Camino Primitivo 13/4 – 23/4
There are things I never learn. E.g. checking up the long-term weather forecast before my journey. I don’t do it now nor, although I spent almost two weeks last year, 2012, in rain and bad weather on this route. Anyhow, I’m planning to make this beautiful route again from Oviedo. Let’s see, how the weather becomes.
I start in Santander by walking a few days along the Atlantic coast. On a small area after San Vicente de la Barquera there are craters, ”Bufones de Arenillas”, with underground channels in the rock to the sea. At optimum conditions and low tide, waves are pulsating into the channels, and create powerful water cascades, up through the craters. I continue my walking toward Llianes. In the evening I find a bus to Oviedo. It’s Friday night and many hotels are fully booked. Eventually, I find Hotel Covadonga in the centre of Oviedo.
13 April, Saturday. From Oviedo to Salas. But no… the day begins with a rain shower. At the hotel they say, that it will soon be better weather. I do not want to wait in Oviedo so I change my plans and take the bus to Grado. From there I hope to continue to Salas. The weather is getting better and better and soon it’s really beautiful. In Grado, I start to walk. To begin with, it is a lot of asphalt roads. Now and then one can see unleashed dogs along the route, but a loose horse is more than unusual. However, the horse is striding at full speed on “the right side” of the road. Someone shouts farther away, perhaps on the horse and he disappears. I hope he will arrive well where he belongs. In Salas I ring the doorbell at Guesthouse “Hotel Soto”. The same hostess, as last year, opens the door and I’m welcome in. In the evening I come to a small kitchen with a couple of tables with chairs, is it a restaurant? There, an elderly lady is cooking food and it smells very good. She says, a little bit grumpy, come back to “Casa Pachon” at eight o’clock. Really hungry, I return to a set table, and am served a terrific delicious four-course menu. I pay the bill of ten euros including wine, and a tip of course.
14 April, Sunday. To Tineo. I’m walking upwards on a nice forest road on “Sierra de Casandresín” to Bodenaya. High above me runs the new highway. It’s a sort of mixture of old and new. The weather is nice but it is still wet in the soil after yesterday’s rain and soon the route becomes quite muddy. I come catch up with “Tres Amigos” Gustavo, Guillem and Diego. They are three funny and friendly guys who also shall walk to Tineo.
15 April, Monday. To Campiello. The weather is beautiful and once again I am on the nice forest road from Tineo up to “Alto de Piedratecha”. I come early to the grocery store and the hostel Casa Hermina in Campiello. It’s lunchtime and several walkers are sitting there and eating. It smells wonderfully well, and I’m hungry. But my plan is to continue. Someone reminds me that there neither exist bar, nor supermarket over the next 28 km before Berducedo. Here are happy guys who have a lot of fun together. Well ..? I choose to stay and eat. I meet Juan and the young Miguel-Angel. Juan complains a little, he has a bandage, and he tells us that he recently was bitten in his hand by a dog, everyone is laughing. I also meet José, a Professor of mathematics from Murcia, the likeable Scott who works in Berlin and Jan from the Netherlands. The afternoon and evening will be really nice in a convivial atmosphere.
16 April, Tuesday. To Berducedo. All of us walk to Borres and continue upwards the desolate mountain to “Pico del Hospital”. In the afternoon I walk alone, enjoying the scenery. The view is beautiful against snow-capped mountain peaks. The silence is ringing in my ears. I see large birds of prey circling in the sky and grazing wild horses. The route goes down and connects to the alternate route over Pola de Allande. Then further down to the desolated village “Montefurrado”. All of us gathered together later in the evening in Berducedo.
17 April, Wednesday. It’s a wonderful morning on my way up to Buspol 1.120 m above the sea level. From the top, the route descends zigzag wise down, 8 hundred metres over a distance of a few kilometres to the power plant and water reservoir “Embalse de Salime. I stop for the night in Grandas de Salime.
20 April, Saturday. From Lugo to San Roman de Retorta. Like last year, I come to the private hostel “O Candido”. Many of my new friends have already gathered in the sunshine outside the hostel. There, they are, Gustavo and his two mates who I met earlier. Also, the author and adventurer Michael from Ireland is there. We have a wonderful evening together, which ends up with a special ceremony. The host invites everyone to a kind of burning “witch-drink”.
21-23 April, Sunday-Tuesday. To Santiago de Compostela. On Sunday morning it’s really cold. I leave O Candido on the muddy Roman route, which is slightly shorter than the marked pilgrim route. The White Mountain “Sierra de Careón” is surrounded by moorland with shrubs. I soon meet some friends from yesterday and we walk together on small asphalt roads down to Mélide. The next day, on Monday, I see Michael again. He has come caught up Roxana from Michigan, USA. We walk together the familiar route to Pedrouzo. On Tuesday, the last day, we will soon reach Santiago de Compostela.
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