What a sleep! I went to bed last night at around 8:30 and slept to 7am non stop. It’s amazing what the body does to heal itself and regenerate as I woke up feeling a whole lot better than the night before. After a hearty breakfast and a couple of Cafe Americanos we set off for the day.
The rain had been through the night and made everything soggy underfoot but not unpleasant. The clouds were lingering around though and we did have patches of rain but nothing torrential.
It was a strange day today be honest. We couldn’t find an Albergue or a hotel open ahead of us when we rang through to a few towns. We met more pilgrims than any other day today as well. A group of four with an American, Russian, Dutch and Aussie walking together. Another woman who was by herself and had started from Lyon in France and another girl travelling in the opposite direction who had walked 1000kms already and was walking back to London of all places. Last of all another from USA Rick who was on his 3rd Camino. Amazing mix of people.
The guide book we were using suggested a bus into the next big town Burgos from Villa de Franco as the walk into Burgos is on the shoulder of the road and a slog through the industrial area as well. Most people take that option. We were going to go with this plan but the pilgrims we met along the way were all heading to Agés. We thought we’d do the same. The road was all uphill from there.
We did toy with the idea of staying in Villa de Franco and also catching the bus but we felt those choices weren’t right for us. We’d only walked 12kms so far and it was around midday. A lot of indecisiveness at that point kept us behind. Once walking we felt we’d made the right decision.
There wasn’t much to see from here on end. It was mostly pine forests with logging tracks to service them. A good walk though. Cold as we were gaining altitude.
This little town with not much around or happening had this enormous monastery in it. Not much action there either. Everything was closed up for Winter. There was one Albergue that had an open sign and that was it. Onwards we went. We had Agés to get to and it was getting late. Along this stretch of road we met Rick from the USA who was on his third Camino and chatted to him a bit but he was walking slower than us so he dropped behind.
We arrived in town to find nothing open. Nada, zippo, zero, zilch. Even the municipal Albergue was open. Not good. We’d walked all this way to find closed doors. The temperature was at 0C too. Nippy. Thankfully we found a group of guys piling into their little Citroen about to leave town and asked them to help us call a taxi out of there. The Lord provided. If we hadn’t had their help or come across them we’d be forced to walk on in the cold and dark to God knows where. The taxi arrived and we whisked into Burgos where we checked into the hotel for the evening. Even though we missed some of the track we could see it as we drove in and it wasn’t all that pleasant anyway. Burgos is a big town with around 200,000 habitants. The industrial sprawl on the outskirts wasn’t all that inspiring. We may have some of that walking out of here anyway. We’re a day ahead of ourselves now so we’re thinking of having a rest day tomorrow, go into town and look around, do a vigil Mass at the cathedral and head out the next day.
For stats and a map of today’s walk you’ll find them here.