Among the many attractions of the village of Nigéelas, in the vicinity of it is the Sendero Acequia de la Pavilla. The village of the Lecrín Valley still retains the characteristic fabric of rural Muslim farmhouses, with narrow and zigzagging streets, and some cul-de-sacs, known as “adarves”, in which family life was at the cover of the curious neighbors.
The geographical location of The geographical location of the Mountains, at the foothills of the Sierra nevada, makes it possess a great rich water, and among the most interesting water collection and distribution resources that we inherit from the Arabs are the ditches, spread throughout the national territory.
On this occasion we will talk about the Ditch of the Pavilla, whose name is recent and alludes to the couples who, at the beginning of the twentieth century, came there to “peel the pava”, an expression that refers to the tonteo, carantoñas and various kisses that each other lovers gave each other; that is, today, “to give the lot”, speaking in a more current language. They did so by taking advantage of the shadows that cast birch trees and other trees sitting on the edge of the ditch.
Apart from curiosities such as the one cited, the ditch is nourished by the water of the Sierra Nevada thaw. It is suspended in a vacuum, in lands of the Kingdom of Granada where the Nasrids cultivated their orchards. The ditch collects the water to take it to the cisterns of Nigéelas, Dúrcal, Acequias and Mondújar. To the southeast of Nig’eles lowers the Rio Torrente River from the mountain range between canyons and cut. In the place known as the payment of the Cahorros, a masterpiece of hydraulic engineering that remains almost the same as when it was built, more than five centuries ago, the distribution between two canals occurs, one that goes towards Nig’elas and another towards Ditches, in a southerly direction. Here begins the ditch of the Pavilla, which represents the border between the great depression of Dúrcal and Padul in the center of the Lecrín Valley and the various roads that go up to the Alpujarra.
The path is somewhat steep, but without much unevenness, giving the feeling of being practically flat. The ditch is built as a terrace, lazy the profile of a large slash that in some points reaches more than 20 meters of fall. The total route is only one and a half kilometers from the distributor to its cistern in the village. If it gets circulated, we’ll talk three kilometers. We will look for the descent towards the Rio Torrente River, and after descending down a street where some of the ancestral mills of the town are located, we will see the waters of the river. There is a concrete bridge that allows vehicles to pass through. On the left begins a lane that ascends towards the mountain range. Walking on the right bank we will reach a group of large cortijos of curious shapes. Right there, on the other side of the riverbed, the path of the Pavilla. Here begins this path suitable for all audiences, also to peel the pava, if you wish, because the road has a varied number of curves and requiebres that invite to show you of love away from the gaze of the curious.
We’ll cross the river by jumping over the stones. We are in the payment of the Cahorros, which opens the path and immediately begins to skirt the cut that falls to the core of the village. It is a viable route to do even in summer, as the moisture produced by water mitigates the effect of high temperatures.
The path is flat and descending, but the ditch is as a terrace on the side of a large cut, which we travel at the same time that the height is maintained. This is possible thanks to a walkway that, as a gigantic balcony, runs perpendicular to the cut.
By this walkway, even if in good condition, you must walk with caution, and at some points help with steel cables as handrails. We will go later through a metal grille under which we see the flow of water. In less than half an hour we will see the first houses of Nig’eles. Finally the ditch flows into the cistern that is located in the center of the village.
During this half-hour tour, and due to the high humidity of the terrain, typical riverside species are present, such as retamas, wickers, and rupícola vegetation adapted to arid rocks of short stems and striking flowers that attract various insects, which help pollination. Among them we find the Iberian orchid, which takes advantage of the moisture of the terrain. Throughout the tour we will see a lot of jilgueros, and other more representative birds such as the lost eagle, the kestrels and the real finches.
The truth is that it is worth enjoying a tour next to the water course and entering the gorge through which the ditch runs that, as we have mentioned, for a few years has a structure of walkways that give the path an attractive and mysterious charm. From Itinerarius.com we recommend the activities we offer hiking and if you have the opportunity do not hesitate to carry out this curious and wet route, near the river along the route.