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10 km or less a day, possible?

kerryfsu

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning for 2023
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
 

David

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Moissac to Santiago Spring 2005 was the first foray.
Hi Kerry, an Australian pilgrim friend of mine introduced me to the brilliant concept of the guilt free "5 to 10 Camino" (5 to 10 kms a day if you want) so you won't be alone out there taking short days (if you do, I found that it is terribly difficult to walk short days ... comes to 11am and the energy is still there!). What you may find is that after a few days you will become fitter and find that you are walking further.
Though you don't say where you are starting - is a big haul up and over from St Jean .. so you could start in Roncesvalles or Pamplona perhaps?

On the Frances there are many refugios and b&b's all along the way with just a few sections that may be more kms in between.

On Camino 54 is a youngster! just an egg! - plenty of pilgrims out there in their 60s, 70s, 80s, even 90s!

I think that the best Camino guide is the Brierley but the mistake so many people make is that they read it as a 'rule' book rather than a 'guide' book. So - it is Not necessary to walk the given day stages, just stop when you get tired. One of the benefits of this is that if you miss the big day stage stops you instead stop at small and wonderful refugios in between, where you will meet many other 'walk at my own pace' independent pilgrims who also see a guide book as only that, a 'guide' book.

What a fantastic step .. drop the young (finally!) off at college and go off on Camino - how utterly perfect! (Just don't get the bags mixed up on that day :D ).

To survive well this last twenty years you will have had to be terribly organised so the trick is, on Camino, is to let the attempt to control go ... don't overplan, don't try and 'organise' it .. do what I think you have already decided to do .. let go, take it as it comes, breath deep - enjoy!

By the way, Pamplona to Santiago is about 700 kms so if you do walk 10 kms a day it would take you 70 days - 10 weeks ........ sooo.... what will you do? Start in Pamplona, walk until your time is up and go home and come back next year and take up where you left off?

Buen Camino!!
 
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SabineP

Camino = Gratitude + Compassion.
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)

Hi and welcome here.
Do take your time to browse through the different subforums.
You will find lots of helpful information here.

A good start is using the searchbox function in the right upper corner. Just type in some keywords and lots of useful threads will appear.

The Camino Frances is the best equipped Camino for those who prefer to make shorter stages.

The Gronze website gives good up to date information on lodgings.

The Camino is for all ages! Don't worry.
Some statistics.

Happy preparations.
 
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Stroller

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2015), Frances (2016)
The best serviced camino is arguably the Francis but even there you will likely need to walk up to 17kM on some days. Most days much less is possible. For the longer stretches you can take a taxi for all or part of the day. So distance should not be a huge problem. Booking ahead in the evening for the next day will also make it a bit more secure.

I have only had to use a taxi only once when albergues were full in September. I suspect that in summer and at easter the albergues will be busier. So depends when you walk.

Probably best not to start from St Jean or Roncevalles as the walk from both will be long and rough in places so would suggest Pamplona. On some stretches, for instance dropping into Molenaseca, the path is also rough so look for alternative routes.

Ages I have encountered are from 2Yrs to 80 plus with the bulk being over 60.
6 weeks seems a reasonable time but take it easy and be flexible using buses or taxies when you need to, if you are carrying injury you will also be wise to budget for rest days.

Walking poles will probably help but learn to use them, and so will sending your pack ahead using Jacotrans, Correos or similar and carrying a light daypack with just lunch, water and rain gear.

For planning two website will give the most upto date information, Godelesco and Gronze but as far as guides are concerned I used the Wise Pilgrim app exclusively and it was fine.

So all in all I think it's doable, go for it and good luck.
 

Felipe

Veteran Member
Camino Frances has the more extensive infrastructure. It goes basically from village to village -not exactly by wilderness, and usually there is always a near paved road. It is actually a quite "domesticated", organized route, with lot of services.
Age is not a factor (I have not the stats, but I believe you are in the average in this forum :p . But If you have a serious knee problem, I recommend you plan some rest days, now and then.
You can't reserve in public albergues, but there are plenty or private ones. Look at a guide, for example the well reputed Gronze (it is in Spanish, but everything is quite straightforward).
There are a few sections with long distances between villages (for example after Carrion de los Condes, 17 km). In these stages, I suggest you arrange a taxi to pick you up and return next day.
You don´t mention when you plan to walk. Conditions vary considerably with the seasons. It could be quite muddy before May and after September.
Buen camino!
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
Kerryfsu:

The Camino Frances has the most frequent infrastructure.

