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Camino Ingles from 21st May (was One month to go)

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#1
It came as a bit of a shock this morning to find I've just one month before I fly over to Santiago to start my Ingles.

Everything is pretty well sorted - it'll be a "cut-down" Camino this time (no blogging, no excess electronic kit, just 2 changes of clothes), all rooms have been booked (I no longer share rooms with other pilgrims - the snoring, mine and theirs, the smell of dirty socks, mine and theirs etc.) so no need for towels or bedding and I've watched The Way twice and all three episodes of the BBC Pilgrimage to Santiago . . .

Just one question - will I need a hiking pole for the Ingles? I normally use one but I'm carrying my pack into the cabin so that rules out taking one with me (and bringing one back) but 66 years old, recovered from a bad knee, not done enough training walks (weather/snow/bad knee/lame excuses).

I arrive in SdC at 09:00 local time from London so I thought I might bus into the city, "borrow" (for a donotivo) an abandoned pole from the Pilgrim House, mooch around and catch the train to Ferrol, maybe even stop off in Coruna to see Gen Moore's memorial. Bring back the pole a week later and not feel guilty about buying a new pole and discarding it after just one week.

What do we think?
 

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Bradypus

Antediluvian
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
#2
Just one question - will I need a hiking pole for the Ingles? I normally use one but I'm carrying my pack into the cabin so that rules out taking one with me (and bringing one back) but 66 years old, recovered from a bad knee, not done enough training walks (weather/snow/bad knee/lame excuses).

I arrive in SdC at 09:00 local time from London so I thought I might bus into the city, "borrow" (for a donotivo) an abandoned pole from the Pilgrim House, mooch around and catch the train to Ferrol, maybe even stop off in Coruna to see Gen Moore's memorial. Bring back the pole a week later and not feel guilty about buying a new pole and discarding it after just one week.
Very little of the Ingles is on rough ground so probably not necessary for that. But there are a couple of short sharp hills where one would be handy. Two might be even better. I've recently been diagnosed with arthritis in one knee and the other is pretty suspect too. For decades I have resisted using twin poles - partly because I didn't find much benefit with them on previous attempts but mostly because I didn't want to look like a complete prat. After a couple of caminos ended very painfully and I was diagnosed with arthritis I reluctantly decided to use them on the Via de la Plata and for a long walk in Japan recently and now have to declare myself a convert. About 1500km trouble free in the past few months. I've now decided that for all but short local walks I will be using two in future. Why not pick up two if they are going spare? I remember seeing a mountain of the things in a store room in The Last Stamp too. If Pilgrim House can't help you you might try asking there.

If you have not visited A Coruna it might be worth giving it a day - or at least a half-day. Great town!

Pax et bonum.
 

natefaith

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Sarria-Santiago (2009)
León-Ponferrada (2014)
Camino Inglés (2017)
#3
Hi Jeff,
That's great that your Camino Inglés is so close!

I was so grateful for my two trekking poles on the Inglés in July - it was hillier than I'd expected, here and there, with a few steep climbs and descents. I did get a couple of blisters and probably would've suffered a few more if I didn't have the poles.

Pilgrim House still has a bunch of poles so you're welcome to grab one or two! What day of the week will you be in? Please just keep in mind that we're closed Wednesdays and Sundays. It will be great to meet you before and/or after your walk.

Enjoy all the planning and Buen Camino!
Faith
 

peb

Member
Camino(s) past & future
C. Ingles March 2018
#4
Sticks and poles are personal, and therefore, if you normally walk with a pole, then your idea of picking one up at the Pilgrim's office appears to me to be a good idea. If you find walking with the pole does not work, then you can always drop it off at any alberge on the way, even if you do not stay there. Alternatively, many shops in Santiago sell poles, which, depending on how much they cost, you may find a better fit. There is also a Decathlon shop in Ferrol, but there is no guarantee they have walking sticks.

The stages on the Ingles are quite long, and so the worst thing would be to walk uncomfortably, regretting not picking up a pole in Santiago as you planned.

