The last couple of days we’ve been talking with other Pelerin, oops, pelegrinos ((Spain now) and we’ve compared the many routes as we addicted walkers will do. We have all been impressed with this route through the Pyrenees. All routes are excellent and have their special hilights, but this is one of those which takes 4 stages to cross, vs the 1 or 2 days on the Napoleon (Camino Frances). We found that it gives one a real sense of the Pyrenees as you tackle the ups and downs. And today was the up day except at the end when we descended steeply to the Estación.
The higher inside mountains immediately made themselves known. We understand from others that the whole pass was covered in snow a week ago and advice was given then to bus across. It since warmed so we are feeling fortunate to be in a position to cross over on foot. It is suppose to cool off considerably the next few days on the French side with lots of rain, so it was all worth it to make it here before the weather window snaps closed tomorrow.
I took this photo for my sister in law, Lisa who I know loves all things horses. The horses up here are really sturdy.
We came back down from the western side of the river, across to the highway and up the eastern side where there wasn’t much of anything flat until we arrived at the top. It was splendid hiking!
It was better and better as the mountains revealed themselves. Really fun to see what was waiting around the next corner. Anticipation is a double edge sword. I know Annemarie was a bit concerned about the climb, and I know that for the past number of months that it’s been at the back of my mind from time to time. Really, it was a good hike, but not as difficult as several of the mountains we climbed in Japan on The 88...all those frickin stairs! So we arrived at the top in pretty good shape.
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It really was a wonderful hour that we spent up there. Taking silly photos and enjoying the moment.
The old frontier border station is still here, long gone for now.
The signs at the top suggest that it’s still almost 900 kms to Santiago. I’ve seen different distances posted and no two agree, so we will just walk on and not worry too much about those sorts of things. Living each day as it comes and taking it all in. Just happy to be here, healthy and able.
We felt especially welcomed when we stepped into Spain and saw this icon familiar to anyone whose walked Camino!
The new highway passes underneath the mountain range, but the old highway still goes over the top as the case in many parts of Europe. We saw both sides of it and it’s been used for the Tour de France and for the Spanish Grand Tour coming up from the Spanish side of course. At the top of the pass is a huge resort for hiking in the summer and skiing in the winter.
The hike down had its moments, but the wifi here is really slow and I’ve been at this two hours and need a beer.....so I’ll finish this up and we will go look around town...the end of the Spanish train line in this region of the country.
We moved left rather quickly!
But we have a nice view from our window:)
Buen Camino! From Spain.