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 Walk Across Europe

2009-04-07 - Trip 15 - Leg 112

Spain, Catalunya and Barcelona

Platja-de-Castelldefels to El-Prat-de-Llobregat

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20.8 km today.
61.4 km this trip.
2219.3 km from start.
0 metres minimum height.
12 metres maximum height.
11 metres ascent.
12 metres descent.
 Track Log: Logged.
 Travel: Train.

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Marine parade, beach, a nature reserve, quiet roads and one busy road (1 km).

We got our usual train and started walking 10 minutes earlier, being less far down the railway line. There had been a thunder storm in the night and everything was damp and fresh. The sun burned off the clouds and it became quite warm for 10 or 20 minutes. Then the wind reversed and it clouded over. Soon it was raining. We walked through two or three showers but did not get very wet. During the sunny interval, we must have been in the eye of the storm.

We walked through a nature reserve. This was very tranquil and attractive apart from the jets landing at Barcelona, El Prat. Thanks to Google Earth, we found a route under all the Barcelona peripheral motorways. We were on agricultural roads, not marked on normal maps. After the motorways, we passed through a kilometre of heavy metallurgical industry before reaching our target; El Prat de Llobregat railway station.

The forecast for today on the BBC before we left was heavy rain. I fell asleep at 9pm and woke up again two hours later as usual for a pee. Thanks to dates and activia yoghurt I also did a poo. I then fell asleep again and when I woke again, my light was on and Neil had delivered my breakfast. IT was 6.20. I had 20 minutes to eat, get dressed, set up my mustang and be ready to leave. It had rained heavily in the night as forecast with thunder and lightning but all that passed me by. We caught our train easily and were soon at our departure point.

The walk began along the beach. For some reason I couldn't get going even though the early part of the walk was very nice. We saw sea holly coming up and the leaves of Pancreatic maritimes. There was a pea-type plant in yellow swathes over the beach. But still I kept stopping, first to have a date and a pee, then to take of my helly and legs, then to put my helly and legs back on – it looked like rain again, then to get out my cagoule and umbrella. It was raining again. We saw a sad chameleon on the path. He was alive but not happy. Perhaps he was just cold and wet.

As it was now dry, we decided to carry on along the beach rather than go inland. We had lunch by a lovely river which I managed to cross dry. Earlier, having observed the river mouth to be dry over a considerable period, I ventured across,was caught by the seventieth wave and got doused. Neil observed a bit longer and came across unscathed. The sky was turning black and rain threatened once more. We were able to watch waders and ducks in the river and aeroplanes coming in to land at the airport. We just managed to have lunch in the dry. We now decided to head inland on a different spoke as fighting your way along a beach into the teeth of a gale is not much fun.

The planes were now landing in the bad weather direction. We skirted the river and then, when this was forbidden because the site is a protected area, we walked along a lake instead. This track eventually passed beyond the lake and the route became more urban. There were huge road works round the airport but our road was quiet. For a short distance we risked life and limb by sharing a busy trunk road into the city but after about a killometre we could turn off and follow the railway line along a camí agricola. This took us pretty much straight to our destination.

As the walk had been short, we decided to divert on our way home to see if we could find a charger or a camera. However, by the time we got to Francia again, it was tipping it down and we went straight home. We couldn't even get some more Häagen Dasz ice cream as the shop was not yet open.

It meant I could check these worms for the historic present which does not conform to Neil's website house style.

Of course for the book I shall suit myself or the editor if we can find a publisher.

Spotted pink cistus earlier with spots.

Choosing a doggy for me, is Mini's favourite pastime at present and we are joining in the game. There are lots of lovely ones here although of course you can't actually have them.

Anne's aged, rescued Laza Apso called Teddy had, after a long life, to be put down a few weeks ago. He could no longer stay standing up because his back legs would collapse. Apart from this, he was still happy when he went.