Monday, September 27, 2010

Pyrenees


The last day in France we'll remember with the worst hitch-hiking in our trip. We waited 4-5 hours at the entrance of the highway after Bordeaux until dark. Not one car stopped. We had to sleep near the road in 'largest forest' in Europe, which actually was pretty loose and young, and trucks with dead trees constantly drove around. The next day a Belgian girl saved us from waiting, and the next car with two French women dropped us in Spain. As soon as we crossed the border, the landscape changed. Everything was yellow-brown and for the first time in Europe we saw a shepherd and sheep without fences. Although we had heard that hitch-hiking in Spain is very difficult, the first car we waved at stopped, we had not even put down our backpacks. It was a 30 years old Spanish and when we told him that its our first day in Spain, he replied: 'This is not Spain this is the Basque country '. He explained that their culture, language and customs are quite different from the Spanish, but still he did not want to become a separate country. We agreed that borders are useless.  People should not be divided with borders. One has to feel everywhere at home. He, like all countries which we passed, did not like politicians. Switzerland is the only country where people do not complain about politics, corruption and mafia, and were happy and proud of the management of their country.




Anyway, with two more cars we reached a village in the Pyrenees called Pantikosa. On the way to the mountain we saw buses with well-armed police blocking the road, searching for ETA terrorists. The woman, who drove us to the end of the road and the beginning of the mountain was very smiling and talkative. Although she did not know English we understood each other perfectly with Spanish-English and a lot of laughter. The Bulgarian-Spanish phrase book, a gift from Bulgaria, came into use.

The next day after 6 hour climb we reached wonderful alpine lakes (2500 m) and put our tent there. It was cold, snowing and almost immediately we went to sleep dressed in our sleeping bags. In the morning we were surprised to see that snow is covering the landscape, and our tent 'igloo' resembled a real igloo. We found the path difficultly in the snow and walking on stones covered with snow was pretty tough.
before...
...after



As we walked down the snow disappeared and the sun smiled at us. All the way marmots welcomed us and we saw a large flock of vultures flying around a dead cow. We found a little shelter, where we spent the night, made a fire and dried our clothes. 























4 comments:

  1. Such beautiful photos of a dramatic location. What simplicity to walk up a mountain, dry your clothes by fire & come back down again, although the snow makes things disappear. Looking forward to seeing more photos along the way. We have to go to Barcelona. Fiona & Martin, Malaga to Estepona.

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  2. Hey, thank you very much for the comment and for the ride :) Thanks to people like you we reached Morocco and soon we continue to Mauritania...good luck with everything :)

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  3. Jaume (Barcelona)July 29, 2011 at 10:25 PM

    Hi,I'm Jaume from Barcelona (Spain). On July 2011, we were making a trip through the Pirinees in Spain (Huesca) following the GR11.There, between Panticosa and Bujaruelo, we found a note about your blog in a little shelter. This is how I've arrived here.I hope, I'll do a trip like yours in the future. I send you my support and Good luck. Mucha suerte y buen viaje!!

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  4. Holla, Jaume! Life is incredible and the world is sooo small. It's cool to hear that somebody read our sticker in this far away place in the mountain...Thanks a lot for the support and who knows our paths may meet again in some place in our small planet. Wish you all the best in your journey too.
    Lora and Evgeni

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