As @Bradyplus, says, the Ingles doesn't walk on the rough ground that other of the Caminos cover in the mountains. About half of the Ingles is on tarmacked roads, including the two steep 20 minute climbs out of Pontedeume and Betanzos. The rest is on country tracks. I thought about walking poles, but decided that due to the long stages, I wanted to save my energy moving my legs, not my arms.

There is only 1 direct train day per day from Santiago to Ferrol, leaving Santiago at 14.15 arriving Ferrol at about 4pm (cost about € 16, and you have the privilege of going on a high speed Alvia train). Therefore, unless you stay in La Coruna for a night (which I did and would do so again, because the Tower of Hercules and the Riazor are worth seeing) stopping off at La Coruna may be an issue. Moore's tomb is in the Xardin de San Carlos in the old citadel, and the battlefield with the Moore memorial, harder to find and reach in the hills in the suburbs.

The train station at La Coruna is some way from the city and the uphill walk back to the station from the city is not something, I would do with a pack. Maybe, as you will have had a very early start if you land at 09.00, better to take the bus into Santiago, pick up that stick, have a good lunch and then sleep / relax on the train to Ferrol early afternoon. This is especially because I found it very difficult to find a restaurant serving good evening meals which was open before 9pm in Ferrol (again, noting your very early start).

What you can then do on arrival in Ferrol after finding where you stay is to walk down to the start of the Ingles by the harbour, obtain a credencial / first stamp from the tourist office by the harbour (open till 6pm) and then walk up to the tourist office by the station for a second stamp (open till 7pm), so that next day, you save yourself the time of not needing to go down to the harbour again and start walking from the front door of where you are staying (obtaining a stamp before you leave), especially because the tourist offices are not open until 10am and the first stage (if you are walking all that way) to Pontedeume is very long. There is also a large El Corte Ingles supermarket on the main shopping street in Ferrol to pick up water / fruit / provisions which is open until 9pm.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#5
Very little of the Ingles is on rough ground so probably not necessary for that. But there are a couple of short sharp hills where one would be handy. Two might be even better. I've recently been diagnosed with arthritis in one knee and the other is pretty suspect too. For decades I have resisted using twin poles - partly because I didn't find much benefit with them on previous attempts but mostly because I didn't want to look like a complete prat. After a couple of caminos ended very painfully and I was diagnosed with arthritis I reluctantly decided to use them on the Via de la Plata and for a long walk in Japan recently and now have to declare myself a convert. About 1500km trouble free in the past few months. I've now decided that for all but short local walks I will be using two in future. Why not pick up two if they are going spare? I remember seeing a mountain of the things in a store room in The Last Stamp too. If Pilgrim House can't help you you might try asking there.

If you have not visited A Coruna it might be worth giving it a day - or at least a half-day. Great town!

Pax et bonum.
Thanks for this - I'm a confirmed one-pole man. If I use two I tend to walk too quickly and I intend to savour this Camino!

Besides, if it's sunny I'll need the other paw for my sun-brella!
 

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Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#6
Hi Jeff,
That's great that your Camino Inglés is so close!

I was so grateful for my two trekking poles on the Inglés in July - it was hillier than I'd expected, here and there, with a few steep climbs and descents. I did get a couple of blisters and probably would've suffered a few more if I didn't have the poles.

Pilgrim House still has a bunch of poles so you're welcome to grab one or two! What day of the week will you be in? Please just keep in mind that we're closed Wednesdays and Sundays. It will be great to meet you before and/or after your walk.

Enjoy all the planning and Buen Camino!
Faith
Hello again Faith,

I'll be arriving at SdC at 09:00 on Monday 21st May so will have plenty of time on my hands before heading for the coast.

Will look in on you and say hello - I look just like my avatar except no penguin ;)
 

Camino Chris

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015); Camino Norte/Primitivo (2016); Camino Frances (2017); Le Puy (June 2018)
#7
Thanks for this - I'm a confirmed one-pole man. If I use two I tend to walk too quickly and I intend to savour this Camino!

