Cuevas de Ortigosa


Useful Information

Location: Ortigosa de Cameros. At the eastern end of town LR-232, turn left into Cala Z at the park/little church, cross the bridge.
(42.1792926, -2.7010182)
Open: APR to OCT Tue-Sun, Hol after appointment.
Closed 16-JUL, 13-OCT.
[2021]
Fee: Adults EUR 5, Children (5-11) EUR 4, Children (0-4) free.
School Groups: Adults EUR 3.60, Children (5-11) EUR 3.25.
[2021]
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light: LightLED Lighting
Dimension: A=1,073 m asl, T=14 °C.
Gruta de La Viña: L=114 m.
Gruta de La Paz: L=236 m.
Guided tours: L=700 m, D=45 min.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:  
Address: Cuevas de Ortigosa, Ortigosa de Cameros, Tel: +34-.
Town Hall, Plaza Alberta Martínez, 1, 26124 Ortigosa de Cameros (La Rioja), Tel: +34-941462001. E-mail:
Guide, Tel: +34-662086899.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

1862 Gruta de La Viña first mentioned.
1910 Hierro Bridge built.
1912 Gruta de La Viña first surveyed.
1964 Gruta de la Paz discovered during quarry works for the construction of the González Lacasa reservoir.
1968 operation of quarry ended.

Description

The Cuevas de Ortigosa are named after the village Ortigosa de Cameros, where they are located. There are actually two caves named Gruta de La Viña and Gruta de La Paz, both together make the show cave. They are located on the other side of the valley and are reached across a huge footbridge. At the eastern end of the town turn left into Cala Z at the park with the little church named Ermita de Santa Lucía, then cross the Hierro Bridge. The ticket office is on the other side, from here its a short walk uphill to each cave entrance, one on the left, one on the right side.

The town Ortigosa de Cameros is located at the slopes of Mount Encinedo (m asl). The mountain consists of Jurassic limestones which are about 160 Million years old. The limestones were quarried on the other side of the gorge, and during the qquarry works two caves were discovered and ignored.

The caves are rather similar in character. Both are just a single passage, rather narrow and high with many speleothems. They obviously formed as river caves, which explains the profile of the passages and the typical erosional forms at the wall. Then the drainage went down, most likely as a result of uplift, and the former cave river flows today at the bottom of the gorge. Gruta de La Paz is the bigge cave and is a through cave. It is entered through a 5 m descent right at the entrance, the rest of the cave is level. The Gruta de la Viña has only one entrance, and while it is only half the size, it is necessary to return on the same path and so the walking distance is actually the same. Both caves actually belong to the same cave system, the connection is quite narrow and only accessible for cavers.