Depending on the time of year, accommodation availability can be more challenging. It appears you are talking about the fall time frame and August is one of the busiest months. Accommodation shortages can be managed by reservations.

Brierleys guide book is pretty detailed. Gronze.com is a good online guide.

Six weeks at 10km's per day = 420km's. I recommend you start in Leon which is less than 400km's. This would allow for rest days, injuries and some time in Santiago upon completion.

Hope this helps.
Joe
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) Portugues(2013)
San Salvador (2017) Ingles (2019)
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
Welcome! I was older than you when I started looking for signs that it would be possible for me to walk the Frances! You say you are planning for 2023. That gives you oodles of time to get into walking mode. As in, an hour, then two, then three. At the end of that, you have at least 12km under your belt! Believe me, it is very possible. Next trick, two hours together. and the same the day after. Include plenty of climbing stairs, or little hills if they are available. Fact: I practised for 150km over about five months. As soon as you set out on your camino proper, you will begin to build up stamina by walking day after day. Then you will, as noted above, see that you have lots of energy left at 11 to do a little more. You can cover 800km at 10km a day in 80 days. At 20km a day, 40 days. At 15km a day, it would take you less time than at 10 a day, but I can't work that out, sorry, I am on my lunch break! you will have so much fun working all of the tips out, adding them in as options.... enjoy it all!
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
You can use this planning tool to plan out your stages. Between St Jean Pied de Port and Santiago I can think of 2 places where you would need to walk 17 km, unless you are willing to take a taxi - between Orisson and Roncesvalles, and between Carrion de los Condes and Calzadilla de la Cueza.

 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
That is a very cool tool. Do you know if there is anything like that available for some of the other routs?
I actually use the Buen Camino app to plan (and re-plan) stages. It has a great stage planning feature.

 

RJM

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few times
Walk the Frances route.
Get the Brierley guidebook. Utilizing the guidebook plan your 10 km or less a day walks accordingly. It will show you all the town's and all the accommodations. You will see it is quite doable.
Ultreia
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Thanks, guess I should start looking at Spanish language resources. 🤔
The Buen Camino app will be in English (or the language of your choice). Their website is in Spanish though.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and back (no name; Tours; Francés; sea; no name)
The Buen Camino app will be in English (or the language of your choice). Their website is in Spanish though.
There is an excellent video (in English!) that explains how the app and its features work, including the option for planning individual stages, as short or as long as one wants them to be. The video starts with a short 1-minute introduction in Spanish but then switches to an English narrator. Recommended! (I have no commercial interest or connections to the company who produces it).

 

kerryfsu

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning for 2023
Hi Kerry, an Australian pilgrim friend of mine introduced me to the brilliant concept of the guilt free "5 to 10 Camino" (5 to 10 kms a day if you want) so you won't be alone out there taking short days (if you do, I found that it is terribly difficult to walk short days ... comes to 11am and the energy is still there!). What you may find is that after a few days you will become fitter and find that you are walking further.
Though you don't say where you are starting - is a big haul up and over from St Jean .. so you could start in Roncesvalles or Pamplona perhaps?

On the Frances there are many refugios and b&b's all along the way with just a few sections that may be more kms in between.

On Camino 54 is a youngster! just an egg! - plenty of pilgrims out there in their 60s, 70s, 80s, even 90s!

I think that the best Camino guide is the Brierley but the mistake so many people make is that they read it as a 'rule' book rather than a 'guide' book. So - it is Not necessary to walk the given day stages, just stop when you get tired. One of the benefits of this is that if you miss the big day stage stops you instead stop at small and wonderful refugios in between, where you will meet many other 'walk at my own pace' independent pilgrims who also see a guide book as only that, a 'guide' book.

What a fantastic step .. drop the young (finally!) off at college and go off on Camino - how utterly perfect! (Just don't get the bags mixed up on that day :D ).

To survive well this last twenty years you will have had to be terribly organised so the trick is, on Camino, is to let the attempt to control go ... don't overplan, don't try and 'organise' it .. do what I think you have already decided to do .. let go, take it as it comes, breath deep - enjoy!

