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LIVE from the Camino Live from the camino, Ruta de la Lana

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Second day on Ruta de la Lana, Novelda to Villena. What a joy this walk is. Novelda has an incredible albergue, such luxury. I was the 5th pilgrim this year. Counted 58 for last year and they seemed equally divided between Sureste and Lana. The markings have been great except they can be a bit thin in cities, good to have a backup GPS map.
Perfect walking weather so far. Saw 5 castles today and 105 rabbits (well, an estimate). Looking forward to the days ahead. Almansa tomorrow.
Let me know if you have questions about the route. I've been using Kevin O'Brien's guide (thank you very much) as well as the association's 2-part guide, that have been referenced in other threads. And Alan Sykes commentary will be useful down the way.
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Good to hear someone doing the Lana,,great camino..i'm guessing its a bit chilly in the mornings.Probably too late to tell you but Los Rosales is a great hotel in Almansa and right near the camino for the next day.
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Great to hear @federico ! I will be leaving in about 3 weeks and am also planning on staying in Novelda and probably Villena. How was it getting out of Alicante?

Look forward to any suggestions you may have.

Buen Camino!
Leaving Alicante is quite straight forward, following a main road, Avenida de Aguilera, until taking a right at the cemetery sign. The signage is excellent. Do take water, there's a couple florist shops and a bar by the cemetery where you might refill. I ended up asking for water at one of the houses along the way and they were happy to provide.
I left on a Monday and after the cemetery there are some narrow roads with minimal shoulders and a lot of commuter traffic, but they were attentive and provided space.
The first 15 k or so, the route is circuitous and the sights are industrial with cement plants, and a pungent landfill, but it was the first day and all is good.
Buena Camino!
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Thanks for the tip but I decided to try the convent albergue and it's quite good for tonight. Stayed in Hotel Salvadora in Villena, 30€, including a continental breakfast. Basic but quiet and clean.
If anyone else is thinking of staying at the convent albergue in Almansa, be aware the entrance is on the back of the building (no signs) from #2 Calle del campo, the back has an address of #7 calle Cervantes. Just go down the side street with the tattoo parlor at end.
[QUOTE="omar504, post: 714570, member: 397"
Good to hear someone doing the Lana,,great camino..i'm guessing its a bit chilly in the mornings.Probably too late to tell you but Los Rosales is a great hotel in Almansa and right near the camino for the next day.
[/QUOTE]
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Ruta de la Lana update: day 5, Alatoz.
In Alamansa, hotel Los Rosales was closed, but there's another hotel on the way out that is open. When leaving Alamansa there's a petrol station/bar/restaurant that opens early and has fresh tortilla.
In Alpera, the albergue is fine, but there is only a microwave and no dishes or utensils, the supplies belong to an association that has activities on the lower level. But I left 2 beers in the refrigerator for pilgrims, forgot to leave a note.
There's 2 panaderias that open early on side streets on the way out.
Beautiful walk today. Almond trees are in bloom. Haven't seen any other pilgrims. Maybe more on the Levante.
 

backiej

Member
Great to hear @federico ! I will be leaving in about 3 weeks and am also planning on staying in Novelda and probably Villena. How was it getting out of Alicante?

Look forward to any suggestions you may have.

Buen Camino!
I am also leaving in early April. Please bring your earplugs because I am the champion snorer for Britain (not a joke).
 

Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-VDLP-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
We just got to Zamora yesterday. You may see evidence of our Levante journey along the way. Barrie brought lots of kangaroo, koala and crocodile pins and keyrings with him and tends to give one to anyone who has been nice or helpful to us. I initially thought it was a little crazy but I love seeing the response from people as it really makes the locals smile. And I have to say that everyone knows Skippy the bush kangaroo.
 

Dougyharry

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Via De La Plata 2014
Camino Sanabres 2015
Camino Mozarabe (2016)
Second day on Ruta de la Lana, Novelda to Villena. What a joy this walk is. Novelda has an incredible albergue, such luxury. I was the 5th pilgrim this year. Counted 58 for last year and they seemed equally divided between Sureste and Lana. The markings have been great except they can be a bit thin in cities, good to have a backup GPS map.
Perfect walking weather so far. Saw 5 castles today and 105 rabbits (well, an estimate). Looking forward to the days ahead. Almansa tomorrow.
Let me know if you have questions about the route. I've been using Kevin O'Brien's guide (thank you very much) as well as the association's 2-part guide, that have been referenced in other threads. And Alan Sykes commentary will be useful down the way.
Watching your posts with interest - you are helping us to make up our minds for May this year. How is the weather so far?
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Watching your posts with interest - you are helping us to make up our minds for May this year. How is the weather so far?
The weather has been perfect. Cool mornings, clear skies, warm afternoons. Albergues have been chilly.

