Tuesday, 18 March 2014

17 March 2014 – Orba Castle

We met at the farmacia in Parcent for this local walk.  Jan and I were able to walk down to meet the group.  Pleasant at the start, not so much so at the end of the walk!
Only five of us for today’s walk.   Some are holiday, some spending a few months back in UK.   Fortunately Wendy has just returned from a three week holiday in India, or it would have been only Ken and Sylvia with us.
We stopped off in Murla to have a look at the new bell tower.   The previous one collapsed 20 years ago, killing two local women.   The new one is very modern, and looks very strange in this old Spanish village.   
This Spanish lady was sitting on the pavement opposite the new tower, obviously waiting for the gas man to arrive.   She spoke to us as we passed, and insisted on getting this old photograph of the original tower.   She agreed that the old one was much nicer, but her husband preferred the new one.   Note the key pinned to her cardigan.
It’s an easy walk to the foot of the hill, but quite a steep climb up.   We have done this walk quite a few times, but found it harder than usual to find the track today.   The markings are now well worn, and difficult to spot.
It took us an hour to climb to the castle, and by the time we arrived were all feeling quite shattered.   The temperatures were quite high today, the first time this year that we have found it difficult.   And, of course, none of us had done any serious walking for at least two weeks.
It’s quite exposed on the top of the hill, but the ruins of the castle provide sufficient shade.
The all around views from the castle are pretty spectacular.   After lunch we had plenty of time to explore and admire the views.
We came down the more direct route.  It's shorter, but much steeper.  It’s an unofficial path, and even more difficult to find than the official one going up.   
It was a relief to reach the bottom and the easy flat walk back to Parcent.

Monday 24 March 2914
Juvees de Alt from Benimaurell.   Meet in the car park at 10am.   This is the walk which David usually leads, down the 2000 steps and up to the abandoned village.  Then the long path to the Green Horse and back to the car park.  

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