By the way, Pamplona to Santiago is about 700 kms so if you do walk 10 kms a day it would take you 70 days - 10 weeks ........ sooo.... what will you do? Start in Pamplona, walk until your time is up and go home and come back next year and take up where you left off?

Buen Camino!!
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
Yes, you can do the Camino at a pace of 10 km or less a day. For this kind of pace, as others have said, the Camino Frances is your best option. If you are budgeting 6 weeks that works out to 420 (or less) km. Some options to consider for starting points (distance from Santiago based on the Wisely app; other sources give slightly different distances): Fromista (419 km), Carrión de los Condes (400 km), Sahagún (361 km), León (306 km). If you wanted to do the "whole" camino at this pace, starting from the Pyrenees, I would budget 12 weeks instead of 6.

There are some stretches between accommodations longer than 10 km. For example, one of the longest is right after Carrión de los Condes at 17 km. What you can do in this situation is to walk as far as works for you, call a taxi to take to to accommodations for the night, then taxi back in the morning to where you left off. Some people walking from St. Jean Pied de Port do the same for that first stretch to Roncesvalles.

In terms of guidebooks, Brierley is very popular although I also liked the Village to Village guide. I also liked using the Camino Guide apps on my phone: Buen Camino, Wisely, and Camino Pilgrim, among others, served me well. They are inexpensive and weightless. As well, with the apps you can see where you are on (or off) the Camino which is very handy if you stray.

I did most of my Camino Frances with knee issues, wearing a knee brace and taking ibuprofen regularly for knee pain. I was about 53 at the time. I was was walking farther (and thus longer) each day than you are planning (about 20 to 30 km). I didn't have trouble finding accommodations at all until we were in Galicia. By then there were lots of albergues in each town and it was just that the first few were full but there was space in the third or fourth that we tried. After that we reserved a day or two in advance, which wasn't hard because by then we knew how far we walked in a day. If you are walking 10 km or less a day, you should arrive early enough that finding accommodations won't be a problem. Especially if you are staying off the terminal points of Brierley's recommended stages.

As a final note, if you have knee issues I highly recommend bringing hiking poles. I am convinced they saved my Camino when I developed knee issues.
Buen Camino!
 

kerryfsu

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning for 2023
Hi Kerry, an Australian pilgrim friend of mine introduced me to the brilliant concept of the guilt free "5 to 10 Camino" (5 to 10 kms a day if you want) so you won't be alone out there taking short days (if you do, I found that it is terribly difficult to walk short days ... comes to 11am and the energy is still there!). What you may find is that after a few days you will become fitter and find that you are walking further.
Though you don't say where you are starting - is a big haul up and over from St Jean .. so you could start in Roncesvalles or Pamplona perhaps?

On the Frances there are many refugios and b&b's all along the way with just a few sections that may be more kms in between.

On Camino 54 is a youngster! just an egg! - plenty of pilgrims out there in their 60s, 70s, 80s, even 90s!

I think that the best Camino guide is the Brierley but the mistake so many people make is that they read it as a 'rule' book rather than a 'guide' book. So - it is Not necessary to walk the given day stages, just stop when you get tired. One of the benefits of this is that if you miss the big day stage stops you instead stop at small and wonderful refugios in between, where you will meet many other 'walk at my own pace' independent pilgrims who also see a guide book as only that, a 'guide' book.

What a fantastic step .. drop the young (finally!) off at college and go off on Camino - how utterly perfect! (Just don't get the bags mixed up on that day :D ).

To survive well this last twenty years you will have had to be terribly organised so the trick is, on Camino, is to let the attempt to control go ... don't overplan, don't try and 'organise' it .. do what I think you have already decided to do .. let go, take it as it comes, breath deep - enjoy!

By the way, Pamplona to Santiago is about 700 kms so if you do walk 10 kms a day it would take you 70 days - 10 weeks ........ sooo.... what will you do? Start in Pamplona, walk until your time is up and go home and come back next year and take up where you left off?

