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Arriving in la Herradura: our home for March

Saturday 2 March dawns very dull and chilly. We fill up with fuel and decide to clean the van, which has got very muddy with all the rain and a few diversions along dirt tracks. Setting off from Antequera, we stop at a fascinating restaurant/museum, Molina de Blanco, for coffee just outside the town. It’s full of a motley collection of farming and domestic implements from a bygone age and the coffee is very good. With tables set out for at least a couple of hundred we’re the only ones there to explore the exhibits and warm up by the roaring fire.

There are fantastic rock formations further up the road in the Sierra del Torcal, a nature reserve, so we spend some time exploring and watch a shepherd at work with his flock coming to drink at the troughs. We stay beside the road for lunch and meet a couple of guys on bikes – doing 180 km and 9000 m climbing in a day! We make another short stop at Villanueva de la Conceptión where there’s a visitor centre but it’s still dull and very cold. This is certainly an area to return to though for a few days hiking when the weather’s better – only an hour from la Herradura, so maybe a weekend trip?

Avoiding Malaga we take the motorway to la Herradura, arriving at 1600 to find the sign on the campsite gate ‘completo’, but we’re made most welcome by our hosts from last year and take up our reserved pitch under the avocado trees. Unlike last year, it’s very cold and chilly – even trying to rain. We decide to eat out and take a walk along the front and find a good pizzeria.