After surviving the ordeal of the ice-box WiFi room, we decided to have a leg stretch up one of the tracks running past the campsite to get the circulation going. It was cold to start with, but as usual, I was over dressed for fear of death on a mountainside. Off came the hat and gloves, then time to unzip the waterproof jacket and the sleeping-bag style underjacket. Aaargh, temperature light flashing, still hot, better unzip the wool-rich cardigan with a fleece lining. Phew, that’s better!
6ºC is cold, but if you’re walking, then you don’t need to panic. Note to self, when my hands are blue and look sort of dead, don’t over compensate with huge amounts of clothing or I’ll start a fire.
The previous day when we drove up to the campsite we became slightly lost. Satnav lady said go up a hill only suitable for a funicular railway and then recalculated to somewhere in the middle of Gouveia. The usually helpful signs placed at strategic junctions of towns to lead you to the “campismo” suddenly became unhelpful and not particularly strategic. So halt the wagons and the Old Man and I head off on foot for a reconnaissance of the area. On the way back to the wagons with ladies and dog waiting patiently, a chap walking past asked if we needed help. He explained that the campsite was along the road about 400 metres and upstairs. By his little smile as he said it, I think he knew “upstairs” wasn’t quite right, but we knew exactly what he meant when he pointed almost vertically up behind the town.
You might have to drive up stairs to get there, but the Portuguese high country is yet another tick on the ever growing list of places we like in this little strip of land squeezed between the Atlantic and Spain.