A forever green landscape
First settlements in the region were born between these lush landscapes and a diverse cultural and ethnographic heritage. At the start of each early season “monteros” would live in “cabañas pasiegas” (traditional cabin dwellings) that could be found all around the steep scenic pastures. A scattered settlement on the mountainsides of the rivers Miera and Pas.
The Pisueña Valley is one of the areas of Cantabria where spa tourism started. During the middle of 19th century, “Puente Viesgo y Alceda” spa waters became pretty renowned. A well-deserved recognition that they still carry on to this present day.
A steep terrain forged from a glacial valley. The intricate, rocky contours welcomes you to roam through its complex labyrinths made of caves and enormous limestone blocks. You will see stunning backdrops and impressive peaks.
Learn about Pas traditions
The forever green pastures of the three Pasiegan villages, the feeling of transumance.
Migratory herders came to settle on rivers Miera and Pas mountainsides arund the 11th century, looking for green pastures. These herders, known as “pasiegos”, would move their herds to high mountain areas the winter was over. During cold months, herders would stay in the warm valleys, meadows and lowlands in the south and west of the Iberian peninsula, until spring arrived and they could once agin move to the northern mountains.
What is making hay in the Pasiegan Valleys about?
A traditional herder will cut the grass from the spring pastures and let dry for the animas to consume over over winter. This process known as “making hay”. To make hay, the grass has to be “cured” or dried in the sun by a turning process we call making hay. It is then kept in the huts “payos”. The weather plays a defining factor in this process; when sunny and warm, a “parva” only has to be laid down and flipped once before the “empallado“. If the grass gets wet due to raining, “hacinar” is needed which means stacking the hay in order to drain the water and reduce humidity. Once done, lay it down when the sun is out again, flip it and that’s it!
¿What is “La Muda” in the Pasiegan Valleys?
“La muda” is the periodical change of hut location that Pasiegan families had to do living at different mountain altitudes to find the green pastures. It is this community’s most distinctive feature and one of the most defining of the valleys’ image, since it has created a charming landscape of green pastures, rock walls and houses scattered on the mountainsides.
Although very few “pasiegos” keep these traditions alive today due to livestock farming changes, regional villages have made an effort out of documenting and showing this heritage to their visitors.
¿What kinds of fish be found in the Pasiegan Valleys waters?
The most common species of fish are the brook trout and the minnow.
In the Ecomuseum-Fluviarium of Liérganes, an interpretation center on the Pas mountain and its rivers managed by the “Fundación Naturaleza y Hombre” (Nature and Man Foundation), a point of reference can be found in the preservation and education of local species. They show the visitor the rich and diverse terrains and the traditional way of Pasiegan ecological lifestyle and sustainability.