An update is overdue; I'm on day 14, on my way to Trillo from Salmeron. Looking back here are some points that might be useful.
At Alcala del Julcar after the incredible descent the arrows disappeared, as they often do in towns, but if you go through the park and cross the bridge, just head up to the the castle through the switch back streets. Once on the ridge road to the castle turn right toward Las Eras, village on the top. You will see the arrows leading to a very nice trail on the left. When you get to Las Eras the route goes straight through but just as you leave the village, there's a bar/restaurant 1 block to the right.
If you arrive in a village on the weekend with an ayuntamiento albergue, like Casa Ibanez, there won't be access. There I stayed in the Hotel Aros, 25€ pilgrim price. Very nice room and a supermarket nearby open on Sunday.
In Campillo de Altobuey I took Kevin's alternative route suggestion and walked the highway to Almodovar then Monteagudo. It's feasible and worked ok in my situation, wide shoulders to walk on and still scenic but fairly constant traffic.
Monteagudo is a very nice village, friendly and great setting. I stayed at Rincon de Sandra's, beautiful remodeled old house near the top of the village by the castle. 20€ pilgrims price. Very nice rooms, all with a bathroom.
After Cuenca at the village of Noheda there's a Roman ruin site that the arrows take you out to make a loop around. The place is closed and the trail is not great. Probably better to just take the road to the left, the trail will loop back to it anyway.
The arrows were thin on the route to Villa de Domingo and on to Villaconejos, surprised since they are usually excellent in Cuenca. Bar Goyo in Villa de Domingo where you get the key for the albergue is very good. No tienda in the village.
Villaconejos and the Cuenca association live up to their reputation for great service to pilgrims and hospitality as I'm sure you will discover.
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Route change; at Villaescusa de Palositos between Salmeron and Viana de Mondejar there was a landowner that had gated the road but the camino had gone through anyway. That's no longer the case. Now all the signage directs you to go around the property. The signage that redirects occurs before the gate so I wasn't aware until later. It adds another 2-3 kms to the day, significant since this is a fairly rugged stage.
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Day 15; Stayed in Trillo at the bull ring last night. Called the number on the door and a fellow showed up in 5 minutes. This is on a Sunday, very nice.
4 single beds, no bedding. My first time using the sleeping bag on this camino. 2 bathrooms, good hot shower. No kitchen. Very clean and right by the river. Tienda was open, back across the bridge and down the street to the left. Bar/restaurant by the bridge and another bar by the tienda.
Walked to Mandayona but couldn't find any place to stay so went on to Aragosa to stay at the beautiful casa rural Rio Dulce, quite luxurious. Stopped today for menu at the truck stop restaurant 1 km before Mirabueno since I wasn't sure what would be available. Good food and friendly service, glad I did. No restaurant or bars in Aragosa.
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
Thanks for the update @federico as I am planning on staying in Trillo and Mandayona. In my information from the Amigos it says that there is a Acogida Municipal in Mandayona. Did you not call? Just wondering if I need to adjust my stage as casa rurales are more expensive than I would like to pay.

Also, you said that you haven't used a sleeping bag yet but somewhere in another post you said that it was chilly in the albergues. Just wondering what you have used till now. I plan on bringing my sleeping bag in any case.

Thanks in advance and ultreia!
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
I arrived in Mandayona about 5pm and got no response from the number. Might be better to call ahead to make arrangements if you want to stay there.
I'm in Sigüenza tonight and staying at a newer private albergue by the castle on Calle mayor. It's 20€. The president of the Guadalajara association said the monastery is not enthusiastic about providing lodging any longer so I didn't try.
I haven't used my sleeping bag because there's been blankets, sheets, and pillows that I have felt comfortable using. Since I've been alone I could use as many blankets as I wanted.
This is the first city since Cuenca to have a train station.
The bunnies must all be on the Levante. Hardly a hare since Alpera. But 13 deer so far, the most of any camino I've walked. And 8 flocks of sheep...😁
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
What luxury, pillows, sheets and blankets! I don´t want to push my luck so will take one and anyway, I might walk along the Francés for a few days after arriving in Burgos , at least if I have a few spare days over.
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
What luxury, pillows, sheets and blankets! I don´t want to push my luck so will take one and anyway, I might walk along the Francés for a few days after arriving in Burgos , at least if I have a few spare days over.
This camino has been different that way. I recommend the Albergue in Sigüenza, friendly owners, new place with pilgrim thoughtful design. 4 rooms, mine had 3 double bunks, bathroom, small kitchen (large well equipped kitchen downstairs by the common room), balcony with clothes line, beautiful view of the hills. Quite amazing. A good breakfast is 4€, but I left early.
Stayed in the municipal albergue in Atienza. The phone number is directly to the mayor who will come and direct you to the place. But the keys were on a hook above the door, 2nd floor of the old school. There's no sign in process. 2 beds, blankets, hot shower, microwave, a little rough but a space heater made the small room cozy.
Stayed in Fresno de Caracena last night. Luckily someone saw me and helped find the mayor to open up the ayuntamiento where there's a storeroom upstairs a pilgrim can use. I slept on an old sofa which was surprisingly comfortable. No hot water or shower. The woman who helped me brought food later, very kind. Both of the other villages where I planned to stay were closed, Retortillo de Soria and Caracena. If you can speak Spanish it would definitely be helpful to call ahead.
Unfortunately I end my camino today in San Esteban de Gormas, I've run out of time and won't be able to make it to Burgos. It's been a great walk. Having this run of ideal weather has been a blessing. Hope you and others starting soon are equally blessed as well. I look forward to hearing about your experiences.
Buen camino!!
 

