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Time of past OR future Camino
Yearly and Various 2014-2019
Via Monastica 2022
Hopefully the rain might come and go, as in previous days, rather than being constant.
Looking at the projections, the earlier you go, the better - by noon the more serious spitting will possibly start. I'm glad the wind is at your back at least.
Buen camino, peregrio! May it be an easier day than expected.
 

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JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
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Weather forecasts around here have been partly or completely wrong around here in recent days, though rain today is inevitable. It's raining a bit now.

But for instance, the day I walked from Sahagún to Moratinos was predicted as overcast with some rain, instead was clear blue sky and the Sun just occasionally hidden behind fluffy white or grey clouds.

Dawn is getting later again.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Day 316 - - Carrión de los Condes

A long cold day, with some hours of drizzle in the last part of it.

I managed quite well over the first 15K, then some pain kicked in, albeit not debilitating, so even that was OK.

I can't really compare with my last time on that stretch, as I was fairly ill at that point, but comparing with the 2014, it seemed to be slightly easier in the French-ward direction than the "normal" one, I think because of the very slight downhill instead of up, though it's also true that the rest spots are more handily placed when walking towards Carrión than away from it.

Less rain is forecast for today, but we'll see.

I have a much longer day today, if I can manage it, as all of the Albergues between here and Frómista are closed, and so that is a 20K stretch.

However, there are some pueblos and at least some watering holes along the way, so I may be able to keep my strength up.

And I did manage about 3K/H yesterday, which is good.

The Camino is becoming more expensive though, even in relationship to six months ago, and I'm running out of cash again. That didn't happen in the first three months.

I stayed at the lovely Espiritu Santu Albergue, and they let me stay for free which was very helpful indeed, but even here the normal price for a night has doubled in just a couple of years. And the food prices are all way up, whether sit-down or supermarket.

Though the worst now is still those Albergues that were open all year round, and now aren't ; and those that have permanently closed because the Camino mostly closed down for a while.

All of this is making a Winter Camino even harder than it ought to be.
 

JabbaPapa

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Oh BTW I crossed paths with about two dozen pilgrims on the way yesterday, and it seems a similar number stayed in Carrión last night (just an estimate, as I don't know how many slept privately, but there were about 15 of us at the Albergue).
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
Yearly and Various 2014-2019
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Forecasts are statistical, not certainty. At least the difference is good for walking, a gift!
Buen camino...!
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Hmm...Gronze says that La Finca should be open in Poblacion de Campos although that is almost all the way to Fromista. We stayed there the year they opened in 2016 and Phil stayed there last fall on his way to serve at Caldazilla de los Hermanillos. Each bed has its own little cubicle. Might be worth it to see if they are open if you don't want to walk the last few kms into Fromista.
 

JabbaPapa

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Days 317, 318, 319 - - Frómista ×2 ; Itero de la Vega

The walk into Frómista was tough, especially the last few K, and after the previous day's 17.

It was mostly OK as far as Revenga de Campos, but the bar there is now only open on weekends and holidays, and then for some reason walking either into or out of Población de Campos is something I always find difficult.

I had to drag myself a bit, though at least the bar there was open, where I had some beer and a little chorizo, though I really would have preferred to stop there.

But it was getting late and I needed to move on, got into town then after some stumbling about, I managed to get a bed at the Betania donativo, didn't meet the husband, but Lourdes is so nice, and she managed to arrange things so that I could use a lower bunk rather than space on the floor which I would have been content with.

My legs were seriously aching though, and it was clear I needed a proper rest day.

So I spent the morning with some beers, then got myself a decent pilgrim menu - - they swapped the seafood starter that was no good for me, though I'm sure it was delicious for a semi omelette semi scrambled eggs with mushrooms that was particularly good - - then checked in to the other Albergue for the second night, despite a silly argument with the hospitalero that got sorted through abject apology on my part, though really either neither or both of us were at fault.

More beer, then siesta plus sleep.

Next morning, I still felt a bit weak, so it took me 'til near midday to get moving, for a pleasant enough walk in bright and sunny weather, even though the portion between Boadilla and Itero has not enough rest stops to my liking, and day turned to night along the way.

Bar was closed, and I wandered around a bit, then called the Albergue and found a bed - - there were four of us, and the place is nice, though the weather turned cold in the night - - which made me glad I wasn't outside !! The hospitalero also runs the village tienda, which he opened up briefly for me, so nice, so I got some cheese and tinto, already having half a chorizo left in my pack.

Shop will be open by now too, so looking forward to some more supplies, and see if the bar isn't open as well. But I shall not be tarrying as much as yesterday !!

Weather should be OK or fine, night sky was perfectly clear last night.

The next stretch is one of my favourites in the other direction, interested to see what differences there are to it in this one. I certainly do hope that the weather will be clear when I come upon that view on top !!
 

mspath

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Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Days 317, 318, 319 - - Frómista ×2 ; Itero de la Vega

The walk into Frómista was tough, especially the last few K, and after the previous day's 17.

It was mostly OK as far as Revenga de Campos, but the bar there is now only open on weekends and holidays, and then for some reason walking either into or out of Población de Campos is something I always find difficult.

I had to drag myself a bit, though at least the bar there was open, where I had some beer and a little chorizo, though I really would have preferred to stop there.

But it was getting late and I needed to move on, got into town then after some stumbling about, I managed to get a bed at the Betania donativo, didn't meet the husband, but Lourdes is so nice, and she managed to arrange things so that I could use a lower bunk rather than space on the floor which I would have been content with.

My legs were seriously aching though, and it was clear I needed a proper rest day.

So I spent the morning with some beers, then got myself a decent pilgrim menu - - they swapped the seafood starter that was no good for me, though I'm sure it was delicious for a semi omelette semi scrambled eggs with mushrooms that was particularly good - - then checked in to the other Albergue for the second night, despite a silly argument with the hospitalero that got sorted through abject apology on my part, though really either neither or both of us were at fault.

More beer, then siesta plus sleep.

Next morning, I still felt a bit weak, so it took me 'til near midday to get moving, for a pleasant enough walk in bright and sunny weather, even though the portion between Boadilla and Itero has not enough rest stops to my liking, and day turned to night along the way.

Bar was closed, and I wandered around a bit, then called the Albergue and found a bed - - there were four of us, and the place is nice, though the weather turned cold in the night - - which made me glad I wasn't outside !! The hospitalero also runs the village tienda, which he opened up briefly for me, so nice, so I got some cheese and tinto, already having half a chorizo left in my pack.

Shop will be open by now too, so looking forward to some more supplies, and see if the bar isn't open as well. But I shall not be tarrying as much as yesterday !!

