We left kinda late today, our hostess said she would return at 8:15am for breakfast. We decided to wait even though her pilgrim meal the night before was lacking. Most of these places know your hungry, so the pilgrim meal is meant as a cheap filling meal, because more than likely, it’s the only one you get a day. I know for us it is. Her lodging was also more expensive, the last 2 nights, 5 euros a piece, she was 10. Dinner is normally under 10, she was 12, and I left the table still hungry. To her credit she did throw a coffee in at the end.
But she never showed up the next morning we waited until 8:30, we needed her to call the service for us to see if they still had my poncho. So we had a long day ahead of us and a late start.
4.9km later we were at a Cowboy bar for some coffee in El Ganso. He had all sorts of cowboy memorabilia and kept joking that he was Ramone. If you have seen the movie you would understand, it was a character they met in the movie ” The Way”.
Then 6.9km more, through 2 more villages and into Rabanal, then we started to climb. It’s really incredible that anyone even lives up here. 5.8km more and we are in Foncebadon. Some of these villages used to be abandoned but the Camino has brought new life to them. This one is considered the doorway into the mountain. We reach our highest point to date at 1,505m. Cruz de Ferro is 4,934 feet above sea level. It didn’t really seem like a climb to us because we have been climbing for days. Silly me i forget my rock, Al actually had 2, one was for him and one his brother. You know to be honest I’ve carried that dam rock more than half way across Spain, I’m keeping it!
The roads/ paths today have really been horrible. It’s raining, slick and with uneven terrain.
When we reached the top, the sun actually came out for 10 minutes, no rain. Then we started down, it started to rain again.
6.5km later we are walking, still in the rain through a gorge, Rainbow, gorgeous! The path is really horrible, I can’t say it enough, the rain just intensified it. When we finally got to Acebo, another4.7kms. I was so done. The downs really kill your knees, we went up for days and down in a few hours.
Acebo was a disappointment, 5 Albergues, NoBeds! At this point it was 6pm and pouring. We have never walked this late. We were turned away, again and again. I couldn’t believe it, at the church, where I would have slept on the floor, we were told, ” only another3.8km, just over the hill.
We were crushed, Al was also pretty heated, all that hill climbing, and the decent, to be sent away in the rain at 6pm. We ended up in a great place, Riego de Ambros. They had a kitchen and a washer, we were not up to cooking but we needed our laundry done. The bedrooms were also cool, one bunk on the floor and the other above and then pocket doors, so you had a room to yourself, cool. Also we used the washer, no dryer, then went to get dinner, which was fantastic. The man at the Alburge hung out all our laundry for us! He didn’t speak much English but I think I conveyed my gratitude. Lots of mucho gracias and head bowing. Also there were only 5 of us there, so it was nice.
Tomorrow day 22, not a good day, we were jinxed, you know who you are.