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San Salvador - June 2016

peregrino_tom

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Past OR future Camino
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https://www.flickr.com/photos/peregrino_tom/albums/72157667837220514/with/27822645040/

I very much enjoyed the San Salvador. Excellent waymarking, nice albergues and friendly people along the way. And in many places there were real, single track less-travelled hill paths - the kind that seem to be getting rarer on other caminos. Unfortunately the weather was not at its finest on the two days in the high hills, but that didn't dampen my enthusiasm at all.
As for the photos - not my best set but they'll give some indication of what it's like.
It's the first time I've taken just a phone camera (LG G4). It works OK in sunlight but the auto function over exposes a bit in grey conditions and as it was usually raining when it was overcast, I didn't have the luxury or being able to fiddle around with the manual light settings. Still, I think there's a few pics here that will give a flavour of the journey.
cheers, tom
 
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peregrina2000

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Thanks, Tom -- Beautiful, no matter what the weather. What's not to like? Ok, well, there was almost impassable mud in the woods after the descent from Pajares (we were six walking that day to the albergue in Pajares and nearly all fell in that woods) -- how did you find it? (BTW, as an aside, Ender asked me about it and has assured me that they will be finding an alternative that avoids that muddy stretch in the woods, but it sure was beautiful).

Did you walk the highway from the parador to the turn-off at the runaway truck spot? Our group split up -- some went up the "official way", which involved another ascent with even more steep descents. We took the highway to the place where the bar is, only to find it closed, and at that point, we just decided to stay on the highway (shh, don't tell Ender). It was quite harrowing, especially given the weather, but the other options just weren't really feasible.

Were there really 7 of you in Benduenos?! I couldn't convince anyone to take the short day from Pajares, but it was a wonderful stop.

We must have missed crossing paths by a hair, because I see Kinky's Slovenian pal, whose name I forget, in your pics, and he and I overlapped for a fair amount on the Primitivo. Maybe next year!
 
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peregrino_tom

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We must have missed crossing paths by a hair, because I see Kinky's Slovenian pal, whose name I forget, in your pics, and he and I overlapped for a fair amount on the Primitivo. Maybe next year!
I was quite looking forward to the moment when I would spy you and say the camino equivalent of 'Doctor Livingstone I presume?' - well, maybe next year.
I wonder if I have got this in the right order or whether we took a different route as I'm sure we had no muddy descent after the village of Pajares... Earlier we came down off the hill to the road at Arbas del Puerto in the driving rain went left along the road and then when the road signed off to Puerto de Pajares we veered right, walked across a kind of car park and behind a big concrete building then very steeply downhill meeting the ram's skull at the road. Then across the road where there was the bifurcation to Pajares or San Miguel. Four of us walked the Pajares option which did, after ten mins, veer downhill through woods and became steep and slippery, so we detoured a little into the woods and employed sticks and no-one landed on their posterior (if that is the section you are referring to?). We were then on a track below the highway and only came up to join it a couple hundred metres before Pajares. We stopped outside the bar (initially closed) but the resourceful women I was with sniffed out a man with a bakery van and relieved him of 8 empanadas... So we were quite full when the bar owner arrived to top us up with Cafe con Leche (and Kinky with beer of course). Suitably revived we pressed on to Benduenos. There were 6 of us staying, yes, including Dušan. A relative of our group who drove up from Oviedo with extra provisions is also in the photo. We overslept massively in very un-pilgrim-like fashion, but that's just the relaxing effect of the place and Sandra's hospitality. It meant the last of our entourage rolled into Mieres sometime after 6pm, only 23km up the road...
 
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peregrino_tom

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Nuala, Maggie and Beatrice - Gracias, glad you liked them.
Yes, it's a funny thing, but there were some places, like after Pajares which aren't really photogenic at all as they thick with vegetation, but the walking is glorious and so wild you do wonder sometimes if you can really still be on an official camino path... but that's how we like it. :)
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I'm sure we had no muddy descent after the village of Pajares...

Four of us walked the Pajares option which did, after ten mins, veer downhill through woods and became steep and slippery, so we detoured a little into the woods and employed sticks and no-one landed on their posterior (if that is the section you are referring to?).

Yes, I should have been clear whether I was referring to mud after the pass at Pajares or after the town at Pajares, and I meant after the pass (and before the town). It's quite the slip and slide. Ender is quite sure there is a better drained alternative, and maybe you found it!