Weather should be OK or fine, night sky was perfectly clear last night.

The next stretch is one of my favourites in the other direction, interested to see what differences there are to it in this one. I certainly do hope that the weather will be clear when I come upon that view on top !!
Jabbapapa,
Glad to read that the stars were out last night and thus today's weather should be good as you enjoy that splendid view from the top at Mostelares.
Carpe diem and Buen camino !
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Yearly and Various 2014-2019
Via Monastica 2022
Hope you're out there by now and that the climb is easier from this side than the other one - and that you have enough in the tank to sail easily up to Castrojerez once on the other side. This stretch is sooo lovely!
 
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JabbaPapa

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Days 320, 321, 322, 323 - - Castrojeriz ; Hontanas ; Hornillos del Camino ; Tardajos

The walk into Castrojeriz was glorious, and I had the whole stretch to myself until about three quarters of the way to the ridge. Then a great big holá !! from the first pilgrim I came across, who was bursting to share with someone how wonderful it is up there, and so I came along. The Camino provides. And he shared some of his Euros with me, to help keep me lodged and fed, so that goes both ways.

Pilgrim numbers are down again, so that I come across about half a dozen or so on the way, then in the principle Albergues around a dozen, but I am still keeping my head mostly above water Euros-wise. Though it is day-to-day now, and will be for another week.

Dinner was some supermarket lentils, and the first of three bottles of wine over three evenings, the third being the one too many. Then it was, annoyingly, lentils again at Hontanas, and some overpriced potato dish at Hornillos, so the kind of food that made me ill last year - - happily today, though, steak and eggs at Rabé, first time I have found them in weeks !!

The Municipal at Castrojeriz is great as always, though it was a village feast day, and they organised a massive disco party right next to the place from 11:30 to 4 AM. I managed to shut out most of it and sleep by putting some of my own, more soporific music on and into my ear plugs, 'til 3 anyway, but it really was a relief when they finished !!

Superb weather on that walk again BTW, as well as the next two days, only today's forecast of overclouded chill was correct.

Easy walk into Hontanas, though I started a bit late, and I did finish on the tarmac, as in this direction there's a little climb that I decided to simply avoid. As usual, the guy in the car tried to sell me a wooden tau cross.

I spoke of the lentils in Hontanas, but the starter was a salad, the lentils were quite properly prepared, and luckily it was one of my days when I actually need the fresh vegetable nutrients, so that was excellent timing. Pleasant chatting with the pilgrims.

And the hospitalero, one of the good ones.

The food he prepared anyway was great, though one of the Koreans got my yoghurt for his breakfast.

Slightly longer to Hornillos, the notable pilgrims being the two French peregrinas camping out, at the edge of Hontanas, with their two donkeys and two dogs. I had met them very briefly in the evening, as they used the Albergue showers, so it was nice to have more of a chat with them on the way out in the morning.

These are some parts of the Meseta that I had already walked in this direction, partially, during hitch-hiking back home along the Camino, but what is more interesting and positive is the comparison with my walking on the way there last year on these same stretches. My hiking is still difficult, but it is much much easier and better than it was in 2021 even though the daily distances are more or less the same. Same difficulty, but less pain, and it's easier for me to push to a longer distance if needed, from causes of Albergues closed for the season.

From Castrojeriz to Tardajos is one of my favourite stretches of the Meseta, so the walk into Hornillos is great, though I do have mixed feelings about the Albergue there. It's comfortable and warm enough, but the meal that night was terrible, no starter, a very cheap potato dish not even well prepared, despite the Italian women who prepared it, and just a tangerine for dessert. Plus that was the day of the aforementioned tinto too many, which led to my walking today with a bit of a hangover. Oh well.

And the weather today was not good, and the last stretch of that meseta was spent in the clouds, and so the cold and damp, until the descent into Rabé went down below cloud level.

And at Rabé, I was happy for the warmth of the bar, the steak and eggs of course with beers, and the short tarmac stretch to Tardajos was easy. Unsurprisingly, the Municipal here closed two weeks ago, so I'm at the Casa de Beli, which is not indecently priced, cheaper than both of the Municipal Albergues at Hontanas and Hornillos, and I find it to be most comfortable and warm, and so most restful.

Burgos tomorrow - - and it's less than 300K to France now, so getting closer.

I have started thinking about my route after Lourdes, and setting aside matters of potentially speeding my way up a bit from there onwards on local buses and so on, I may very well also shorten my way by going to Montpellier via Carcassonne and Béziers. And avoid Agde. That route would dodge one mountain, get me towards the Mediterranean much faster, avoid some bits of the Arles Way that I don't much like (though also some bits that I do), and cut maybe 150-200 K off the remaining distance. And on flatter terrain roughly following the canal, so better for the knees too.

Seems like the right plan.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
My husband stayed at the municipal donativo in Tardajos last fall and said it was really nothing to write home about. He was the only pilgrim and things were a bit neglected. No volunteer hospitalero on site at that time in early September--possibly due to difficulties getting hospitaleros due to Covid and Covid restrictions in Fall 2021. He said the private lodging establishments were doing a robust business, possibly because reservations were accepted?
 

JabbaPapa

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My husband stayed at the municipal donativo in Tardajos last fall and said it was really nothing to write home about. He was the only pilgrim and things were a bit neglected. No volunteer hospitalero on site at that time in early September--possibly due to difficulties getting hospitaleros due to Covid and Covid restrictions in Fall 2021. He said the private lodging establishments were doing a robust business, possibly because reservations were accepted?
I love the simplicity of that place, and there's everything else you need elsewhere in the village, even in November, as it is also a place where people driving through on the main road can stop for lunch or a drink or whatever. Plus the little shop by the church.

I noticed earlier BTW that the storks aren't wintering here, though in past years my impression is that they have been, which might be an indication of a colder Winter this year.
 

J Willhaus

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Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Yes, he ate with other pilgrims at a nearby place and was able to get coffee the next morning nearby before setting off. He met a Frenchman at supper who was writing a book about his father. His father had done the Camino, but never spoke of it with his son and then later when the father died the son found the backpack, shell, etc. among the belongings. He was retracing his father's steps. Phil bought a copy of the book in French and it was mailed to him after it was published. We don't speak French, but he was touched by the story...
 

JabbaPapa

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Days 324 and 325 - - Burgos ; Orbaneja Riopico

I really am in the crunch time cash-wise now.

I took some wrong turns on both days, both times near motorway crossing places. This led to coming across even fewer pilgrims, and so also to fewer people to ask for help from.

It was unusually warm though, all being relative, on the day into Burgos, so I was back in short sleeves for the day.

