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Camino Frances gear review

legless

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances March-April 2022.
Hello, this is my gear review. It’s 100% a review and not recommendations, because I don’t know you, I don’t know how long your back is or how wide your feet are or whether you run hot or cold or whether you love wet feet etc. But these are my reviews of what I used on Camino Frances and Camino Muxia-Fisterre in March-May this year in case you are considering any of these items.

Pack
Vango Ozone 40
I used a Vango Ozone 40 and I carried 6-7kg depending on water and snacks each day. This pack fit me like a glove and I didn’t feel the weight at all on my back except one day when I was so stressed walking through a city my shoulders were tense.

It has minimal pockets – 2 mesh pockets on the hip belt that I used for sweets, tissues and gloves, and 2 mesh pockets on the sides that held a water bottle comfortably and that I could just about access myself while walking, although this was much easier with other pocket designs that I saw.

It’s basically a large stuff sack with compression straps to pull it close to the body and that worked well for me. My gear inside was organised into 3 main bags plus loose stuff in the bottom (I can be a little chaotic) and there was plenty of space for all my gear and food.

There are no rips, the seams are solid and it’s been unloaded, loaded, compressed and uncompressed for 40 days so seems robust. It has a rain cover included which covers the whole thing, and good padding on the hip belt. I love this pack, and when I’ve worked out how to get it clean I’ll let it back in the house.

Shoes
Keen Targhee III
I wore Keen Targhee III ladies waterproof goretex shoes in ½ size larger than usual, I used the Keen sizing guide. I wanted waterproof as I really didn’t want cold, wet feet in snow, and I didn’t have cold, wet feet in snow. They were lightweight enough for me, I usually walk in boots and the tread lasted well, I still have many miles left in them. The insoles are great but I swapped them out for gel ones during the meseta as I find flat surfaces put more pressure on my feet and then put the Keen insoles back in afterwards. By 500 miles the padding at the back of the heel was wearing but it lasted fine on to Finisterre. I had no blisters at all and still have all my toenails.

Rain gear

I used a lightweight waterproof jacket and trousers because I wanted that extra layer of windproof stuff on my legs in case of cold, windy days (which we had) and I also didn’t want to have to wear a poncho if I wanted to go out in the evening and it was still raining. This worked for me.

Hydration
I usually walk with a bladder but find on longer, multi-day walks the tube needs cleaning and I didn’t want to carry the brushes etc so I used a water bottle. I’m happy with that, it was easy to fill up with cold water on hot days from the fountains, in most areas there were plenty of places to fill up.

Obviously I used all the other items a person needs for 5.5 weeks but I think these are the ones talked about most on here.
 
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