Here I go...

Finding magic under the stars of the Camino Santiago de Compostela

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Day 9: Santa Celia to Arres

Today's walk was short, only about 12 kilometers.

But do not discount the last 3 kilometers in the heat.

It is an uphill rocky trail around the mountainside 

and has plenty of loose rock.

We left Sta. Celia about 9 am after our 3 euro breakfast at the Albergue.

Not a bad price for 2 ups of coffee, croussants and cakes.

We stopped at the panaderia hoping to pick up 
a loaf of the famous local bread for our lunch,
but we were too early.

The walking was nice, much of it along the Aragon River.
We saw a lot of wildlife, 
including a vulture feasting on a dead boar!
Phewie! That thing stunk!

The wheat fields were full of wild poppies.
I've never seen so many wild flowers.

I've walked in the Fall in the past

and the landscape is totally different

this time of year.

At the bridge we turned right and walked over the bridge
and about 100 meters to a market called Meramix
(on our left)
where a nice man from Columbia let us browse and buy our groceries.
We found fresh bread, tuna, ham & cheese,
a beautiful juicy orange and a small but sweet nectarine,
 juice, sunflower seeds, gazpacho, olives and salty bits
all for about 12 euros.

We walked back across the bridge and sat on the benches
and had lunch before continuing on our way.

If it is hot, you can hold off eating for 15
 minutes because there are shaded Picnic tables
right across the road from the trailhead up the mountain.

Be sure you have water if it is hot
because the trail is a bit steep at first and there is not much shade.

Very soon after the bridge the road splits.
You bear to the right and walk the road
until you catch the trail to Arres.

As you meander up this trail take it slow.
There are some slippery places,
and the view is spectacular,
so you must keep your eye on the trail
and stop when you want to look down into the valley
from which you climb.

Once you come around the corner and see Arres 
take caution for the last 10 meters of trail is treacherous! 
Go slow.
My walking partner 2 years ago fell and split open her head
on this section,
ending her Camino early!

After reaching Arres, 
we were happy to see a familiar smiling face from home! 
Angela from the Pacific Northwest is hospitalera at Arres!

This is one of my favorite stops along the Aragones Route.

Laundry was done and hung out back

The beds are in a nice cozy stone room

The Albergue here is donativo with places for 12. 
At 6 pm they will open the church for you to visit, 
after which all pitch in to make the communal meal.
The weather was pretty, and so we ate outdoors.

 I think 8 to 10 minimum euros is a fair donation per person considering you get dinner and breakfast. But give what you can please.

This albergue has a 'free box' here if you need gear or would like to lighten your load. 
Take what you need or leave what you no longer want to carry. 
Some pilgrim will be happy to have what you donate!

This is such a sweet village.
There are views in every direction.
There is a nice bar where you can have 
a cervesa con limon (very refreshing!) or a coffee 
or buy food if you can't wait for dinner.

There are awesome hot showers 
where you are standing next to the huge foundation boulder 
and a great scrubbing sink to do your wash.

The rest of the afternoon you can explore the tiny village, 
take a siesta, or sit in the shade out front.

Angela took us on a tour of the tiny chapel after dinner.

We had a friendly visitor

Watching the sun set

I am in love with Arres!

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