Day 26, Ponferrada to Pieros, 18k
April 26, 2016
Last night was one of the nicest group of hostel volunteers. Anne (from Ohio) joined us yesterday and we three shared a room.
I’m really showing signs of wearing down–too tired to eat dinner last night. I’ve gotten some chalky anti-acid tablets (Euro Tums) and using them to settle my stomach in the mornings. I also have a blister on the second toe on my right foot. I don’t know what was rubbing and didn’t even know it was there until I too off my sock. It looks like my toe is trying to grow another toe!
Linkin (from Denmark) joined us for this leg of the journey. We met her at an earlier hostel. We all four stayed at El Serbal y la Luna, and excellent albergue with very good vegetarian food. Since there was no wifi, I showered, hand washed a few items and took a two hour nap before dinner. Everyone seemed surprised, but I had no trouble falling asleep again after dinner.
Day 27, Pieros to la Portela de Valcarce, 21k
April 27, 2016
A tough day–mostly flat, but almost entirely road/sidewalk walking. Those hard surfaces really took it out on all off us and after our showers we are all flat on our backs. Anne got a private room. She is a light sleeper and suffering from a bad nighttime cough.
The first 7k this morning were especially beautiful with many vineyards. The grapevines are in perfect rows and the severely pruned plants are just beginning to show some green leaves. This is the Bierzo area, a micro-climate with excellent wines. The next 7 were completely along the highway, but had the advantage of being relatively flat, following a river that had cut a path between substantial hills. One of the alternative routes would have taken us straight up those hills. Not me! Did I mention that my original trail name was Flatlander? The last 5k began the assent of what will be out last major hill, O’Cebreiro, which we face tomorrow. It’s about a 1,000 meter climb (3,000feet) and I’m not looking forward to it!
On the plus side, we’ve dropped below the 200k mark–a bit over 100miles left to do. Since I don’t have to be in Madrid until the week of May 15, that gives me plenty of time to get to Santiago and take a bus to see Finisterra.