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Live - Camino Mozarabe North to Granada

Discussion in 'Camino Mozárabe' started by alansykes, Oct 16, 2016.

  1. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Day 1: Almería to Rioja

    Luckily, there was nobody about to stare at me emerging from the sea just before sunrise on Friday. Lovely warm calm sea. Once out of the city centre, next few km were pretty horrible, beside a busy road, then through endless dreary suburbs and satellites. If I ever come this way again, I'll probably get a bus or train to Huércal de Almería, skipping 5-6 really bad km. From there you mostly follow the dried course of the Andarax river, taking about 17km from central town to Rioja, a pleasant sleepy village. Its brand new albergue is by the municipal pool, has 6 (bunk) beds, loo and shower, donativo. It also has a nice sitting room with a "biblioalbergue", with pilgrims encouraged to borrow books and return to albergues further up the camino. Two very helpful ladies visited after I'd been in an hour or so. I think one of them was the mayor. They let the albergues further up know when people are starting - I'm three days behind a Slovenian and, as my knees are in a bad way, won't be catching her up.
     
  2. Kevin F. O*brien

    Kevin F. O*brien Active Member

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    Nice to see you are under way Alan. Quite right about the dreary suburbs. Also good to see that the ref. at La Rioja is open. It's a long day to Mondujar.
     
  3. KinkyOne

    KinkyOne Veteran Member

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    I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
    Oh, you lucky you, TWO ladies at once??? You charmer ;)
    And not only that - even a Slovenian??? Could share a name (maybe on PM)?

    Wish you nice Camino!
     
  4. islandwalker

    islandwalker New Member

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    Alan, thanks so much for posting these details. We are thinking of walking or cycling the Camino Mozárabe from Almeria next spring or fall, and are very interested in the insights you are posting. I hope you keep us updated every day! We'll be watching for your news.
     
  5. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Good to see that you are on you way, Alan. The scenery will be much better in the coming days.
    There will be some steep hills in the second stage between Santa Fe and Alhabia.
    There is an alternative route for bikers avoiding the steepest parts, and well sign-posted on the hills.
    Also steep is the climb out of the Nacimiento river bed, early in the third stage from Alboloduy.
    Bicigrinos can avoid this one by taking the road directly from Alboloduy.
    Back from the road to the Nacimiento rambla is much easier than the climb out of the valley.
    Apart from those two steep parts, there will be no real difficult climbs in the coming days.

    Buen camino.
     
  6. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    I should perhaps add that the camino out of Almería was better signed than from any other major city I can think of. It may have been busy, ugly and stinking of diesel, but it was clearly marked, so one spent no longer there than strictly necessary.

    Day two: Rioja to Alboloduy via Los Millares

    I detoured off the camino as I wanted to visit Los Millares, described as the largest copper age settlement in Europe. After Rioja, you cross the Andarax at Gádor rather than going on to Santa Fé de Mondújar.

    Los Millares was fascinating, with an excellent interpretation centre near the line of forts. "My" camino then rejoined the proper one at Alhabia, a pleasant village for a spot of lunch and then up the riverbed of the Nacimiento and on to Alboloduy. According to wikiloc, it took me 24.7km from Rioja. Alboloduy was a delight, a beautiful pueblo blanco nestling in the gorge of the (dry) Nacimiento. Its private albergue (15€) is hideous, resembling concrete portacabins placed on top of each other, but it's very comfortable and well equipped (kitchen etc). In the evening you get a great view down onto the floodlit village and the line of its Arab defenses, with the added advantage that it's the only place where you can't see the albergue. Above the albergue is a pretty little chapel looking back on the way you've come, and at dusk I enjoyed watching a fat full moon rising up out of the sierra. Lovely.
     
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  7. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Hi Alan. Prepare for a long day tomorrow and a steep but beautiful climb out of the river bed. There are bars in Nacimiento (but I missed that one) and in Ocaña (100 meter from the little fountain at the entrance of the village). In Abla there is now a choice between hostal Miraseirra and the new albergue. Good luck.
     
