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 Walk Across Europe

2007-12-23 - Trip 10 - Leg 68

Spain, Andalucia and Almeria

Pozo del Esparto to Calabardina

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24.5 km today.
52.7 km this trip.
1280.7 km from start.
0 metres minimum height.
64 metres maximum height.
219 metres ascent.
206 metres descent.
 Track Log: Logged.
 Travel: Car.

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Rob took us to the start. Cliff top paths. Beaches. Busy road at the end.

Today we left Andalucia and entered Murcia. It is likely that we will never walk in Andalucia again so there was more that a tinge or regret. Of course there was anticipation too as we thought of future destinations.

Rob gave us a lift to Pozo del Esparto. From there we walked to Calabardina. The first half of the walk was along cliff top paths and beaches. This is one of our favourite terrains. Then we had to walk through Águilas. Águilas is a typical Mediterranean seaside town with a harbour having moorings for fishing boats and yachts. There is a central square and a marine parade. The hills northeast of Águilas are being destroyed by developments. The traditional routes used by walkers and cyclists have been blocked by building sites, forcing people to use cars instead. There is no useful bus service. This pattern is being repeated world-wide so it is no surprise that the developped world population is turning into fat lazy car slobs.

I seem to have forgotten to take my Foosmax yesterday so I am taking it today. That means 30 minutes of walking about before having breakfast. It is not an early start so this is no problem. Rob comes to pick us up in his car which he tells us is not quite legal because he has not transferred ownership and the person he bought it from is a German who has returned to Germany and now gone to live in France. As he has things in hand, I’m sure it’s OK.

At a turn-off where you had to stop he stopped and Neil said he only did that if there was a police car. Rob said he stopped because his eyesight was not what it was. Still he seemed to stay on the road most of the time. Later, at the turn-off to Pozo del Esparto, he did a "very very bad thing". In Spain, left turns are often forbidden and you have to turn right, and then cross a sort of roundabout where the main road has the right of way. Rob just turned left without doing the proper loop-the-loop. Years ago, Neil made the same mistake on an almost completely empty road in Lanzarotte. The only other vehicle nearby followed us, also breaking this same traffic rule. The German driver then lectured us at length explaining that we had done a very very bad sing. What is it with Germans and ze book of rules. We have also been told-off by germans for walking on the wrong side of the road and for throwing away our rubbish in a communal municipal waste bin. Of course we are retiring British people so we never vocalise our thoughts. "Why don't you eff off back to Germany where you lost the war." Last April we did meet some nice Germans. After several minutes of pleasant chat it turned out they were Swiss. To be fair we have lived in Germany and the vast majority of the locals were delightful. Perhaps we have just been unlucky with these incidents.

Rob's car ride was a lot of fun and we shall make a donation to The School for Peace in lieu of giving him something which he turned down. More collaborators. The first part of today's walk was lovely. First marine parades but quite rural ones with just houses or scrub alongside, occasionally stretches of beach and then, once through San Juan de Terreros which was largely pedestrianised, it was billy tracks and beaches all the way to Aguilas - stunning views of the coast and the pummocks and some early spring flowers are beginning to come into bloom, now we are past the shortest day - rock roses (3 types) lavender (2 types), rosemary, heather, marrow sodom's apple or was it mandagora, no it was henbane and various daisies.

Once we got to Aguilas it was all happening with a funfair and a trade fair selling traditional foods. The last stretch was killing. There was a short bit through the pummocks and after that we had to go along the road pretty much all the way to Calabardina. The nice routes were all blocked by building sites. The weather was lovely with sun for much of the time. I took off my helly and legs. My helly went back on in the evening but my legs stayed off all the way home.

Rob has lent us a book which shows some of the walks we have done and some of the ones we have still to do. He made it sound as though tomorrow's walk was fierce. I am prepared to be afraid, very afraid. He thought we would be doing the road route. I have now looked in the book and the walk is described as medium. I didn't look to see what today's was like by their standards. That would give a good guide. The book says only 500m are unsuitable for a bike to it should be maakelik. Rob will pick us up in the evening. It is really nice of him to do this a second time as it has saved us two days of half walks. After that we will use taxis again to help cover the ground. Tonight we have buck buck baa and courgettes. Nice.