Day 4: The vertical day.

Day 4.  June 10
Ponte de Lima to Valenca. (Via Rubias)
22 miles / 36 km
Fitbit steps for the day: 37,342

This part of the camino has a reputation for being difficult. No kidding. The path climbed 400 meters (1300 ft.) in just a few kilometers. It was a steep scramble up a rock strewn path and it took me nearly two hours to reach the top. Then, coming down, the path all slippy, slidey–this time through gooey mud and rock.

IMG_0262Being “The Lost Girl”, I managed to get several kilometers beyond my planned stopping point for the day before realizing it. Rather than turn back I decided to continue on to the next albergue, turning an 18 km day into a 36 km day. I soon caught up again with the Dutchman who was limping from of a fall he’d taken on the way up. Then I, too, went down on a rock that left me with a few bruises. It’s hard to recover in slippery mud with a pack on your back. The Dutchman gave me a hand up and we carried on, albeit more cautiously.

This cross was the only flat spot on the entire climb today. It’s my last night in Portugal. I’m just a bridge away from Spain–two countries are separated by a beautiful river. Zzzzzzzz…