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 Walk Across Europe

2007-12-26 - Trip 10 - Leg 70

Spain, Murcia

Cloque to Isla Plana

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22.7 km today.
93.2 km this trip.
1321.2 km from start.
0 metres minimum height.
60 metres maximum height.
187 metres ascent.
185 metres descent.
 Track Log: Logged.
 Travel: Hire car, Taxi.

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Coastal tracks. Very nice. Fairly busy road at the end.

We went by car to Cloque. From there we walked on dirt tracks to Bolnuevo. There we used the beach and sea front paths to get to Puerto Mazarron. Then we took the road to Isla Plana. A taxi got us back to our hire car parked at Cloque. We would prefer to use public transport but this part of the coast is not well served by buses.

Today we left at about 7 and went to Los Cloques where we left the car. We headed north along the road until we saw a right turn leading up the pummock. We followed this and soon picked up the red and white stripes of GR92. There is rarely a sign at intersections or at points of departure. This would be an improvement but it’s nice to get reassurance once you are on your way. On our Monday walk and also today, we are following a route logged by Antonio M Cano. He posted his track on the Internet site "wikiloc". Neil had uploaded this track to his GPS so we could see how closely we were matching his route. In this way, we could avoid his detours. Sometimes, he seemed to have chosen the most difficult route available but other times, it was fine. We go up and over the first pummock sometimes on Antonio's route and sometimes not. There are various paths along the cliff tops and through the tureens. One is unlikely to do the same route twice but it is a lovely walk all the way to Bolnuovo where you again pick up beach tracks and golden miles.

We make a detour to visit the bookshop spotted on Christmas Day. We got more postcards for Mini but failed to get a new sim for the telephone because I had forgotten to bring the telephone. Beyond Puerto de Mazarrón the route leaves the beach and we follow the coast road towards Cartagena. We carry on as far as La Isla Plana where we eventually decide to call it a day. We wander back to a restaurante, La Chara and have a carvar and thé con limon. Then we ask about the bus stop which we haven't seen and about taxis. The man comes out with two numbers on a parper. I was hoping he would ring for us but I have to do it. I hate tellingphones at the best of times and even more when they speak another language. The phone is still on from Rob wanting to be able to reach us the other day. Luckily it has a huge pile.

We had taxi numbers for Luis and Alfonso. Luis was not at home but Alfonso said he would come and pick us up. He started off taciturn but got much friendlier when a story about "who is the most powerful" for children came on the radio. "Quien es lo mas poderoso?" In the end it was the ratón who was the most powerful, even more powerful (poderoso) than the sun or the mayor because of whom he or she marries. I must find out more as I missed the punch line and couldn’t follow the taxi driver’s explanation.

All along the coast, there are small concrete cones or bollards that look like little triangulation stations (geodesic vertices). Sometimes they are only a few metres apart. They have a millitary look about them. They also seem to be a little pointless. In Roman times, Tacitus describes the activities which soldiers do, either "for use" or "to fill in time". These cones seem to be the latter. More recently the saying is "If it moves, salute it. If not paint it." Many of the cones were neatly painted. I must also get a copy of the Gallic Wars by Caesar to get the spits and promontaries quotation and Livy's Punic Wars to find out if Hannibal took our route. Is Anibal's Gasolinera wishful thinking like Carthage.

Near Isla Plana, Anne was disturbed trying to have a pee behind a bush. This is always a problem and new ways of being disturbed keep cropping up. This time it was a very low flying microlight. Years ago in France after searching high and low for a suitably secluded bush Anne found the perfect place. It was only when she had finished that she spotted the man up the telegraph pole mending the phones. Neil got disturbed too. On a walk when we had met no one all day, a cyclist sailed quietly past before he had time to finish.

The taxi dropped us off beside our hire car and we went shopping at Mercadona on the woo hum. We had a lovely supper of left-overs from Christmas.

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