Day 52 – Montanejos to Mora de Rubielos

Dinner at the Hotel Xaeun was OK – not a buffet, even though it’s a spa resort. A choice of three entrees,  three mains, and three desserts. I had spaghetti marinara – pretty sure it came out of a can and they added a handful of mussels – fish and sald – Emparador they called it; looked and tasted a bit like tuna – and rice pudding for dessert. Two glasses of house red, and in bed reading by 10:00 pm.

Up at 7:00, packed, went to the place they’d stored my bike, and tidied it up a bit – there is a full workshop there – bike stand, gentle pressure hose to wash your bike, a full set of basic tools, chain degreaser and lube, and as floor pump. Impressive, and a first on this trip.

Back to the hotel, washed my hands and took my luggage downstairs to check out after breakfast.

Which was utter chaos. A narrow hallway led to the breakfast room, and just inside the door was the buffet laid out – the queue went for miles. I sat and read for 30 minutes – there were two buses leaving at 9:00, and all the passengers were getting breakfast first. When I got in, there were still several people at the buffet – there was no cereal, just toast, jams, sliced cheese and meat, and yoghurt. There was one croissant left, which I snaffled. I looked at the coffee and juice machines – there was  queue of about 30 still there, so I ate a toasted cheese sandwich, a tub of yoghurt and my croissant, drinking the bottled water at the table. By the time I’d finished they had mostly gone, so I grabbed an OJ and a coffee, and made another toasted cheese sandwich. One observation – I was probably the youngest person there – spas are for old folk…..

There was a huge thunderstorm going on when I woke, and heavy rain. I left around 9:30 am, when the rain had turned to light drizzle. It stopped on and off, and varied between no rain and torrents during the ride. Skin’s waterproof, and it wasn’t cold. A solid climb

road2

(I ended up over 1100 metres – started out at 470) – up to the dam at CV-20.

lake

It then levelled out a bit, with just gentle climbs up to Puebla de Arenoso,

puebla

where I hit a serious climb, up past Olba to Fuentes de Rubielos. Lots of ruins along the road – abandoned hamlets, slowly turning back into soil…

ruins

Got hit by a hail storm, too – and nowhere to shelter. It only lasted for 10 minutes, but it wasn’t nice.

From Fuentes de Rubielos I took the A-232 to Rubielos de Mora

mora

and from there the same road to Mora de Rubielos – dunno what all the Rubielos stuff is about, but it’s a bit confusing to have two towns with such similar names 12 Km apart.

More hail as I approached Mora de Rubielos; I stopped at the first hotel I found, a 4 star – they wanted 118 Euros for bed and breakfast, so I bummed a town map from them, and cycleda couple of hundred metres to the Hotel Jaime 1. Dinner, bed and breakfast for way less – the hassle is dinner doesn’t start till 9:00 pm.

Food has been a problem on these quiet byways; no petrol stations,  no bars. and only a few serious restaurants. The few hamlets I cycled through didn’t have shops, and the bigger towns I bypassed. I’ll have to grab a few extra bits at breakfast, and stash them away.

A hot shower and dry clothes – much better 🙂 I walked up to the castle – it has little tiled sections on the walk up showing the twelve stations of the cross, for some reason. The castle saw some heavy action in the Spanish civil war,  and also during the war of the two Peters – I don’t remember that one from history lessons.

It’s now 8:30 pm – I’ll finish this here and go down to the bar; a glass of red should set me up for dinner.

See you down the road.

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