Buen Camino!!
Thank you for the wonderful advice and the words of encouragement! I 'm even more excited now than I was before! I think I'm going to adjust my timeline to 8 weeks based on this information. I really don't want to rush my Camino. I think it has a lot to teach me:)
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
You can use this planning tool to plan out your stages. Between St Jean Pied de Port and Santiago I can think of 2 places where you would need to walk 17 km, unless you are willing to take a taxi - between Orisson and Roncesvalles, and between Carrion de los Condes and Calzadilla de la Cueza.

True, but there is a huge difference in the terrain.

The stretch from Orisson and Roncesvalles is VERY hilly, coming down from the Napoleon Pass form France into Spain. However, once in Spain, there is a windy road alternative to take most of the hazardous slip-sliding in the forest away. I always walk the road coming down...

The stretch from Carrion to Calzadilla is almost billiard table flat. it is easy walking, albeit it nearly devoid of shade and frequent cafes, etc. Once you are out of Carrion, things get very rural, very fast, but it is all easy walking. This is actually my favorite stretch of the entire Camino Frances. I just love the Meseta.

Hope this helps.
 
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David

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Moissac to Santiago Spring 2005 was the first foray.
Thank you for the wonderful advice and the words of encouragement! I 'm even more excited now than I was before! I think I'm going to adjust my timeline to 8 weeks based on this information. I really don't want to rush my Camino. I think it has a lot to teach me:)
Thank you! The body is an interesting thing, how it reacts to physical stresses. When NASA were working out how to keep astronauts fit in zero gravity they found, to their utter surprise, that exercising every other day was more beneficial than every day. Working on it they realised that an exercise day broke down muscle and the body then rebuilt it, but larger and stronger - but it took a while to do that, two days instead of one.

Now, that ramble is suggest to you (and other pilgrims) that it might be a great idea to build in regular rest days - I see that you are not time poor - Logrono, for instance, is a great day off place, neatly placed where a body that started in either St Jean or even Pamplona has started to show signs of wear ... pains and wearinesses (not to say shin splints and blisters!) - so do feel guilt free to regularly take R&R, rest and recuperation days.

Enjoy it all Kerry, every moment, 'good' or 'bad', as there is no good or bad, only what happens out there ;).
 

Harington

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Vézelay/Francés 2011, Primitivo 2012, VdlP 2013, Via Domitia 2014, Inglés 2015, Francigena 2016
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
Do you mean the Camino Francés? If so, loads of taxi possibilities. fewer on the others, but not impossible.
 

Hurry Krishna

Indian on the Way
Camino(s) past & future
2009 (from Sarria), 2014 from St Jean Pied de Port, 2016 from Porto, 2018 from Le Puy to Santiago.
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
I know it is possible to do the last 120k or so in 10k or less blocks. But in earlier stages, especially in the early stages, accommodation could be an issue unless you are willing to take taxis and buses to shorten the day’s walk - btw, taxis between villages are apparently not too hard to arrange. One woman who walked some of the distance with us was taking taxis for part of the walk almost every day.
Accommodation: depending on the month, albergues could be very full. But there are lots of different types of hotels - most quite cheap compared to UK/Australia etc. There is an app called My Camino Bed, which is a superb source of information on all types of accommodation. As for age - ahem, you are a baby! I did my first CF the year I turned 60 and several more since then. Always found lots of people in my age bracket and several quite a bit older. It is a wonderful place to meet younger people too. I hope you love it. Buen Camino.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
I have a tendency to plan too ambitiously. As I do book accommodations ahead, I sometimes do find myself with a planned 30 km stage to walk, but only maybe 22 km of walking in me that day. It could be due to terrain, health, weather, joint pain, depression, whatever... I am told that I suffer from a walking corollary of my eyes being bigger than my stomach... I do seem to bite off more than I can (proverbially) chew.

Outside the 100 km threshold for qualifying for a Compostela, if that is in my plan for THAT Camino, I will go to the nearest bar / cafe. There, will ask if there is a bus coming along any time soon that will get me to the days' destination up ahead. If yes, I will hang out then take the bus. Buses in Spain are very cheap, clean and efficient. They might not be very frequent though.

Many of the smaller towns will have only one or two busses daily. So, if that is the case, I ask the proprietor to call me a taxi to take me to "X." Taxis run about €1 per km on average. So, if I have maybe 8 km to go, and no giddy-up left.

IMHO, this is not unreasonable. If there are other complaining, wet or sullen pilgrims around, I always offer a free lift.