Besides, if it's sunny I'll need the other paw for my sun-brella!
I also am a confirmed one-poler. My main reason is that it is much easier to grab my phone for the 2000+ photos I take! And, yes, dealing with my umbrella when needed, too.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#8
Sticks and poles are personal, and therefore, if you normally walk with a pole, then your idea of picking one up at the Pilgrim's office appears to me to be a good idea. If you find walking with the pole does not work, then you can always drop it off at any alberge on the way, even if you do not stay there. Alternatively, many shops in Santiago sell poles, which, depending on how much they cost, you may find a better fit. There is also a Decathlon shop in Ferrol, but there is no guarantee they have walking sticks.

The stages on the Ingles are quite long, and so the worst thing would be to walk uncomfortably, regretting not picking up a pole in Santiago as you planned.

As @Bradyplus, says, the Ingles doesn't walk on the rough ground that other of the Caminos cover in the mountains. About half of the Ingles is on tarmacked roads, including the two steep 20 minute climbs out of Pontedeume and Betanzos. The rest is on country tracks. I thought about walking poles, but decided that due to the long stages, I wanted to save my energy moving my legs, not my arms.

There is only 1 direct train day per day from Santiago to Ferrol, leaving Santiago at 14.15 arriving Ferrol at about 4pm (cost about € 16, and you have the privilege of going on a high speed Alvia train). Therefore, unless you stay in La Coruna for a night (which I did and would do so again, because the Tower of Hercules and the Riazor are worth seeing) stopping off at La Coruna may be an issue. Moore's tomb is in the Xardin de San Carlos in the old citadel, and the battlefield with the Moore memorial, harder to find and reach in the hills in the suburbs.

The train station at La Coruna is some way from the city and the uphill walk back to the station from the city is not something, I would do with a pack. Maybe, as you will have had a very early start if you land at 09.00, better to take the bus into Santiago, pick up that stick, have a good lunch and then sleep / relax on the train to Ferrol early afternoon. This is especially because I found it very difficult to find a restaurant serving good evening meals which was open before 9pm in Ferrol (again, noting your very early start).

What you can then do on arrival in Ferrol after finding where you stay is to walk down to the start of the Ingles by the harbour, obtain a credencial / first stamp from the tourist office by the harbour (open till 6pm) and then walk up to the tourist office by the station for a second stamp (open till 7pm), so that next day, you save yourself the time of not needing to go down to the harbour again and start walking from the front door of where you are staying (obtaining a stamp before you leave), especially because the tourist offices are not open until 10am and the first stage (if you are walking all that way) to Pontedeume is very long. There is also a large El Corte Ingles supermarket on the main shopping street in Ferrol to pick up water / fruit / provisions which is open until 9pm.
Thanks so much for all the advice - couldn't have asked for a more detailed itinerary!

I shall drop by Nate and Faith and "rent" a pole - it's not that I'm against buying one (even a super cheapie from Decathlon) but it seems profligate to buy one only to use it for a week and then abandon it!

My revised plan is (as suggested) lunch in SdC after dropping in on the Pilgrim House and heading up to Ferrol and wander around collecting sellos here, there and everywhere. I live just outside of Canterbury in England and in the next two weeks shall walk the first stages of the Via Francigena to top up my stamps - the new credentials are beautiful but SO much blank space - when I got the first stamp at Canterbury Cathedral the clerk was all excited and asked if I was walking to Rome and seemed a little disappointed when it was "just SdC"!

I'm in no rush for this Camino - retirement can be such fun! I've booked into the Hostal de Frontera for the first evening and shall be at Fene (via Neda) on the second leaving Pontedeume for the third and am actually taking a full 8 days to get to SdC.

That said I think I'll leave La Coruna until September/October when I'll be working in the Pilgrim Office and I can use one of my days off to fully enjoy the city (I'll also bus to Fistera as I've never been there either).

Once again, thanks for the advice - my feet are starting to get itchy!
 

natefaith

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Sarria-Santiago (2009)
León-Ponferrada (2014)
Camino Inglés (2017)
#9
I wished I'd had a full 8 days to enjoy the Inglés, Jeff, so I'm glad you've given yourself that much time.

Buen Camino!
Faith
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#10
So, three weeks until I start out so should really be getting things sorted.

Loaded the recently provided "routes of all the caminos" onto Google Earth and flew the full length of the Ingles - not the prettiest of routes but the thought occurs that, in some areas, food stores/cafes might be in short supply.

