Sunday, July 20, 2014

July 20, 2014 -- Atapuerca, Spain

The leg is still swollen but not as sore. I hobbled 18.5 kilometers or 11.5 miles on it today to Atapuerca. Tomorrow I hope to make Burgos, which is a slightly longer distance to walk. I have 331 miles left to walk, and I've done 159 miles so far or just under 1/3 the distance. The hardest place was from Villafranca Montes de Oca to San Juan de Ortega, 12.4 kilometers with, given the cold and wet conditions, no place to sit down for a rest and three hills to go over. It was in San Juan that I finally got my morning cup of coffee.  Here's the welcome view of that village as it finally came into sight.

I was lucky as far as the weather was concerned. It had rained during the night, so the morning was wet, windy, and cold, and the sky was dark until almost noon, but except for one light shower, there was no rain until I was safely indoors here in Atapuerca.

I have been unable to ascertain the origin of the name Atapuerca, which seems to imply tying a sow, but I can tell you that just outside of town there is an important geological site where ancient human remains were found at the bottom of a shaft. The remains are judged to be 800 thousand years old, making them the oldest ever discovered in Europe.

It's raining again this afternoon, but the forecast calls for the rain showers to end during the night and for sunshine the next few days with a warming trend.

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