Monday Morning Mountain Marathon!

Later today we will be heading to Portimão to hang Marc’s exhibition, which officially opens tomorrow. Very exciting for him, such a wonderful opportunity to have the kind of coverage he wants here in the Algarve.

This morning however, Joanne and I had decided to head off to São Miguel as it’s close and a relatively middle of the road type hike. We took a route that Joanne had not yet explored and at the half way point, instead of continuing upwards, we took an extreme right and headed down a “wrong way” road for about 2 kms, simply to explore while enjoying the fabulous view, then we returned and finished the hike.

We saw a rabbit, a hawk, a few grouse, and many signs of boar but not the animal itself. Mother Nature also blessed us with a few new wildflowers, which always delights me.

The interior of the trail, which was going up the east side of the mountain, was ablaze with lithodora and broom. The combination was quite striking as you can see.

We had worn a sweater as it was only 15 degrees when we left the house but within five minutes of walking upwards, they came off and as usual, we carried them in our knapsack. What a surprisingly warm hike it turned out to be.

This trail was new to Joanne and although she enjoyed herself, she prefers the other route we have taken up the mountain in past hikes.

As we wandered down an old rocky path we rounded a bend and there we found several bee hives, the sound of happily buzzing bees greeted us almost before we saw the hives. On the ground near them somebody had thrown a few large pieces of honeycomb, which were sweet smelling, glistening, and covered in bees. I’m not sure why.

The south facing slope on our way down was covered in clusters of Phylum. This impressive plant with its creamy-green flowers is one of the earliest to bloom in the Mediterranean and can be seen from February until May. 
That’s the sea off in the distance. It was a perfectly clear day and you could see forever.

The hike from start to finish was 1h22 minutes and was close to 8 km, much of that uphill. As always, we both enjoyed it immensely. As we headed home I took a small sidebar route that I thought might provide me with some other wildflowers and I wasn’t disappointed.

I do believe these are mirtilo (blueberries). They certainly smelled like them although a faint chocolate scent as well. In any case, the field we were in was full of them.

And finally, this very large and interesting looking rock…….from a distance I thought it resembled a VERY large skull. Up close it had a marble texture, or sheen. Interesting.

Lunch is behind us, Marc’s paintings are ready to be loaded in the car, and Portimão awaits. Till tomorrow.

Até Amanhã

10 thoughts on “Monday Morning Mountain Marathon!

  1. as per usual…great…you should put together a book of photos of the flora…that honeycomb thing..I wonder if a wild animal raided the hives…do they have bears there! Nice shot of Randy at the top of the world….good luck with the exhibit…enjoy every minute…

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    1. Thanks Beth. No bears here only boars!! Exhibit all hung. Folks very organized and incredibly friendly and congenial.

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  2. What a lovely hike! Such views!

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    1. Merci mon amie. I think of you often on our hikes.

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  3. Beautiful fĺowers, with all the hiking you guys must have been doing must have kept you both in shape. Good luck to Marc ,I hope he is successful in selling his paintings,as they are beautiful.

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    1. We hike so we can eat chips and drink wine!!! LOL. It’s a balancing act.

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  4. I can solve the honeycomb mystery for you! While bees are generally orderly and neat, if they run out of space to build their comb on the frames provided inside the hive, they can go rogue and start building in any space they can find inside the hive. Beekeepers call this excess comb “burr comb” and part of hive maintenance is to remove the burr comb to keep the frames easy to remove and replace and leave space necessary inside the hive for bee movement from one frame and section to the next. I’ve been enjoying your daily accounts and vicariously tagging along on your holiday. All the best to Marc, the exhibit looks fantastic!

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    1. Thanks Eileen, I love that you took the time to send me that information. Nothing like learning something new. Marc thanks you for your comment.

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  5. Hi Randy and Marc, Although I haven’t commented on all your blogs this nyear, I await them with eagerness and read them all voraciuosly! Thanks for asll the photos, a great many of which bring back such powerful memories of the Algarve from February 2020. Wishing a huge success for Mar’s show and Randy – keep hiking!

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    1. Thanks Rod, it pleases me to know you are following along.

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