  8. peregrina2000

    peregrina2000 Moderator Staff Member Donating Member Donating Member

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    Loving this --getting to partake from afar in the AAA (annual Alan adventure).

    Hope your knees hold up, Alan. Be kind to them! Looking forward to once again following in your footsteps, but maybe not for a year or two. Go well, Laurie
     
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  9. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Day 3: Alboloduy to Abla

    A very hard day, even if it was only 30km by wikiloc. 7.5 litres of water, possibly more. The bar by the church in Alboloduy was open at 7.30, thank goodness. There is a very brutal climb from the riverbed up to a road, about an hour in. Possibly the most strenuous 40 minutes I can remember of any camino, scrambling and climbing out of the valley floor, mostly on not especially firm scree, sometimes with a several 100 ft drop on one side. A real goat track, and lots of droppings, although sadly I didn't see any.

    The reward at the top was fabulous views on all sides, including on towards Nacimiento, looking impossibly far off, but only about 2 hours. Back down in the riverbed, it was fine, with occasional pleasant villages. Sadly, in Abla, the hospitalero had unilaterally decided to close the albergue and bugger off without leaving the keys behind, so I had to stay in the Hostal Mirasierra (15€), which was fine, with quite decent food, and very good views of the sierra - including a rather beautiful silent monochrome firework display, with the silver lights on the dozens of wind turbines flashing across the sierra.
     
  10. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Hi Alan, You have the hardest climb of the whole Camino Mozarabe behind you. Tomorrow you will have an easy day, with a nice village (Finana) half way.
     
  11. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Day 4: Abla to Huéneja.

    A much easier day. Left Abla as the near full moon was setting into the sierra, and was in Finaña for the second coffee by 10am. A striking hill village with a 12th century mezquita, converted into a chapel. Shortly afterwards, I took my last steps in Almería province, and vides ut alta stet nive candidum on the high slopes of the Sierra Nevada. It was odd seeing snow when the temperature was heading towards 28 centigrade. There are some amazing huge chestnut trees dripping with nuts on the edge of town, and several houses had loads of them drying in the afternoon sun on blankets outside their porches.

    The (donativo) albergue in Huéneja is GREAT. A comfortable 3 bedroom flat (8 beds/bunks altogether) on the 3rd floor of a building by the local school, with the best views of any albergue I've ever stayed in - down onto the village and the church and out onto the sierras. You pick the key up at the old peoples' home and drop it off there in the morning - handily, it's right on the camino out of town.
     

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  12. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Hi Alan. I remember the Hueneja albergue for the cold, as it was the coldest day of my Camino. However I loved the last part, leaving the rambla and entering the village going down the hill. Tomorrow is fine again, with plenty of villages, fine views, La Calahorra castle, and an amazing finish along an old abandoned mining site.
     
  13. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Huéneja to Alquife: the best day yet.

    Almost entirely off tarmac, and mostly through alternating almonds, olives, cherries and pines, with the occasional giant chestnut for variety. For much of the day the southern skyline is dominated by the squat grandeur of the snowcapped peaks of the Picón de Jérez, almost 10000' high.

    The first coffee was at 9am at Dólar, a pretty village with hilltop castle. Another hour or so, mostly gently uphill, and you get to Ferreira, another pretty village. This one has a fortified moorish farmhouse, very similar to the bastles where I live near the Scottish border - a downstairs area to protect your stock, and an upstairs to chuck stuff at any marauding Scots trying to steal your stuff.

    Then on to La Calahorra, whose amazing hilltop castle/palace frowns over the plain. It was built for Cardinal Mendoza's son, with apparently spectacular interiors using marble brought specially from Carrara. Sadly, it's only open on Wednesdays, so all I could admire was the forbidding exterior. I then had a pleasant hour chatting to an enterprising Romanian who runs a bodega cum "gastrobar", and who is planning to use a couple of rooms there to open an albergue. I hope she does, as La Calahorra is a much more attractive place than Alquife, where, for some reason, there are three albergues. I ended up in the albergue Lacho, at the top of the town. It has two twin rooms and a well equipped kitchen. Included in the 13€ price is a clothes wash and breakfast (and wi-fi). Manuel, the hospitalero, is very well meaning and has a compostela.
     

