Vía de la Plata – Day 2: Castilblanco to Almadén de la Plata

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30 kilometers, 6 hours. No stops in between.

Overcast and warm again. Easy walking—half beside highway, half on dirt road through parkland, Parque Natural Sierra Norte de Sevilla. Lots of cork trees and pine plantations.

Looked much like California with its dry grasses, oaks plus cork trees. Very dry; end of summer.

A friendly pig I called El Jamón (the ham) followed us quite a long time, hoping for a handout. I walked with Eric from Belgium most of the way. We had met the night before and ate dinner together, and mostly chatted about the next weeks on Camino.

Jenny, from Cuba, walked 12 kilometers and developed a blister. She caught a bus and beat me to Almadén. Nieves, our hospitalera (hostel host) from the municipal albergue, fixed her up. Nieves was a spitfire. The Spanish guys (José, Carlos, Fernando) and Eric really got her going, or the other way around, when we checked into the hostel later that afternoon.

Jenny was thinking to quit. She “changed her mind all the time,” she said to us. Though we coached her a little about taking it easy and continuing, we did not see her again after that night.

People on, more or less, the same schedule:

Eric (from Belgium)

José (from Spain)

Francisco (Fran) (from Spain)

Carlos (from Spain), who started in Cadiz, another 130 kilometers before Seville.

Fernando (from Spain)

Nina (from Switzerland)

Lara (from Germany)

For slides, click on imagine.

Others we talked with: four from Holland. Stayed in hotels, not albergues. Three women, one man. Nice people. Spoke Dutch, French, English, and a little Spanish.

Nieves recommended the Restaurante La Muralla for food that evening. It was near the church, the red clock tower, and the tourist office. I had a mini burger for lunch, and Eric and I met there for dinner at 7:30 p.m. Shared a plato (plate) of local pork, potatoes, and peppers. Most excellent and plentiful.

Costs: €3 for coffees and bread, €8 for lunch, €10 for the albergue, and €10 for dinner.