There were just two of us in the Albergue at Tardajos, the other being a Polish peregrina ; 15 at the Municipal in Burgos, though I'd estimate a couple of dozen total in the city ; and I am alone in Orbaneja.

In Burgos I did my usual thing of downing a 1L bottle of beer on the plaza in front of the Cathedral, then in the morning resupplying at my habitual supermercado. I had got some ham on my way in at the shop by the University, which was that day's meal, then some ham and chorizo on the way out which was yesterday's.

As for today, I trust in the Camino but hmmmmm ...

I mostly followed the river route out, despite a wrong turn, though the route is now marked on mapy.cz

Yesterday was a lot colder.

The Albergue El Peregrino is likely pleasant enough in warm weather, though it is very simple, but the dorm is quite cold in Winter, and I needed the sleeping bag, two blankets, the woollen jumper, and the cape to stay warm.

I had considered taking the route north around the Oca hills, same route as on the way in, and I might have done with better finances, but in this situation I just have to follow the main Camino to try and hope for enough help.

Pilgrims have generally been helpful, but the wrong turns these past two days have eaten up the last remains from less replenishing, so that I barely had enough to cover the cost of the Albergue, and even that was mostly from one particular, generous peregrino who just emptied the contents of his small change pouch for me, and a few of the locals who helped with some small coins.

I am anyway glad that this place was open, Km-wise it was a far better distance for me, and I don't think I would have been able to afford Atapuerca, but I pray that this will change along the way there today. Sleeping outside is a very poor option at least until I get out of the meseta, possibly until I get back to France.

The cheaper Albergue at Agés is closed for a few days, looks like for a vacation.

So, see how things go, but anyway a shorter couple of days days than expected, which is good, and just the one long day instead. And it's four days 'til the next money arrives, so I should be OK again in Logroño or thereabouts.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Day 326 (morning) - - Cardeñuela Riopico

hmmmmm, well The Camino Provides.

Less than 45 minutes after typing that last one, I had about €22 in my pocket, a significant improvement over €1, and a coffee and beer on the table.

And the Albergue here is open, much cheaper than Atapuerca, if I stay it's a1.5K day, but I would have enough for proper lunch which I think I need, and it reduces my cashless days from 4 to 3.

I am honestly just thinking this through as I type it, but I can really see no downside to it, as I will in any case be in similar financial situation tomorrow morning.

God Bless the Pilgrims of the Way of Saint James !!
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 326 - - Cardeñuela Riopico

Well !!

The Albergue here is a bit better than the one down in Orbaneja, 1.5K distant, because the dorms are a bit smaller and so not so chilly, and the bedclothes are a lot warmer. Though it's true that yesterday I was too cashless to be able to fully enjoy the lovely wood stove in the bar.

Today instead, bacon and eggs, a couple of beers, and I am presently getting through a cheap bottle of tinto, though it's actually a claret.

A forum member has kindly arranged a bed for me tomorrow at Atapuerca, so I have less worry there too, and from there it will be just two days to payday.

Blue sky and sunny since about midday, so it would have been a good day for a walk, but this outcome really is the better one.

I did need a double dose of the anti-inflammatory this morning, so that the unexpected rest day is probably for the best.

Also, there is a certain promise that I would love to keep, in I can't remember which pueblo, and don't know if the establishmemt is even open in December, to have another of that lady's chuletas, so that this delay is a help towards that purpose, as it makes me more liable to be able to keep it.

I had never stayed in either of these pueblos, and now I will have stayed in both. This is pleasing.
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 327 - - Atapuerca

It was snowing today !!

I was the only pilgrim again, and I think I really needed those two nights alone, though I am glad to have enjoyed the company of the half dozen or so pilgrims this evening, including because we are an eclectic group of people with diverse provenance and fortunes, rich to poor, brought together by circumstance as much as necessity.

It was another very short day, albeit over that ridge trail up at 1,000 metres altitude on top, and that horrid rocky walking surface, but hey it is still very beautiful up there.

Virtually same as yesterday, I met three pilgrims immediately out of the pueblo, and they were able to help me with the minimum I needed for food and so on. The Camino Provides yadda yadda ....

For some months I had been thinking and saying that I expected to see my first snow on the meseta, but then just yesterday I was starting to doubt it, but then it happened.

It did start to stick, though very lightly, the only bad thing really being that the cold and the lower oxygen levels in the midst of a snow storm did make my chronic pain worse than usual.

No big deal really, any more than some extra pain from a twisted ankle, didn't stop me carrying on forward.

Still, eventually catching sight of the pueblo was a happy event, as was stopping for a coffee and beer.

Pleasant enough chat with a local French lady, who is married to one of the locals.

Then took me a while to find the Albergue, then to go out and discover that the local shop currently is a rip off joint for tourists, that the excellent bakery-shop that was has been permanently closed for years (boo !!), then that the best place for the purchase of provender is back to the Albergue.

Beers, a bottle of tinto, a jar of Spanish pâté, but the other pilgrims made some other food, so that my tin of meatballs and some leftovers will be good for lunch tomorrow, cervezas are mostly still unopened, I have enough for another tinto tomorrow, and especially some well targeted assistance from other forum members means that I am staying a second night, well done as I understand that the next Albergue along is closed tomorrow.

The hospitalero here BTW is very good and caring.

It's a slow way away from Burgos, but it seems to be what I needed. Not the resting as much as the slowness, and the pause before the hill.

The other pilgrims tell me there was an inch of snow up there, I would not be surprised if it were deeper still when I cross over myself, but then who knows if it won't melt instead ?
 
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mspath

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Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
It's too cold for the frozen earth to get that bad I think.

-3°C out there right now.
JabbaPapa,
Since it is -3 "out there" hopefully you will be able stay inside wherever you may be now.
Right now here in rural France along the Marne river we too are very cold and beginning another winter of our discontent.
Stay safe!
 

JabbaPapa

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Days 328 and 329 - - Atapuerca ; Villafranca Montes de Oca

I really needed that second night in Atapuerca, as I had twisted my ankle a little, and the day spent almost entirely in bed helped with that.

I made a lunch of leftovers from the previous evening's cooking and a tin of meatballs that I had, half a bottle of tinto left over, then spent my time reading with another tinto.

A French peregrina walking to Logroño from Santiago had some pleasant conversation, cut too short by my need for bed. I had the previous day failed to understand that another peregrina was on her Camino by horse.

The walk over the hills was about as difficult as expected, including that it is a bit less difficult in this direction than the "normal" one.

Freezing mist in the morning concealed the frost whitened Winter Wonderland Way of Saint James, and when it lifted all had melted, just as the snowfall had too, leaving patches of mud in its stead - - though mostly localised and rarely impossible to avoid.

