Still overwhelmed. Somehow these mountains are… I don’t know, a bit frightening, a bit violent, very mesmerizing, always shocking, like I just want to fall over. Sometimes I have to look away.

The village of Sotres. Not the top, but I was too tired to go further. Took 10 minutes to park, as in finding a place I could safely put the kickstand down and think I could get the bike upright.

Monsters must live there. It’s like a movie.

Sotres is prospering, at least the tourism seems to be bringing $ for new buildings.

This area is a super tourist area, all the hiking thru the Picos. It’s basically the north facing section, opposite to Fuente De (cable car) and Espinama (hotel). You could hike from Sotres to Fuente De, marked in blue. The super crowded area is the red, the Ruta de Cares, from Camarmeña to Cain, along the Cares river. It’s around 6-7 hrs round trip and only gains a few hundred meters, so considered doable by many hikers.

This area is all crawling with van campers of all sizes. There’s a ton of free roadside pulloffs for free camping, so it kind of looks like Alaska in that way.

Of course, this is hell on wheels for those of us on cycles. You just have to pass wherever you can.

And of course, stop for cider. Many places give you a bottle and a pump, but this one is the best one yet.

The owner was insistent that you must squirt one mouthful into the glass and drink it down. I was bad and squirted out half a glass and let it sit. (Also I was helping a British couple take a little movie of it.)

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