DAY 1 – Camino Del Norte
We begin our Camino Journey of 869 km today by taking our first steps. We left the safety of our B&B and were out to begin our walk at 6:30 in the morning just before the sunrise.
3 km after we started, we saw our first Albergue and many pilgrims ready to start. We made sure to get our stamp for the start and promptly left the town to take the country path that slowly began to climb uphill. We had purchased our breakfast and lunch the day before so our backpacks were the heaviest it will be for the duration of the Camino (good thing we were prepared because there was no water or food until the end).
We thought we were almost done with the climbing, but that was not the case. There was a split on the path and we decided to take the shorter but more strenuous path. While it was the right decision, it was one of toughest ascents we have done in the 20+ years of our hiking. The slope was extreme, but the views were breath-taking. I have never taken more Panaromic pictures in my life.
The climb went on and on for another 6km and some rough trails that had us wondering what we had gotten ourselves into. At the top the skies turned cool and we even had two shorts bouts of mist and rain. Whoever coined the name Camino on steroids was definitely correct.
After 32,000 steps, 22 km and 8 hours of hiking we are waiting outside our albergue at Pasai Doniban which opens at 4 PM. We are number 8 and 9. The albergue has 14 beds so we should be set for tonight. There is a boat downstairs that shuttles passengers across the bay that we will be taking to begin our day 2.
Now that we have taken a shower and rested our legs, we are beginning to feel normal. Actually, the town is cute. There is just one street with one lane (cars wait on each side of town for 10 mins to go – one way at a time for each way).
Victor Hugo lived in this town and now his home is preserved as a museum.