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  1. Marc Hamel


    Ed and I did the Camino in 2016 and Ed had such painful foot problems that we almost decided to go home after making it to Logrono. After a lot of discussion we decided to take a bus and skip about 50K and give his feet a rest. Eventually when we made it to Ponferrada we bought him some new...
  2. Marc Hamel

    More on inner soles ; a comparative study of Six brands

    I never even gave any thought before the Camino to looking into alternative insoles. Maybe that is a piece of advice that I missed, but I am only 5'1" tall and weigh in at 123 lbs. Perhaps that may be one reason that my Merrells worked as well as they did. And I have to say as far as wear goes...
  3. Marc Hamel

    More on inner soles ; a comparative study of Six brands

    I completed my Camino on October 11 after walking in my Merrell Moab mids from St. Jean to Santiago with the inserts that came with the boot. I had no problems, felt sufficiently supported and never had a single blister. I am 64 years old and when (not if) I walk the Camino again after...
  4. Marc Hamel

    Comment by 'Marc Hamel' in media 'Camino Frances'

    I remember this tunnel so well - my husband Ed sat on the ground here as I took care of several blisters that were causing him a good deal of discomfort. It was mid September and the light was just as it is in the picture.
  5. Marc Hamel

    What if Orisson Refuge is full?

    I must have been born under lucky stars! I emailed Orisson and received a reply and reservation confirmation three days later. I had heard so many complaints about how long it took to hear back, but I have to say Jean-Jacques was prompt and courteous. I will be staying there the night of...
  6. Marc Hamel

    From Santiago to Madrid

    Muchas gracias to all of you for your replies and support - I'm now off to research all of your suggestions! HI AZgirl - I'll have an afternoon and evening in Madrid and would love to see some of the city - perhaps a visit to the Prado.
  7. Marc Hamel

    From Santiago to Madrid

    I'm sorry if this has been asked a lot before, but I have a hard time searching this forum for information. I will be walking the Frances starting from SJPdP on September 5. I will be flying home from Madrid on October 13. I already have train reservations from Santiago to Madrid (Chamartin...
  8. Marc Hamel

    Hat recommendations for a first-time Camino pilgrim

    I can also say that I sweat profusely from the top of my head and would always prefer not wearing a hat, however having lost almost all of my hair, there is no way I can go out into the sun without getting sunburned on the top of my head! Not a good way to do my first Camino. I looked into...
  9. Marc Hamel

    Towns on the Camino Francés with direct bus and/or train links with Madrid

    Thank you - this is exactly the kind of detailed information that I was looking for!
  10. Marc Hamel

    Towns on the Camino Francés with direct bus and/or train links with Madrid

    I'm also interested in travel from Santiago to Madrid. If I take the train to Madrid, what is the connection to the airport? Thanks, Marc
  11. Marc Hamel

    Weather in September/October

    Hi Nelia, I am walking as well Sept to mid October. I will leave from SPPDP on Sept 5, perhaps we will run into each other. Buen Camino
  12. Marc Hamel

    Accomodation...or lack of

    Thanks Viranani - I will look forward to staying with the Sisters in Zabaldika - I think Ed and I would like to stay with as many religious houses as possible, being former Catholic religious ourselves. Unfortunately I have not found a currently occupied Trappist (Cistercian) monastery close...
  13. Marc Hamel

    Accomodation...or lack of

    Thanks James - I'll also check out Marc
  14. Marc Hamel

    Accomodation...or lack of

    My partner and I will be starting in SJPDP on September 5. I have already booked Orisson for the first night as we are both in our late 60's and I thought that would be a good first day's walk for us. However I was not planning on booking ahead but having read all of the above posts think it...
  15. Marc Hamel

    Monastery of Iranzu

    I will be walking the Camino Frances in September and have a great interest in monasteries and medieval monastic architecture, as I was a Cistercian monk (Trappist) for about 12 years. I have just discovered photos of a 12th century monastic cloister in a monastery called Monasterio de Santa...
  16. Marc Hamel

    Bedbug Question! Settle our debate!

    Kanga, what do you use as a sleeping sheet? And where did you get it? Thanks - Marc
  17. Marc Hamel

    Martin Sheen needs a GPS!

    I was at REI the other day and was looking at shirts and couldn't believe the prices. I then went to Walmart and bought 2 poly/blend shirts marked as dri/360 which supposedly wick moisture away from the body. They were $9.00 each. We'll see if they last the length of the Camino Frances. Where...
  18. Marc Hamel

    Backpack in the Hold?

    Thanks Maggie, I'm happy to hear that you have the same size bag! I'm carrying the Sirrus which is the 'woman's' model as opposed to the Stratos, because I'm only 5'1" and even the small Stratos was too long for my body height. But I'm happy to hear that you could carry yours on as carry on...
  19. Marc Hamel

    I'm 65 and I have plan for my first Camino

    I will be 64 by the time I walk in September and my partner will be 67. We are both training now and will have 40 walking days available to us. I was going to do SJPDP to Roncevalles in one day, but decided to stop in Orrison the first night just to have a slower start. So I have...

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