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Peregrino Torture Tower

Helen1

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
London to Santiago (2014)
Narbonne to Oloron (2015)
Camino Portugues (2016)
Sentier Cathar (2017)
#1
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2016, Mansill de las Mulas to Finisterre and Muxia 2017, Camino Aragones 2018
#6
The first time I crossed that overpass I had to wait for another peregrina so that I could take her arm to walk with me. I am pleased to say that on my second camino I not only crossed the Peregrino Torture Tower on my own, but also the two, or is it three, overpasses into Leon and the bridge into Portomarin with low water, all on my own. Who knows, next Camino I might be brave enough for the Cathedral rooftop tour!
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
#7
I, too, hate high bridges. Each time that I have walked the Camino Frances one section that I have particularly dreaded and even feared involves crossing varied bridges just before entering Leon. In the past we pilgrims walked on a narrow medieval bridge at Villarente in frightening competition with on-coming contemporary lorry traffic. The traffic usually won. Luckily in 2012/2013 a dedicated pedestrian-only bridge was added. What a relief it now is to gently stroll along this elegant low wooden way without fearing being hit or run over!

Closer to Leon amidst industrial sprawl a recent pedestrian bridge carries pilgrims high above the auto-route. When I got there in 2010 the wind was so terrific that at first I could NOT MOVE! Seeking help but seeing no other pilgrim I backed down the ramp and calmly walked into a nearby car showroom. After I explained that I needed assistance to cross the slightly astonished but very elegant manager put on his coat and took my arm. Eventually we both made it across, wind-blown and breathless! With a casual 'Adios' he further added that he had never walked the Camino and if it was all like this crossing he certainly never would! ...Now whenever I have successfully crossed this bridge I smile in great relief!!
 

tillyjones

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances June 2015
VDLP May 2017
del Norte Sept 2018
#8
Ha!!! That's what they call it? Hilarious. Yes, I remember that well. Even that there was some kind of event going on with police all over so I had entertainment.
 
Camino(s) past & future
(Frances)(Portuguese)
#10
Yes! I remember being a little angry thinking about all of the extra steps I was taking just to cross the tracks. :p The bridge heading into Portomarin was a little scary for me - I wanted to walk with my eyes closed but knew better than to take my eyes off the road!
 
Camino(s) past & future
April (2015) SJPdP to SdC; Porto to SdC April (2016)
#13
With apologies to Elizabeth Smart and Paul Coelho, but it was at this very point that I almost 'sat down and wept' having run out of stamina but with many more steps yet to go before reaching an albergue in Astorga. As I have written in another post, the numerous 'Buen Camino' greetings from a posse of cyclists - who obviously saw the bridge as the Tower of Joy rather than Torture - lifted my spirits sufficiently to make the final plod over the bridge and up the hill.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#15
I remember it well and not fondly!!
I think it was RENFE solving a problem that did not exist, or existed somewhere else. With only a few trains a day, pilgrims were not in grave danger on the old at-grade crossing. For a few years it was possible to dodge the fences and use the old path (carefully, of course; Look Both Ways Before Crossing; railroad crossing, look out for the cars, can you spell that without any R's?), but then they beefed up the fences at additional cost, and now the unmoving treadmill is mandatory unless you walk the road (which I do now!).

There is another one on the Camino Ingles to cross the highway. During construction it was not possible to walk the highway shoulder, but when it is done, it probably will be possible to avoid it and head straight to the river's bank.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (May 2015)
Camino Frances (2016-2018)
A complicated Camino from Madrid (Aug/Sep 18)
#17
I've always wondered how many committees and sub-committees the plans for this were discussed at, and then who eventually thought it was the best solution to a fairly simple problem. Or perhaps it was designed, discussed and approved during a single evening of tapas and vino tinto
 

