The Adventure Begins
DAY 3 - Orisson to Roncesvalles
WEATHER: Walking in clouds through the Pyrenees
MILES:- Total is 14.61 miles
So last night was the first hostel experience for many. Our little room of 8 bunks was quite cosy. We had two guys and six women and no loud snorers... result! Julie and Becky were in a different section of the hostel and I gather the snoring was at catastrophic proportions in their room (I think Julie was seriously considering murder by walking stick at 1.50am according to a text that she sent me!)
7 am - We enjoyed a communal breakfast of toast and jam (nothing else!). Followed by big bowls of coffee.. yep! No handles, just bowls.
8 am - Rain Gear on and we were all set to start walking. We spent all day in the cloud going over the top of the Pyrenees and down the other side. Debby, John & Hayley got their stride on and the group soon separated.
It’s important for anyone who walks the Camino that they should do so at their own pace. If you try to walk slower to stay with a group or even walk faster to keep pace with someone else then your body will tell you to stop. This usually comes in the form of blisters, shin splints or worse. The group separating put a smile on my face as I knew they had listened to my advice about hiking their own hike.
🐄 Cows!! My heart raced as a small herd of massive cows with horns decided to join us on the trail. I was very brave and even plucked up the courage to stroke one, but it ran away from me!
🐑 There are some weird looking sheep on the mountains today. Actually, they may have been goats, I’m not quite sure! They had horns. Do sheep have horns?
🐴 Wild horses were everywhere and it was a beautiful site. Caron kept making oh.. ah noises and we spotted small fouls with their mums.
10 am - As we turned the corner a little man in a white van was selling hot coffee and an array of snacks. The coffee would put hairs on your chest but it was absolutely perfect and a welcome break. We caught briefly up with John, Debs and Hayley. John mentioned that we had 1km up, 5km of flat and 5km of down left to go (a map drawing was on the side of the van). The next time we saw them was at the hostel in Roncesvalles.
11 am - we danced in the rain as we crossed the French / Spanish border.
12 pm - We reached the little hut around lunchtime after a traipse through lots of mud and soggy leaves. We were ready for a break. The hostel last night provided up with a bocadilla sandwich. Rachel has cheese (sensible), I had patè (not sensible, it was like eating dog food in a French stick!). Luckily I purchased some Ewe Cheese at the white van earlier!
The Jetboil made an appearance as we brewed up hot coffee which was the perfect way to fuel us for the last leg of today’s journey. 5km of downhill through the forest!
2 pm - We made out way through the winding road that took us through a beautiful forest. Dillion from Oz joined us and Rachel chatted away to him for most of this last part of the walk. She was fascinated by his tales of travelling. By 2 pm the site of the big old monastery in Roncesvalles revealed itself. What an amazing place this is.
We found the others (in the bar!) and checked in. We are all in little cubicles of 4 bunks. Hot showers completed, laundry organised and we were off to have a glass of vino! John was astounded at how cheap the alcohol is here. €10 for a beer and three glasses of large wines!
7 pm:- pilgrim menu. Soup and pasta for starters, followed by chicken or fish and chips for main. The fish arrived in all
It’s glory. Yep, it was winking at you! Debby played mum and chipped off all the heads and tails of the fish for everyone that chose this meal.
8 pm - Pilgrims mass which was all in Spanish and consisted mainly of standing up and sitting down. There was something quite peaceful about the priest's voice though. He gave the pilgrims a blessing and Rachel and Becky enjoyed that experience.
9pm - bedtime. Let the pilgrim snore begin!
3 am - I’m wide awake! There is a bloke a few doors down from me snoring and it’s obviously annoying someone else as I keep hearing a loud clap sound every 10 mins or so. Rachel is doing her girly snore and she keeps making cute little ah... noises!
Must catch some 💤