I did see that the Albergue at Agés was open, and I can't help but regret somewhat not staying there as well, but I was too unsure of the incoming finances to really risk it.

Yesterday evening was when my payday was coming in, but it nearly always arrives quite late in the evening or night, so I was a little worried about lodging, even though all had worked out well in the previous 3-4 days, including two days when, setting out from the Albergue with €1 in my pocket, 2 days in a row within 45 minutes I was given enough to cover bed and food for the day.

Over the Oca hills instead it was enough for a light meal, and enough cerveza for the worst of the pain, but then getting into Villafranca, the lady running the hotel here is happy for me to pay in the morning, and I am in a warm and cozy single room, most pleasant.

The worst part of the hike was really the 20K, beyond my typical and preferred 10-15. Though generally, I really do not like that stretch of the Camino from the very low number of spots to stop for a rest, which BTW was the same when I was young and fast, because my daily speed, whether fast or slow, has always depended on being able to grab occasional rests along the way.

And some pain has accumulated from it, enough that it's even difficult to sleep, despite the amazingly comfortable bed. But I will get out for a breakfast at some point, pay my lodging, rest in the bar with cervezas 'til lunch time, grab a menú del peregrino, and then the 3K or so to Espinosa. I would normally do the extra 4K to the lovely donativo in Tosanto, but in this situation of cash in the bank but no cash on me, that would be most unfair.

Then tomorrow, Belorado.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Villafranca was fairly dead last year when I came through, the big corner bar-restaurant was closed because the owners had retired, so there was just the smaller one which opened late, the little shop was closed for covid, smaller numbers of pilgrims even in Summer, and really just the large private place open.

Whilst much is also closed now, for the season, my understanding is that the Municipal is open in Summer etc, as is the little shop. The premises of the corner restaurant have been taken over by new owners, and whilst I miss the rustic charm of the old place, they have done it up most smartly, and it is as full of locals as the old place was. And I can see that the car park opposite is properly frequented once more.

Where I am sleeping tonight was also closed last year.

The place seems still not 100% back to normal, but it's definitely getting there.
 

J Willhaus

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2016, 2022
Wow, I thought the municipal had closed pre-covid due to competition from the Anton Abad albergue? Are you talking also about the truck stop/hotel/bar? I think it was called El Pajaro or something?
 
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JabbaPapa

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Wow, I thought the municipal had closed pre-covid due to competition from the Anton Abad albergue? Are you talking also about the truck stop/hotel/bar? I think it was called El Pajaro or something?
Yeah. It's not a hotel, though the hotel I am in is owned and run by the same people.

I *think* the Municipal is open in Summer, a local lady in Atapuerca seemed to think so anyway.
 

NorthernLight

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Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
That little hotel called La Alpargateria - with two kitchens on the ground floor - was run by two lovely sisters, daughters of the owners of the truck stop/bar/restaurant, called El Pajaro, when I’ve stayed stayed there (twice now). They took great care of me my first stay, as I was sick. The family name was Oca and their family have lived there for a very long time.
 

mspath

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Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
That little hotel called La Alpargateria - with two kitchens on the ground floor - was run by two lovely sisters, daughters of the owners of the truck stop/bar/restaurant, called El Pajaro, when I’ve stayed stayed there (twice now). They took great care of me my first stay, as I was sick. The family name was Oca and their family have lived there for a very long time.
NorthernLight,
The family name Oca is indoubtedly derived from their location in Villafranca Montes de Oca. The Montes de Oca during the middle ages was a very large Bishopric. Read more on the long Ecclesiastical History and note the Bishop's miter on the town seal here. For a physical remnant of this past history see
this post.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Day 330 - - Villafranca Montes de Oca

The Pope was briefly the nominal Bishop of Villafranca Montes de Oca, when he was an Auxiliary Bishop in Argentina.

I'm still here, after getting into a very involved conversation with another pilgrim after lunch, for about 5 or 6 hours (!!) - - he seemed to need it, and I think I needed something of the sort too. In different circumstances, I think he is one that I could have walked with. Getting into the part of the Camino where blisters are part of the pilgrim conversation LOL.

No big deal to have stayed a second night, just an extra 4K to Belorado compared to a start from Espinosa.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Day 331 - - Espinosa del Camino

I had part 2 of the long conversation with the same pilgrim, who was having his own rest day in Villafranca yesterday, until it finally hit its natural end point at about 11:30AM.

It was beautiful walking weather yesterday, but after about 2K, and especially after catching sight of the pueblo, and realising I was hungry for lunch, it simply became evident that I would be stopping here.

And what a perfect lunch it turned out to be !!

Steak, bacon, eggs, and chorizo - - pretty much ideal within my restrictions, and so tasty. I am having the bacon and eggs for breakfast while waiting for the temps to rise a little. Nasty looking weather today though.

Too much tinto, but no ill effects.

There were two of us in the place, each with his own dorm, and his own toilet, and the rooms were comfortable, and warm enough even without heating. I would definitely recommend this place. And the lady running it is so nice !!
 
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JabbaPapa

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Day 332 - - Belorado

The nasty weather at the start of the day was from starting inside a rain cloud whilst it was raining - - not heavy, just drizzle mainly, but it was quite tiring. In that I felt rather cold and tired after walking into town.

Easy walking otherwise, dominated by gentle downhill on dirt tracks with not too many puddles or muddy patches, and I avoided the one bar along the way that was probably open so as not to delay any more, after waiting to start in the morning for the worst of the morning chill to pass.

I stopped at the gasolinera on the way in for one beer, and if I had realised how much would be closed in town for the feast of the Immaculate Conception, I would have resupplied properly, which I will now have to do this morning instead.

I was too tired anyway to wait for the restaurant to open, so I just had some tortilla de patatas at a bar that stayed open in the afternoon, and then crawled back to the Albergue and into bed.

Three of us here last night, though I saw a total of eight pilgrims yesterday, and more will likely have passed by before I headed out.

There was some report that the Parroquial was potentially open, though I was doubtful (they may simply be offering coffee and biscuits to passing pilgrims), but I just went to the Municipal instead. Heating was on and it was warm enough, so no regrets. The donativo in Tosantos had shutters down so that is closed anyway, wouldn't have slept there, but a warm drink would have been helpful at that point.

That may not be the last of this walking inside clouds, altitude is still fairly high, but I am into the last stretch of the Meseta as it heads towards La Rioja and Logroño, and so tending towards downhill.
 