Old Crow

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2014 Pamplona - SDC - Finisterre - Muxcia.
2015 SJPDP - SDC - Finisterre -Muxcia - Santiago.
2017 SJPDP - SDC. Ingles, SDC - Finisterre - Muxcia - SDC.
#18
On my first Camino, there were two local schoolgirls ahead of me as I approached the "Torture Tower". They turned off to the right on a path through the little field about 50 meters before the overpass. I was surprised, when half way up the overpass, to see that they were already on the road at the other side. I have used this path several times since, most recently two months ago. I also enjoy the curious looks from the Peregrinos who passed me shortly before the overpass.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances-(2013/14/18
Camino Salvado Perth -(2015)
West Highland Way (2016)
Lyon France 2017
#19
On my first Camino, there were two local schoolgirls ahead of me as I approached the "Torture Tower". They turned off to the right on a path through the little field about 50 meters before the overpass. I was surprised, when half way up the overpass, to see that they were already on the road at the other side. I have used this path several times since, most recently two months ago. I also enjoy the curious looks from the Peregrinos who passed me shortly before the overpass.
I looked for that path but could not see it thos time....I was aware of it when I walked here in 2013.....thos time, I did notice that all the fences were new ones and there did not appear to be any way around them at all.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances-(2013/14/18
Camino Salvado Perth -(2015)
West Highland Way (2016)
Lyon France 2017
#20
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
Just for interest here....I noticed on both my caminos that a lot of Pilgrims referred to this particular bridge as"The Jolly Green Giant" - I rather like both names.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#21
Just for interest here....I noticed on both my caminos that a lot of Pilgrims referred to this particular bridge as"The Jolly Green Giant" - I rather like both names.
Google is not real vigorous on standards for user input. If it isn't obscene, you probably could name it anything you want. It is unclear why it would be name in English and not Spanish!! Maybe I can change the name of the Pyrenees to "Fred."
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances sections (2012, 2014, 2015)
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino del Norte (2019)
#22
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
The first time I encountered it, on 2015, a friendly vagrant showed me a way to avoid it. Last year, however, the authorities had comprehensively blocked that short cut.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances-(2013/14/18
Camino Salvado Perth -(2015)
West Highland Way (2016)
Lyon France 2017
#23
Google is not real vigorous on standards for user input. If it isn't obscene, you probably could name it anything you want. It is unclear why it would be name in English and not Spanish!! Maybe I can change the name of the Pyrenees to "Fred."
Lol..lol
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018
#25
I looked for that path but could not see it thos time....I was aware of it when I walked here in 2013.....thos time, I did notice that all the fences were new ones and there did not appear to be any way around them at all.
IF google-maps-satellite is up-to-date, a path seems still to be there:
 

Attachments

Bill Ronan

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
September - October 2016 Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port - Leon
September - October 2017 Leon to Santiago
#28
The first time I crossed that overpass I had to wait for another peregrina so that I could take her arm to walk with me. I am pleased to say that on my second camino I not only crossed the Peregrino Torture Tower on my own, but also the two, or is it three, overpasses into Leon and the bridge into Portomarin with low water, all on my own. Who knows, next Camino I might be brave enough for the Cathedral rooftop tour!
Having done the Cathedral rooftop tour (and highly recommend it) the route up was clear (in comparison to Sacre Couer) and recent tower climb in Brugge. I saw the bridge as one of the beautiful idiosyncrasies of the Camino, and as detailed in responses, it is one of many we enjoyed.
 
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 to 2018
#29
IF google-maps-satellite is up-to-date, a path seems still to be there:
I just pulled it up on Google Earth. The imagery is from 2018. I conclude that the path remains.

Perhaps someone who is there now, or who will be approaching Astorga soon, can verify our assessment?

As an FYI, the RIGHT turn off the Carretera de Leon, heading towards Astorga, onto the side street has a large red painted panel on the masonry wall for "Legumbres Ct. Maragato" with a black right-pointing arrow under it. Turn RIGHT onto this side street.

