After a night in Atienza with everything shut and supplies stocked-up, I’m ready to motor on!
A steady climb out of the village up to the Castle of Atienza (original naming!) 🏰 As with any quality castle, it’ll be up a very steep hill. I didn’t visit, naturally! The road flattened out as did the wind horizontally straight in my face. You always know when the wind is fierce, as you can’t even coast down a good gradient! I arrived in Bar Moreno for a lunch stop and made for the biggest wall I could find out of the wind! 🌬️
The start to the afternoon was spent on a long-gradual-climb, finally realising me out of the Madrid province and into the Soria province. If I’d arrived here a few weeks earlier, I may not have been able to cross, as border restriction movements due take bug floating around!
I filled up with water in Albergue Retortillo and headed out to look for a wild camping spot with my name on it! Plenty of signs saying ‘Private Hunting’ 🦌 but as long as not hunting solo cyclists, I should be fine. I think!! There was however some impressive mauling of the ground by wild boar 🐗 How big they are, I wouldn’t like to find out.
My evening meal is generally the same … pasta, tuna and sweetcorn. With a dash of curry powder or Tabasco if I wish to lighten things up! It works well for me. I’ve tried rice before, but I’m generally flat, physically then the next day. So pasta it is. With a big bag I’ll get about 6 to 7 servings and not expensive or heavy (slightly bulky) for what it provides. And with the tuna (protein) to repair those torn muscle fibres. The perfect go-go fuel for me!
My morning refreshments ☕ are taken in the town of Berlanga de Duero and some shelter out of the drizzle. Along with a light replenishment of plátano’s (bananas) from the modest supermarket.
All things considered the terrain has been pretty benign. Minor roads and no real climbs that never seem to end.
My wild camping spot no. 5 ⛺ is again seated deep in the woods away from preying eyes. I’m further in tune now to where hunters may prey. The foliage is deep and not ideal for hunting boar 🐗 or deer 🦌 I did come across an injured deer (fawn) down a gravel track. It wasn’t able to move. I think its hind legs were broken, as may have slipped down a high embankment. I did think of putting it out of its misery with a rock, but if I’d not come along, nature would take its course anyway. I wished it well, and backtracked somewhere else for the night.
As many previous nights, the sound of gunshot was plentiful. Thankfully, some distance away.
Some light patter of tumbling water through the night but I wake up to a brisk chilly morning. Nice.
I’m still on The Way of El Cid (Camino del Cid). It’s proving a lovely route for a trip that was never on my agenda this year. In fact, I thought I’d had my cycling 🚴 full with all the lovely day trips around Perth and the outlying bush. I’m fortunate.
Before my next decent, I admire the expanse of black netting (I think), that covers a vast area. Quite impressive, whatever it is.
I stop in, what looks like an abandoned village (which practically it is) for lunch. Parking myself on a derelict building site of kind. A lone chap passes me by on his bicicleta. I say ‘Hola’ in my most eloquent Spanish 🇪🇸 he replies, ‘Hello’ … dam, I need to work on my pronunciation! I’m fed up with sounding English, even in a foreign tongue!!
He’s Mexican 🇲🇽 and is the sole person living in the village. How jealous was I. He was off to work at the local fruit nurseries. After lunch, I further descend onto the lower plain that is swallowed up by the immense black netting. Apparently a mixture of fruit is grown here. Before I knew it, I’m on a cycle trail nearing Burgo de Osma. I browse through my phone to search for some cheapo accommodation 🏠 for a night or two. I’ve some business to attend to, namely, I need to hunt down a screw on gas canister and fix my slow puncture. That’s my day off! I live on the edge!
My accommodation was sought after trouncing around everything else that was shut! What’s going on?
Pleasant clean room behind a Repsol petrol station. Hostal La Perdiz. Living the dream! All the more, when I find they’ve the best Tapa’s I’ve had yet. It was simple … large Amstel draught, olive and anchovies in delightful olive oil, home made tortilla (Spanish omelette) and baguette slices. Double helping of all!
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