Distance Walked: 26km (door to door).
Time Walking: 6 am – 2:30 pm (8.5 hours).
Accommodations: Rifugio Communale Alceo Gesti, Piazza Anita Garibaldi 2. Tel: 331-5291556, email@example.com. Bunk Bed: 14.70 euros per person.
Summary: Although we walked 8 km more than yesterday, our early start and frequent cool breezes made it a much easier day for me. Still, it was not without its challenges. Since leaving Radicofani, we saw no shops or cafes which meant that Richard went without coffee until 2:30 p.m. The night before, we had stocked our packs with fruit, muffins, nuts and water so we were well prepared. And there were a few picnic tables (some with water fountains) along the way, which were greatly appreciated.
When there were no ‘official’ picnic areas, we just kinda sat anywhere!
About 3 hours into our walk, we ran into the remains of a Church that had been recorded by Sergiac the Serious, in the 10th Century, as a place for Pilgrims to receive accommodations. Sergiac was the Archbishop of Canterbury who originally recorded the Via Francigena Route…or at least, the lodgings that he stayed at along the way)!
Shortly after that, a family home had set up a Pilgrim rest area in their side yard, with lemonade and snacks. Sadly, they did not have coffee. However, they do offer evening lodgings (which would be very useful for anyone wishing to break up the traditional 32 km of this section..,without climbing up to Castiglione as we did).
Other challenges for today were FIVE small rock and water sections to forge. I was fine until the last one…when my socks became completely soaked!
5 km outside of Radicofani we were stopped by a Pilgrim’s’ Assistance Vehicle that wanted to check that we were okay. We seriously should have asked for a ride up yet another very LONG and STEEP final hill (as shown in the feature photo). That was definitely today’s biggest challenge!
Richard has now lost interest in hanging out in this bar. Thus ends my free WiFi. See you tomorrow from wherever we are (we have 3 different options in mind)!