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  14. alexwalker

    alexwalker Forever Pilgrim Donating Member

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    I've put you on my watch list...

    Buen Camino!
     
  15. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    Hi Alan.
    Sounds as if you are having a great camino, I'm making a note of all the info ready for my trip in April next year. I have a few questions if you don't mind, the "dry river bed" is it permanently dry? what is the waymarking like, would gps help? and what footwear are you using? do you think Hokas would do?
    Sorry to be a bit of a pain, I think a fair few of us are thinking of this route next year and having a "forerunner" is great. My plan at this moment is Mozarabe Almeria to Merida, VdLP to Salamanca then the Camino Torres to SdC, starting about 8th April, some if anyone else is in the planning stage give me a pm as company for part or all would be good
    Regards
    George
     
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  16. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Hi George,

    Between Almeria and Hueneja long stretches of the Camino follow 'so called ramblas, broad river beds that are dry most of the time. Sometimes, after heavy rains in the mountains, the ramblas are flooded. The Amigos in Almeria give warnings if parts of the Camino are flooded. I think that in that case you must follow main roads in stead of the Camino.

    I was there in April and had no problem at all. On the ramblas are gravel roads, used by farmers to reach their gardens and orchards from villages along the Nacimiento river. Most of the time the going under the feet was easy, apart from some stony ramblas in the last kilometers before Abla, and a stony stretch on the side river towards Hueneja.

    After Hueneja you leave the dry rivers and will enter more hilly areas.

    The waymarking was excellent but I also used a GPS. I observed that in some cases the yellow arrows and the GPS data were different. If so, I followed the freshly painted yellows without any problem.

    Carel
     
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  17. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Hi there. It's great. The riverbeds are dry, but I imagine might be muddier in the spring. The way marking is outstanding. It's clearly done by somebody who understands our needs - all of us, I think, have probably stood scratching our heads at a Y junction, where the yellow arrow neatly bisects the fork: this hasn't happened to me here. Every time I get a bit nervous, I stop and look around and, sure enough, there is an arrow or signpost pointing you onwards. Kevin O'Brien's guide (in the resources section) is also outstanding, and, with the updated accommodation list from the amigos, you don't need anything else, although I do use wikiloc, and am posting my trails there when I remember to switch it on. I don't know what Hokas are, but my Merrill goretex trainers have been great so far (as they have on all my previous caminos, except when I had heavily to superglue them to keep going last autumn, as I'd overshot their c 1500km range).
     
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  18. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Day 6: Acquife to Guadix

    Another good day, especially the first half of the walk, and the outstanding albergue at the end. Shortly before noon I was in Cogollos de Guadix, roughly half way. The high fine mudéjar tower had been reminding me for the previous hour and more that coffee was still a long way off. After Cogollos you leave the sierra and it's flat and arid and no surprise to learn that part of "Once Upon a Time in the West" was partly filmed nearby.

    Guadix is a curious mix - a posh troglodyte barrio, an impressive but neglected Arab fortress, a fabulous just post reconquista cathedral and church of Santiago, and a really dull post war section.

    The albergue is astonishing. It's in a 15th century "palacete". The central courtyard is formed by Roman columns, with a marble staircase, and the "albergue" bit is the whole of the 2nd floor, with terraces looking over the street and the courtyard. It's owned by a distinguished sculptor who restored the war damaged pietà in the cathedral, and her art and books surround you. It's a bit like sleeping in a museum. 15€, possibly the most memorable albergue of the 80 or so I've stayed in.
     
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  19. MarianneGardner

    MarianneGardner Member

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    We (5 Antipodeans) are planning to walk from Almeria to Granada in April 2017. Do you recommend carrying a sleeping bag in early April?
     
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  20. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    In the highest part of the walk, between Hueneja and Granada, it was very cold in the nights. In all the albergues on the way however there were plenty of blankets. I walked without sleeping bag, also because after Granada I used a mix of hostals and albergues.
     
