This beautiful mountain is located northwest of Principality of Andorra, in the border with France. It’s surrounded by several glacier lakes in its south face (that belongs to Andorra), in a wonderful glacier basin (Coma de Tristaina) from that we can climb the normal route from the andorran side (“parroquia” of Ordino).
Tristaina is one of the main summits in the border between Andorra and France
. The other are Font Blanca (2.903 m.), Serrera (2.913 m.) and Estany Esbalçat (2.899 m.). Because of that strategical location, Tristaina is a splendid viewpoint from that we can enjoy one of the best views in the Central Pyrenees: Coma Pedrosa (2.946 m.), the highest top of Andorra; Pica d’Estats (3.143 m.), the highest mountain of Catalonia (Spain); Montcalm (3.077 m.), the last three-thousand to the east; Aneto (3.404 m.), the highest summit of Pyrenees are some examples of high mountains that we can make out from this andorran top
All its faces present steep slopes; in snow or ice conditions this event can difficult the climb (even by the normal routes): ice-axe and crampons are indispensable until the end of spring, when you can find snow or ice slopes that can reach 40-45º.
In spite of the proximity of the Ordino ski resort, the ascent from the south face (andorran normal route) crosses virgin high mountain areas, covered by meadows, glacier lakes and rocky ridges
This beautiful glacier basin (Coma de Tristaina) must be protected by the Andorran Government. The huge Ordino ski resort is close, and some interesting places in the north face of neighbouring Pic Cataperdís (2.812 m.) and Pic d’Arcalis (2.780 m.) are full of cement and chair lifts. The road that crosses Coma de Rat rises almost 2.500 meters high and destroyed the pace and quiet of this distant valley.
Visit the web of Guiacampsa
to design your itinerary.
Getting from the Andorran side: From Andorra la Vella, take the road to La Massana, passing Ordino, Arans, Llorts and El Serrat. Continue to the parking of the Ordino-Arcalis ski resort, where you can park the car.
This is the starting point to climb Tristaina by the Andorran normal route.
By air, coach or train
To get to Andorra by air, by coach or by train you can find a lot of information in the link of Govern d'Andorra
Red TapeNo permits or fees are required
. Nevertheless, it’s advisable to get up early if you don’t have any problem to get at the parking of the Ordino-Arcalis ski resort in ski season
. Another alternative to avoid the crowds in ski season is parking the car 2,5 kms lower, in a place named “El Castellar”, where the rivers Tristaina and Varilles join. Here starts a forest trail that skirts the right side of Tristaina river and ends in the aforementioned parking. Close to El Serrat there is a barrier in the road; I supose that the access is closed when the parking of the ski resort is full. Out of high season (ski season) there’s no problem to get to the starting point.
In ski season you can have another problems, even to find lodging
(specially in weekends, Christmas and Holy Week, when thousands of people come from Spain and France to skiing in Andorra).
Camping and lodging
are the cheapest way to stay.
The nearest to Tristaina is Camping Borda d’Ansalonga
in the road to El Serrat.
Another cheap posibility is the Camping Els Pradassos
(phone: +376 850 022), in the road El Serrat-Llorts.
If you prefer stay in a hotel
, you can see the main in Andorramania
Some interesting phones
Mountain rescue: 112
Medical Urgent Service (SUM): 116
When to climb
In snow season it's very important to know the avalanche conditions
. Visit the link of METEO FRANCE
All year round you can climb Tristaina. In winter
be careful with the danger of avalanches, specially after intense snowstorms.
the days are longer. These are beautiful seasons to climb mountains in Andorra. Temperatures are pleasant and snow dissapears, staying only in the highest mountains in remote places (north faces).
To know the weather forecast
you can visit the web site of Andorramania
(in Catalan, French and Spanish).
You can visit also the INM
(National Meteorological Institute) (Spanish).
To know the avalanche conditions
, visit the aforementioned link of METEO FRANCE
The map 1:40.000 of Editorial Alpina
(in Catalan, Spanish and French) is very good. You can find it in a lot of sport shops in Andorra.
If you are in Madrid (Spain), you can buy it in Desnivel
: Plaza Matute 6 - 28012 Madrid (Spain)
Phone: 902 24 8848 - Fax: +34 913 694 727 or in La Tienda Verde
: C/ Maudes, 38.
Phones: 91-533 07 91 and 91-534 32 57
Fax: 91-533 64 54 and 91-533 32 44
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday, from 9:30 to 14:30
and from 16:30 to 20:30 hours
Saturday, from 9:30 to 14:00 and from 17:00 to 20:00 hours.