Friday, February 20, 2009

Northeastern Spain

Pine Mountain News

Hello again from Pine Mountain. We are in the third week of February already. It is winter here on the mountain. The last storm left us with almost 4 inches ( 10 cm ) of snow. The sun is out and it is warming up today so most of it will probably melt.

This week I am cutting our 7 section news letter to 3 sections. Our Newsletter was just getting too long and had too many ads between the introduction and the travel adventure. We are moving all our ads to the right side. If you see something that interests you just click on the colored words and you will travel to that website. We are putting up a new survey so feel free to tell us if you like the new format.

This week our Travel adventure is about Northeastern Spain.
Those of you that have just joined us, here is how our newsletter is laid out at least for this week.

Section 1----Pine Mountain News

Section 2----Our Travel Adventure

Section 3----Pine Mountain Evening

Northeastern Spain

We followed D914 along the coast from Cervera de la Marenda in Southwest France. The road was a twisting and winding one through the foothills of the Pyrennes mountains. This is considered an important eco region. There are thick stands of olive trees and cork oaks. There are breathtaking views of the Mediterranean around many of the turns in the road.

The wintertime brings the birds. There are over 356 species of birds that winter here. There are everything from ospreys, falcons, and eagles to egrets and terns. There are many species of ducks and swans and geese too. This is a wetlands area formed by the Ebro river delta.



People live here too. They terrace the steep hillsides to grow crops. There are vinyards, almond and olive groves and fruit orchards.


We reach the French border at Coll dels Belitres. D914 became N260. All the mountain driving took it's toll and we stopped for our first night in the charming little town of Badia de Portbou.

This region of Spain is known as Catalonia. The capital of the region is Barcelona. There are 3 different languages spoken in this region. The languages are Catalan, Aranese and Spanish. The area has a long and colorful history from the Roman Empire days to the rule of the Moors from 790 to 1492 to the castles of the feudal kingdoms of the middle ages.

We left Badia de Portblou behind an headed down the coast.

The next major town we came to was Colera a town of about 700 people. We stopped for a quick brunch then back on the road again. The next major town that we came to was LLanca. This is a town of about 4900 people. This town has a large commercial fishing fleet.

We continued down the coast until we reached El Port de la Selva. We turned inland and came back out on the coast at Bahia de Rosas. We kept winding our way down the coast and finally stopped for the night at Tossa de Mar.

Tossa de Mar
This town is about the halfway between the French border and Barcelona. Tossa de Mar has a poulation of about 5000 and is 100 kilometers from the French Border and 103 Kilometers from Barcelona. The coastal scenery in this part of Spain is spectacular but the constant twisting and winding of the coast road makes for slow going and it takes it's toll on you by the end of the day.

Next week we will continue down the coast and arrive at Barcelona. This city is the capital of the Catalonia area and is one of the jewels of the Mediterranean.

Pine Mountain Evening

Tonight is another cold winter night on Pine Mountain. I am snuggled up in my easy chair by a warm roaring fire in the fireplace.
Squeekers is on his perch munching peanuts. My coffee of the evening Hot Maple Syrup is from This American roast coffee combines with maple syrup to give you a delicious slightly sweet coffee. It goes well with homemade sugar cookies. Squeekers and I have been watching and old TV series called Highlander. My coffee and cookies are now history and my show is over. It has been a long day. I put Squeekers in his cage and turn off the gas fireplace. It is time for bed. Good night all have a great week. See you next week.