As I already said it, Monterrey is surrounded by mountains: La Estanzuela, Chipinque, La Huasteca and others. But yesterday I went to Cerro de la Silla. Cerro de la Silla that I see from the window of my living room everyday but where I have never been before, after one year!
Well something which doesn’t really incentive, is that a young man died the last summer in this mountain. But let’s put things in their context. The guy decided to go hiking by 40°C with only 50 centiliters of water and he visibly suffered of health issues. Cerro de la Silla is a huge piece of stone. Trees are short or there are simply no trees, so nothing to protect you from the sun. And the worst is that the sun sparkles on the rock: it means that you are surrounded by an excess of light and heat. Cerro de la Silla is definitely NOT an activity to do in full summer.
So, when you think about Cerro de la Silla, you think autumn, winter and early spring. And you think stone! This is maybe what I regretted. I missed the giant nature of Chipinque and its trail of the Pinal. But when you come to Monterrey you need to do it for the view. You actually have two options. The first one and the easiest (that I did) is to take the trail that goes up to the mirador. You won’t need more than 1h30 to go up but you don’t have any passageway. You are regularly slowed down by all the stones which are really slippery.
The second option and which requires a guide is Pico Norte: for this one you need the whole day because it’s an ascension up to the top at the other side of the mountain. Some people talked to me about it and it’s totally discouraged to do it without a guide. The path is not formally marked and you can easily lose you. Without counting that you won’t probably have network and that this is an area where live wild animals.
I actually heard about a group of students who separated because some wanted to go faster, but the slowest group simply got lost and the night was falling…If they ended safe this shouldn’t have happened. Keeping your group complete with your guide is a basic rule when you go hiking.
I did the short track and it is nice for a Sunday morning. The departure of the trail is located in the Colonia Contry La Pastora but is not evident to find so you have to ask a bit around you and to people who live at the base of the mountain. It is definitely not touristic and you don’t have that many people who go there actually, especially not the inhabitants of San Pedro. This is maybe why the trail has not been really developed. No needs…
But why “Cerro de la Silla”? Because literally the top of the mountain, at 1820 meters in altitude, looks like a saddle horse. You have 4 mains peaks: Antena, Norte, Sur and La Virgen.
When you arrive to the mirador (from where you can continue to the antenna) you have the city stretching away in front of you. You have the industrial zone on your right and San Pedro in the left back with its growing buildings and then its residential area. In front of you it's the mountain of La Huasteca which is actually a canyon. Some will may tell you that there’s nothing extraordinary to see because after all, Monterrey is not a work of art. But well, as I said it, Monterrey is not highly cultural, not yet…and I try to find beauty where maybe we don’t expect it.
I try to explore. I try to analyze this city from different perspectives. I simply enjoy a Sunday morning with at the end of the track the reward of a fresh orange juice (this is the good thing of Mexico: you find easily sellers of fresh juices in the street).