Rutes » Torre de Riner
“Discovering the calmness of the Negre river valley”
The Negre river is the fluvial axis that is the backbone of the landscape of the municipality of Solsona: meeting point of the waters from the streams in the north of Solsona, it crosses the city under the main bridge, which is the entrance to the old town, and it goes on to finally converge with the Cardener River. Halfway through the valley we find Riner, a small village of medieval origin featuring a square tower which has been standing beside the river since the 10th century silently watching this mysterious and unknown section of the river. This route takes us from Solsona to Riner along a trail that follows the Negre river at all times.
Solsona is the starting point of this route (where the Negre river and the Pallarès ravine meet). In fact, this route almost never leaves the side of the river, until reaching the Riner tower, ending point of this walk. We start walking along the urban part of the riverside path. Houses give way to gardens, and later gardens give way to crop fields. The riverside woods to our right feature poplars, ashes and white poplars just until we reach the Sewage treatment plant. After that we find a crossing (1) where a signpost with a map tells us to take the path that goes to the right, which leads to the south-east.
We find fields and holm oak groves around Cal Sastre, and then we get close to the river once again. This house is the last inhabited place until the end of the route: after that, calmness reigns as the route grows more lonesome and pristine. We get to the other side the river across a stony crossing (2): now we have the riverside woods to our left. To our right, there is an oak and holm oak forest. This spot was burned during the 1998 great forest fire and is now regenerating.
This section of the itinerary is flat and closely follows the river’s zigzags. It’s a good spot to enjoy a contrast of plants, as well as a notable diversity of fauna, with species native to open spaces such as the subalpine warbler (Sylviacantillans) and species native to forests with more mature trees such as the nuthatch (Sittaeuropaea). If we pay attention we will be able to see tracks of mammals such as the roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) or the badger (Meles meles).
We keep following the river; sometimes we have good panoramic views from high spots, only to get to the lowest point in the valley later. At some point, when the riverside forest is most mature and dense, a paved path crosses the trail (3): we take the paved path on the left and continue until we see the Riner tower and the Riner church, the ending point of the route. In Riner we can find a church, a rectory, a cemetery and a tower, and it is an excellent viewpoint and an interesting monumental ensemble dating from medieval times. The Riner tower, which is square, has two meter thick walls and is 18 meters tall, is what remains of the Riner castle and dates from the 10th century. This quiet location is an excellent spot to have something to eat and regain strength in order to walk back to Solsona.