The extrem skiing started in the 80s here at Circo de Gredos with Juan Lupión, Miguel Angel Vidal (I knew him when he was Refugio Elola guardian), and Manuel Santos. They descended the gullies of Cuchillar de las Navajas and La Galana. In May 2, 1982 Miguel Angel Vidal descended Almanzor N face. But it was in April 11, 1992 when Oscar Morales descended the low section of El Escudo, placed on the NW buttresses of Cuchillar de Cerraillos over La Esmeralda pond.
The optimal season is in the end of Winter or early Spring, when the snow is not too much soft neither too hard. Be careful with the possible rocks, also with Portilla Bermeja's cornice and the cliffs NW of Los Barrerones (with fog or blizzard). The N slopes could be icy as well.
See MAIN PAGE / "Overview" section to get to the base of the climb, Refugio (hut) Elola.
From the hut (1,945 m) hike SW, crossing Hoya Antón as if you'd follow Portilla del Crampón Normal ROUTE. Ascend the increasing scree slopes to Portilla Bermeja (2,418 m). This portilla (gap) is places SE of Risco (Cliff) de la Portilla del Crampón. This risco could be considered as a subsidiary peak of Almanzor because the elevation over the NE gap (Portilla del Crampón), wich separates from Almanzor, is only 24 m (less than 30 m, an average rope long). So from this gap the descent is steep firstly (40º) with a possible cornice. The rest of the gully is wide and easier (30º) than the first part; until it joins with the gully from Portilla del Crampón, this place is named Hoya Bermeja. The final section to Hoya Antón is a little bit narrow. From the hoya (plain), just an easy descent to Laguna Grande. And then as MAIN PAGE / "Overview" section.
Crampons, ice axe, skis, poles, skins, ski blades, helmet and warm clothes. Also orientation instruments (map, compass and altimeter or GPS) could be necessary.