish province of Tarragona. It’s got an easy hiking route from the nearby Colonia dels Ports, with about 350 meters to be climbed and excellent views of the mouth of river Ebro. And some routes of its eastern face have no relationship at all with the road to the summit, offering long hikes and altitude gains over 1000 meters. An enjoyable mountain, therefore, and a nice possibility for anyone who is spending some days in the Mediterranean coast and looks for a change in the sun-and-beach routine…
Getting ThereThe limestone massif of Els Ports, where Mont Caro is found, stands a short distance away from the Mediterranean coast. The closest main town is Tortosa.
By car: Tortosa is placed near the mouth of the river Ebro, where the alluvial plain of its delta begins. It can be easily reached by toll highway AP-7, which links the French border of La Jonquera to the cities of Valencia and Alicante. Tortosa is placed 87 km south of Tarragona, 124 km north of Castellón and 204 km north of Valencia.
By train: use the railway line (served by RENFE (spanish national railways) between Barcelona, Tarragona and Valencia. The most convenient station is the one placed at Tortosa, though the station at L’Aldea-Amposta-Tortosa is also handy.
By plane: The closest airport is placed at Reus, near Tarragona. That means about 90 km away from Tortosa, a distance you would have to cover by some other way. The Valencia Airport is bigger and served by more airlines, but it’s placed rather a long way southwards.
Once you get to Tortosa, there’s an additional 20 km to the main trailhead (Colonia dels Ports) for the basic “normal” route. I’m not aware of the existence of any public transportation along the road to the summit, and therefore you might need to consider taking a taxi or some similar measure.
See bigger map The position of the summit is marked by the green arrow. You can also drag around and move the map by keeping the left button of the mouse pressed over it.
Red TapeThe mountain is placed in a Natural Park. In spite of this, I haven’t found any compulsory rules or prohibitions in its web page (see link section). So, my main advice would be to respect nature as you usually do anywhere else. Bear in mind the Mediterranean climate of the area: in summer time, the forest may be really hot and dry. Therefore, please take all necessary measures to avoid initiating a forest fire.
The whole area is a tourist one, and therefore it shouldn’t be difficult to find established camping sites with restaurant, bungalows and so on… Apart from that, there’s a mountain hut (Refugi Caro, see external links section) placed in the Colonia dels Ports. You won’t really need it to climb Mont Caro, but it might help if you decide to spend one or two nights in the massif for some additional hiking
External LinksNatural Park of Els Ports: Web site offering official information (Government of Catalonia) about the whole massif of Els Ports
Refugi Caro: Information about the Caro Mountain Hut
Cycling profile of the road to the summit: Complete profile of the road slopes, useful for cyclists. The trailhead of the Colonia dels Ports is placed between km 18 and 19