Along the Camino

Hello All

It’s coming to the end of my rest day in Burgos, a small city some 250km down the road from Pamplona.

It has been quite a leisurely ride, flanking or riding along the Camino de Santiago as it goes from village to village. It’s a very picturesque route but I can understand some of the criticism about it being included amongst the world’s great treks.

As a pilgrim route it obviously developed in a time before leisurely (let alone challenging) trekking and is essentially a walk from town to town on the way to a destination. While there are a few sections of “trail” much of the route is along roads – some dirt, some sealed and in some stretches the main highway is the only path.

For the many pilgrims this  is not really an issue, but for those seeking a trekking experience, I can understand the disappointment. The many towns and villages are definitely worth seeing but well-cushioned walking boots are highly recommended as there is a lot of bitumen and crushed rock tracks in between. A bike is ideal – though I have only seen a handful of other cyclists.

Contrary to the warnings the pilgrims haven’t thrown any stones!

While I followed the Camino through the parks and along a few dirt roads, most of the the time I stuck to the secondary road that flanked the main highway. The climbs were a lot easier than anticipated and the days short leaving plenty of time to stop wherever I saw a coffee shop and to explore the town at the end of the ride.

I must admit that the alleyways and cathedrals are beginning to blur, but it’s still a pleasant way to stretch your legs after a ride.

Tomorrow I head to Castrojeriz, where I will leave the Camino and head southwest via Palencia to meet up with the Ruta de la Plata in Zamora. By tomorrow night the odometer will have past the 7,000km mark and the distance to go dropped to three digits!

I’m at that point where I am starting to wish it was over. Physically I feel great, but mentally it is becoming increasingly difficult not to focus on the destination and see each day’s journey as one step closer to this.

But the remaining journey will take me through some amazing places – Palencia, Toro, Zamora, Salamanca, Càceres, Seville and Càdiz – to name a few, with a chance to see remnants of the Roman and Moorish history of Spain.

Enjoy the photos (WIFI here was painfully slow and it took three hours to load them).

To Estella

To Longrono

To Santo Domingo de la Calzada

To Burgos

 

1 thought on “Along the Camino”

  1. Hello, I should get an extra hug for the last half hour- I’ve been trying to find you!
    Rose has been wonderful and sent me a message on this special day. My second foot is breaking down – not my fault – it’s called old age! I am trying to write but thumbs playing up – am considering asking for help – apparently I can talk to the screen and it will do the job for me. It’s interesting writing – I had forgotten about smog – I also learnt that Prof Fred Hollows was at Rhydlaver and involved in the decision to have the Americans build the huts at Rhydlaver etc I’m checking out details of Footscray in 1964 fascinating ! Swamp, water so filthy that when specimens were opened at local Council meetings the odour was so over whelming, the men were forced out of the room: When the Trade Union Clinic was built I used to send the men there and when I was thrown through the car window I went there -Jack Smorgon was fantastic.
    Memories… you have achieved a great deal- take care the last part of any program is the toughest.
    Clare has had a large tumour out of her leg – but, luckily not malignant. Cathy has a new man in her life, but Mark is taking ‘house’ to court! Doug and Graham away on holidays… raining cats and dogs here. Thinking of you Love always Mairwen – or am I Anne now?

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