The footpath that goes off to the LEFT is no more than 30 meters from the intersection. The footpath proceeds through the brush (not really a field) directly to the area to the right (North ?) of the blue safety fence. There are no yellow arrows that I can find in the images... But you can plainly see where you want to be.

Once over the track, make a sharp LEFT turn to return to Carretera de Leon. I assess that this detour will take less time, and less effort that the Pilgrim Torture Tower. I am not fond of the up-up-up over then down-down-down... Remember, once you get into Astorga, getting to the albergues and hotels involves a rather steep walk up the steep escarpment the city is built on.

Summing the detour up, coming off the Carretera de Leon, you make a right, followed by a left, walk about 100 meters over the tracks, then make a sharp left to return to the Carretera de Leon.

If you DO try this, Do PLEASE be careful when crossing the tracks...

Hope this helps.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
North
#31
I've always wondered how many committees and sub-committees the plans for this were discussed at, and then who eventually thought it was the best solution to a fairly simple problem. Or perhaps it was designed, discussed and approved during a single evening of tapas and vino tinto
Actually I think it's the cheapest way to meet two objectives imposed by law:

1.- Elimination of level crossings

2.- Elimination of architectural barriers

Yes, it is horrible, but the railway company does not look for beauty, but compliance with the law at the lowest cost
 

andywild

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
april '2018'
#33
I walked over it about three weeks ago. I remember discussing it that night with another pilgrim, we decided it probably added an extra 2km on the day's distance..
 

MoniRose

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(5/28-7/4, 2012) Camino Frances - SJPP to Santiago
(7/22-8/2, 2013) Camino Finesterra
(?) Camino Le Puy
#37
Unfortunately, I was having foot problems so took a bus into Leon and food poisoning a few days later meant that I taxied into Astorga from Santbanez. Sorry, not sorry, I missed these! ;)
But I made up for it. Having a fear of water, just walking next to the canal heading to Fromista, and then having to cross over, freaked me out. I crossed the Portomarin bridge by keeping my eyes straight ahead and counting my steps-“One, Two, One, Two...” When I got to dry land I cried.:oops: Plenty of excitement!
 

Bill Ronan

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
September - October 2016 Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port - Leon
September - October 2017 Leon to Santiago
#38
I read on NewLife 2015's post on April 14 2016 that it is called The Fichier Bridge Portomarin Spain
For me it was a beautiful arrival to Portomarin, but I guess for those with a respect for heights it represents about 300 metres of tension.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2016, Mansill de las Mulas to Finisterre and Muxia 2017, Camino Aragones 2018
#39
Thank you for finding its name. For those of us who have panic attacks with heights, it is helpful to have a good name for the bridge in order to change our emotional response
 
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 to 2018
#40
When on the Portomarin bridge, do not look down. Try to focus on the approaching stairway on the other side. You still have to climb higher, albeit on dry ground using either a road or the stairs, once you get to the other side. Look up at the church on the hill. Do anything to avoid looking down.

It also helps, if you are walking with others, or even nearby others, to engage them in a walking conversation, sing along, bitch-fest....ANYTHING to distract you from the fact that you are doing something that frightens you.

I know it is easy to say, but harder for someone with a fear of heights to accomplish.

I would normally suggest taking a taxi from the last albergue or village to bypass the sketchy part. But as Portomarin is within the 100 km minimum walking distance to qualify for a Compostela, hopping a ride would technically be disqualifying for that purpose...just saying...

Hope this helps.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Contemplating yet another "final" camino
Porto to SdC May 2019
#41
Since the Peregrino Torture Tower, sometimes known as the Tower of Joy, has a name, is there a name for the bridge to Portomarin?
My daughter, who hates bridges even more than me, would call it "the Bridge . . . . of Death!"

When asked what kind of bridge she actually liked she answered "ones with earth underneath them" - so that would be an embankment then?
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Contemplating yet another "final" camino
Porto to SdC May 2019
#42
Did nobody notice the traffic priority sign before you mount the ramp?

