Donkeys! Yes, I said donkeys. I could never get enough of them on the Camino del Norte. They always seemed so friendly and gentle. On a day like this when I was struggling in the hills west of Deba, they also brightened up my spirits. And believe me, as I started to weaken in the heat of the day, my spirits really needed to brighten fast.
I left my last post, On the Camino Del Norte in Spain, Deba to Ermita del Calvario, near the small church, Ermita del Calvario. If you’re struggling or want an easy day from Deba, there is an albergue nearby (at the time of writing). About 20 kilometers with some tough climbing is awaiting you before Markina. From Ermita del Calvario, the Camino follows this road.
A cross looks over the hillside with a typical landscape of mixed forest and farmland.
Ahhh… the donkeys. Let’s say hello 🙂
Cute little guy. Let’s say hi to your friends…
So friendly and at least one seemed happy for the company of this tired pilgrim 🙂
From Deba to Ermita del Calvario, the Camino basically parallels the Cantabrian Sea before heading inland southwest toward Markina. As we continue toward Olatz, the ocean gets more distant until there were no more views. We won’t see the Cantabrian Sea again for days.
Some of these openings between fences were quite narrow and I could barely get through with my large backpack.
The path very rough at times.
A shelter, in case you need to escape a storm or stay for the night.
There were many trails in this area but the Camino del Norte was easy to follow. We’ll go right here toward Olatz.
This is a memorial in Basque. Bernabe is free in the mountains, like free birds and wind. Thanks to Gonzalo from Basque Coast Geopark for that.
This home must have fine views of not only the Cantabrian Sea but the surrounding hills and farmland.
A much older memorial. Not sure what it represents.
Getting closer to Olatz…
Homes in the peaceful countryside…
Love this view! I was tempted to walk up the road but there was likely a large dog waiting for me.
We made it to Olatz which has a bar at the time of this writing. If you need food or refreshments, I would still stock up in Deba and not depend on the bar. Supposedly, they are open on weekdays and weekends in August only and on the weekends the rest of the season. If the bar is open when you arrive, please take a break because there is nothing all the way to Markina.
I’ll leave my post in Olatz, where I wish I had at least carried an extra bottle of water. I really, really needed it later in the heat of the day. Don’t make the same mistake as I did as very few drinkable water sources were present along this stretch. Please join me on my next post, On the Camino Del Norte in Spain, Olatz to Markina-Xemein, in the hills as we continue toward the town of Markina where I would have a very disturbing experience. I’ll get to that later.
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