N.B. Every year, when I plan my Camino, I ALWAYS include too-long daily stretches. Even though I tell myself that "you know what is likely to happen..." the left side of my brain does not listen to the right side of my brain. And so it goes... Idiocy repeats itself...

Hope this helps.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2019)
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
 

JennyH94

Pilgrim in progress
Camino(s) past & future
CF - sections and whole (2012-2019) and part VF (2017)
Hi Kerry -

Welcome to the wonderful world of the Forum!

The following might be helpful for you ...

Some years back, Bystander, a fellow Forum member who sadly hasn’t posted for a while, generously shared the daily distances he planned to walk for the beginning of the Camino. His thoughts were that these distances would build up his stamina in a gradual way and hopefully avoid injury.

The walking schedule is:

Day 1 - St Jean to Valcarlos - 12 km
Day 2 - Valcarlos to Roncesvalles - 13 km
Day 3 - Roncesvalles to Viskarret - 10 km
Day 4 - Viskarret to Akerreta - 17 km
Day 5 - Akerreta to Pamplona - 15 km
Day 6 - Rest Day in Pamplona
Day 7 - Pamplona to Zariquiegui - 14 km
Day 8 - Zariquiegui to Puente la Reina - 16 km

My family and I followed Bystander’s walking schedule earlier this year, except we stopped in Larrasoana, just before Akerreta, one night as the steep descent into Zubiri needed to be walked slowly and carefully. The schedule worked really well for us.

I hope this will help you -

Cheers from Oz -
Jenny
 

WalkingJane

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
May and October 2015
(2015 October)
June 2018 Portuguese
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
As to age; I was 82 when I began the Camino Frances. How much time and can you do 10 or km per day: my longest day was 11 km. Since I usually stopped at lunch time, and even then sometimes called ahead to reserve a bed, I never ran into a situation where there were no beds in the town where I wanted to stay. I used the Brierley guide book; it gives several options for most towns. GO! You will have a great time.
 

Jay Es

Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017 the del Norte, home via the Portuguse to Vigo, Planning a Via de la Plata for October 2018.
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
I'm nursing a foot injury.We are planning the Via de la Plata, but will walk the shortest days possible and use a taxi on occasion if needs be. I know that people will say do the Frances as albergues are so numerous, but we have wanted to walk the Plata for years.
I'm 60 and my hubby is 65 BTW. We find on long walks we definitely get fitter over the weeks. Don't hurry the first couple of weeks, have plenty of rest for your body to adjust if it tells you. No one else can walk your Camino.
 

alhartman

346 joyful days in Spain and France since 2005
Camino(s) past & future
Hope so!
Yes, short stages are doable--and exist on the Frances. That said, the following chart shows guidebook distances of greater than 10km where I found no lodging. I did it because I am aging out of the 25km/day pack but still love walking. You can land in any of the 'from' villages and probably walk to the 'ending' village. And you can get a taxi from almost any bar to shorten a distance. Or catch one from the albergue where you are sleeping for a drop-off down the route.
Use Godesalco planificador for better planning--and I suspect buencamino app can do the same but have never tried.
I love the planning part of the camino experience, but remember planning is just that--no reason not do deviate even drastically once you are on the camino. And IMO Brierley gets a bad rap for what is a great 'guide'--at least to to your library and read a copy.


Profile
"Stage"FromEndingKm
6Villamayor MonjardinLos Arcos12.5
7Torres del RioViana10.8
8LogronoNavarette12.8
9VentosaNajera11.0
12Villafranca Montes de OcaSan Juan Ortega12.3
14BurgosTardajos11.5
18Carrion de los CondesCalzadilla de la Cueza17.5
19SahagunBercianos10.0
20El Burgo RaneroReligios13.0
 

jeffrey grant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
September (2017)
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
Hello my friend,
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
 

