Monday, May 25, 2009

31 Dec 2006 - Back in Spain

It was lovely to be able to share Christmas with Stuart, Michelle and Jack. But it was also lovely to return to our home in sunny spain in time for the New Year. These photographs were taken on New Years Eve, just so that we could send them back to UK to make everyone jealous!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

25 Dec 2006 - Christmas Day in Bedlington

Jack had two, or was it three, Father Christmas outfits so had to keep changing to make sure he wore each set. Michelle bought him one, and then received the rest as presents.

Friday, May 22, 2009

18 Dec 06 - Bedlington

We returned to UK from 16 to 31 December 2006 to meet our new grandson Jack

Michelle, Jack and Stuart

Jan and Jack

Me and Jack

This seemed to be Jacks favourite position

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

5 Dec 2006 - Smugglers Bay

Hard to believe this photograph was taken at the beginning of December! Not to difficult to understand the advantages of living in Spain rather than UK.

The walk started at Combre del Sol and followed the coastline around to a lovely little cove called Summlers Bay.

Very hot day, and this unusual bit of shade was very welcome, as Barry takes a much needed drink of water.

I wonder how much the owner pays for insurance. The views must be very impressive, but I would not like to go to bed with this image in my mind.

Its a very steep climb down to the Bay, and some of the walkers remained at the top to avoid climbing the steep stone steps again on the way back.

The Bay was deserted and we had it all to ourselves. Not too surprising when you consider how far we had to walk to get there. Certainly no obvious road suitable for wheeled traffic. These buildings were very run down and did not appear to be in use any longer.

Monday, May 18, 2009

28 Nov 2006 - Benimeli Walk

Benemeli is about 8 miles from Parcent, quite close to Sagra. It is overlooked by a mountain with aerials, so we call this the "Benemeli aerials walk".

The walk starts with quite a steep climb to a plateau with some old buildings (fincas) just below the final steep climb to the top. Jan and Barry have a well deserved break before we make the final climb.

There is a fantastic view from this plateau over the Jalon and Orba valleys, and also towards Benechembla and the "Green Horse" on the right of the photo.

At the top of the steep climb is a car park and a picnic site with a viewing platform. It always seems very unfair that others can just drive up, when we have to climb the mountain foot by foot. But I must admit it always makes me feel quite superior when we stagger in all hot and sweaty. And I think that they always look a little shame faced - but perhaps that is just wishful thinking.

Our climbing is not yet finished. We have a very steep concrete road up to the aerials themselves. Then a lovely summit walk to the far end of the mountain where we have our picnic lunch. With lovely views of the coast, Montgo and Denia.

After lunch its downhill all the way. About a mile on the road which leads to the picnic site and the aerials. Then we leave the road and walk around the back of the mountain we have just climbed. Finally downhill on a difficult track back to Benemeli, the cars and a well deserved beer in the town square.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

21 Nov 2006 - Pinos Walk

Penos is a small village about about 10 miles from Jalon. Getting there involves a lovely drive along a winding mountain road. There is not a lot to see in Penos, but it is the starting point of many excellent walks, and has a nice bar to retire to at the end.

You are spoilt for choice for the best spots to stop for a short break, always popular with the Monday Club who regard a walk as something to enjoy rather than something to finish as quickly as possible.

We always have lunch at this spot, with its lovely views over the valley towards the sea. It is also about half way, and just before we head down into the valley.

Jan during the picnic lunch stop. The range in the background is the unmistakeable outline of the Bernia mountains.

Like most Monday Club walks, this one is about 9-10 miles and takes about five hours - plus half an hour at the bar at the end of the walk.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

15 Nov 2006 - Boulla Castle

To reach the walk we had to drive over the col de rates and through the mountains to Tarbena, then take the Castells road to kilometer 7. Very impressive scenery, but a winding road which left Jan a little car sick

The leader was not sure how to get to the castle, so we just scrambled up the hill side.

Unusual to have a photographs of us both together, courtsey of a kind fellow walker

Well worth the climb to have fantastic views towards Benedorm and the sea.

Another scramble down, and then a lovely walk back to the cars.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

20 Nov 2006 - Jack

Jack is going to hate these photographs when he gets older!

Monday, May 11, 2009

14 Nov 2006 - El Algar Walk

It was a long drive through the mountains for this weeks Monday Club walk, starting from Fonts de Algar. It took us about an hour each way, much longer than we would normally drive.

The Fonts is a tourist attraction near Benidorm, but our walk was well away from the "maddening crowds".

November is often a lovely month for walking here. The heat of the summer is well gone, but we still get warm and sunny days.

This old finca was ideal for our lunch break, plenty of shade for those of us who needed it.

We ended the walk at a local cafe. With a glass of two glasses of beer costing €5 we were reminded that we were on the tourist trail. Next week we will be back to our more normal €1.10 for a glass.

14 Nov 2006 - Jack Leniston

Jack Two Weeks Old

Sunday, May 10, 2009

12 Nov 2006 - Alcalali Walk

None of our neighbours belong to any of the regular walking clubs here on the Costa Blanca, but they often ask us what it is like to walk in this area. So one Sunday afternoon we asked them if they would like to come for a short walk to see if they like it or not.

For our first walk we took them to the nearby village of Alcalali. This is about a mile from Parcent, across the "campo". It is a very easy walk along good tracks, but with a small dry river to cross to make it a little more exciting.

By the time we reached Alcalali they were all ready for a break, and we sat for half an hour in the village square.

No one found the walk to be too difficult, but they were still glad to get back to Parcent. I think most found it more difficult than they expected, because we have not been asked to take them on any more walks since!