Although it was initially built to carry timber from Mount Irati to the sawmill at Aoiz it soon became a modern means of transport for passengers from the valleys in the area. Despite its prestige, by the mid-20th century
the rise of the motor car led to the demise of the Irati line.
However, the route that follows the old railway line is back in fashion again, particularly in the best-conserved section, a 4-mile stretch
on good ground between Lumbier and Liédena. The route winds through one of the most beautiful areas of scenery in Navarre, the Nature Reserve of the Foz de Lumbier
A number of structures evoke the railway past of the area. The iron bridge over the crystal-clear waters of the river Salazar, just outside Lumbier, marks the start of the old railway line.
There are very few sections that recall the line along the way, although the most characteristic are the two tunnels
through the limestone rock that allow access to the gorge. At the exit of the second tunnel stand the ruins of the 16th-century 'Puente del Diablo' (Devil's Bridge). Liédena
is the end of the line and preserves a number of old buildings. The railway station, the platforms, stores -and even the accommodation for the personnel- seem to be watching the horizon to look for the arriving train.
It is essentially a beautiful walk that is free of smoke and noise. The route is level
and the well-compacted earth means that both pedestrians and cyclists can enjoy the route.