Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Spain, May/June 2018. Day 17

Good morning dear blog.  I am able to report that I am sitting in the sun relaxing after a late breakfast.  We had a dry night and the weather prospects for the next two days look promising.  We have booked the Hotel Colonial in Santillana del Mar from Friday for 5 nights.  Partly as the weather is going to go off again but also because we want to explore the coast.  We had one night in the Colonial on the way here and really enjoyed it; we look forward to a few nights of luxury to finish the holiday in exchange for our swamp.
After our late breakfast in the sun we set off off up the Puerto San Glorio pass again at nearly 6000 feet in the hopes of views.  In my case this was the fourth trip and it proved to be successful; well semi anyway.  We certainly had wonderful views all around but cloud had bubbled up again and obscured much of the Picos; we were actually above much of the cloud.  The object of the drive really was to photograph the life size statue of a cantabrian brown bear at the top of the pass with views behind to the mountains above the cable car at Fuente De.  Although the bear was beautifully lit, sadly the mountains had their tops hidden in cloud.  It was still a special place, however.  The statue is on a col that is used as a corridor for this rare animal which is in danger of extinction.  Chough were plentiful up here as were Griffon vultures; a squadron of 6 making a very close fly past.  I was also fascinated by the numbers of bikers on big touring bikes, especially the two on old Honda Africa Twin machines.  The stickers on their panniers testified to their travels.  Chatting to them made me nostalgic for my land rover trip to the Sahara with Steve.
Eventually we gave up on the clouds clearing and headed back down the pass, stopping for lunch on the way.  We called in at the site briefly for Heather, while I went back for some more shots of the occelated lizard.  I was delighted to find that one was two and I got shots of both in the same image.  Unfortunately the one bus of the day disturbed them on the way up and then on the way down.  Such is life.🤓
We next pottered up to Mogrevejo another very attractive village above the main valley.  Sadly the bar was closed so we repaired to the site for a beer in the bar (well it was nearly time) before cooking a simple meal out of a tin, managing it all before the evening's rain set in.  The main meal may have been simple but we finished with local sheep's cheese, local cherries and grapes and coffee.  It may now be time for a 10 year old Torres and an early night.
A good day.

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