Day abandonded at Col de Portet.
We left the refuge this morning hoping that the morning storms had passed. Hail, thunder and lightning woke us. At breakfast there was a lot of planning of new routes from other hikers. We decided to also take a safer route through the ski resort and up to the GR10 via a gravel road. About 15 minutes into the day we huddled in a lee slope as hail and more thunder and lightning returned, our walking poles a safe distance away lest we become lightning conductors.
As it slowed we continued up for about 20 minutes and soon a convoy of work trucks pulled over beside us and told us to get in. They were finished for the day as the weather was too dangerous to be on the mountain. Their tale of the death of a cow from a lightning strike the week before along with the cold water leaking down our backs was enough to persuade us. Officially we will never have walked from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean due to today’s cheat. However the hot shower here at the hotel and not being roasted by lightning was worth it. Oh and the four course lunch with wine and coffee for 13€ each.
Just before our pick up.
Martinez the driver and ski lift engineer, thank you.