To walk off some of the calories, the following morning we hiked up another 1,000 metres to a small peak called Penabon. This ascent criss-crossed the hillside and went through the forest and across scree slopes before ending at the peak with uninterrupted views of the terraced hillsides, white villages, and the serrated sides of the valley. On the far horizon were the peaks of Mulhacen and Alcazaba.
With quite a bit of energy still left, we decided to walk over into the next valley following the GR7 or E4 route to the village of Juviles, where a scheduled bus service would be leaving at 17:15 that would bring us back to Trevelez. Following the signposts in the other direction eventually leads to Greece, so it’s important to go the right way. Luckily the GR7 was marked with a white horizontal stripe over a red horizontal stripe and we followed these signs successfully, ignoring the other paths that split off from the trail every few hundred metres. Crossing through a firebreak in the trees there was a sign that indicated Juviles was 6.3 kilometres away.
This was the last sign for what seemed like 6.3 miles – the track twisted and turned and we just hoped we were going the right way. Cows were lowing and the wind was beginning to pick up in speed; although the ridges were clear, nimbus clouds were again forming over the higher mountains. Eventually another GR7 marker came into view and we walked through an orchard to the road into the village. We found the bus stop first and then had a quick beer; my bottle had obviously been stored in a cowshed or pigsty. The bus was 10 minutes early but we caught it in the nick of time. Our fare to Trevelez was 1.35 Euros with the final destination being Granada. Unfortunately, we got off the bus at the wrong stop and had to climb the dry-ski slope back to our hotel – in many ways this was the hardest climb of the day. Sheep were blocking one street and there was a furniture manufacturer in the town producing doors of a high quality. Someone had a stash of hashish nearby.
To be continued tomorrow…