JabbaPapa

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Sigh, it's going to be another very late start, as I have my ritual drinking of a 1L bottle of cerveza on the Plaza Mayor that I *always* follow in Belorado, which was impossible yesterday evening because of the Feast Day. So this morning instead, which has already mostly slipped away.

Not sure how far I'm going today, it will depend on whether certain Albergues are open or not - - the Aprinca site not being entirely exhaustive.

The shop on the Plaza is BTW closed now, permanently, as the owners have retired ; so that I went to the other place on the main road, for the first time since IIRC 1993 - - it is much larger than it was back then !!
 

JabbaPapa

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Weather anyway is much nicer, still clouded over, but about 5°C warmer.

I have had to finally retire my great big yellow arrow I had on my hat, as it has become so torn into bits as to no longer be an arrow. Sad, but I suppose that it is a sign that this Camino is now heading into its endgame, and perhaps becoming more the Way to Lourdes and to Home than the Way of Saint James proper. Would have been nice to get a replacement from where it came from, but I was given a lift over that section down from O Cebreiro, and oh well.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Christmas music is playing in the Plaza Mayor in Belorado, and whilst right now it is a cacophonous competition between two separate sources of it, earlier there was playing a rendition of Auld Lang Syne which quite moved me.

The Scots of those three words is somewhat untranslatable, but roughly (including "for") "with care and attention to that which has long been and that we hope to see continue".

As I start to head out from the Francès, though there's still about 200K left of it, and in this Plaza Mayor that I love, my thoughts naturally turn more towards, is this it, the last time ?

Belorado for me will always be a Locus on and of this Way of Saint James.
 

JabbaPapa

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And oh well I just can't move on.

This is starting to become the anticipated regret of the Camino starting to end when pilgrims get closer to Santiago multiplied by ten.

It's magic, and it's a beautiful goodbye, but this passage through Belorado really would have been easier to navigate had not both the weather been better yesterday, and the whole town not been so closed for the Feast Day.
 

mspath

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Christmas music is playing in the Plaza Mayor in Belorado, and whilst right now it is a cacophonous competition between two separate sources of it, earlier there was playing a rendition of Auld Lang Syne which quite moved me.

The Scots of those three words is somewhat untranslatable, but roughly (including "for") "with care and attention to that which has long been and that we hope to see continue".

As I start to head out from the Francès, though there's still about 200K left of it, and in this Plaza Mayor that I lo7ve, my thoughts naturally turn more towards, is this it, the last time ?

Belorado for me will always be a Locus on and of this Way of Saint James.
JabbaPapa,
Thank you for sharing with all your digital followers these thoughts.
Your lovely words "with care and attention to that which has long been and that we hope to see continue" will be a most poignant reminder for all of us who have walked camino paths how important it is that such paths exist forevermore.
 

J Willhaus

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Love this stretch of the Camino myself. Will you stay in Grañón tomorrow or try to press on? We spent the second half of December serving there in 2018. I know the confraternity will also be open in Santo Domingo.
 

JabbaPapa

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It is my favourite part of the Meseta, even though I also think that the most beautiful part of it is between Burgos and just before León. I especially love the Meseta at the border area between Castilla and La Rioja.
 
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NorthernLight

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Anyway, I've pinned my crazy giant big yellow arrow back onto the hat, it's a fun and delightful anti-serious counterpoint to my whole "great big beardo true pilgrim in black with a huge cape and crazy big army boots" shtick, that seems somehow to have gathered onto me --- well, someone has to do it, I guess ?
December 15, 2018

Goodbye arrow.
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 333 - - Belorado

The pilgrim menu was fine, rice with chicken and chorizo bits, steak, tinto, and some just about acceptable cheesecake even though this dessert is understood only by New Englanders and the English. Or by very rare exception some individual French.

So, despite being here all day, I still managed to get in too late for a bottom bunk in the main dorm, and the ground floor one is apparently occupied by a peregrina and her dog(s).

So I am up in one of the attic dorms instead.

Pros :
Alone.
Bed, not bunk.
No squabbling over electric sockets.

erm ...

Cons :
No heating.
An extra floor down every time I need a P.

As to the other pilgrims, I am a loner but I am a pilgrim, so put that in both columns.

The attic dorm is charming though, and compared to sleeping outside, it's positively cosy. Got three duvet blankets now, and easy to get more if I need them.

Plus my great big black pilgrim cape.

In comparison to my second night on this Camino, up in an attic room in Nice, freezing cold in January, this is luxury. But that night was just as welcoming. Often, it's when you're set aside and apart and alone that you are actually the most welcome.

Besides the Community of Pilgrims, there is the inherent solitude of Pilgrimage.
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 334 - - Grañón

I am in La Rioja !!

And that ended up being a difficult one, not from any particular hardship in the hiking, which continues to be majority downhill as I near the edge of the Meseta (it's already 300 metres lower than the recent high point in the Montes de Oca), but because the 17K was overmuch this time.

I did succeed in setting out early though, and straight onto the Camino, without my usual coffee and cerveza. I had some beer in the pack, had a rest at the edge of town at the rest area where the Camino crosses the main road, then nonstop up to Villamayor del Rio. Coffee and beer there, then, at the large bar-restaurant.

Heading out, I saw there's a new small bar and mini-tienda, at what would be the entrance to the pueblo for most pilgrims, so stopped there again mostly for curiosity.

Nice rustic people running the place, which as a shop really just has some bare essentials plus drinks and snacks, but they also seem to do breakfasts, sandwiches, and some basic hot food. Not a bad addition, as the big place is not inexpensive.

The Sun came out in the meanwhile, then up to Villoría de Rioja, where I sat in the warmth for a bit, and took my woollen jumper off to get into my t-shirt for a bit.

Then easy from there to Castildelgado, where I made a first real mistake by skipping the watering hole there. Because all was closed in Redecilla del Camino, not just the Albergues, but even the Association bar.

And that was at about my normal 15K limit, so that the inflammation started acting up from that point onward. So the final 1 to 2 K were tougher than they should have been, and I ended up in a somewhat rough state coming in to the Parroquial, which is somewhat pleasant apart from that.

I slept on the floor in the living area, so as not to have to trudge up and down a few times for a P in the night.

The only other peregrino is a strange Dutch character, one of those permanent pilgrim types, with some extremely bizarre ideas about religion that he puts forth with some unpleasant aggressiveness, though beneath that he seems decent enough at heart. He made the community meal with help from a hospitalero, of tortilla de patatas. If I had been up to it, but I was still stuck sitting down with inflammation, I would have made it with the family recipe instead, but it was rather nice anyway, the good olive oil helping especially.

Today is not that long, but it will be hard from no beer, as everything is going to be closed for Sunday, and no watering hole, not even a gasolinera, until Santo Domingo,where I'll stop.

