For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move. ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

Friday, 8 February 2008

Into The Mountains

The next 2 days - the 7 and 8 December - took me into the mountains and up to the highest point of the Camino: the Cruz de Ferro (The Iron Cross) at 1505m above sea level. The hills of Leon ranged far and wide - the Castilian plain a distant memory.

I climbed gently from Astorga through half-deserted mountain villages to Rabanal del Camino, where I spent the night at the Albergue del Pilar with its most attractive arched doorway and central courtyard. Not for the first time I imagined how this place would be teeming with pilgrims in the summer. For my part I much preferred these quieter, off-season months. Here I met up again with my Japanese friend, Hiroshi, and befriended 2 more pilgrims from Spain - who were a restaurant manager and a Basque theatre director in 'real life'.

The photo shows sunrise in Rabanal.

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