Sheila is in the UK babysitting the grandchildren, and I am trying to keep myself busy in an unusual cold and wet time in Mallorca. Today I took a drive and walk. The Gorge of Pairs (Torrent de Pareis) is a beautiful gorge in Mallorca and one of the famous hikes here. When it rains a lot, however, there is too much water in the gorge for hiking down the steep river bed. There is access from the bottom though, at Sa Calobra, which is just a couple of restaurants set at the end of a long and very winding steep road. From there a short walk leads to the mouth of the river and usually one can walk up the canyon for a bit. When I went there today, there was so much water that I could only go a few hundred meters. The weather was rather bad, with thunderstorms and hail, but that kept the number of people visiting this top tourist attraction down. I was fortunate that the enjoyable hour I spent walking around the gorge was the only dry time this afternoon.
We had a few days of very strong winds, heavy rain and rather cold weather. Today the sun came out again. Sheila went to Palma to meet some friends from Germany, and I hiked across the hills behind our flat to the bay of San Vincenc. Beautiful views on the way and a good workout. There was not much wind, but the breakers were still rolling into the bay.
In Vancouver, there is a record breaking dry spell of 12 days without rain, which only happened once before around this time of year. It is also less rain than we have had in Mallorca this year. This morning was beautiful and sunny, though, and Sheila and I walked to Cala Murta before enjoying German cake and Spanish coffee at the lighthouse of Cap Formentor. Tonight a cold front is moving in and rain started again. There might even be snow up on the mountain tops this night.
We met our friends Siegfried and Maike in Valdemossa this morning, left one car there and drove to Esporles. From there we hiked 11km back to Valdemossa, up two mountains with nice views and very interesting landscape. This is part of the cross island path GR221, but it was not as well sign posted like the other segments for most of it. Not a problem as I had a GPS track to follow and we ended up in the right cafe after the walk. The weather was warm, but cloudy, perfect for hiking.
After a rather untypical week of rain and wind (for this time of year), the rain left us and we are enjoying sunny and warm weather. All our guests have left us too, and we are using the week alone to set up for winter, do some hiking, and plan visiting some of our friends who live on the island.
We have arrived in Mallorca, Jessica and her family came, my parents and Sheila’s mother. It rains only on about 50 days a year here, but after two sunny days we are hitting a few of those days. The kids (and adults) nevertheless enjoy the warm weather and ocean. We also have access to a pool, great to sit at, have a drink and look at our WhatsApp messages.
Val took Maike, Sheila and me on a long hike yesterday across the Mola d´ Esclop. It was very windy again and quite cold. The area suffered a large forest fire a few years ago and while it has become green again, there was a lot of windfall from old burned tress that blocked some of the path. The landscape is very dramatic and we have up to now not hiked much in the southern part of the island, so this was great.
Ulrike, Sheila and I left before 9am this morning and went to Lluc to hike up to the Coll de Prat. The weather was nice and sunny, but above 900 m there was snow and ice. The pass is 1,200m high and there was a bitter cold wind. The views were outstanding and after a 15km hike a beer in the sun tasted very good.
Sheila came back yesterday and today we joined a German group for a hike to the necropolis at the public estate Son Real. This is not far from us, but we had never been there. For many centuries, the necropolis was the grave yard for the upper classes on the island, today there are empty graves with a view. The weather was great, and of course we went for a long lunch afterwards.