Cerro de Muriano to Villaharta 14miles a little up and down.
A very comfortable night in the house of Juan and Maria, thank you. Hans the hospitalero provided much useful information about the route. On the way into the village for breakfast we pass the local used car lot “Rusticars” honest, really we don’t think the significance in English is realised. Still bigger organisations than this have fallen over muligual misunderstandings.
We bowl out of the town and are repeatedly lapped by squaddies from the huge army base on both sides of the road doing their morning training runs.
The dominant flora is cistus and holm oak although there are large area of damp and at least one that contains numbers of enormous tadpoles presumably the young of some equally enormous local amphibian. We continue warily for the next few km. But the only large beast seen is a very large bird by Ray which lumbers into the air. Possibly a vulture disturbed on its night time roost. There are also lavender, potentillas and the host of daisies and smaller flowers everywhere allong the way with the occasional harvested cork oalk tree.
On the new road traffic flashes past , our route is mainly 20m away on the old road with a fence covered in sweet peas between us and them. The only traffic on our road is a solitary army vehicle possibly doing driver training and a German pilgrim walking back from Merida. Coffee in the half way bar/shop/hardwarestore/museum is very welcome in El Vacar where another large flock of sheep are grazing. Tim is convinced that they are the same sheep we saw yesterday on entering Cerro de Muriano others are less convinced, the sheep they admit could be but the two large dogs are different and there aren’t any goats eating the bushes.
We continue alongside but not on the N 423 to Badajoz. The route takes a delight in seeking out damp herbaceous patches fortunately only a few are damper than needed. At one point the way meets a under road drain pipe , about 2m diameter, the yellow arrow is ambiguous we pass under the road the end is blocked with a fence ,foliage and a swallows nest. Time to reverse.
One of our wayarks as advised by Hans in the house last night is a Feruginous Fuente there are several of these in the area passing though iron rich strata they are loaded with the mineral and leave orange stains across the ground. Ray calls them Irun Bru fountains and claims to have seen them in Scotland. We stop by it for oranges and bicuits before continueing the last mile or so up to Villaharta.
Link to where we are on Google Maps