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  21. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Half way between Guadix and La Peza is the pleasant little partly troglodyte village of Los Baños, which has been a spa since possibly Roman times. Well worth a pause for a tapas or more. The next few km are through spectacular gorges and bad lands, and then suddenly you are high above the village of La Peza, with its Arab ruined castle, and church with mudéjar and baroque towers. The (donativo) albergue there is excellent - four rooms with two (bunk) beds in each, and a full kitchen downstairs. The sello is of the carbonero alcalde, a giant cannon which helped briefly beat off the French invaders.
     

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  22. KinkyOne

    KinkyOne Veteran Member

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    I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
    It's interesting how we people notice things differently. For example our forum member (Val) in her blog https://valjrob.com/2016/10/18/guadix-to-la-peza/ doesn't mention it at all. But the blog is very interesting and with beautiful photos though.
    Buen Camino, Alan!
     
  23. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    La Peza to Quéntar. A fabulous day, but quite a tough one.

    I left the albergue at 7.30, with Jupiter and the half moon closing in on Orion. Thankfully the bar Oscar was open and busy. They were the last mammals I saw in 28km and 9 hours until the outskirts of Quéntar. I love lonely and empty, but that was a lot even for me.

    High opens passes going well over 1400m up, alternating between lovely pine woods with the occasional clump of poplars putting out their golden autumn splendour, and virtually no tarmac. Rounding one corner, you are unexpectedly confronted by Mulhacén and his mates in their snowcapped magnificence straight ahead - with any luck I should still be able to see them gradually receeding for a few days north from Granada.

    It was a relief finally to get to Quéntar and be able to top up with much needed water - today's walk would not be fun in high temperatures, as there is absolutely nowhere to refill your bottle.

    Quéntar is yet another pleasant hill village, with delicious water tumbling out of every corner. The private albergue/casa rural is near the start of town. It's run by Axel, a German who has lived in Andalusia for 30 years, mostly in Quéntar. The "albergue" 3 bed dorm is 10€, with a well equipped kitchen.

    Mañana La Alhambra.
     
  24. alansykes

    alansykes Veteran Member

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    Day 9: Quéntar to Granada

    Left first thing, al campo frío, aún con estrellas de la madrugada. Shortly after coffee in Dudar, the camino once again rose onto a magnificent high mountain path. At first the solitude was again complete, but, as the morning wore on and Granada drew near, I was soon being whizzed past by crowds of Lycra out for a Saturday ride. The approach to Granada is by the Sacromonte, and suddenly you are greeted with a fabulous view of the Alhambra. Shortly afterwards you are greeted by crowds of tourists taking selfies in front of it, and then by people trying to sell you huge quantities of total tat. And the crowds - at times it was difficult to stay on the pavement without bumping into people, quite a contrast with yesterday. Fortunately I quickly got me to a nunnery, that of the Hermanas Comendadoras de Santiago. A charming young nun showed me to my cosy en suite "cell", overlooking the convent's sunny gardens, 20€ b&b.

    The last time I visited the Alhambra was 20 years ago, almost to the day, with my wife and son, then aged 4½. En los nidos de antaño, no hay pájaros hogaño.
     

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    Last edited: Oct 22, 2016
  25. KinkyOne

    KinkyOne Veteran Member

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    I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
    Ah, lucky you :D
     
  26. peregrina2000

    peregrina2000 Moderator Staff Member Donating Member Donating Member

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    Wonderful posts, Alan, can't believe you're in Granada already. I am hoping to be able to walk this route in April 2018, so I will pore over your words many times. Rest day in Granada? Buen camino, Laurie.
     
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  27. Walli Walker

    Walli Walker Active Member

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    Leaving from Granada next April so very much looking forward to your posts.
     
  28. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    We - two Antipodeans from Perth - might catch you there and then! :)
     
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  29. MarianneGardner

    MarianneGardner Member

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    We are planning to leave Almeria on March 31.
     
  30. ajloughran

    ajloughran New Member

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    HI Alan,
    Thanks for you very informative postings.