mikebet

Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP to Pamplona (2016); Baiona to Santiago (2018); Sarria to Santiago (2018)
Why not? I'm a big fan of "moseying" along. However I think you will find that even with occasional stops to smell the flowers -- and inhale a cafe con leche as well -- you will be getting to your daily destination in just a few hours, maybe too early to check into a hotel or albergue. And I really think that you will find you are comfortable with longer distances. I'm 74 now and based on Camino experiences over the past few years think that 20 km/day is about right for the one I'm planning in March (Via Francigena). Leaving after a comfortable breakfast and moseying along with a stop now and then puts me at my daily destination in the early afternoon with time for sightseeing. Best to just start out and see what feels comfortable instead of adhering to a preset timetable. As some have said, however, you may want to think about starting at Roncevalles. The first-day segment from SJPdP to Orrisson is fairly demanding if you are not in decent shape, and there is no way I'd recommend going on to Roncevalles that same day unless you are a 25-yr-old Swiss mountain guide or being chased by Interpol.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Norte and Frances Sept 6 - Oct 11, 2016
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
I was 72 when I did the Camino Norte and part of the Frances with a knee replacement, back problems, and NO problem. I averaged about 22 km a day and had three 30 km days. You can do it
 

Relume99

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan - Autumn 2014 or 15
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
I walked the Camino de Frances from Roncesvalles in 2015, when I was 70. I had an artificial knee in one leg, was missing an eye, had bad lungs from smoking and bad feet from alcohol abuse. It was the greatest experience of my life and I worried a lot, like you, before doing it. You need not worry, it is a walk in the park, it's just a very big park. Very few stages are physically demanding and there is plenty of accommodation, which increases every year. My advice is to start early and finish early. Get off at 0730 and call it a day at 1400 when the alberges open. Try to be the first one in!! Get a good bed, first use of shower, have a siesta and enjoy your evening exploring your location and/or drinking wine. Do not overplan. If your leg plays up, ask permission to stay a second night or walk only to the next open accommodation. DO NOT HURRY!! There are plenty of cheap hotels along the route, use them two or three times a week to get clean, rested, do your laundry. Stop two or three nights in the cities, again, in a cheap hotel. You can get a single room with bath for 30-40 Euros. Enjoy it. See the sights, have a proper meal. If it rains, hole up for a day or two.
You need more time. It took me 52 days on the road and I walked every step!!
Use a smartphone with Booking.com on it and reserve your first three or four days to make sure the distances are small. Use it again after Sarria, when it might get crowded. You will get fitter and stronger as you go on. Do not overload with food and water, you will not need it except on a few stages. The water in public fountains is safe and delicious and marked "No Potable" if it isn't. Read the guide book every evening for the next stage. Never be ashamed of stopping early or resting up. You will see more than any of the "fast" people and enjoy it more. Get used to being overtaken!! Don't worry about what you look like and get your pack to a minimum, then less, then halve it again. No paper except the guide and your journal!! Paper is heavy. If you have a Brierley cut the pages out when you've used them! Enjoy, enjoy and enjoy more!! Buen Camino!!
 

Bob Howard

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2016
Frances 2018
I walked the Camino de Frances from Roncesvalles in 2015, when I was 70. I had an artificial knee in one leg, was missing an eye, had bad lungs from smoking and bad feet from alcohol abuse. It was the greatest experience of my life and I worried a lot, like you, before doing it. You need not worry, it is a walk in the park, it's just a very big park. Very few stages are physically demanding and there is plenty of accommodation, which increases every year. My advice is to start early and finish early. Get off at 0730 and call it a day at 1400 when the alberges open. Try to be the first one in!! Get a good bed, first use of shower, have a siesta and enjoy your evening exploring your location and/or drinking wine. Do not overplan. If your leg plays up, ask permission to stay a second night or walk only to the next open accommodation. DO NOT HURRY!! There are plenty of cheap hotels along the route, use them two or three times a week to get clean, rested, do your laundry. Stop two or three nights in the cities, again, in a cheap hotel. You can get a single room with bath for 30-40 Euros. Enjoy it. See the sights, have a proper meal. If it rains, hole up for a day or two.
You need more time. It took me 52 days on the road and I walked every step!!
Use a smartphone with Booking.com on it and reserve your first three or four days to make sure the distances are small. Use it again after Sarria, when it might get crowded. You will get fitter and stronger as you go on. Do not overload with food and water, you will not need it except on a few stages. The water in public fountains is safe and delicious and marked "No Potable" if it isn't. Read the guide book every evening for the next stage. Never be ashamed of stopping early or resting up. You will see more than any of the "fast" people and enjoy it more. Get used to being overtaken!! Don't worry about what you look like and get your pack to a minimum, then less, then halve it again. No paper except the guide and your journal!! Paper is heavy. If you have a Brierley cut the pages out when you've used them! Enjoy, enjoy and enjoy more!! Buen Camino!!
Whoa! That is a great summary of how to enjoy it, irrespective of pace.
 

