|The view from Javier's tower|
Our stay in Laguardia was perfect. Our hotel host, Javier, had fired up the heating system anticipating our arrival. Our room was a haven of warmth for two, chilled to the bone, pilgrims. He also kept the heat going all night (a major plus). We had dinner at the hotel and went to bed immediately afterwards, thoroughly done in. This morning at breakfast Javier said he thought we would encounter some snow today on the way to Navarrete. As it turned out we had a cold, but dry day for today's walk. We took a bit of time this morning to allow Javier to show us the tower of his castle (small one) now hotel.
|Robin on the castle tower|
Robin and I clambered up and up the spiral staircase and out onto a crenelated flat roof. The view was unrestricted but the 30 F air temperature kept photo opportunities to a minimum. Back down from the tower we made our farewells and set off for the Calle Mayor and the Camino path out of town. One interesting piece of information that I picked up from Javier is that Laguardia is well known for its extravagant wineries. They are called "wine temples." I noticed one was done by Frank Gehry, and not surprisingly it looked like the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. Even Javier had bottles of wine hung like family portraits in his tower. Everyone is mad for wine in this area. Things could be worse.
|Back down to earth|
We passed through the city wall shortly after 9:00 and set out across the vineyards towards Navarrete. The Camino marking on today's stage was pretty thin. I mostly relied on the gps track to lead the way, and it was well that I did for there were some intersections that were not clearly defined in the written route description. It was mostly a slight downhill trend to the point where we crossed the Rio Ebro, the boundary between Euskadi (Basque Country in Basque) and Rioja. At this point it was a gentle climb to the hill on which sits the town of Navarrete. We were puffing past the church at a few minutes past 1:00, and found the Hotel Rey Sancho (our home for the night) just beyond the church. We checked in an headed down into the plaza to find the Restaurante El Molino (thanks for the tip Margaret) for a great lunch. So now it is the usual laundry and sorting things out for tomorrow's walk to Logroño, and perhaps a few kilometers beyond. I am still, trying to work out how to reduce the 30 K stage after Logroño to something more manageable, especially when it is only 13 K from Navarrete to Logroño. It will probably involve a bus or taxi back to Logroño where we will spend the night, and then a bus or taxi back to where we stopped to resume our walk. We will get it all sorted tomorrow. Now it is time for a siesta. Bye for now.
|Calle Mayor in Laguardia|
|Passing through the city gate|
|Bodega in the foreground|
|Waving farewell to Laguardia|
|The hill in the middle is Navarrete|
|Rio Ebro crossing|