    I am planning to walk this route late March/early April 2017. Is your "goat track" description typical of this route or is this a one off?

    regards,
    Arthur Loughran
     
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  31. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    A one off. or nearly. On the second day there are a few steep ups and downs in the first part from Santa Fe, which you can avoid by taking the signs for bikers. And there is a rather steep descent from the talc quarry, the highest point before Quentar in stage 8. Maybe there will be a new route by now. But the rest of the Camino Mozarabe between Almeria and Granada has no technical problems. I started on 1 April last year, and had no problems with the heat.
     
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  32. ajloughran

    ajloughran New Member

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    Hi Alan,
    Thanks for your speedy update.

    Reassuring news for one who has a problem with"several 100 foot" drops.

    best,
    Arthur Loughran
     
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  33. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Planning to walk the Camino Mozarabe followed by the Via de la Plata from Merida in April-June 2017
    We (my husband Peter and I) will leave Almeria on 10 April - we may catch up with you somewhere along this long, long route :) ...who knows. We are however trying not to rush it. What date (roughly) do you envisage to arrive in Santiago de Compostela?
     
  34. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    Hi, We are leaving from Almeria (10 April) and we are currently tossing up whether or not to take our sleeping bags - reading previous posts (e.g., Carel5) we should be fine without the sleeping bags??? Is this the general consensus? Just thinking of the additional weight that we might have to lug around with us all the way to Santiago ;-(
     
  35. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    Hi Pemalily,
    You will find that while there are blankets at a lot of albergues, it's not universal, and it's likely that there will be no heat on in the albergues. Spain in April can be very cold. Maggie and I on our Camino de Mozarabe de Malaga, experienced a number of frosty mornings. The VdlP last year in April/May was also cold and wet.
    I would definitely take a lightweight synthetic bag. (Cost basis) or a lightweight down bag(money no object) or be prepared to perhaps sleep in your clothes.
    Remember just because there were blankets, doesn't mean there will be blankets!
    Regards
    George
    PS, I am starting from Almeria in April.
    PPS, I've hesitated before adding this, I didn't want to be seen as ungrateful to our Spainish hosts, but, many of us who walk avoid albergue blankets, because you can never be sure how clean and bug free they are.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2017
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  36. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Hi Pemalily

    The albergues I visited were clean and had blankets. But maybe I was lucky to avoid bugs. And in some cases I opted for a hostal.
    I remember heaters in the albergues of Hueneja and La Peza, both on 1000 meter level.
    Despite the heater it was very damp and cold in Hueneja, and I decided to add a merino and slept under two blankets.
    Be prepared for cold in the morning, and also for heat in the day. When I walked last year in April, the temperature never rose above 25 degrees, but I have seen reports on temperatures well above 30 degrees, already in April.

    Bon camino.

    Carel
     
  37. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Planning to walk the Camino Mozarabe followed by the Via de la Plata from Merida in April-June 2017
    Thanks for your helpful response - sleeping bag it is! :)
     
  38. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    I have one more
    Thanks - very helpful! Really helps with preparations! :)
     
  39. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Planning to walk the Camino Mozarabe followed by the Via de la Plata from Merida in April-June 2017
    One more question (without wanting to sound overly alarmed :) ): I have just read about bed bugs in some albergues along the Northern routes.
    Has anybody who has walked the Camino Mozarabe from Almeria followed by VdP had nasty surprises in this regard?
    I know Carel found the albergues he was staying in clean. Any other experiences?
    If yes, should we treat our sleeping bags before leaving home?
     
  40. peregrina2000

    peregrina2000 Moderator Staff Member Donating Member Donating Member

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    Hi, Pemalily,
    I was bitten by bedbugs once in an albergue on the Vdlp years ago. And last year, I may have been bitten in a pensión along the Ruta del Ebro. I never got confirmation, but I acted on the assumption that they were bed bugs. They may have been flea bites or some other creature. You can find them anywhere. And it has nothing to do with cleanliness or lack thereof -- one of the cleanest albergues I have ever stayed in was in Sangüesa on the Aragonés, and we learned that a day or two after we had been there, the place closed for fumigation because of bed bugs.

