This morning we woke to clearer skies, Iain suggested we go out walking and as its not a suggestion he has on a regular basis we were up and out before he could change his mind. The campsite owner printed us off a map of a 5km circular local walk along the goat tracks and back along the river.
Iain has just said if I am writing blog all I need to put is “went for a walk – got wet”.
However, I cannot be that precise and I don’t think it really tells the story…..
We left campsite, walked for 20 minutes – heavens opened. No it didn’t rain, it hurled hailstones down for 3-4 minutes – it was akin to being pelted with ice by a sub machine gun. We couldn’t have been wetter if we had sat fully dressed in a bath of water. So as we were well and truly drenched nothing for it then to continue. The route went up through the Alentejo hills which really are worth the walk just to see the forests of cork trees. Once you get high enough the views would be spectacular – if you could take your eyes of the thunder and lightening storm a mile or so above your head (second soaking of the day).
We managed to lose the route once, took a slight detour but joined the footpath back near the river. Once we got to the river our problems were back – the river is a good 5 ft higher than normal, therefore the footpath is now under water. Oh no of course we didn’t turn back – that would be sensible, we will take the goat path literally and try and climb our way along the granite rocky outcrops. Sounds easy enough? it wasn’t, it was a nightmare. Sheer drops down 15ft to a fast flowing river and we are balancing on shinny slits of granite with a good slurping of mud pouring down the hill 800 odd metres later we made it on to terra firma.
Two hours later we get back to camp, wet, cold, miserable – and just in time to watch the sun come out and sky turn blue ready to dry out our soaking clothes and walking shoes.
On the plus side – its not raining now, its warm and surely there cannot be much rain left in the sky? fingers crossed, tomorrow we head for the Unesco World Heritage Site of Evora.