Well, that was short and sweet! I worked out my stages for this camino a couple of months ago now and I am sure I applied good sense and logic, but I can’t remember what any of it was now. However it has all worked out entirely to schedule thus far. I am tempted to shake things up in a couple of days though, but not yet sure if this diversion will have me ending up where I need to be at the right time. I will be in Lugo the day after tomorrow, and here it is possible to cross over to the Camino del Norte, which will keep me off the Camino Frances and it’s inevitable crowds for one stage longer. Some research needs to be done.
Back to today, once again the weather forecast was for rain all day and storms this afternoon. It was dry when we left at 07:00, but a bit cooler than we have experienced recently, and we were walking through low cloud as has been the case for the last days. I was wearing my normal shorts, sleeveless t-shirt with arm warmers and buff wrapped around my shoulders. I knew there was a lot of elevation at the beginning of the stage (nothing new there!) and I know that I generate a lot of heat when climbing, so was pretty sure I would soon be comfortable in the cooler conditions. But as I climbed it cooled further. Luckily the air was still so I just donned my gloves and all was well.
The first 2.5 km were along woodland tracks which were delightful. It had rained during the evening and night so it was rather muddy in places, but not too boggy. There were more raindrop opportunities thanks to the wet weather and I made frequent stops to play with my camera. The first 8.5 km rose steadily to the summit of today’s stage at 1117 metres. I could hear a noise of a motor but couldn’t work out what it was. There were no roads nereby, no overhead electricity pylons and it wasn’t until I was very close that I could see faintly through the mist that there were wind turbines towering above me in the gloom and they were moving at some pace – which wasn’t good news as I didn’t want a stiff breeze to bring the temperature down further. However, the wind didn’t materialise.
At the summit of the walk is the border of Asturias and Galicia with almost literally a line (of stones) drawn in the sand. Before the start of the descent I decided to stop and put on my rain coat to give a little warmth now that my body wasn’t working so hard and creating my own heating system.
There is a cafe at around 9 km but it was closed as I passed, although those passing a little later found it open. There was also another bar/restaurant a further 6 or so km, but it was a few metres off the trail and I didn’t want to go back on myself so I just kept plodding on, enjoying Galicia and my first sight of the sun and a few patches of blue sky. 21 km continual walk – no stops.
All in all it was a lovely walk along very quiet tracks with not much on the road. I saw hardly a soul the entire way which suits me very well. I like being back in Galicia with its rugged landscape.
We are staying tonight in the very nice Albergue Cantábrico in A Fonsagrada, with 34 places, huge common area/kitchen, four separate bathrooms, bedding (two cotton sheets, pillowcase and – wait for it – duvet!), all for 10 euros. Spotlessly clean, good sturdy beds each with its own shelf and electrical socket, and roomy lockers. Superb value.
Today’s distance 21.1 km
Accumulated uphill elevation 601 m
Accumulated downhill elevation 317 m
Total distance 695.9 km
Average per day 26.8 km