Monday, July 26, 2010

Day 23 - Port de la Selva to Cap de Creus

18km, 500 metres of ascent
Today was a strange little coda to the trip. It really felt like I'd completed the traverse of the Pyrenees yesterday, but the GR11 demands that you hike out to the barren wasteland of Cap de Creus to complete the route.

I had a super-dawdly start and didn't leave the campground until 8am, and then immediately stopped in Port de la Selva for a café con leche and croissant. I was getting a bit worried that the day was slipping away, and my foot was off the gas.

But once I was out of Port de la Selva, the kilometres ticked by, and it wasn't long before I was on the final stretch of tarmac road leading up to Faro Cap de Creus lighthouse, surrounded by cars and tourists.

At the lighthouse I could see continuing red and white markers. Not quite there yet. I followed the paint marks through ever more jaggy rocks, towards the true headland.

Soon I was alone again reaching the final red and white mark; then a cairn; then a cliff into the sea. This really was the end of line.

For 23 days, every footstep had been leading to this point, but now the journey was over. I was off duty. I was just another tourist bumbling around on the rocks.


View GR11 - Day 23 in a larger map

4 comments:

ann said...

Congratulations!!! And more, now I have read the whole grueling lot of it. By day 21 I had got an excited knot in my stomach at the thought of the route almost completed. Whay! Or was it the idea of being trampled by the bull?
Anyway, apart from making sure that I never even contemplate trying to walk the GR11 myself,it was still interesting to draw some comparisons with the teeny GR130 route - forest tracks, ascents and descents, plus the 'special considerations' required when trying to find food and drink in Spain ...
but it still gave me a kick up the arse not to moan when it's hot or 'hard.'

Chris said...

Thanks very much Ann! I'm not sure which was tougher, hiking the route or writing it up afterwards. Perhaps I'll head back to La Palma sometime for a jog around the GR130 as a bit of light relief!

David Gilbert said...

Just found your blog - congratulations! We did the GR11 (not as swiftly as you!) - back in 2003 for my 40th, and I've got the itch to do another big one soon. Your account brought back plenty of memories. My version is at http://www.davidgilbert.org.uk/GR11/ if you want to have a look.

David Gilbert

Bart said...

Hi Chris,

Congratulations! bumped into your blog and photo's on wikipedia...it's really inspiring. Never did any long-distance walk like the one you did, but I'm sure I will in time. Thanks for sharing!

Bart