donalomahony

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
"Camino Frances" 2013, "Burgos to Leon," February 2014 - "Frances" June '14
Thanks for your posts!
 

Joe McDonald

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances2014
F'sterre14,16,18
P'uese16
Vdlp/Sanabres17
Ingles17
Sureste/Vdlp/Invierno18
Really appreciate your accounts. They will be very useful for me when I start from Valencia in late August. Always good when the weather is on your side.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Really appreciate your accounts. They will be very useful for me when I start from Valencia in late August. Always good when the weather is on your side.
Late August from Valencia — you must love walking in very hot weather. I would wilt quickly, so you must be more like my hot weather fan friend @LTfit.

Average high in August, 86 F. But hey, very little rain! Buen camino to you, hope you will let us know how it goes.
 

Joe McDonald

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances2014
F'sterre14,16,18
P'uese16
Vdlp/Sanabres17
Ingles17
Sureste/Vdlp/Invierno18
Per2000, I did the Sureste from Alicante last August and just love the hot weather walking. You just need to be sensible and have good water management. Good luck LTfit. You will make it alright! Enjoy
 

John P.

Member
Route change; at Villaescusa de Palositos between Salmeron and Viana de Mondejar there was a landowner that had gated the road but the camino had gone through anyway. That's no longer the case. Now all the signage directs you to go around the property. The signage that redirects occurs before the gate so I wasn't aware until later. It adds another 2-3 kms to the day, significant since this is a fairly rugged stage.
Ah, Thanks for the update Frederico -
Route change; at Villaescusa de Palositos between Salmeron and Viana de Mondejar there was a landowner that had gated the road but the camino had gone through anyway. That's no longer the case. Now all the signage directs you to go around the property. The signage that redirects occurs before the gate so I wasn't aware until later. It adds another 2-3 kms to the day, significant since this is a fairly rugged stage.
Thanks for the update Federico, would you have gone over the fence if you hadn't missed it? I'm leaving with my son in May - and am debating... thanks! - John P
 

alansykes

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Except the Francés
Ah, Thanks for the update Frederico -

Thanks for the update Federico, would you have gone over the fence if you hadn't missed it? I'm leaving with my son in May - and am debating... thanks! - John P
I jumped the fence in October, on the advice of hospitaleros Pepe in Villaconejos and Luis in Cuenca. The block over the cañada real is completely illegal. This is my wikiloc of the day ( a very beautiful one), with pics of where and how to cross the blocks:


 

John P.

Member
I jumped the fence in October, on the advice of hospitaleros Pepe in Villaconejos and Luis in Cuenca. The block over the cañada real is completely illegal. This is my wikiloc of the day ( a very beautiful one), with pics of where and how to cross the blocks:


Thanks Alan! - I'm game to jumping :) - John P
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
To be honest, I was conflicted about the gated finca. I resented having to walk the extra kms on a less interesting forest road, but the markings the Guadalajara association has put up are very explicit. The day before the hospitalero Esteban in Salmeron had gone over the route and mentioned I would be going around the private property. I interpreted this to mean some sort of agreement had been made and I should respect it. Luis and Pepe didn't mention it when I talked with them, but you could certainly ask them if there's been an official change. I look forward to future postings to see how others fare. Buen Camino!
 

backiej

Member
Second day on Ruta de la Lana, Novelda to Villena. What a joy this walk is. Novelda has an incredible albergue, such luxury. I was the 5th pilgrim this year. Counted 58 for last year and they seemed equally divided between Sureste and Lana. The markings have been great except they can be a bit thin in cities, good to have a backup GPS map.
Perfect walking weather so far. Saw 5 castles today and 105 rabbits (well, an estimate). Looking forward to the days ahead. Almansa tomorrow.
Let me know if you have questions about the route. I've been using Kevin O'Brien's guide (thank you very much) as well as the association's 2-part guide, that have been referenced in other threads. And Alan Sykes commentary will be useful down the way.
Where did you stay in Villena Frederico?
 

federico

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 11 & 14
Norte & Ingles 15
Portuguese 16
Via de la Plata 17
Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 17
Hotel Salvadora, it was convenient to the Ruta, central with a Mercadona nearby, 30 euros with breakfast. Not much else available.
 

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