Camino Frances | Day 7
Torres del Río to Logroño, 19.8 km
One minute update
Seven days, a week, and I can’t believe I’m getting used to this. I left the Albergue at 6:30 am with my headlamp out and my down jacket on. I’m heading to the city of Logroño where I will be taking a much-needed rest day tomorrow.
While on the subject of headlamps, you don’t need them, not unless you plan on walking every day before the sun comes out. They are way too powerful for the albergues, and you are going to piss some people off. A cellphone will do the job, and I’m not talking about the light either. Get a white picture and bring the brightness all the way up.
On my way out of Torres del Rio, I walked with a doctor from Chicago. He told me his life story and how his mother’s heart disease inspired him to become a surgeon. I was blown away by his generosity in sharing his story with me. That’s the real treasure of el Camino, the people that you meet and the stories that you share. That’s what’s going to stay with you after the journey is over.
I came across the strangest of altars in the woods not far from town. It looked more like a dumping ground with letters and objects everywhere. I even saw a condom hanging from a branch.
Logroño is 16.7 km away, and my Achilles tendon is starting to act up on me. Every morning is becoming harder and harder to start walking, but after it warns up and the help of some pain killer, it leaves me be until I’m almost at the albergue.
It was time for number two in the woods, and although it is not the most comfortable of situations, it is something you will have to do too. So here it goes. Don’t leave the Albergue without some TP, just enough for one serving, and please bury or cover the evidence after you are done. Also, get away from the path because no matter how long you’ve been walking alone when you sit down, someone is going to walk by, it never fails. A small bottle of hand sanitizer will go a long way.
I decided not to shave on this trip, I want to see a physical transformation, but after a week, my face is starting to itch. I’ve never been able to grow a proper bear, so this will be interesting.
The path zing-sags between dirt paths and the road. I have an apple for a snack as lunch is still a couple of hours away.
I made it to Viana at 9:48 am, this is where I had planned to have lunch, too early, so I decided to push on. By the way, it was 13-degree Celsius. Viana is the last town in Navarre before reaching Basque country. The church of Asunción de Santa Maria and that of San Pedro are the two highlights of the town. I refilled my water bottle at a fountain in the main square and headed out into the open country.
A stick on the side of the path came in handy as my Achilles tendon was starting to act upon me again. It made walking painful, and I began to question if I could make it to Santiago this way.
It was at the chapel of Virgen de las Cuevas that I took a break to water down my feet and let them dry before re-applying Vaseline. Using my clothespin, I hanged the dirty socks to my backpack to dry. Logroño is but 6.8km from here, but the sun is out and in full force.
I crossed over a modern pedestrian bridge over the highway and into Logroño’s industrial section where a sign welcomes me to the province of la Rioja.
Just as I made it to the city I came across Maria and her lazy black Labrador on the side of the road, she’s a sweet old lady selling Camino totem. While I was deciding what to get, I bumped into Amin, my German pilgrim friend. I decided to get a necklace with a tiny wooden shell.
We then dipped our feet in the cold waters of a public fountain in a park just across from the river. Two more pilgrims joined us as we were done walking for the day. I decided to walk the rest of the way to the albergue on the other side of Puente de Piedra on my flip flops.
I was disappointed to get another bunk bed, but I later find out that they save the bottom ones for old and injured pilgrims.
After falling back on the Albergue routing, I dipped my feet once again into a small pool in the courtyard while drinking a beer from a vending machine. There were other pilgrims, including one with six toes on one foot. Trust me; I did a double-take.
It was at Calle del Laurel that I hit the bars for some pinchos and man oh man, were they tasty.
Daily Cost Breakdown
+34 608 250 121
C. Mayor, 5
Albergue Casa Mariela
+34 948 648 251
+34 948 648 433
Pl. Padre Valerino Ordónez, 6
+34 948 648 472
C. Jesús Ordoñez, 6
Albergue Andrés Muñoz
+34 948 645 530
+34 609 141 798
C. Medio de San Pedro, s/n
Albergue parroquial Santa María
Pl. de los Fueros
+34 948 090 002
+34 660 071 349
C. El Cristo, 6
+34 648 908 898
+34 620 551 822
C. Eliseo Sainz Ripo, 188
Albergue Santiago El Real
+34 941 209 501
C. Barriocepo, 8
+34 941 700 832
Pl. Martínez Flamarique, 4 bajo
C. Capitán Gallarza, 10 entpta. y 2º izq.
+34 608 234 723
+34 941 254 226
+34 941 256 976
+34 670 993 560
C. Rua Vieja, 42
+34 941 271 334
+34 941 271 335
C. Portales, 12 bajo izq.