Cerro Montero. Villarquemado
The republican trenches of Cerro Montero have the peculiarity of being located right in front of others of the national side called Montón de Tierra, which indicates the high war activity of the place. From them you can see a good panoramic view.
The lines that defined the front in the Jiloca valley had been consolidated since April
1937, when the republican forces had taken the town of Celadas, to later withdraw to the position of Pico Pichón and La Losilla.
Since then, the government defensive line surrounded the town of Celadas from those positions, passing through the heights of Portillo de Santo Domingo, to head towards Cerro Montero an Villarquemado mountains, and continue through the Torremocha, Torrelacárcel and Singra mountains, at the foot from Sierra Palomera.
When arriving in Bueña the line separated from the valley to ascend towards the north.
In front of them, the national line rested on the dominant height of Santa Bárbaa, Celadas, taking as defensive points the aforementioned villages of the plain, which had remined in a rebellious zone since the beginning of the war. In the case of Villarquemado, the national troops had their most advanced positions in the heights that are a few meters from the position of Cerro Montero.
Although the activity of the front had been scarce before the battle of Teruel, these fortifications would acquire their maximum prominence in their final phase. On February 5, 1938, on the occasion of the Alfambra offensive, the 85th Division of the Galician Army Corps would attack these positions head-on. After a brief preparation of the artillery, at 9.00 am the advance of the division would begin, although the combatants of the 4th Battalion of the 151 Mixed Brigade defending the sector would resist this first attack. However, the progression of the 83rd National Division, located to the right of the 85th, up to the heights of Patagallina, makes the defenders of Cerro Montero feel surrounded and retreat towards Sierra Palomera.
To locate them you have to go to the local cemetery and from there take the Carrasca road (which is paved) to the Medio Monte picnic area. Once there, take the path to the left (which is indicated) and shortly afterwards both facing trenches are signposted, with Cerro Montero on the right and Montón de Tierra on the left.