We have planned a route for several days. The plan is to walk to the refuge Ventosa, here stay overnight and then ascend to the Montardo summit.
The reality makes the changes to our plan already at the very start. We cannot drive to the point where the track starts as river has swept away parts of the road. So we start to walk from the town of Arties, means another couple of km to walk. We follow the road ant then path to refuge Restanca. I decide on favor of the wrong path here. After several hours walk we are near lake Estanh de Rius and find out we are far away from the place we intended to be. We have no time to reach Ventosa today so we turn back and return to Restanca. We arrive there at 6pm.
I book four beds in a 14 bed room and ask the hosts to call Ventosa and inform them not to wait us. Restanca is located at the shore of the lake. The view from the bedroom window is like one on the postcards. Lake and a waterfall right on the opposite side of the lake. Rucksacks, hiking poles and boots must be leaved in the entrance hall. Plastic slippers replace the boots and the basket can be used to take inside some of your belongings.
The dinner is nourishing and tasty – a traditional Spanish soup with bread and garlick, a salad, a meat with mushrooms and a yogurt. Our table mates are a French man from Toulouse and a Canadian lawyer from London (one that is near Toronto 🙂 ). The Canadian has traversed half the Pyrenees (starting from Atlantic ocean) and will finish his tour tomorrow in Salardou. The rest he plans for the next year.
We manage to convince Benita and Imants to expand two days tour to three days. Ventosa is the destination for tomorrow.