15 th May Villeret d’Apchier to St Albin sur Limagnole 21.5 kms.

We had a lovely breakfast with home made yoghurt and apple cake as well as the usual muesli, fruit and breads. They may have some rules but they know how to feed pilgrims.

The weather was misty but no rain and as we climbed( again!) the mist/fog rolled in. The road is good and I got such a rhythm going I shot ahead accompanied by a lively black dog. Creating a hill I looked back to see where the others were and Karen was waving to me. They had stopped at another of these pop up rest stops. I charged back and went in to find the guys drinking hot coffee and chocolate. I needed a loo stop but the sign said behind and below the house. In fact it was the public loo across the park a good distance away. When I went in it was quite modern but the placement of the toilet and the urinal left a lot to be desired. If you sit on the loo and bend over to attend to yourself you nearly end up with your head in the urinal! Anyway it served the purpose. We were back on the track again and visibility was quite low, about a 100 metres. All you could hear was the tinkle of cow bells, a few birds twittering and the gurgle of water running as snow melted. Other obstacles were fallen trees and branches from the sudden snowfall.

Once again the track turned slushy and slippery which is very tiring to walk on. We were getting tired from the effort to keep our footing when Andy and I spotted a picnic table. The difficulty with snow is you can’t just stop and rest. You get cold quickly and wet sitting. As we decided to stop and have a lunch stop of bread and cheese and muesli bars another group were also heading towards the table. It turned out they had stayed at the gite last night and two are driving and two are walking. The two driving had bought lunch. They insisted we share the table and even gave us a blanket to sit on. It was really nice of them. The couple walking are brother and sister and are walking with a huge dog. Andy and I both were amused about the gite not wanting our boots inside but no problem with the dog!

We were cold after the stop but once we got walking we warmed up and the track started to get wetter and wetter as we descended. Actually it was a fast flowing stream! When we came out of the forest to see the valley below it seemed surprising after we had been in fog nearly all day.

As we walked into town we came across two crosses loaded with pilgrim’s stones. It is common on these journeys to place stones on rocks and cairns and any place that seems significant to mark a sacred journey.

We are all tired and a little footsore but the bar we are staying at has boot drying machines! They look a little like vacuum cleaners but they blow warm air.

The town is in the Lozière department. We have left the Haute Loire.

I noticed a sign that said it was 1475 kilometres to Santiago!

Author: fleetfootkath

I am a keen walker and traveller. I love to explore and learn about new people, places and cultures with a sense of joy and gratitude for this fortunate life. I believe walking is a wonderful way to really connect with the present and the beauty of the world that surrounds us. It makes me happy.

One thought on “15 th May Villeret d’Apchier to St Albin sur Limagnole 21.5 kms.”

  1. Sitting on Mikala’s sofa on a sunny Sydney morning with my morning cuppa seems more than a world away from your experience Kath. I am hoping that as you push beyond this valley that the weather lifts and that the track becomes a lot less treacherous. Well done to all of you for negotiating the conditions so well! I’m very glad that both Peter and Karen are fully well again. And may that stay the same for all of you as you continue this journey. Nine x

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