Astorga crossing.JPG

Vehicles trying to crash through the barrier from the east have priority, white arrow, over vehicles trying to do the same from the west, red arrow, (from Google Streetview July 2013 - I couldn't find the one I took)
 
Camino(s) past & future
**CAMINO FRANCES: LEON-SANTIAGO sept. (2015)
**CAMINO FRANCES SJPP-SANTIAGO 2017
#43
I remember both bridges PERFECTLY...Astorga, we saw the sign “Astorga” thought we had arrived and noooooooooo....jajaja !!!!! And Portomarin...it eas a very sunny and hot day...wanted a shower and a beer...when we saw it...We wanted to run but it was long...so we stopped and started admiring the surroundings...that’s the Camino...so many stories to tell...ALL OF IT A TREASSURE OF GREAT MEMORIES !!!!!
BUEN CAMINO AMIGOS
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Contemplating yet another "final" camino
Porto to SdC May 2019
#44
When on the Portomarin bridge, do not look down. Try to focus on the approaching stairway on the other side. You still have to climb higher, albeit on dry ground using either a road or the stairs, once you get to the other side. Look up at the church on the hill. Do anything to avoid looking down.

It also helps, if you are walking with others, or even nearby others, to engage them in a walking conversation, sing along, bitch-fest....ANYTHING to distract you from the fact that you are doing something that frightens you.

I know it is easy to say, but harder for someone with a fear of heights to accomplish.

I would normally suggest taking a taxi from the last albergue or village to bypass the sketchy part. But as Portomarin is within the 100 km minimum walking distance to qualify for a Compostela, hopping a ride would technically be disqualifying for that purpose...just saying...

Hope this helps.
First time I held a young German pilgrim's hand to help her get across; second time I looked up and watched a cloud (prayed?); third time when the water lever was really low and I stared at the asphalt bridge deck the road side of the crash barrier thinking how pretty the stones looked. They last time I was so tired I just stumbled my way across.
Thanks, everybody, for reminding my why I never want to do the CF again ;)
Funnily, as an engineer, I could look DOWN a 30m deep tunnel shaft with no qualms - mind you I'd be wearing a full harness attached to an arrestor brake and be inside safety caging around the ladder. Makes a difference I guess?
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Contemplating yet another "final" camino
Porto to SdC May 2019
#45
I just pulled it up on Google Earth. The imagery is from 2018. I conclude that the path remains.

Perhaps someone who is there now, or who will be approaching Astorga soon, can verify our assessment?

As an FYI, the RIGHT turn off the Carretera de Leon, heading towards Astorga, onto the side street has a large red painted panel on the masonry wall for "Legumbres Ct. Maragato" with a black right-pointing arrow under it. Turn RIGHT onto this side street.

The footpath that goes off to the LEFT is no more than 30 meters from the intersection. The footpath proceeds through the brush (not really a field) directly to the area to the right (North ?) of the blue safety fence. There are no yellow arrows that I can find in the images... But you can plainly see where you want to be.

Once over the track, make a sharp LEFT turn to return to Carretera de Leon. I assess that this detour will take less time, and less effort that the Pilgrim Torture Tower. I am not fond of the up-up-up over then down-down-down... Remember, once you get into Astorga, getting to the albergues and hotels involves a rather steep walk up the steep escarpment the city is built on.

Summing the detour up, coming off the Carretera de Leon, you make a right, followed by a left, walk about 100 meters over the tracks, then make a sharp left to return to the Carretera de Leon.

If you DO try this, Do PLEASE be careful when crossing the tracks...

Hope this helps.
Thinking about it, the two times I've used the bridge it's only been pilgrims on it, no locals. Image dated 13 September 2017.

1528558801985.png

Walk with caution - look both ways.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Second camino Summer 2018. First camino Aug/Sept 2014.
#46
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
Yes, I recall it quite clearly! It's quite the road crossing for pedestrians. I've never experienced another quite like it.
 

