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Category Archives: Travel

Foncebadón to Ponferrada

image After a great breakfast consisting of bacon, eggs and fried bread at the local shop I set out for the Cruz de Ferro, reaching it just before sunrise. It turned out to be pointless arriving at sunrise as there was a thick blanket of fog and even if it was a dear day it would have been impossible to actually see the sun rise from the Cruz as it is surrounded by trees! The Cruz also turned out to be something of an anticlimax. image One thing that didn’t dissapoint though, was the walk to Ponferrada, the scenery was stunning for much of the way. The past couple of days has seen more and more flowers blooming and the leaves on many of the trees are beginning to unfurl. image About 12 of our multi-national group turned up at the same albergue so in the evening so together with Che we cooked Korean egg soup and Coq au vin. image

Astorga to Foncebadón

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After a night listening to the guy in the next bunk snoring I wasn’t in the best of humour when I got out of bed. I never realised the one person could make so much noise all night long!
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Today I started on the hardest part of the Camino, which will last until I reach Santiago, and hopefully beyond. I set out alone today and covered the first 22 km in about 3.5 hours.
I must admit that as I approach the Cruz de Feiro I have my moments, which is why I prefer to be alone. Tomorrow I will try to reach the Cruz at sunrise.
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Once past Rabanal del Camino the path begins to rise as it changes from a dirt lane to a mountain path. I walked the last 6 km. at a very leasurely pace covering the distance in two hours, pausing a couple of times along the way. The second stop in particular was really nice with views accross the mountains.
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The village I am staying in tonight is in a complete state of decay, with most of the houses in ruins. The albergue itself is also quite something, I am sitting in front of a log fire as I write this. Yes, it’s a wee bit nippy outside!
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Villar de Mazarif to Astorga

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León to Villar de Mazarif

image Why some pilgims wake up and start getting ready at 5:15 in the morning is beyond me, especially when the convent are handing out a free breakfast at 7:00. image Today we walked just 22.2 km, 23.4 when factoring in the climbs and arrived in Villar de Mazariffe at 12:30 pm. image Along the way today we came across a guy giving away free food, coffee and fresh orange juice to passing pilgrims, donations only, which really cool! The landscape is starting to get a little more hilly as we approach Astorga, which I expect to reach tomorrow. From where I am now to Astorga is about 32 km. My blisters are healing well, as is my right leg. However I am a bit concerned about the latter, 32km is a long way and the path is becoming more hilly. Downhill is the worse. We are cooking ourselves this evening and a few friends have turned up in the abergue so it will be a great evening I am sure. I have made a white bean cassolette and will also make a simple tomato salade with some large greenish tomatoes we managed to get. image

León day 2

image Although last night’s curfew was was midnight instead of the usual 22:00 I was in bed well before then. Today we have moved to a convent just off of a really beautiful old square, where the curfew is a respectable 22:30. This is not as daft as it may sound when you tend to wake up and leave really early. image Tomorrow I will probably move on to Villar de Mazarife, and will take the more scenic of two possible routes. image Thankfully for some, this vast flat region will become a thing of the past as the terrain becomes more mountainous again as the path climbs towards Cruz de Ferro and then on to O’Cebreiro in Galicia(!) and beyond, but first Astorga which I hope to reach in two days time by and feet allowing. image Because I am staying for two days in León to rest my leg and foot, some friends are now one full day or more ahead of me, while others are still one or more days behind me. Every day I meet new people, sometimes there is a chemistry, but not always. This mornings farewell with one fellow pilgrim was particularly difficult I think, especially for her as she was torn between staying a second day in León or moving on with two other companions. image

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