After that, there's a nasty 20K+ stretch to Nájera with no Albergue, so one way or the other I'll sleep in Cirueña on the next day, either expensively or outside, IIRC there's a bit of shelter at the golf club.
 

JabbaPapa

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The strange Dutch character turned out not to be a pilgrim at all, but rather a pseudo-pilgrim tramp, and sadly also mentally ill. Also an unpleasant racist and bigot, though clearly that comes from his mental illness rather than from any fundamental desire towards ill.

There used to be many more of such characters on the Francès, and this is the first of them that I have seen since the 2010s IIRC.
 

J Willhaus

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The strange Dutch character turned out not to be a pilgrim at all, but rather a pseudo-pilgrim tramp, and sadly also mentally ill. Also an unpleasant racist and bigot, though clearly that comes from his mental illness rather than from any fundamental desire towards ill.

There used to be many more of such characters on the Francès, and this is the first of them that I have seen since the 2010s IIRC.
We had one such person there at Grañón New Years Eve of 2018. He was threatening other pilgrims and we learned two nights before that at another albergue, a group of pilgrims had barricaded themselves in a bunk room while he stood outside banging on their door hurling racial slurs and threats of murder. Phil carried his backpack down the bell tower steps, escorted him out, and bid him adios as we could not have him threatening others. We saw him a few days later after our volunteer time in Burgos at the bus station deep in conversation with a security guard.
 
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The strange Dutch character turned out not to be a pilgrim at all, but rather a pseudo-pilgrim tramp, and sadly also mentally ill. Also an unpleasant racist and bigot, though clearly that comes from his mental illness rather than from any fundamental desire towards ill.

There used to be many more of such characters on the Francès, and this is the first of them that I have seen since the 2010s IIRC.
Hopefully he's going the opposite way, and you won't see him again.
 

JabbaPapa

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Hopefully he's going the opposite way, and you won't see him again.
No, apparently he's just going back and forth between places on the Camino where they would let him stay, and the Municipal in Santo Domingo de la Calzada is most definitely no such place.
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 335 - - Santo Domingo de la Calzada

Lack of beer did end up making the last couple of K into town hard for the knees, though the last little resting place not far from the bridge into the city did help.

As I was walking in, I remembered that the large supermarket is open on Sunday mornings (in fact, until 3PM), and it turned out that I needed a full 2L of beer just to get my pain back down again. But I did, so all was good, even in the midst of a sudden chill in the middle of the second one, including a very light hail storm.

It helped greatly though that the walk was so easy. It's a 7 to 8 K job on paper, but I think as the bird flies, it's closer to 5 or 6 - - though there's about a 200 metre elevation difference, so that functionally, the uphill walk in the direction of Santiago would most certainly give that 7 or 8 K impression, but in the direction of France it's a pleasant downhill stroll, with nice benches at a halfway resting point.

I had managed to get a little red wine before leaving, which did help, and I can usually manage the first 3 to 5 K without cerveza, so the walk to that halfway point was fine. Weather was overcast and not too cold up to that point, so good for hiking, and then more downhill into town with the aforementioned knee pain, and not overly bad.

The way things are organised here at the Albergue continues to annoy me a bit, but the dorm room was fine this time, individual beds not bunks, just five of us, and they put us into an easily and so well heated dorm. Too many steps up into it for my comfort, but they let me keep my stick and my boots, which made a good difference.

As for food, this place continues to be a touristified problem. The place next to the Albergue had a €15 menu of stuff I can't eat, drinks not included, so with tinto adding up to €24, and basically double price.

I had thankfully already eaten a cheap chorizo, then I went to the only bar I know of here with normal prices, and had some tortilla with a beer, cost €4,20 - - which was a lot more reasonable I would say.

Looks like temperatures tonight will be a lot more clement, so that if I do end up sleeping outside, I should be OK, as long as I can find some roofing to sleep under in case of rain ; but I am still hoping for a bed.

I'll need to do a few things before heading out anyway, resupply, get some food for my pack, get some cash out and some medicine, so that a later start can't be avoided and the idea of a longer stretch is a non-starter just for that reason alone. So Cirueña it will be.

Monday though, so the village bar there might be closed ? I hope not. But I do remember they do not open in the early morning, so I will need to ensure setting out from here that I have enough of the cerveza for the two days, at least to last until Azofra. The Municipal there is open all year except in December, else there is where I would be walking to today, grumble.
 

JabbaPapa

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I really don't need to hurry out, and I *think* I have found an affordable place for lunch in Santo Domingo, and not far from the supermarket, so there we go. The golf course seems to be closed 'til Wednesday, so if I do need to sleep out there, at least I wouldn't be bothering anyone.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Heck, @JabbaPapa, you can have your pick of empty houses. Well. Just kidding, of course.
I've stayed at Virgen de Guadeloupe in Cirueña and liked it a lot. The owner was smart and spiritual, both.
Almost certainly closed. Lunchtime soon in Santo Domingo though, just finishing a cerveza before heading to the eatery. (and it's gone)

The owners of the Hotel Vitoria that run the (closed) Albergue of the same name are good people.
 

J Willhaus

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Heck, @JabbaPapa, you can have your pick of empty houses. Well. Just kidding, of course.
I've stayed at Virgen de Guadeloupe in Cirueña and liked it a lot. The owner was smart and spiritual, both.
Phil stayed there after a day of walking in the cold rain in December 2018. The hospitalero was kind and welcoming and helped him dry his drenched clothes.
 

JabbaPapa

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Weather is foul, and I am forced by it to see if I can't stay a second night.

Don't think I can move on if they say no.

As to the situation in 2018, good stuff, but the Camino since the covid business has gone into a degree of regression.
 
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I've stayed at Virgen de Guadeloupe in Cirueña
I was here too, in 2015, and there were only four pilgrims. It definitely was the most quirky and unusual place I have ever stayed at to date. I remember leaving the lights on in my room all night to ward off bedbugs, but not sure why I had become paranoid; I think it was the overall vibe I had. The lentil soup served was very good and the opera wake-up music was very nice. The dogs he loved looked very old.
Screenshot_20221212-103207~2.png
 
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J Willhaus

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Weather is foul, and I am forced by it to see if I can't stay a second night.

Don't think I can move on if they say no.

As to the situation in 2018, good stuff, but the Camino since the covid business has gone into a degree of regression.
Hope they allowed you to stay over at the confraternity albergue.
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 336 - - Santo Domingo de la Calzada

Not much to add, slept in the same bed, and there were different hospitaleros.

