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Ribeiro Frio – Portela Pedestrian Route Reopened

The major landslide that occurred last March on the PR 10 Levada do Furado pedestrian route, which caused the collapse of part of the pedestrian path and the levada channel, forced, for safety reasons, the official closure of the pedestrian route and the need to find an alternative

According to the Regional Secretariat for Agriculture and Environment, “in view of the magnitude and complexity of the recovery works of the original route, which are strongly conditioned by the difficulty of access and logistics to the intervention site, as well as the technical requirement of the works, since they first require an intervention by brushcutters to clean the escarpment, therefore, only later can the project to replace the levada channel and its esplanade be carried out by ARM – Águas e Resíduos da Madeira, S.A., the managing entity of the levada.”

Faced with this scenario, and given that the Levada do Furado is one of the most sought after walking routes, both by tourists and by local pollution, the Institute of Forests and Nature Conservation, IP-RAM, in collaboration with some mountain guides and hiking lovers, sought to find an alternative route that would enable the enjoyment of this levada, while the necessary works are completed.

To this end, a technical survey was carried out on an existing footpath in the area that bypasses the landslide area. After the auxiliary information and guidance signage (provisional) has been implemented on the alternative route, it is now possible to take the pedestrian route between Ribeiro Frio and Portela.

The alternative route has a total length of approximately 2.2 km (1.1 km more than the original route).

The detour to the alternative section must be made to PK 7+200 (counting from the beginning, in Ribeiro Frio) and runs along an old footpath to Pico do Suna and later along a forest path until it meets the levada, at the Lamaceiros site, and from here the hiker follows the original route to Portela.

It should be noted that the alternative route will be a little more demanding than the original route, due to the unevenness, as it will have an ascent of approximately 1000 meters to Pico do Suna and then a descent of approximately 1200 meters to meet the levada.

This important tourist infrastructure is now open.

Samantha Gannon

info at

The reopening of the original route with the repair in the intervention area of the collapse does not yet have an estimated date.

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