This trip was really a tale of two halves. Having arrived at the Hoyo de los Piños campsite at La Bolero after a particularly mud-laden day, we’d hoped (and there were rumours) for a period of better weather. As it was we were gifted with perfect weather for the rest of the trip!
In days pre-child we would have stocked up and pushed on out and upward from Baza. This is nothing against Baza, but much more an obsession with camping rather than being beholden to the preferences of others. Having dragged him through multiple days of rain and mud we felt we owed Bryn an early mark. For the reference of those in a similar predicament, Baza has an extremely fine playground. The audience pictured above may have been more attracted to dappled shade and habits of many years than a particularly loud Australian small person
Arrival towards the end of siesta (a less extreme form appears to be practiced in Spain than Argentina) gives less traffic to view our progress the wrong way along one-way streets. Rule – the shortest route from where you are to where you want to be will be the wrong way up a one-way street (no exceptions found after considerable research).
After extending our stay in Baza to a full rest-day (in tribute to the extraordinary attraction of it’s playground), the way out of town has the (very) new and old well-mixed.
We manifestly got here at the wrong time of year for way-side fruit.
Accompaniment on foot
Stopping for a snack break when the navigator lands you in a baby-head strewn field despite having a GPS track to follow
That’s better – it’s upward, but it’s fun and a diversion from the effort required.
A camping meadow materialises just as we’re feeling that the track is about to trend downwards after a day of upward progress. We’re using GPS on our phones, so some satisfaction permeates when they read 2033m. Nevermind that it’s got a tree for shelter, a spring and really not a bad view…
Getting going the next morning doesn’t appear to be high on anyone’s priorities. Cuddles are worth any acceptance of a late start.
The kite was worth bringing
The Sierra Nevada as a backdrop to our descent from the Sierra de Baza maintains the late-morning pace.
Not too far beyond this, we discovered a solar farm that post-dated the .gpx track we were following (loosely). Just prior to this we’d smiled hopefully at a group of farmers as we forged past them along a track that didn’t look particularly ‘official’.
Bryn’s a pretty resilient travel companion really. His favourite pastime is ‘making fire’. While this compulsion tends to get on his parents’ nerves, it is extremely transportable. A dry and dusty road/track with optional stick is all it takes – raising clouds of ‘smoke’ as he lights his ‘fire’
La Calahorra is just round the corner (under the post-Moors castle). A tip to those for whom another couple of kms uphill seems excessive before giving into demands for a playground – Aldeire in the foreground has better food shops and is worth it.
Getting up into the Sierra Nevada is just the right side of too steep – especially with 17kg of toddler who has chosen that morning to eschew the trailer.
Lunch – it hasn’t changed much since the Americas trip (though the bread’s a different shape)
Clutter – mostly power-related. As with our previous Munda Biddi Trail trip, we didn’t really move fast enough to run things fully from my dynamo hub, but it was still worth having it connected up. (work)-Life doesn’t really make allowances for wanting to be completely off-grid. I was actually involved in a 7 time-zone teleconference when I took this photo. Mobile reception riding round the Sierra Nevada isn’t too bad!
Gone ‘fishing’ (we think). Better weather allowed a much more relaxed attitude to getting going in the morning
This is what you have to resort to when you’ve left the entire bag of tent pegs at the previous campsite.
A very satisfactory final campsite before heading down to Granada and the journey onwards
Morning view – what a place to wake up!
Somewhat unusually, he’s content to snooze on after we’ve both left the tent.
Take your mother for a walk (very insistently)
All is revealed – it’s about the climbing…
Granada – a good place to finish the route, although we couldn’t get a Media Distancia train from there to Madrid and resorted to other means of transport.
This was the last trip we did before Bryn mastered riding a pedal-bike by himself. In contrast to our November 2015 Munda Biddi trip (when he was 2 1/2 years old), this trip was a significantly greater challenge for his parents. A large element of this was the weather in the first half – if we’d not been able to slow down and do shorter days with under-roof overnight sleeping it wouldn’t have worked with the repeated daily rain. The glory that was the 2nd half made up from this. We both felt that we were working closer to the point where we were less able to give Bryn enough energy – especially during the wet half of the trip than we were able to on ‘home soil’ during the Munda Biddi.