So you walked Poladura to Benduenos, then. That makes sense. I stopped at Poladura for the night and then just decided to take a short next day to Benduenos. So instead of my last two Salvadors, which I walked in 4 days, I walked this one in 6!:p

Did your oversleeping in Benduenos have anything to do with that big 2L bottle of J&B down in the kitchen? :D

And I think that by going through the town of Pajares instead of following the signs for San Miguel at the bifurcation, you added a few more kms onto your already heroic walk!
 

peregrino_tom

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Hi Laurie - ah, OK I understand now. Yes, we are talking about the same spot.
Poladura to Benduenos worked pretty well with a lunch break at Pajares, but that last hill up to the sanctuario really does test the old camel's back...
We did stop a long time at the bifurcation and weighed up either taking the shorter option or going longer and hoping the Pajares bar would be open - and we got lucky.
I didn't notice a big bottle of whisky, honestly.
Cheers, tom
 
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Madidi

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Past OR future Camino
Frances 2012 & 17: Fisterra Muxia 2013 & 2015: Ingles 2014: Madrid 2015: Salvador & Primitivo 2016
More beautiful photos Tom. I am looking forward to following you on this camino in late August. I am betwixt and between on shoes or boots: Laurie used trainers when walking it in June, what about you.

Take care, be safe.
 

peregrino_tom

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Past OR future Camino
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I am betwixt and between on shoes or boots: Laurie used trainers when walking it in June, what about you
I noticed most people I met walking just the Salvador had trainers or trail shoes, but those of us adding it to another route tended to have walking shoes or boots. I had some old boots and they were a bit slippy. I reckon having a good tread on the soles is more important than whether you take trainers or something sturdier.
 

BeatriceKarjalainen

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Finished: See post signature.
Upcoming: Nothing planned
I noticed most people I met walking just the Salvador had trainers or trail shoes, but those of us adding it to another route tended to have walking shoes or boots. I had some old boots and they were a bit slippy. I reckon having a good tread on the soles is more important than whether you take trainers or something sturdier.
I walked it with Primitivo and as usual in sandals. No problems at all.
 
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Csutak

Active Member
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Since 2006 almost every year, usually walking more than two routes
Thank you, Tom! Your photos are wonderful. :) And it was a big surprise for me to see that there's an amazing new albergue between Pajares and Pola de Lena. Hope to spend a night there very soon. ;)
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
Hola Tom :)

Nice set of photos. Thanks for opportunity to see the interior of Sta.Cristina de Lena because I missed the opening hours by minutes. BTW in the photo with "Puente de Alba?" title is actually aqueduct built in 1795 after La Robla.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Thanks for opportunity to see the interior of Sta.Cristina de Lena because I missed the opening hours by minutes.

Kinky -- how was Finisterre/Muxia or have I missed your posts? But more to the point, pilgrims get special treatment at Santa Cristina. If you call the number on the door, she will come open for you if it is not too much of an inconvenience, and she does it with a smile and a bit of history. I'm sorry you missed it.
 

peregrino_tom

Member
Past OR future Camino
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Thanks for opportunity to see the interior of Sta.Cristina de Lena because I missed the opening hours by minutes. BTW in the photo with "Puente de Alba?" title is actually aqueduct built in 1795 after La Robla
Kinky - thanks. I've amended the photo title. It's good that someone notices these things!
I got lucky with Santa Cristina - it was closed when I arrived but while I was breathing in the view, the woman with the key came up the hill with her dog and a baguette under her arm and asked me whether I'd like to see inside...
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
Kinky -- how was Finisterre/Muxia or have I missed your posts? But more to the point, pilgrims get special treatment at Santa Cristina. If you call the number on the door, she will come open for you if it is not too much of an inconvenience, and she does it with a smile and a bit of history. I'm sorry you missed it.
Ah, that extra Camino is just special for me every time I walk it. Only Fisterra this time. For me so beautiful and completely different set of energy.
I came home yesterday and already missing Camino. Funny feeling because when everything fit into place (weather, my little toe) I had to return home. And I feel like my legs and my head are short of about two weeks or some 300kms. Well, it was a very bumpy Camino this year and I (again) learned some things. I guess it's never too late ;)

Anyway, I was on-line with my pal Dušan (Douschan) few minutes ago and he's walking back to Madrid through Portugal. He is in Ponte de Lima today and I suggested to take Camino Torres to Salamanca and then Camino Teresiano to Avila and he would be almost at his doorstep.

BTW he's sending his regards to you and @peregrino_tom (he's on two of Tom's photos) :)
 
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peregrino_tom

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Hey Kinky, please send my best wishes and 'good road' to Dušan - it was nice to meet him. Sounds like he still has plenty of walking ahead of him!
 

gollygolly

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2000/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/2021
Many thanks for your posting the photographs of a Camino that I will never forget.
 

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