Trude

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francais 2013 Finnestere, Muxia 2013, 2017
Norte 2014, Francais, 2015, 2016, VDLP 2017
#47
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
Or you can cut across the tracks like most of the locals do. You can’t miss the well trident path.
 

Bogong

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
First, March 2014
#48
Unfortunately, I was having foot problems so took a bus into Leon and food poisoning a few days later meant that I taxied into Astorga from Santbanez. Sorry, not sorry, I missed these! ;)
But I made up for it. Having a fear of water, just walking next to the canal heading to Fromista, and then having to cross over, freaked me out. I crossed the Portomarin bridge by keeping my eyes straight ahead and counting my steps-“One, Two, One, Two...” When I got to dry land I cried.:oops: Plenty of excitement!

Bridge at Portomarin? I was following a very attractive young blonde Lithuanian lady and I didn't notice a bridge at all.

De colores

Bogong
 

SeaHorse

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(May-June 2015)
#49
I'm not sure about this particular rail line but bear in mind that in Spain they do have high speed trains and those also go to Santiago. Those can travel at 200km or more. Think mass of a train and speed of F1. So it's possible if an elderly pilgrim (and who are we kidding, most of us are elderly, non-sprinters, hard of hearing or wearing earphones) tries to cross the track when the train is approaching, there simply is no time to react, jump and run from the pilgrim side, brake from the train side. Minced pilgrim is what you get. I wouldn't relay on the fact that locals do cross the tracks regularly, they may know the schedules or be suicidally careless or mentally incapable to assess the danger, you can't deny such people exist everywhere.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Portugues - Tui to Santiago (2014, I think)
French - St Jean to Santiago to Finester (2018)
#52
One kilometre to get 100 meters .....
(well, it felt like it)
 

JennyH94

Pilgrim in progress
Camino(s) past & future
The Frances from Pamplona and part VF, first-aid helper and hospitalera
#54
'Love this thread Helen1! Thank you for OP-ing it.
I have just one thing to say ... after the nightmare that is this bridge you have the dream of all the chocolate shops in Astorga ... best medicine EVER to calm the nerves!
Cheers from Oz!
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#55
Or you can cut across the tracks like most of the locals do. You can’t miss the well trident path.
The Google Map that shows the short fence is from 2013. I know the fence was extended in a later year, but the locals are resourceful and do not like the ramp any more than pilgrims. They probably have established another crossing. Still, it is easiest to join the road just before the ramp and walk the route through the roundabout up into the city. I did that in February (and did not look for the other shortcut, so it may be there). It is as short as the old "local" shortcut, and a couple hundred meters shorter than the ramp.:)
 

bbates225

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
June/July (2017) Camino Frances (couldn't finish)
June/July (2019) Complete Astorga to Santiago
#56
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
Oh, I remember it well. I had to cut my Camino short last year in Astorga because of excruciating pain in both feet due to bursitis (diagnosis once reaching home). When I saw that I had to cross this I nearly sat down and cried. It took me what seemed like forever to get across, and on top of that I have a little vertigo when I am on open heights like that. It was pure misery. I will finish my Camino one day, starting in Astorga, but I will start well away from this "torture tower".
 

bbates225

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
June/July (2017) Camino Frances (couldn't finish)
June/July (2019) Complete Astorga to Santiago
#57
I, too, hate high bridges. Each time that I have walked the Camino Frances one section that I have particularly dreaded and even feared involves crossing varied bridges just before entering Leon. In the past we pilgrims walked on a narrow medieval bridge at Villarente in frightening competition with on-coming contemporary lorry traffic. The traffic usually won. Luckily in 2012/2013 a dedicated pedestrian-only bridge was added. What a relief it now is to gently stroll along this elegant low wooden way without fearing being hit or run over!