    I have never been proactive about it, but this year I plan to spray the outside of my sleeping bag and the outside of the pack before leaving home. I always intend to follow the great instructions provided on many threads here about what to do upon return home... but as my mother always used to say, the path to hell is paved with good intentions.
     
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  41. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    I hesitated to refer to bedbugs, because I know they have the potential to become a emotive issue (much like an isolated incident of mugging years ago has resulted in the idea the outskirts of Seville are knee deep in robbers)
    Almost without exception I have found Albergues to be clean and well ordered, and where they are not its usually perigrinos that are to blame.
    Re bugs, the best tactic in my opinion is avoidance, so in my case no blankets.
    Regards
    George
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2017
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  42. peregrina2000

    peregrina2000 Moderator Staff Member Donating Member Donating Member

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    AGree with you completely, George, but I do think it's important that pilgrims realize that the level of cleanliness of a place has nothing to do with whether there are likely to be bedbugs or not. If they can show up in the Ritz in New York City, they can show up anywhere!
     
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  43. eritho

    eritho New Member

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    Walked Almeria to Rioja yesterday. Can only agree with the above. Only the walk in the Andarax riverbed was even worse than the rest of the walk. It was only a little stream and stinking like the worst in the heat!
     
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  44. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
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    Thanks, this helps a lot! :)
     
  45. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
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    When you said 'hot' - how hot is hot?

    I looked Almeria's weather yesterday and it said 21C. Is that not correct?

    We will be walking the same route starting on 10 April . We are considering to take a bus/taxi for the first few kilometres out of Almeria - given that the route to Rioja does not seem to be not that great in the beginning at least. How far do you think we should go before it gets better?

    Thanks so much! Lily
     
  46. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    We will probably treat our sleeping bags and backpacks before leaving. Thanks for your insights! Sounds like you have done this walk a few times? :)
     
  47. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    Hi Pemalily,
    Just seen that "we" are departing Almeria on the 10th April, may I ask how many in your party? as I am planning to start roundabout then.
    Regards
    George
     
  48. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Last year I started early April. I don't remember the first stage as so horrible. The first kilometers in town, it followed roads with broad footpaths beside. Then some parts through the dry river bed . Later lovely walking along small country roads. And after the first stage it will get better and better.
     
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  49. eritho

    eritho New Member

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    Walked Rioja to Alhabia today 18 km, intended to go to Alboloduy but much to hot today, a street thermometer showed 27 Celsius!
    I would say start in Rioja it's easy to take the buss from the combined buss and railway station in Almeria.


    I looked Almeria's weather yesterday and it said 21C. Is that not correct?

    We will be walking the same route starting on 10 April . We are considering to take a bus/taxi for the first few kilometres out of Almeria - given that the route to Rioja does not seem to be not that great in the beginning at least. How far do you think we should go before it gets better?

    Thanks so much! Lily[/QUOTE]

    in Almeria to Rioja!
     
  50. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    Hello George,
    Our party is n=2...my husband and I. Are you planning to walk as part of a group or by yourself? I am sure we will bump into each other en route... don't think there are too many albergues and hostals along this route :)
     
  51. Pemalily

    Pemalily New Member

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    in Almeria to Rioja![/QUOTE]

    Thanks for your response! We will follow your advice about taking the bus to Rioja and we'll walk from there - 18 kms sounds plenty anyway for Day 1 :)

    27C sounds like a good hiking temperature for us - we are coming out of the Australian summer where we would consider 27 to 32 pleasant for hiking. Above 35C we would probably say, "It's hot!" That's why I was asking ...

    I suppose you hail from cooler climates? :)
     
  52. eritho

    eritho New Member

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    Thanks for your response! We will follow your advice about taking the bus to Rioja and we'll walk from there - 18 kms sounds plenty anyway for Day 1 :)

    27C sounds like a good hiking temperature for us - we are coming out of the Australian summer where we would consider 27 to 32 pleasant for hiking. Above 35C we would probably say, "It's hot!" That's why I was asking ...

