Camino de Santiago – Day 19
Walked from: Santa Catalina de Somoza
Walked to: Riego de Ambrós
Date: 20 October 2017
This little holiday of mine keeps getting better and better. It was a stunning day of walking / going up and down hilly stuff (what a fantastic change after the flatness of the Meseta), followed by a brilliant evening in the tiny village of Riego de Ambrós with every single person staying at the hostel going for dinner together… yup, all three of us (t’was a lovely evening with Dutch Bianca and South African Cecilia)!
My guidebook warns of steep ascents and decents, and today I did pass the highest point of the Camino – the 1,505m high Cruz de Ferro that is supposed to be one of the most important symbols of the whole walk. I say ‘supposed’, because, to be honest, the iron pole on the mound of stones felt entirely underwhelming to me, and I moved on quickly, especially as there were a number of people taking what seemed to be a very long time to have photo ops of the things they were symbolically giving up. Not every one there is hitting style over substance, but the ones I saw certainly appeared to be.
Symbolic iron cross aside though, the countryside surrounding it really was something to be worshiped. Despite the chilliness, the spectacular views – which stayed with me the entire day – were something to take time over, to savour. And to find such a tiny, quiet hostel at the end of it in the pretty mountainside village of Riego de Ambrós was a wonderful end to a ‘proper’ day of walking.