Closer to Leon amidst industrial sprawl a recent pedestrian bridge carries pilgrims high above the auto-route. When I got there in 2010 the wind was so terrific that at first I could NOT MOVE! Seeking help but seeing no other pilgrim I backed down the ramp and calmly walked into a nearby car showroom. After I explained that I needed assistance to cross the slightly astonished but very elegant manager put on his coat and took my arm. Eventually we both made it across, wind-blown and breathless! With a casual 'Adios' he further added that he had never walked the Camino and if it was all like this crossing he certainly never would! ...Now whenever I have successfully crossed this bridge I smile in great relief!!
Amen for Camino angels.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, (2013)
Camino Frances, (2014)
Camino Frances, (2015)
#58
I think it was RENFE solving a problem that did not exist, or existed somewhere else.
I think there is another angle to the "problem" being solved. Although these trains are relatively infrequent, they are passing through at a high rate of speed.

Train engineers live in fear of hitting someone, let alone killing them. Somewhere in the United States, on average, one person is killed each day by a moving train. And the tragedy does not end with the family of the person killed. The whole train crew is affected. Especially, the person at the throttle. Many never return to work because they can never go through a similar incident again.

This pedestrian bridge is located at the end of a hard days walk. Before it was built, pilgrims would have to walk across the tracks of a high speed rail line. Engineers hated approaching this location. They know the pilgrims are tired and just want to get to the albergues they can see on the hill on the other side of the tracks. Given their level of exhaustion they make poor decisions. Some hopped across when they should have waited. And these near misses wear on the crew day after day. They always wonder will this be the day I kill a pilgrim?

I think this pedestrian bridge is a wonderful gift from the people of Spain.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2016, Mansill de las Mulas to Finisterre and Muxia 2017, Camino Aragones 2018
#59
I agree that the tower is a wonderful gift for our safety while on pilgrimage! It is just another challenge along the way, in addition to the hills, rocks, mud, rain, cow and sheep poo, bedbugs, did I forget anything?

Has anyone else noticed that the name of our beloved Peregrino Torture Tower has been removed from Google Maps?
 
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#64
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
P
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
last year as we were approaching Astoria we met a local women and she offered to give us the tour of Astoria by a local. The first things she showed us was a short cut over the tracks without going over the Torture Tower. It is on the right before you get to the sign pointing to the steps to the Tower. You go through some bushes and there is a path where you step over the tracks. It was very cool.
Be carful of the fast moving trains.
Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
September - October 2016 Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port - Leon
September - October 2017 Leon to Santiago
#68
Take a look at this lovely story of the Camino (The Camino Frances) day 22. At 12.50 in this video the illustrious Peregrino Torture Tower makes its appearance...and at 12.59 the wise inscription aptly says "I very much dislike the designer of this bridge".
“Life is really simple, but men insist on making it complicated.” —Confucius
 

Lucy Keenan

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Northern Route - 2016
Santiago to Finestiere and Muxia - 2017
Frances Route - May 2018
Camino Ingles
#69
I really appreciate this thread and issue about the bridges in general.
If there is one thing about the caminos I hate it is the bridges that go over the roads and motorways.
My fear of them is not getting any better. I find i have to go down the middle (if possible) and look at the ground and march straight ahead counting the steps until I arrive at the other side.
I think it is something to do with vertigo, but I am glad I am not alone.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Contemplating yet another "final" camino
Porto to SdC May 2019
#70
Super annoying and way over engineered. I do remember this well.
I doubt that it's over engineered - apart from the ugly pad foundations it all looks quite minimalist but I will concede it's not elegant.
I can see the rational behind it though: If they'd built a straight bridge and kept the same requirements for slope (for wheelchairs etc.) and height (clearance for trains to pass) you end up with a structure about 260m long and passing by three houses,

1529615780305.png

and you'd have to construct under those massive, overhead high tension power lines. Nobody would build a thing that ugly for fun!