    I suppose you hail from cooler climates? :)[/QUOTE]

    From Sweden :)
    There is a nice albergue in Rioja if you need.
     
  53. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    Hi Pemalily,
    I arrive at Almeria airport at 1130 on the 10th, and if I can get some sort of stamp from the tourist office there, then I will probably get a bus/taxi to the edge of town and start walking from there, probably to Santa Fe.
    If you google... wikiloc Camino Mozarabe etapa 1 ......you can "walk" the route, it's not so bad, certainly no worse than the exit of many other cities.
    Have you looked at Maggie's blogg, for info about the days after Córdoba ?
    Regards
    George
    PS. You may find the high temperatures are confined to the coastal region, last year there were a lot of cold wet days in April and May on the VdlP/Sanabrese, current walkers are talking of SNOW on the Levante.
    PPS. Have you prebooked tickets for the Alambra, I have, some time slots seem to be sold out!
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2017
  54. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    Hi all,
    I want to book a room with the Hermanas in Granada, other than contacting by telephone, is there a booking site?
    Regards
    George
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2017
  55. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Hi George,

    Almeria is a small airport and I really wonder if there is a tourist office there. I arrived in the evening when the few shops were closed.

    I would advice you to take up contact with Mercedes from the Amigos of Almeria-Granada. She will arrange that you can get your credencial on the location where it suits you. When I arrived in Almeria, Mercdes had left my credential at the hotel reception with a note to call her. Maybe she can drop your credencial at some place at the airport.

    About the first leg. Walking some kilometers through urban areas is part of the Camino. My experience is that leaving Almeria it is not so bad as some contributions here suggest. The first kilometers after Granada were much worse. I suppose leaving Almeria is more pleasant than following the Camino in the suburbs of Burgos or Leon.
     
  56. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    Hi Carel5
    The Almeria airport website suggests that there is a tourist information office and they must have some sort of stamp, but if not I'll go to the office in town and get a stamp there, as to walking out of Almeria as I said I have already walked it "virtually" via wikiloc and it looks ok, I'm not the sort of perigrino that busses the "boring" bits, like you I recognise that, good and bad, its all part of the camino experience.
    As to credentials I've had a couple sent by post from Ivar so a stamp is all I need to get going.
    Regards
    George
     
  57. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    Well, you studied it before, while I only speak from a short memory of the place. I guess there will be more open there in daytime.

    There is a bus to Almeria town. My plane had some delay so I had not a good connection.

    If you go the first stage to Santa Fe: The albergue is one kilometer before the village. If there is nobody there, you must go on into the village and get the key at the bar. There you can eat dinner and also get breakfast the next morning when you return the key.
     
  58. eritho

    eritho New Member

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    The part out of Almeria is not bad. It's like out of every larger city. What was very unpleasant was walking the nearly dried out riverbed of Rio Andarax. The little stream left was stinking awful in the heat! Can still taste the smell now, many days after walking.
     
  59. Erik Anderson

    Erik Anderson New Member Donating Member

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    Hi George, I shall be arriving in Almeria from UK around lunchtime tomorrow (Tuesday 21st) and plan on over-nighting in Rioja. Any information on the route as you progress towards Granada will be gratefully received. Buen Camino, Bloo
     
  60. george.g

    george.g Active Member

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    Hi Erik,
    I start my next Camino on the 10th of April, so you will be 3 weeks in front of me, I think I'm well prepared info wise, but if you come upon anything out of the ordinary please post.
    Best of luck on your Camino.
    George
     
  61. Erik Anderson

    Erik Anderson New Member Donating Member

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    Hi George, I'll certainly post any updates as I go and hope I can pass on anything of interest. Looking at your past treks, you may catch me up!
     
  62. Carel5

    Carel5 Active Member

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    It looks as if I was lucky as it was not so warm on my first day. You will progress the next three days along the Nascimiento River which was completely dry when I walked last year. The only unpleasant part was just before Nascimiento village where the track is muddy and you walk through a kind of bamboo curtain. After Nascimiento the valley is wider, and in the upcoming days you will see amazing mountains.

    I will follow your progress (and also George) with much interest.
     

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