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Europe » Spain August 13th 2022

Wednesday 10th August Camping Aneto in Puen de San Chaime to small bothy called Refugio d’Angliós 20km (10km in bus & 10km walking) 7:15 - 17:00 with an hour bus journey, then actually walking by 8:30am, a few short breaks, 20mins in boulder field , 20mins at the top of col, 90mins at Refugio de Cap de Llauset, 20mins stuck under ground sheet seeking shelter. Well, the idea of a bus taking us an hour up the dirt road was too tempting soooo we took it. Call it working smarter not harder or call it cheating, either way it saved us a long boring climb and meant we got to experience a bus chugging it’s way up rocky paths and swinging round tight corners alongside mountain edges; fun! Full of day packers, we let them all ... read more
Woodland climb
River crossing
Lake view

Europe » Spain August 9th 2022

Sunday 7th August Parzan to Camping Forcalla at Es Plans 21km 7am-2:30pm with few shirt breaks and 30mins at bothy by dam on the incline and 30mins on the wooded descent After watching a terrific thunderstorm (only cool because we were in a hostal room rather then tent!) last night, we didn’t get to sleep until later then usual. This, plus being in a comfy bed and having enjoyed a rest day, made getting up this morning difficult. However, with another storm forecast for this afternoon we knew we had to get moving to be up and over the col by midday. With 1500m to climb today, which started almost immediately once we left Parzan, not feeling warmed up, with one trekking pole down and without a morning coffee for Paul, it was a slow slow ... read more
Coffee stop
At the top
River crossings

Europe » Spain August 6th 2022

Thursday 4 August Refugio Goriz to Bothy at La Larri 17km 7:15 - 19:15 with many many short breaks, and an hour at the last water source on the incline and first water source on the decline For a first experience, Refugio Goriz did well! Apart from being super busy, it was well organised, clean, friendly, comfy and warm and despite one guy coughing a lot we slept pretty well. The dinner was great, buffet breakfast set us up well and the picnic lunch was pretty hefty. It was also great chatting to our American friend more and we met a Spanish guy who was hard of hearing and used sign language (albeit Spanish sign) who was fun to talk to; he’d got to Goriz in 9days! What a machine ? Setting off between other groups ... read more
Climbed down that
More down
Three falls in one

Europe » Spain August 3rd 2022

Monday 1 August Wild camp below the incline to Ibon de Llena Cantal to Wild camp below incline to Ibón dero Brazato 17km 7:30 - 6:30pm with many many short breaks, 30mins on first decent next to river, 30mins at Ibón Azal Baxo, 120mins at Refugio Bachimaña and 20mins along pipeline. Described as the most difficult day of the GR11, according to the cicerone guidebook, with the highest point of the trail, we were nervous but eager to go this morning. A ‘lovely’ warm up hill climb to the Ibón dero Brazato got our hearts going ready for the next stage of a steep scree climb. This is tricky, we thought, as we huffed our way up, but then came the moment we saw the ‘uncomfortably steep gully’; say whaaaaaat?! With a safety rope on the ... read more
vertical scramble climb just there
Made it up
going down where?!

Europe » Spain August 1st 2022

Thursday 28 July Extra Rest day in Candanchu due to storm forecast 0km Well the storm forecast kept changing and making the storm later, so maybe we could of walked today and got to another hotel for the storm to then come in overnight, but, then we would have missed out on the amazingly special day we ended up having with Pedro and the restaurant hotel staff. Catching the bus with Pedro to the capital Jaca, he then showed us round the city including the fort, massive cathedral (with marble windows!-something we’ve not seen since the Taj Mahal) and where his grandmum used to live. We then bumped into the two restaurant staff having a drink, so joined them and their friends for a while to celebrate ones birthday (talking broken English and Spanish between us ... read more
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Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Barcelona July 29th 2022

CRUISING I started writing this blog a few days ago by talking about destinations but half way through I decided to change the format. The reason being, I have been seeing so many wonderful historic sites that even I am beginning to feel jaded and think, oh, yet another cathedral/castle/ancient ruin etc. I have enjoyed them all but there is a limit to how much you can take in day after day! A sea day came as a welcome break. If that is the effect on me I think it could be much worse for readers. Plus I thought some people might like more information about the cruise experience, particularly for a lone traveller so I will start there and then go through the destinations and if boredom sets in you can stop reading. Jim & ... read more
The Sea Walk, disconcerting just to see sea below your feet
Ship’s atrium 3 decks high
The Egg Drop competition- good to see the hard hat!

Europe » Spain July 27th 2022

Sunday 24 July Isaba hotel to Zuriza camping 11km 7:15 - 11:20 with regular short breaks and 30min break at the Col d’Arguibiela Walking out of Isaba, past some of the younger generation clearly still awake from the nights celebrations, we enjoyed a gentle climb along a wide path along the river before hitting a signpost. Here we had a decision to make: to go the much harder, longer and more technical route (old GR11) to Zuriza or the shorter and easier one (new official GR11). Knowing the temperature was meant to rocket up again today, and knowing we had plenty of harder days ahead, we chose the simpler and shorter route, which followed the river further and, surprisingly, past a beautiful waterfall spot; a perfect place for a swim if we hadn’t only really just ... read more
Which way to go?!
Cool Cascada
Leaving the Basque Country

Europe » Spain July 23rd 2022

Thursday 21 July Urrobi campsite near Burguete to wild camp just up from Hiriberri 19km 6:45am - 6:30pm with regular short breaks, 30min drink break at Orbara and 4hour siesta at Hiriberri Having enjoyed our rest day and another good sleep (despite it being much busier the second night with a youth group having some sort of a disco near us) we set off sharpish to get back into Burguete and on the trail. Although still an incline, the trail was much steadier for the first half, gently climbing and meandering up and down through beautiful woodland. We also began to see rocky cliff edges and outcrops as we noticed the scenery beginning to change, and we caught up with a new hiker today! He is actually Spanish and doing part of the GR11 but, ... read more
Rocky Ridges
Orbara
On the right track

Europe » Spain » Valencian Community » Valencia July 21st 2022

It’s our last full day with access to a washing machine for at least a week so we decide to make use of it while we still can. As I think I might have mentioned previously the washing machine is in a cupboard on the very much smaller of our two balconies, as is the fold out contraption that we need to hang them on to dry. We quickly discover that if we try to fold out the contraption before we do the washing, we can’t get past it to get to the cupboard where the washing machine is …. unless we only half fold out the contraption….. and also bring the fold out ironing board inside so that it doesn’t get in the way too…. And then there’s the pegs issue. We’ve noticed that the ... read more
Valencia Town Hall
La Lonja de la Seda
Opera House, City of Arts and Sciences

Europe » Spain July 20th 2022

5 - Sunday 17 July Wild wooded camp 2km south of Elizondo to Collado Zaldegi hunting cabin 12km 7:30am - 1pm with 1.5hour break at Collado de Urballo Waking early, it was a little spooky but cool to open the tent door and remember we were pitched in the woods with the sounds of insects and birds. It was beautiful though, to see the light change from this cool deep blue colour with silhouetted trees to a warm pink and orange as the sun started to rise. Noting a hiker already on the trail below pass us, we finished up breaky and got going around 7:30, spotting a fox run across a field in the distance. The trail, expectedly, quickly began to climb, up and up, getting steeper and steeper, along stoney tracks and forest roads ... read more
Hikers wash at Urballo
Climbs equal views
Spectacular views




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