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1st day on the Le-Puy

Past OR future Camino
VDLP to Finisterre 2009
Le Puy to SJPDP 2013
Frances 2014
GR700 & Arles 2017
Norte 2019
Hi all

I'm starting out from Le-Puy on Sunday 1st September and to be honest I'm unsure of how to plan my first few days. Because of circumstances I haven't been able to do any mountain training, only walks up to 14 klms and shorter with my loaded backpack.

I'm aware how up and down it is in the beginning so do you think I should plan?
A. Day 1 : Saint-Christophe sur Dolaison - 8 klms
Day 2 Montbonnet from Saint-Christophe - 8 klms
Day 3 Monistrol-d'Allier from Montbonnet - 13.5 klms
Day 4 Sauges from Monistrol-d'Allier - 12 klms
OR
B. Day 1 : Saint-Christophe sur Dolaison - 8 klms
Day 2 Saint-Privat d'Allier from Saint-Christophe sur Dolaison - 16 klms
Day 3 Sauges from Saint Privat d'Allier - 17.5 klms
OR
C. Day 1 : Montbonnet - 16 klms
Day 2 Monistrol-d'Allier from Montbonnet - 13.5 klms
Day 3 Saugues from Monistrol-d'Allier - 12 klms

I'd appreciate any feedback, I'm not trying to race and would be happy to spend an extra day 'getting my mountain legs' and enjoying my Camino. On the other hand would I be bored doing the short days of Plan A?

Thank you all in advance.
Bon Chemin
Cherie
 
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Thomas1962

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2010/2011/2012/2013: Madrid -Salvador -Primitivo 2014: EPW 2015: Amsterdam - SdC
Its difficult to advice without knowing anything about the state of your body.
Having said that, from le Puy till at least Saint Privat there isn't much climbing. 8 km's really seems a short walk to me for the first day. Unless you have some serious physical uncomfort, 16 km's must be no problem the first day. The second day you might be still tired, you beter plan less km's that day. From there on you can make a day to day plan according to your experience and actual condition. After monistrol there is a serieus climb.
What works for me is to walk quit some km's the first 2 days and take a quit 3th day (10 km's) to recover. The 4th day I'm fit again I feel my body gets already used to walking.
You'll be fine any way...
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Like Thomas says, it is quite hard to advise, but if you are walking about 14kms now on walks, I'd be inclined to keep your first few days to about the same. I had Montbonnet and Monistrol d'Allier for my first two nights both times, and found it was a good way to walk myself in. I struck bad weather on Day 1 both times, several kilometres before Montbonnet- first time with sleet/snow, and last year with a severe hailstorm, so I was glad to be stopping at Montbonnet to get my wet cold clothes off! The climb down from Rochegude on Day 2 was quite tricky for me with my short legs, and the climb up from Monistrol d'Allier was quite long and steep in places. My first time I walked only as far as Saugues on Day 3, which was perhaps too short, but last year I walked onto La Clauze. By the time you have walked two days to perhaps Monistrol d'Allier, you will have more idea about how far you can walk per day.

Your option C was what I did my first time. Personally, I wouldn't stop at St-Christophe, unless you are leaving Le Puy later in the day for some reason (eg sightseeing there, which is always a possibility.)
All the best with your plans,
Margaret
 

dalston999

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Walked Le Puy/Santiago/Fisterra/Murxia Sept/Oct 2012, Portugues march 2013, Arles April 2013
I agree with the last posts, I walked from le Puy twice without much prior training and I am a not very fit lady of a 'certain age'! First time as far as St Privat, which I managed but it was a long and tiring day, second time shorter but I still averaged about 4km per hour and i think you will be bored stopping so early in places where there is not much to do. It depends very much on the weather too, just be flexible, play it by ear, book the first two or three nights and then y will know your capabilities better. If I can average 20-25 Kms per day, anyone reasonably healthy can.
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
I just did Option A, and it was all I could do! Had I been in better shape, Option C would have been Ok. The tough part is up to Saugues!
 
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Kitsambler

Jakobsweg Junkie
Past OR future Camino
Le Puy 2010-11, Prague 2012, Nuremberg 2013, Einsiedeln 2015, Geneva 2017-19
I also went with Option C, which was quite challenging enough for me. And while some may find 20-25 km/day and 4 km/hr to be their standard, that is more than I can manage. So for me, 16-18 km/day and 3 km/hr is my norm. I've walked four years now - and this is a consistent figure for me. What made route planning difficult is, that this is less than I was accomplishing during training at home. I think the difference is that my 7 kg pack had gained weight from water and groceries to something like 9 kg. And there were more hillclimbs than I anticipated. So try to gauge your own capacity, and then be flexible when that needs adjustment.
 
Past OR future Camino
VDLP to Finisterre 2009
Le Puy to SJPDP 2013
Frances 2014
GR700 & Arles 2017
Norte 2019
Thanks everyone for taking the time to reply. I think I'll go for option C as from your comments the toughest begins at Monistrol. I will also take into account your comments too Falcon whilst I'm on the track and change if necessary.

Bon Chemin
 

AMDG56

Member
Past OR future Camino
August 2013
I will be starting my walk with a friend on sept 2nd. We will be arriving late the night before. I would like to see some of le Puy before starting out. What will be open after 8 am when mass is over? What is worth seeing. Anybody do the lace museum.
We have booked acceuil st Francois for the first night and wonder do we need to book the second night much in advance? Will it be ok to book the Tuesday night's lodging on Monday when we get there. And where to stay if we do some sightseeing - st Christophe or montbonnet?
Advice from those who have done it please.
AMDG


Sent from my iPad
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Not sure what opens soon after 8am- but if you visit St Michael's chapel on the 'needle', (a 'must-see' in my opinion) climb up inside the statue of Our Lady, visit the cloister attached to the Cathedral, and explore the Cathedral itself- it will take several hours. If it was me doing that, I would probably only go as far as St Christophe or perhaps Bains -on the alternative route- for the first night. Montbonnet sounds 'close' with a distance of 'only' 15km, but both times I have walked there, it has taken longer than I was expecting with the initial climb out of Le Puy, and also with bad weather in the last few kilometres. (First time I struck sleet/snow; second time I struck a horrendous hailstorm that I couldn't find anywhere to shelter from!)
Margaret

Just found out that the chapel of St Michel opens at 9am. http://www.ot-lepuyenvelay.fr/monuments/Rocher-et-chapelle-Saint-Michel-D-Aiguilhe-id1.htlml
 
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