Friday, 13 June 2014

Day 24 13 June from Rabanal to El Acebo not stopping at Thomas the Templar 17 km

The highlight of today were the views and the gleaming Wild Broom - the hills were seas of yellow...
With the distant snow capped mountains of Montes de Leon - 


But I was sad to leave the little village of Rabanal .. So many delightful buildings ..and great spirit in the village..last night in the church..beautiful gregorian chanting by the monks, warm service..


The park next to the church..



On our way out.. Road is on the left..


On the way out, a spring and always the cross to remind one of its symbol.


Filling our water bottles at a Fuente..


We stop for coffee at another village - I love that thnSpanish in every village are focussed on the Camino and supporting the pilgrims.. So from here it's 230 km to go...!


Leaving the village and looking back..



We reach Manjarin where there is a total population of 1!  His name is Tomas the Templar where we were hoping to stay in his ecologically friendly Alberge.. ( pit toilet, no running water, no electricity.. Fellow South Africans had said it was an experience!). But Tomas was out, and the pit toilet was ...
However, it's around 11 a.m. And it's really hot so many pilgrims stop for a drink..and rest..and given the heat we decide to push on to Acebo as a shower would be really welcome ...


More amazing views...


We ride to the Cruz de Ferro which has a simple iron cross on top of a 5 m pole that is one of the most important symbols of the way.  Most have brought a stone (or many) in memory of loved ones, prayers, and others symbols which have travelled 550  Km .. Some more, some less.  I leave prayers and stones and SA soil, praying for peace and well being for all the people of SA..  See how high the pile of stones is... It's very moving to walk over all the stones knowing that each has been placed with intention and love..


The weathered pole with messages, photos...


Some individual stones..


It's a serious uphill ride..we are riding on the road and the peregrinos to the right on another path..



The heather, wild  daisies and others seem to encourage us up the hills...


After a hectic ride/push for 7 km we see this sign.. Basically warning us of very dangerous descent!




And we very carefully with both front and rear brakes descend to Acebo..


We settle into an Alberrge, warmly welcomed, and have our first decent eggs on the trip!  What a delicious lunch!








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