(What can I say, retired civil engineer, bad hay fever today and I got bored :))
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#71

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#72

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata.
#73
No @Lucy Keenan you are not alone! I also hate high bridges and get that horrible vertigo feeling. It takes all my willpower to keep going. If there is a narrow pedestrian pathway on the outer edge of the bridge I often think I'd rather dance with death and the traffic in the middle.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Contemplating yet another "final" camino
Porto to SdC May 2019
#74
Oh, and I need to give credit to Jeff Crawley's post above which made me curious enough to try and get a close up look at the 'bypass'. Thanks, Jeff :)
There are bits of the Camino that aren't that well trodden! :)
 

Cobar

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French Route, 2014; French Route 2015, Camino Primitivo, 2016; Camino Ingles, 2017
#75
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
Have crossed the bridge two times. On second occasion saw some adventurous Pilgrims choose to walk across tracks. Barely missed oncoming train. It is for Safety.
Same for new bridges across new Velocity Train tracks on Camino de Sanabres
 
#76
Ha, ha! It's my favourite bridge on the Camino Francés.

View attachment 43420

Just to cross one single railway line:

View attachment 43421

Jill[/QUOTE
Ha, ha! It's my favourite bridge on the Camino Francés.

View attachment 43420

Just to cross one single railway line:

View attachment 43421

Jill
I agree - it's my favourite bridge as well. However, at the time, it was the end of a long day and we had just managed to get lost for a while. Climbing the bridge just went on and on as we went up a ramp, round the corner, up another ramp, round the corner, up another ramp etc. etc. I kept thinking why was I walking up and up this weird bridge that seemed to go on for ever. But then we arrived in Astorga which turned out to be one of my favourite places on the Camino. It is such a beautiful city. So now I have very fond memories of that mad bridge and the strange experience. Plus thank you for the photos because I didn't take any.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Leaving August 25, (2014) for Camino Frances starting in SJPP.
#77
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
And when you get to the top you can see the worn path that the locals use to cross the tracks!
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF (SJPdP to Santiago) March 15, 2018
#79
Oh yes, I remember that well, that was not exactly what we called it but that was a lot of up hill zig zag for such a short distance at the end of the day. Much after the fact it became a part of a great story. Thanks for the memory
 
#80
I think it was RENFE solving a problem that did not exist, or existed somewhere else. With only a few trains a day, pilgrims were not in grave danger on the old at-grade crossing. For a few years it was possible to dodge the fences and use the old path (carefully, of course; Look Both Ways Before Crossing; railroad crossing, look out for the cars, can you spell that without any R's?), but then they beefed up the fences at additional cost, and now the unmoving treadmill is mandatory unless you walk the road (which I do now!).

There is another one on the Camino Ingles to cross the highway. During construction it was not possible to walk the highway shoulder, but when it is done, it probably will be possible to avoid it and head straight to the river's bank.
I also remember the old way Falcon and was disappointed it had been closed off last time I walked into Astorga.
 

Stephen

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Twice walked from St Jean to Estella and once from Sarria to Santiago. Maybe someday I'll find the time to do the entire walk.
I've found the time. Just completed SJPP to Santiago. 25 Aug to 1st Oct, 2016.
And now the Portuguese from Lisbon.
#81
I'd
Whilst trying to navigate to the Chocolate Museum in Astorga (lovely place to visit) I saw "Peregrino Torture Tower" marked on Google Maps and was totally intrigued. Turned out to be the railway crossing! You can find it here: https://goo.gl/maps/xz4xwj9WDj82 along with 12 reviews. Made me smile, has anyone found anything else fun in Google Maps?
Believe me, I'd sooner cross that bridge than try to cross a railway track any other way at the end of a long and tiring day walking.
I remember walking on the VdlP and approaching a railway line . When I was about thirty yards from it a train sped past at a fantastic speed. That was near the end of a long day, too. I was exhausted and if I'd been a few seconds earlier Heavens knows what might have happened.
 

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