27.4 km today.
47.8 km this trip.
892.1 km from start.
0 metres minimum height.
386 metres maximum height.
428 metres ascent.
420 metres descent.
Track Log: Logged.
Beach, road, golden mile and mountain road.
We had a "lie in" not needing to catch a bus. At first light we set out. The Mercadona supermarket a mile east of our flat was still closed so we pressed on and bought drinks from a petrol station.
We had been following the main road and beach since Gibraltar so at the first opportunity we headed into the hills. This involved a significant climb by Norfolk UK standards. We reached 380 metres or a little over 1000 feet. The end of the walk involved a fairly busy road but it was worth it for the views and the discovery of red mistletoe (Viscum Cruciatum) growing on an olive tree. We finished up at the end of the bus route in Vélez Málaga.
We set off at 8.45 after a lie-in as we didn’t need to catch a bus. The sun is just coming up. I want to get some drinks at our local shop on the way. It is shut. I will get them at Mercadona. This is also shut even though it is past 9am when it should open. Actually, this is wrong. It opens at 9.15. 9.00 is the time you can start placing telephone orders. A lady is balaying (sweeping) the carpark but there is no sign of anything going on inside. Other people are also waiting. In the end we give up. The coast is not so isolated that it will be difficult to get a drink later. We set off along the hard shoulder. Very soon I see a petrol pump and check to see if it has a little shop. It has and I buy two little bottles of juice - one piña (pineapple) and one melocotón (peach).
We continue, sometimes on the beach, where every few hundred metres there are flocks of gaviotas (gulls). Most of these take off at our approach but interestingly the black-backed ones don't bother unless we come really close. The drinks are absolutely delicious but I discover they are made by Schweppes which is Coca Cola so I shan't be buying them again except in a real emergency. We eventually get past human habitation for the first time since before Easter last year. We have been able to see the mountains behind us, but now we can also see those which are level and the lure is strong.
As today's walk is quite short, we decide to turn inland and go to Velez Málaga instead of Torre del Mar. The route is tarmac all the way and winds steadily uphill. We pass through a number of villages - Cajiz, Iznate, Benamocarro and finally Velez Málaga. The last stretch was extremely unpleasant. The road was busy and there was only the narrowest of hard shoulders. In all we did 27.4km which is a lot for the second day and on a hard surface. We also climbed to a height of 380 metres (1200 feet). We locate the bus stop in Velez Málaga, and wait for a bus. We catch the 17.50. This reaches Torre del Mar at 6.10 and may be our most frequent bus from now on. There is an Eroski right there where we can top up on supplies. Today we get a few things at La Gaviota, the mini-market near the fountain bus stop. We are home by 7 pm so we don't have to ring Mini. For supper we have soup and sandwiches and Christmas cake.