The lunch was very good, but I am still in denial about the fact that I really need to start avoiding chocolate. But the fleshy mushroom and pork bits starter was truly excellent, and the steak was spot on.

I will make the attempt to get to Nájera. It's a 20K so a long one for me, but Azofra is a good watering hole, it's majority downhill, and so on. Weather is just too iffy to risk sleeping outdoors.

I'll not hang about much, just get going ASAP, as I did on my last long stretch from Belorado.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Day 337 - - Azofra

I have left the meseta !!

Yesterday morning, a forum member most kindly offered assistance for accommodation if I could get no further, and what an accommodation it is, in a most comfortable hotel room.

I started out in the morning anyway too late to really hope to get to Nájera. I would have been capable physically I think, but night was falling as I was coming into Azofra, and it would have been tough.

I had my beer and coffee, paid a quick visit to the Pharmacy to resupply with antiinflammatories, then headed out.

The weather was great for walking, overcast and cool but not cold. It had rained a lot the previous afternoon (which had prompted me to stay put), and also somewhat overnight, and though the trail was soft sandy dirt, there was not a single pilgrim footprint to be seen, rather unusual on the Francès.

Anyway, I made my way up eventually to the top of the second ridge before Cirueña, where I came across some pilgrims finally, about 8 or so total over the day (three of us in the Albergue overnight, five the night previous - - I think some pilgrims do the Nájera to Belorado stretch on one go, from a higher proportion of long-distancers in this season).

I stopped in the pueblo for some tortilla de patatas and some more beer, and if the rain hadn't stopped me, I would have slept here yesterday. The hotel is open, one of the Albergues might be - - really don't know.

Headed out anyway over the very final stretch of the meseta, with one of its most beautiful views, but slowly the top of the valley on each side closes in, until you stop walking in the plain, but you are in the hills, and the meseta is behind you. It's actually a lot easier to see where it starts and ends when you're walking towards France than the other way.

There's a lengthy stretch though with nowhere to rest, but I got by not too badly. I did get some fortification from a bunch of grapes, as some vineyard had for some reason not been harvested (yet ?), and they were perfectly ripe, though I feel it's unusual to find such fruits in December.

Coming into Azofra, I did come across the best location had I slept outside, well covered and protected, that I had forgotten about, 200 to 300 metres outside the village towards Compostela.

Then I checked in, didn't go immediately to my room and went out to look for some food and stuff, and though the bar was closed, 4PM Winter closing time apparently, far more importantly I did just manage to catch the shop.

Got a decent enough chorizo, but especially a bottle of the local village rosado wine. The tinto is OK, but this stuff is brilliant - - somehow managing to combine being dry, fruity, liqueurish, strong, and yet somehow still being light at the same time. I love this stuff, I'll get another bottle later.

There are only two places in La Rioja where I'll buy wine, here in Azofra, and one particular (inexpensive) wine vendor in Logroño.

Breakfast here looks like it'll be brilliant, and rather than having to get out between 8 and 9, the breakfast itself is between 8:30 and 10:30, and whilst I will likely be out and about by 10, it's just a short one today to Nájera, so this easy opportunity for a late start is quite handy. Will still need cerveza this morning, so getting out of the pueblo might take a little longer.
 
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May you have a relaxed walk to Najera! I loved that place and the friendly municipal, barn though it was.

some pilgrims do the Nájera to Belorado stretch on one go
Oy. Isn't that about 45kms? 🥵
And a pity to miss Grañon.

slowly the top of the valley on each side closes in, until you stop walking in the plain, but you are in the hills, and the meseta is behind you. It's actually a lot easier to see where it starts and ends when you're walking towards France than the other way.
Yes, the new landscape and the expanse of the meseta is only really obvious in the other direction once you come down to Burgos, after the alto in the Sierra de Atapuerca.
 

JabbaPapa

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Oh, I meant Santo Domingo de la Calzada ... or something ...

If you walk around the Oca hills, as I did last year, there's no break in the meseta landscape.
 
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JabbaPapa

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No, I honestly don't know what sorts of stages people are doing, except that there are some people doing some quite long ones. And that's by my pre-disability standards.

What's certain is that most days, I see more peregrinos on the Camino than in the Albergues, which is the opposite of what I saw about a month ago.

Well, I have just remembered about the cheapish place to eat here, so that's good.
 

JabbaPapa

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I have just found a mistake in the Latin of my Compostela.

It is signed José Fernandez Lago - - except that it should be : Joseph/Ioseph/Josephus/Iosephus.

All are OK, but the ones beginning I are better. As to the é, it's right out, no such accents exist in Latin. Should be Ioseph IMO.
 

JabbaPapa

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Bah, it's the weekly rest day for the good place to eat.

Oh well, pinchos instead ...
 

JabbaPapa

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Or perhaps Iosephum even..
Think signatures are in the Nominative, particularly when he is the one conferring the document and formally declaring this benefit for the recipient.

But what do I know ?
 
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More than me, I'm sure.. There was me thinking your name was José..😄
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 338 - - Nájera

It was delightful sunny weather, though I was only in a t-shirt for a portion of it.

The breakfast was indeed fantastic, ham with scrambled eggs, fruit, tostada with olive oil and tomato, and the café con leche was good enough that I had two.

Then beers in the bar, which led to heading out at about midday ; but it was just a two hour walk, which means that I am definitely walking a little "faster".

With the good weather, the landscape was in all its splendour, and the downhill tendency, at least to the ridge, made it easier to contemplate its beauty.

Just one pilgrim on the way, a Belgian fellow having walked from home. I made an offhand comment from the size of his backpack, are you sleeping out a lot ? He answered yes, because all his money had been stolen (though he had a new card being sent to Burgos for him), so it was nice to be able to help someone else out with a few Euros for a change.

I was already aware that the Municipal had closed a few days earlier than expected, so I went to the Las Peñas place, where I had stayed on the way out last year. The entrance is undergoing renovation, and I think that's why the price was knocked down by €3 I believe. The place was near full, likely because of the closed Municipal. I *think* another Albergue is open, the more commercial private one, and this place is much more pleasant.

As already explained, I couldn't get a menú at the méson here, which isn't just good, it's also still only €12, so that was a disappointment, and I guess I'll have to look for somewhere in Navarrete instead.

Apart from that, a quiet day.
 

mspath

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JabbaPapa,
It is good to learn/read that walking to Najera yesterday you had a good "quiet day". In Navarrete if you are looking for a good menu del dia try El Molino which is centrally located near the church. It was good, popular, cheap, and copious years ago and I always enjoyed eating there. Buen camino!
 
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Glad the breakfast was protein-packed!

