We are in Ponferadda now, some of us walking the 8km into town, the others on a day trip to Las Medulas, a world heritage site. I must tell all our readers about the walk into Molinaseca yeterday though as it was a tough day - but like good pilgrims everybody took it in their stride and coped very well. We started out, heading for Foncebadon in the freezing cold, all layered and wearing juist about all we carry at the moment. I had 2 long sleeve tops on, a windbreaker jaCKET CUM RAIN COAT, GLOVES, BUFF AND HAT FOR WARMTH. (sorry about capitals, standing in the info centre on a funny computer that I´m battling with). Anyway, climbed from 1100 metres to 15oo in 10 km to the highest point fort the day just after the iron cross where we all left our stones or momentoes that we brought from home .... and got colder and colder and more an more wind swept. Then we started a long slow down ,that is hard to describe, except to say it looked to me like walking down a giant chocolate flaky, where the flaky kept on flaking and had grooves. Do yourself a favour, buy a flaky and take a look at it from the top down ... that was our path. We then dropped from 1500 to 550 m by the end of the 27km we had to walk yesterday. I led the pack, and talking for myself had to dig hard both physically and mentally on the terrain and in the grim weather to keep foscussed and walking. There was little chance for looking around, unless one stopped, as eyes had to be kept firmly on the road as we walked. We also had the oportunity to meet Tomas on the way. Tomas believes he is the last of the Knights Templar and offers very basic accommodation to weary pilgrims, or a welcome coffee on a donation basis. There were some other welcome cafe stops on the way, and most of the group reported finding lovely coffee, eats and even welcome onion soup in one instance. I was only able to strip all the layers at 12h30 when I walked into Molinaseca and found our wonderful hotel just on entering town. Good filling pilgrim meal again, before we all went off to bed at about 9pm in broad day light ... can´t get used to that somehow. SO - a tough walking day. Bring on the Sani Stagger race in Nov this year .... yesterdays terrain and steep drop was such good preparation for Sani.
Will keep postiong if you keep up the comments ... its lovely reading your comments everybody, as Sylvia gets them on her phone as they come in and tells us all who has sent us a comment ... so keep it up. I think I speak for all when I say that we all send lots of love to our families back home. All pilgrims well ..... eating well, getting a little sun tan and looking fit and healthy.
Kathy Mountain Goat