Winding roads of the Sierra Nevada

As usual Pete just loves to mix things up, so we decided not to follow the touristy coast of Spain for a while and before I knew it we were driving over Spanish viaducts which are pretty high up whilst being battered by side winds, I must admit I really am not the best person when it comes to heights, so you can picture me holding on to the passenger door handle for dear life every time we passed over a high bridge or viaduct… with my stomach churning and really not caring or daring to look down to the places that Pete kept insisting on pointing out along the way, then passing through tunnels both short and long, not to mention up and around some very twisty, winding mountain roads and up therein to the Sierra Nevada, the place where the clouds drop down and come to greet you… And then on into the campsite Orgiva.

We had stayed at Presa La Vinuela for a whole 7 nights leaving there on the morning of the 27th Feb… I was pretty grateful to the dog for thankfully staying healthy so we could stay the extra time there as I had loved it, we also made use of the ACSI discount of 7 nights for the price of 6, if we hadn’t been so low on food stocks and desperate for shopping I think I would have been happy to have stayed there much longer, but alas, it was not meant to be and running out of teabags 2 days before we left was a major deciding factor in that!!! The campsite shop there only having those horrid herbal type tea bags really wasn’t helpful, we tried them, but decided it would be coffee all the way which then left us wide awake and crazy with caffeine come bed time!!!

Orgiva campsite is a very small campsite set in the mountains with allegedly 30 pitches but looking at this further the pitches are mostly pretty much tent sized and we are taking up two pitches just to park… There are about 10 motorhomes here and a couple of tents which leaves a couple of larger areas for perhaps a couple more motorhomes and a few smaller pitches for maybe smaller vans or some tents… We entered the site and again had to avoid low hanging tree branches and ornate looking lamp lights hanging off the sides of the buildings, having managed to avoid all obstacles we found ourselves a plot…

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Typically and on style we totally missed the turning to a huge supermarket on our way here… yep we passed right by it… so now we found ourselves headed for the mountains with very few provisions on board (more importantly no tea bags) so we were left hoping there would be something around where we were headed…

Receptionist at camping Orgiva told us there was a supermarket 2km up the road, so once pitched Pete thought he might get his bike out along with the doggy hut and ride to get some shopping… to my surprise, hilariously Pete was back 25 mins later… wow that was the quickest shop ever!!!… Pete’s face then said it all… We had totally forgotten about Spanish siesta times and the shop was closed for 2 hrs…

Poor Pete then had to cycle there again once the shops reopened, I stayed at the motorhome and cooked us up a nice big stew, using up some old potatoes, frozen veg and some frozen beef we still had, it went down a treat when Pete got back and it also made some room for the fresh food… Can’t beat a bit of one pot comfort food cooking when in a motorhome!!! With a tiny sized oven and just three hob rings, when low on food supplies you would be surprised what food you can knock up using just one or two pots and make into a comforting, satisfying and tasty meal (I usually let Pete cook… but just to prove I can actually cook I photographed the meal I was cooking!!!)

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We ventured out for a couple of hours to explore the area before the rain came in, we walked along a trek we’d found at the back of the site which took us on to a rough concrete covered road and into the nearby town of Orgiva, I must admit I really didn’t enjoy the stroll and had a bad vibe from the get go…

This may have been due to the countless amount of guard dogs, charging at fencing and gates to get to Toffi and us… Amongst these were breeds such as Dogo Argentinos, Rottweilers, German Shepherds, Pitbulls, Sharpei’s along with many other smaller less intimidating dogs… Now don’t get me wrong I am a dog person and have owned bully breed dogs since my teenage years, but it always makes me nervous (and my nervousness is probably then transferred to Toffi also) when I see other powerful dogs charging at some measly wire fencing to get at us, plus knowing Toffi is often reactive too only gives me more to worry over, it’s no fun splitting powerful dogs up in a fight!!! So our walk was a fraught one today!!!

There’s been a change in the weather now and looks like it’s going to be wet for perhaps the next week, we are on weather warnings for rain, thunderstorms and heavy winds for at least the next couple of days… so it looks like we may be staying here until the weather subsides.

We don’t fancy driving through freshly wet and now down the possibly slippery mountain roads, although the roads are pretty good coming into the mountains here we can wait till the weather behaves just a little better!!!

It reminds me of a time many, many years ago when we were holidaying on the island of Zante/Zakynthos – Greece, we’d decided to go for breakfast in a cafe which someone had highly recommended for the most breathtaking views, the cafe literally overhung the mountainside, (the views and breakfast were pretty amazing from what I can remember!!!) but on the way back down we experienced a pretty scary moment of nearly going off the side of the mountain in the hire car we were driving!!! We we’re high up on the mountainside road, sheer drops off the side and with a big coach also following carefully behind us… when we just lost control and the car span out…

Perhaps there was a bit of oil on the road or the morning heat melting the tarmac road, we will never know but luckily we managed to come to a stop literally just a couple of inches from the sheer drop cliff edge, the car had spun three times in total, how we didn’t go over the side of this mountain I really do not know, there were no safety barriers there either, the tyres were literally caked in tarmac afterwards from the sheer braking and sliding of the vehicle, we were only going at a speed of about 20 miles an hour as I’d been nervous due to my hatred of heights and I’d been constantly telling/nagging Pete to please drive carefully and slowly, well what an exciting day that turned out to be… (this possibly explains why I now hang on to the car handles for dear life, I literally hurt my left hand doing this the other week… yeah really not too keen driving high up mountain roads too often but the views do make it worth it!!!)

Pete had mentioned that there was a lot of multinational hippy type people in the area and that when he’d gone shopping he’d seen a lot of them around, so curious he searched on the internet and found there’s a hippy commune nearby thats been there since the 80’s!!! I must go find a flower to put in my hair…

This campsite here is ok, toilet and shower facilities are clean, and plenty of hot water, with a black waste facility in each of the mens and womens toilet block and the restaurant seems to be used by locals so probably a good sign, although we haven’t used it yet…the swimming pool is closed as out of season…

The rain has now begun so its chill out time for us to perhaps watch a film or two or read a good book.

Will update all you lovely folks soon,

Take Care

Donna x

GPS Coords Camping Presa La Vinuela N36°52’25”  W4°11’9″   €17 pn 7 nights for 6 deal with ASCI discount card + free wifi

Camping Orgiva is €20 pn but 10% discount for 3 days 20% for 7 days 30% for 15 days or a whopping 50% for 30 days + free WiFi (site not listed for ACSI)