In the Maestrazgo region there are still farmers who maintain the custom of transhumance of livestock between the high mountains and the “extreme” of the kingdom, the lowlands of Castellón and Tarragona. These trips are made during the month of May and early June. From Amposta, San Rafael del Rio or other localities, after about four or five days on the road, they arrive at Cantavieja, Cañada de Benatanduz or Fortanete, where they will remain until autumn, enjoying the summer pastures of the Sierra del Maestrazgo.
These breeders are Gonzalo and Eduardo, who go to Cantavieja, Juan Luis, who goes to Cañada, or the brothers Juan and Mapi Martorell, who finish in Fortanete, among others. All of them move large flocks of more than 500 sheep, and in the case of the Martorell brothers, they also move 120 cows.
There are about 100 kilometers along the old cattle trails that the cattle travel, sleeping in shelters or enclosures to continue the next day on roads that have centuries of history, as they have been used since the Middle Ages, gaining about 1500 meters of altitude.
The entrance to Maestrazgo is through the medieval bridge of Puebla de San Miguel (Villafranca del Cid), and then the road arrives at La Iglesuela, where the passage is through its streets, an event that every year arouses more expectation, where neighbors and onlookers take numerous photographs that can then be enjoyed on social networks. The return to the extreme will take place in October.
If you want to enjoy this event, which is quite an experience, you can ask at the Tourist Office of La Iglesuela del Cid.