Outao and a fab van stopover

We finally tore ourselves away from Sagres to make our way north via the spectacular coastline, much of it protected by the Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina.

First stop the world-famous Odeceixe beach, surrounded almost 360 degrees by water where the river loops around to meet the sea – impressive swimming effort by Helen and Jim, especially considering the huge swell.

Onwards to an absolutely spectacular van parking spot, perched on the cliff tops above Praia da Samoqueira beach. The authorities seem to be a little concerned about the stability of the cliffs…

… but we survived the night undisturbed. Here’s the view from the rear window…

A moody sunset with a bit of sea mist:

Arty flowers and sunset shot:

The ubiquitous sun dipping into the Atlantic shot:

…and a moon-set, for a change!

Another couple of hours up the coast is the Parque Natural da Arrábida, a protected area of coastline isolated by a high limestone ridge. We visited the most famous climbing area, Fenda, on our last trip: https://www.rockaroundtheworld.co.uk/2018/02/06/arrabida-fenda/

Somewhat by good fortune, browsing an excellent resource of climbing areas in Portugal at

http://acheym.blogspot.com/2008/07/croquis-de-portugal.html?m=1

… we stumbled across Outao. Not covered in the Versante Sud guide, and mentioned only briefly in Jingo Wobbly (which has only 2 routes) this turns out to be a cracking little crag. About 30 routes from III to 7a, mostly 6as & bs, and up to 35m long.

There’s a downloadable topo here:

http://j.mp/OutaoA4

We did a couple of the longest routes on sector Iliada and Odesseia, both two pitches 6as (though we ran them together and got down comfortably with an 80m rope – 70m would probably do at a stretch) and both good climbing.

The view from the top, of Peninsula de Troia, a 30 km long sandbar, is absolutely stunning!

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