I second El Molino. I stopped there after a fall coming out of Logroño. Nice place. I had a cafe someplace that day in Ventosa too, but can't remember where.
 

JabbaPapa

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Day 339 - - Ventosa

Well, it's one of those sections that is harder on the way towards France, and I couldn't go any further. So, I will be sleeping outside.

Which is OK, it's not cold, in fact I did a lot of my walking today in just jeans and t-shirt. And there is good shelter near the town hall. And the bar will be open later.

And it doesn't look like rain, except possibly some little drops. But I'll be dry regardless.

Best option looks like a private patio, which I might normally eschew, except it looks like nobody's home so nobody to complain, though I doubt they would, as it's more like a covered area of the street. There's similar in front of the town hall anyway.

Pity the Albergue is closed, IIRC it's a nice one. Hotel here is closed too.

I'll be fine, still in my t-shirt right now, though also the cape.
 
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JabbaPapa

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I have beer and paella, and I'll see how much a bottle of tinto is later.
 

JabbaPapa

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I'm cosy enough, though I am keeping my socks on to keep my toes toasty.

The tinto is nothing to write home about, wouldn't make an effort for it, as I do the Azofra village wine. This one is actually a claret, and it's tasty enough that it can be a daily table wine without issues. It does grow on you, and I would describe it as being strong, heady, fruity, and dry.

It is raining a bit, so I'm happy for the nice portico to protect me from it.

Don't worry too much about this sleeping outside, it will become much more frequent again once I am over the border and back in France, which will be soon. But it was more difficult up in the meseta, and at 800 to 1100 metres altitude. Yes, I still have the Pyrenees ahead of me, but I think the stretches between the open Albergues are shorter up there. Or so I hope.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Back in the bar, café con leche in my belly, and getting through some very well prepared tortilla de patatas (he made it last night when I was here), and a first beer.

Waiting for the meds to kick in, and daylight too.

Sleep wasn't too bad, it's my usual 3AM to 7AM dozing period that's a bit boring outside in this season (at home, I just get up, make tea, and "doze" in front of the computer).

The pueblo tinto is better than the one in Azofra, but the Azofra rosado is way better than both of them.

Just to Navarrete today, then Logroño tomorrow.
 

JabbaPapa

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It's not just the beer, I needed another dose of the antiinflammatory - - but it's a short day, so no worries. I will avoid Sotés though, don't want to get myself stuck there too !!
 

JabbaPapa

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May those anti-inflammatories kick in soon.
Knees are definitely feeling better now. Beer three nearly gone, if there's a 4 it'll be small.

The sleeping out didn't help of course, but Nájera to Navarrete is a bit of a bad stretch for someone with knee problems, it was much easier in the opposite direction for me last year. Pleasant even. Though of course that was also in Summer weather and so longer available walking hours And I slept in Ventosa anyway, just in the Albergue, not the street.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Yes, well...the sooner you get out there the sooner you're done for the day with your feet up. It sounds painful as heck.
As I keep on telling people, I can either be in pain in front of my computer at home, or in the same pain on the Camino.

Whilst I am definitely now looking forward to getting back to the former, the latter is still better, at least for a while.

Anyway, I have more muscle, generally need fewer antiinflammatories, and less beer than previously, withstanding days like today. And I have lost a good degree of volume, and have lost more than a little weight.

So, pain yes ; but also gain.
 

J Willhaus

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2016, 2022
There was a lot of road construction between Navarette and Logrono last summer. Heavy equipment and dust. Hope they are finished up for your walk tomorrow.
 
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JabbaPapa

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We may have different notions of "copious", but the El Molino recommendation was a good one, as we seem to have the same notions about "quality". Good stuff.
 

mspath

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Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
We may have different notions of "copious", but the El Molino recommendation was a good one, as we seem to have the same notions about "quality". Good stuff.
JabbaPapa,
Glad that you enjoyed El Molino! Where are you sleeping tonight? Hope that it is warmer than here on the Marne river in rural France. The high today was 0; tonight will be -5.
 
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JabbaPapa

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Well, I shall be enjoying another lovely night of pleasant fresh air, given that absolutely EVERY lodging is closed, and that even the Parish Priest is out of town tonight and cannot help.

It is traditional for the Christmas season I guess to have no room at the Inn, but here there's not even a stable. To be fair, I do have no pregnant wife with me.

Two nights outdoors in a row is pretty annoying though, but thank God the temperatures aren't too bad.
 

mspath

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Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Well, I shall be enjoying another lovely night of pleasant fresh air, given that absolutely EVERY lodging is closed, and that even the Parish Priest is out of town tonight and cannot help.

It is traditional for the Christmas season I guess to have no room at the Inn, but here there's not even a stable. To be fair, I do have no pregnant wife with me.

Two nights outdoors in a row is pretty annoying though, but thank God the temperatures aren't too bad.
JP,
Since you are outside what nook have you chosen? In the center or on the edge of town? I remember many possible nooks on the Pasada de la Orden going east towards the ruins of San Juan de Acre.
 
Last edited:

JabbaPapa

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Don't know yet, but I have seen some covered passageways. Right now, cerveza.
 

JabbaPapa

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With hindsight, it's a good thing I didn't push myself yesterday, hurting myself by walking too far plus sleeping outdoors too would have been significantly worse.

But I must say, the Municipal here continues to be a problem. Logroño to Nájera is over 30K I believe, and for there to be nothing at all at the natural halfway point is not a good outcome.

And it's hardly the first time that I've been forced to sleep outside in this place.

So annoying, it's such a nice pueblo otherwise.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
El Cantaro used to be open all year round. My husand stayed there in December once and Gronze said they should be open. Here's the phone on the website.
941 44 11 80
Address
C/ Herrerías, 16
26370 - Navarrete
La Rioja

Edited: 629942691
They are on WhatsApp, too.
 
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John Brierley 2023 Camino Guide
Get your today and start planning.

JabbaPapa

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Day 340 - - Navarrete

And it's my day 200 since starting again earlier this year - - Hooray !!

As to the sleeping arrangements : yeah well once I'm over the border this will be more frequent, but it is nevertheless annoying to have two nights in a row like this whilst still on the Francès.

This is otherwise the first day when I have seen no other pilgrims since reaching the Central on my Way down to Fátima.

It was suggested to me to get the bus, erm naaaaaah, but perhaps others did so.

Aaaaah this stuff is just so much easier in the Summer.
 

JabbaPapa

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One of the locals is trying to find me a bed, which would be an interesting bookend if that should be the case, to my first Camino in 1993, as that is exactly what happened on the very first night of that Camino, in Navarrete.

But well, we'll see, obviously no guarantees.

eh, cervezas meanwhile.
 
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