There are only so many ways through the mountains. We rode all the way back to Lourdes and out again along a different route, stopping at a petrol station to gird loins and empty bladders for the long slog ahead. I attempted to raise everyone's spirits by handing round my BN biscuits, with varying success.
Towards the middle of the day we found ourselves back on track and up among the mountains. When we emerged from the pass, we were in Spain.
We stopped near the border for a late lunch of tapas in the sunshine, entering a bar and pointing inquiringly at the food on display. We didn't fully understand the reply, and ordered one of everything regardless.
The afternoon's roads were gorgeous, with wide, sweeping bends and views of brilliant blue lakes. The highlight, for me, was seeing the rest of the group going in the opposite direction to me along one shore of the lake, while I waved from the other.
It was hot, though.
In the early evening we entered Logroño and wound through the streets to our hotel, which had a vehicle lift for access to the garage. This fitted four bikes at a time and was pretty exciting.
In the wonderfully cool reception, we were greeted by a brace of Tintins on the front desk. (The one on the right is a pilgrim; you can see his cockleshell.)
Checked in and showered, we went out on the town and I wondered why I hadn't been to Spain before. Everything is cheap and they truly understand the importance of the olive.
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