DAY 2 – AUG 25 TO RONCESVALLES

Cast of "The Way" stayed in Roncesvalles
Cast of “The Way” stayed in Roncesvalles

 

Part of the beautiful Auberge at Roncesvalles. Usual lodging cost there is about 5 - 9 Euros a night, many in room, few showers etc
Part of the beautiful Auberge at Roncesvalles. Usual lodging cost there is about 5 – 9 Euros a night, many in room, few showers etc

 

DAY 2: August 25 La Vierge d’Orisson to Roncevalles (16km) After a good sleep and healthy breakfast we hop into the van (which arrived on time:-) to travel to yesterday’s stop point. Passing the route we hiked yesterday we marvel at what we accomplished. In the distance we see today’s route—-it still goes up……another 8 km to climb up 1000 ft through the pass and across the border into Spain. This is a hard hike and once again the sun is hot, but most if the path is paved or through grazing land. We notice buzzards circling above us and we feel this an ominous sign. We later learn how ominous. ( http://www.independent.co.uk>News>World Europe>Europe) The upslope is beautiful with alpine flowers and here and there a copse of beech trees. We pass ancient stone shelters used by the herdsmen of long ago and cement blinds for bird hunters of nowadays. We are grateful to reach the peak and begin the final part of the day’s trek. The path is steep, narrow and rocky. In many areas the drop off is over 500 ft. We walk cautiously and close to the mountain side. Incredibly there are cyclists on this trail! The trail offers more shade now —and the alpine flowers have given way to heather and yellow gorse (broom) and a wild type of anise. The fragrance is lovely. Our hotel, a renovated monastery is a welcome sight:-). Dinner in Spain is later—2000 so we shower, change and head to the albergue (hostel in Spanish) for our Credencial. There we meet an Aussie woman who has come over the Pyrenees with tendonitis of her ankle. This puts our fatigue into perspective.

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