GRAN CANARIA 7th FEB

The journey ended, as it began, at a lighthouse in a desert.
I was glad I hadn’t gone last night down the prescribed route of avenues, roundabouts, shopping centres, hotels bars and restaurants to finish but had instead run the gauntlet of all of the above from my room in San Fernando to the sea but then had walked across the Dunes de Maspalomas for the last few kms of my journey to the Faro.

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It seemed fitting to finish as I had begun, with sand in my boots and to end at the beginning.
Although more tame and controlled and busy with tourists than the desert surrounding the Faro at El Puertito on Fuerteventura but it took me back to hiking on the soft yellow sand there and to muse on all the other surfaces my boots have been over on all the seven islands of the Canaries I have experienced since.
Sand in all its forms, from soft and deep to solidified and calcified, lava of every type, colour and contortion. Black ash, red and grey pumice, pine needles, lush grass, dirt track, fertile earth, moss mud and lichen. Pebbles, cobbles and boulders, concrete, tarmac and the finest of stone paved mule tracks.
But the shifting sands of Maspalomas were a fitting finish representing the final result of the process of erosion of the mountains, born of eruptions beneath the sea, eventually returning to it.

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With the lighthouse in the distance I came upon a little mock up of what could have been a Guache ceremonial site or settlement. Just a play thing in the midst of the tourist trappings but their lives on these islands should be remembered.

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On past the empty loungers on this grey day to the finish.

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One million, twenty nine thousand, seven hundred and twenty five steps later.
Six hundred and fifty one kilometres.
Five metres short of twenty thousand metres of ascent.
I’ve noticed that most travel- hiking etc bloggers include kit reviews where the latest high tec , high spec, high price gear is given the once over.
My approach is somewhat different. I wanted to show you don’t have to spend a fortune to have adventures in the wilds.
I set off with bargain basement equipment and was wondering about approaching one of my main suppliers, Lidle for sponsorship ( not really but not a bad idea).
My 15€ Lidle tent, although not tested in extreme conditions has done its job well as has my cheap Alpkit bivvy bag.
30€ worth of sale priced Hi Tec boots have lasted better than top brand Brashers I used on the Camino.
The Lidle supplied hiking poles have saved many a fall and fitted into my hand luggage that the Leki never would.
Socks, shorts and bamboo t shirt, all Clivit brand from Lidle are as good as you need.
The Eurohike sleeping bag could have been warmer but I was using it at nearly 2000mt and it was ultra light.
In fact the equipment that let me down the most was the Berghaus rucksack and the IPhone.
So don’t let a lack of top of the range gear stop you getting out there- remember the stuff out celebrated explorers had, and I’m not talking about the ones with teams of porters carrying the champagne and truffles.
This Ramble is over now and I have a few weeks R and R before the next one begins.
At the beginning of March I’ll be starting off on the Camino Mozarabe from Malaga, joining up with the Via de la Plata, and hopefully making it to Santiago de Compostella about 6 weeks later.
If you have enjoyed reading any of these ramblings it would be nice if you left a comment because I have no idea who is out there, apart from my much appreciated faithfulls.
Buen Camino

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28 comments

  1. Well done Steve. You must be feeling good, and rightly so! Really enjoyed reading about your travels, trails and ( not too many) trials. And superb photos. Looking forward to seeing you and Sally and assorted others soon! Enjoy a bit of r and r. x

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  2. good man yourself stevie you must be chuffed . the stats make for god reading, all the more impressive as you were carrying (with food and water) roughly the same weight as a bale of briquettes.see you in spain soon X

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      1. didnt get to register booked out strait away which is o k with me . were gonna go up later on in the year and spend a few days up there and do a bit of climbing . see you soon X

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  3. I forgot to say how impressed ive been with your technical abilities keeping this blog going through thick and thin . all i can say is well done Bill your time and patience have paid off (Who said you cant teach an old dog new trick )

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  4. Stevie has always been one of most talented pupils, quick to grasp the most complex of technological tasks.

    Well done Padre, it’s been great following your adventures. One day I think I’ll follow your route myself x

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  5. Hi Steve. What a wonderful journey! Its been brilliant to see it all spread out before us like this! Just wondering whether, in spite of your close bond with Lidl, there might be some supa-lite, supa-warm, supa-rugged, supa-expensive item that you would appreciate for the next leg? Or any small cheap things either! Text me any ideas if you can. See you soon Ax

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      1. Hope you ‘re having a productive Friday work day, with a few beers, and that the ladies are chilling out with a glass of wine! Wet and stormy here.
        Enjoy the next leg of Camino.
        Linda

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