Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Astorga to Rabanal 10/14/15

Today we travel from the larger city of Astorga back to the richness of small village life! Our path has mostly wound through the gently sloping foothills of the Cantabrian mountains on narrow gravel trails. As our elevation has increased  the temperature has dropped and has really become perfect for hiking. We often feel like we are playing the Tortoise and Hare with our fellow hikers as we continue at our sustainable pace often passed by other hikers only to pass them  an hour or a day later pretty well burned out! Tomorrow a real challenge begins as we head up a steep incline to the highest point of the Camino at 4940 feet! The path is not only steep but without any food or water for many kilometers so we will have to carry a supply. The decline later in the day is apparently even more challenging so stay tuned!
Please send your positive thoughts, white light, prayers and good vibrations to fuel us for the challenging days ahead!
Love to all,
Grannies on Camino 
Mariah and Mary

Heading out of Astorga and city life after a few good cappuccinos and breakfast

The trail soon becomes country!

Our 1st great stop in the village of Santa Catalina de Samoza. A very festive town with a handful of welcoming pilgrim snack bars to choose from

Loved this pilgrim bar ... This is the back seating area, rustic with great old farm equipment as accent decor not to mention the vintage buildings!

Our new fun friend Katherine from Toronto, Canada . This is the 3rd or 4th time we have crossed paths!

Roman ruins we noticed as we were leaving town... Wow... ancient history so non chalantly available within steps of the pilgrim path!

Mountains off in the distant.... Tomorrow starts our ascent into a new mountain range and a totally new experience!

Open views, open land as we travel mostly flat trail today

Skies became blue and it warmed up

Entering the village of El Ganso for a snack.... New twist on the pilgrim bar here ... Cowboy Saloon on the right and   Cafe for cappuccinos & food on the left. We reconnected with our energetic Dutch couple and met some new Australian pilgrims at this stop.

Great interior of Cafe

Mariah in front patio doing a bit of charting and plotting after snack time

Beautiful old church leaving the village of 
El Ganso

The trail varies with trees and shade

More greenery and vegetation... Loving the mountain views but we are told we haven't seen the mountains that we will begin to ascend tomorrow.

Entering our village of Rabanal for the night . This is a beautifully maintained and restored picturesque village!

Love our home for this evening! ... 
La Posada de Gaspar

Great views from our room!