Reetuska

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
January Camino Frances
I was training for my Camino which was planned for 2020 January. A little careless and enthusiastic - I managed to tear the ligaments of my left knee. Oh! Now I might have to change my plans a little if healing takes time. At least I learned something valuable - streching all the big muscles around the knee before and after walking is so very important. I also found out that my left knee gives in slightly so I have had special soles made to keep the leg in good position. Something worth checking with physiotherapist before going - Downhill is very hard on the knees. My other knee will need support - even after it heals - to walk the Camino.
Backpack will add some burden for the knees. I am hoping trekking poles will give me enough support. And merino wool tube around the knee during rest time will be good I think. All difficulties can be overcome. Walking less in a day is good, I think - get to enjoy the Camino for longer😀
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino de Santiago, St Jean to Santuago, 2015
Camino Portuguese, 2018
Thank you for the wonderful advice and the words of encouragement! I 'm even more excited now than I was before! I think I'm going to adjust my timeline to 8 weeks based on this information. I really don't want to rush my Camino. I think it has a lot to teach me:)
I followed the Camino Frances at 82 and made quite a few adjustments in order to manage. Hiking poles - yes! And use one at home now too as my balance is poor. Send backpack by Jacotrans or Os Correos. 10 km a day is plenty! If you need to use public transit, it is not a sin requiring penance. Local buses are lots more fun than taxis. They don’t follow the Camino perfectly so you can get help from a local person to find the way to your Albergue on arrival at your town. Getting off the “beaten track” can be unsettling but rewarding when you allow yourself to be helped.
 

Zoran K.

ZK1107
Camino(s) past & future
2009 St. Olav Ways-Norway 645 km
2018 CF - full
2019 CF - full
2020 VF - Lucca to Rome
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
Just go for it!!!
I walked my 1st CF when I was 61 and my second a year later. I was averaging 25K/day on first and 22K/day on second. Main thing is that you listen to your body (knees, feet, thirst) and you'll be fine.
 
Camino(s) past & future
cycled from Pamplona Sep 2015;Frances, walked from St Jean May/June 2017. Plans to walk Porto 2020
Sorry for the rambling mess that follows. I'm in the very early stages of planning and a little nervous/excited. Which route offers the most albergues along the way? If I can only do 10 km or less a day, but have plenty of time is it possible? I have a knee injury I'm nursing so I'm worried about showing up to a town and the albergue being full and not being able to walk to the next town. How often does this happen? Have you had luck finding a hotel when you have run into this? I'll be 54 when I start my Camino. Wondering if most folks are substantially younger? Best guide books for people who want to take it slow? I am budgeting about 6 weeks. I'll be starting right after we drop our youngest off at college. I'm really interested in the adventure aspect of the Camino. After having provided a safe, steady consistent home for my children for the past 20 years I'm excited to meet new people and experiencing something new outside of the safe and sanitize world I've spent so much energy creating:)
Hola @kerryfsu As others have suggested the Frances is definitely the best Camino route for people such as yourself. Yes there are a couple of stages where the minimum stage is 17km, but its about as flat as a piece of road can get.
Injuries occur on the camino almost every day. Whilst hospitaleros are not trained medical people a good number have a basic first aid certificate and most towns have either a clinic or a doctor (in the smaller places chemist/pharmacy acts as the clinic). If you are unable to walk on the following day (as a genuine injury) most albergues will allow you to stay an extra night, especially if this is recommended by a medico. If not there are usually buses or local "taxis" that will transport to the next town.
I see you have 6 weeks (42 days) which by most calculations will not allow you to complete the 700 km from (say) Pamplona. So then you have to decide - is this the only time I am going to walk the Camino or is it likely that I will return. If a return is unlikely and you wish to qualify for a compostela then remember that all you need to do is walk the final 100 km (say around Saria) to Santiago. Sure it would be great to walk all of it but only you can be the judge of your abilities. Buen Camino (Oh BTW if you see posts that are (in your estimation negative) just ignore them.) Cheers
 


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