Has anybody come across a .gpx or .kmz/l file indicating where food or refreshments may be found?

Any Ingles veterans have any advice.

I'm not panicking, honest.
 

mylifeonvacation

Active Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Inglés (from Ferrol June 2014)
Camino Portuguese (from Tui May 2015)
#11
Has anybody come across a .gpx or .kmz/l file indicating where food or refreshments may be found?
There's a kmz file from a couple of years ago that @miguel_gp posted that does show some of the café/bars/restaurants. But I'd probably look first at Gronze's pages about the English route. It indicates which towns/places have a spot for food/drink. Now, whether the place will be open when you go by, that's another story! ;)
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#12
There's a kmz file from a couple of years ago that @miguel_gp posted that does show some of the café/bars/restaurants. But I'd probably look first at Gronze's pages about the English route. It indicates which towns/places have a spot for food/drink. Now, whether the place will be open when you go by, that's another story! ;)
Good thinking - thank you kindly.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#13
A word of caution: Take care of your boots!

Two weeks to go and I've just discovered I've destroyed my boots.

We've had a very strange spring here in the UK. Snow, lashing rain and two mini-heatwaves.

I've been walking as much as possible in either boots (wet and muddy days) or trail runners (drier, warmer days).

Last weekend was a muddy walk and so, when I got home I took my very muddy boots through the the sun room at the back of the house with a view to scrubbing them under the hose when the rain stopped. They were sitting on a large, black plastic bag which folded over them and so they sat for nearly a week during which time the weather has flipped and for the last two days we've have temperatures in the mid-20s except that my sun room hots up 45 degrees Celsius on a clear day and look what's happened to the boots:

20180506_111508.jpg

The glue has melted and the sole at the toe has peeled away as has the waterproofing bumper around the toe box. Since taking the photos I've tried some high strength glues to no avail - the sole has too much curl to close the gap and there are gaps in the bumper that will allow water to trickle in.

So it's either the well worn trail runners or some relatively new Merrell shoes :confused:

They did say in the army "take care of your boots and your boots will take care of you".
 

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peb

Member
Camino(s) past & future
C. Ingles March 2018
#14
Should be warm and dry enough in Galicia for trail runners now. I would caution new shoes for a long walk day after day
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#15
Should be warm and dry enough in Galicia for trail runners now. I would caution new shoes for a long walk day after day
I think I agree. I did 10k yesterday and another 12 today in the Merrells but while they're comfortable they don't feel mmm "cosy" yet.
A walking buddy has suggested a local boot menders in town otherwise I'll go trail runners with a spare pair of insoles like Trecile suggested.
 
Last edited:

peb

Member
Camino(s) past & future
C. Ingles March 2018
#16
Jeff, about half the Ingles is on asphalt (local country roads). If I were walking the Ingles now in minimum temperatures of 18 degrees plus (and possibly higher), I would not take walking boots. As long as your trail runners can cope with a possible day's rain, I would have thought the lighter footwear would be much more comfortable .
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#17
Jeff, about half the Ingles is on asphalt (local country roads). If I were walking the Ingles now in minimum temperatures of 18 degrees plus (and possibly higher), I would not take walking boots. As long as your trail runners can cope with a possible day's rain, I would have thought the lighter footwear would be much more comfortable .
Convinced!
 

peb

Member
Camino(s) past & future
C. Ingles March 2018
#18
Jeff, when in Santiago, be sure to pop into the new Anglican and pilgrim centre coordinated by Sybille Yates of my former chaplaincy.

www.egeria.house for more details
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles May 2018 (flight and accommodation already booked!)
#19
I shall do my best if I have time - I've already said I'd drop by the the Pilgrim House when I get to SdC.
Won't be able to do it when I leave as the airline has brought forward my flight time home from lunch until breakfast.

If I miss out this time I'll drop by when I come back in September.
 

natefaith

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Sarria-Santiago (2009)
León-Ponferrada (2014)
Camino Inglés (2017)
#20
Buen Camino, Jeff! It's not long, now! And it looks like you'll have sunny weather to start - wonderful!
Faith
 

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