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5867

Bradypus

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
What one municipality believes is the true number of Peregrinos who passed through their area on the Invierno last year in contrast to just over the 1000 who claimed compostelas.
Interesting. I am reading the article using Google Translate and may have missed some nuance though. The article seems to be saying that the discrepancy is largely because most of those whose starting point was Ponferrada have been mistakenly added to the Camino Frances total by the pilgrim office. I have not walked the Invierno myself. Is it really likely that the numbers walking are nearly six times greater than the pilgrim office statistics would suggest and that this has gone unnoticed until now?
 

hamish

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Sanabres
Hamish - I walked the Invierno last May but couldn’t face the queue for my compostella.
 

Guy Strachan

Alba Guido
Camino(s) past & future
Frances ('13/'14), Portugues ('15), Finisterre ('16/'19); Ingles ('17); Sanabres ('18); Invierno '20
It obviously also leads into the Via de la Plata/Camino Sanabres so there is plenty of scope for confusion!
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
It makes me think that some of the volunteers in the pilgrim office do not look very closely at the sellos on the credentials or they would have realized quite a few were coming from the Inveirno...
That said, I am not being critical of the many wonderful volunteers who give of their time out of love and dedication to the Caminos.
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018; Munich to Lindau (Germany) Sep 2020
It makes me think that some of the volunteers in the pilgrim office do not look very closely at the sellos on the credentials or they would have realized quite a few were coming from the Inveirno...
...
I think even if you look at the sellos it is not so easy in many cases. (In 2018) I started in Somport... Camino Aragones, then parts of the Camino Frances, Camino de Invierno and then the last part of the Via de la Plata... if you want to press this into "one camino" for the statistic... you can never see the reality from this statistic.
 
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VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
Like @martin1ws, many of us walk camino mixtas, and it must be confusing for those in the Pilgrim's office who must perforce put every camino in some sort of box.

I walked from Irun, on the Vasco/Via de Bayona, along the Frances, and ended up in Santiago on the Invierno - and because I had lost my original credenicial near Monforte, my stats were entered for the Invierno. But who knows what they would have decided otherwise.

Is it really likely that the numbers walking are nearly six times greater than the pilgrim office statistics would suggest and that this has gone unnoticed until now?
Hmmm, maybe, but I wonder. I met more pilgrims than I expected - not that it was a horde, but I saw between 2 and 8 people each day - looking at the actual number of people I saw over the days on the Invierno per se (between Ponferrada and A Laxe) the number of encounters averaged 2.4 per day. 1000 divided by 365 is 2.7 pilgrims per day, though of course they would not be distributed evenly over the year. But my experience is pretty close to that.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I would not be at all surprised if this number reflects the busloads of walkers that nearby ayuntamientos and social clubs organize. I have seen at least three of these groups over three Invierno caminos — one on the way up to Monte Faro, where I was invited to partake in a very yummy breakfast stop, with tables of food laid out by the support bus personnel (there were well over 100 in the group); one on the way down from the Cornatel Castel to Borrenes, as the group piled into the bus to avoid the road walk; and one other somewhere outside Rodeiro. This seems to be part of the strategy to promote the Invierno, and a very good one, I think! But these walkers typically do day hikes and may not ever intend to complete an entire 100 km. Just a guess, but the discrepancy is too huge to be just a miscalculation on one side or the other, IMO.

But I don’t think there’s any way that big number could represent the number of those walking day by day from Ponferrada to Santiago, If we assume that the bulk of walking pilgrims walk over 6 months rather than 12 months, that would mean there is a daily approximate number of 30 or more a day. That is not anywhere close to the reality.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and back (no name; Tours; Francés; sea; no name)
The Pilgrims Office registers only 9 Caminos in their database, so you can safely ignore the Aragones and Madrid and Baztan etc. They register only the 9 named Caminos that pass through Galicia. They are:
  • Camino Frances
  • Camino Portugues
  • Camino Portugues Costa
  • Camino de Norte
  • Camino Ingles
  • Vía de la Plata
  • Camino Primitivo
  • Muxia-Finisterre
  • Camino de Invierno
The large discrepancy described in the article cannot be explained by occasional confusion or occasional errors of volunteers. The Oficina’s website does not have an explanation of their methodology, no description of how they classify pilgrims’ trajectories if more than one of the caminos in Galicia is involved. Perhaps some of the forum members who have volunteered can shed some light on this? Is it the starting point in Galicia or the point of entry into Galicia that determines which Camino is entered into the database?
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
It happens on some routes, you might not meet many other pilgrims while walking or in the evenings, this has been my experience on the Norte twice. When I took time out two days in Llanes and 2 in Vilavicioasa it was like watching a conveyor belt of pilgrims pass through the day.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
In my six-years experience volunteering at the Pilgrim Office, I believe Kathar!na is correct. All the other (lesser) Camino routes are subsumed into one of the listed major primary routes.

For example, the Camino Aragones is not listed because it is merely a feeder route into the Camino Frances. When one comes this way, they spend way, far more time and distance on the Frances than the Aragones. So it is thus counted.

This feeder or tributary relationship also explains why most all the lesser routes are not listed as 'official routes." Personally, I think this is a mistake that needs to be addressed.

All the listed routes have one thing in common, they terminate at the Cathedral in Santiago (sort of). That could explain why the 'official' list is far shorter than the several dozen we all know are out there.

OTOH, the Camino Sanabres is actually the common terminating Camino route segment for the:
  • Camino Invierno
  • Camino de la Plata
  • Camino do Este
  • Camino Portuguese Interior, and the
  • Camino Torres
So, and using the 'ending at Santiago' logic, the de la Plata, Norte, Invierno and Primitivo ought not be on the list as one must join another route before arriving at Santiago.

Listed above in the 'official' list are routes that actually flow into and enter Santiago on another route.
  • Invierno via the Sanabres
  • Primitivo via the Frances
  • de la Plata via the Sanabres or the Frances
  • del Norte via the Frances
In this relationship, it is the main catchment route, ending in Santiago for these known routes.

This said, I recall that the answer lies in the understanding of on which primary "official" route did the pilgrim spend most of their time. So, if you walked the Norte, De la Plata, Invierno, Primitivo, etc. you spent far more time and distance on that primary, more historical, or major route than you did on the smaller segment of the ending route into Santiago. That is why you are credited with walking only on the primary or official route.

The outlier here IMHO is the Sanabres. While not one of the 'official' main routes, I am aware that there is a surge in pilgrims choosing to walk from Ourense. It is emerging as yet another 'just long enough' to qualify for a Compostela starting point, akin, to Sarria and Tui. But Ourense is on the Sanabres route.

In closing, I shall put this on my 'to do' list for this season's volunteer stint. But, if any of you out there are volunteering before I arrive in July, please DO print this out and show it to someone in charge, or in the know. I believe they SHOULD start tracking the route your started on and the route you finished on.

We need to find a way to bring the Invierno and Sanabres out into the open and be counted more accurately.

Hope this helps.
 

VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
Tom, for those of us walking camino mixtas, is it possible to request that your camino be credited to a particular route, regardless of where you started or how you walked into Santiago?
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
Tom, for those of us walking camino mixtas, is it possible to request that your camino be credited to a particular route, regardless of where you started or how you walked into Santiago?
i don’t know. I will add it to my ‘to do’ list for this season.

That said, if you do not ask something, the answer is always no.😉
 


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