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Camping roll mat - to take or not to take

handzondeck2

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
CF (x2); VdLP (x4); Portuguese (x2); Madrid (x2); S/Salvador, Primitivo, Ingles ('17) Camino 19 tba
HI all

Is it worth taking a camping roll mat to sleep on if the numbers are quite numerous on the Camino Portugues due to the Holy Year? :?:

Thanks

Sharon :p
 
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elzi

Active Member
I think the general rule for camping mats is that you don't need to take one unless you are actually camping!
My understanding is that regulations for albergues often mean that you can no longer sleep packed in on the floor on mats. I wouldn't bother carrying one if I were you - it's just some extra weight that you will probably end up dumping.
 

muppet

Member
No dont bother....Takes up extra weight and space and all the albergues I visited in the last two weeks had "decent" matresses....The only people I knew on the walk who had them dumped them half way.

if you're camping its a different story of course.
 

Nandy61

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2010 CF StJPP to Santiago
2014 CF Leon to Santiago
2015 Primitivo
I too was seriously considering bringing mine on the Camino Frances. I was thinking that it could come in handy with the crowds (June-July) of this Holy Year. Am I wrong? Will there always be a bed, somewhere?
 
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Catalinda

New Member
I'd really like an opinion too. I bought a mat, because I will be walking the camino frances in June and July (hopefully arrive in Compostela by July 15) I don't think I would need it on the earlier legs, but what about in Galicia. I don't want to bring it, it's light but if I don't need to carry it, if I won't need it, but I don't want to be without should the need arise.
I'm only bringing a sleeping bag liner, so i wouldn't be comfortable sleeping on the floor with just that. What does everyone else think?
 

fiddletree

Active Member
They will no longer let you sleep on the floors, and by 'they' I mean every albergue.

There will not necessarily be a bed for you. You might have to walk strange hours, or longer/shorter distances than you anticipated to find a bed at an albergue. Or, you might have you pay to stay in a casa rural or hotel if space is all gone.

When I walked the Camino 3 years ago, these things happened a few times. And when all the beds were gone, they were always very strict about no sleeping on floors (it is due to fire regulations, and if they get caught they can be shut down). The only time where there was no where to sleep in more than 20 km in any direction and I thought I would have to sleep under a bridge, the hospitalera took me home with her to sleep in her house. As long as you are flexible, you'll probably find a place to sleep. But with it being holy year, I don't know!

So, yeah. Like others said, if you are camping, that is the only possible way you would need a mat. Otherwise you'll dump it. If you decide you need one while you are on the walk, you can always find one in a 'free' box, or you can buy one in a city you pass through.
 
Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
I respectfully disagree with fiddletree.

I walked this past August through November, and there were many places that would allow you to sleep on the floor or out in the yard. I know because I did it.

I also slept in a church pew once and on a church porch once.

I usually say do not take a mat, in fact I said it just last week.

But I'm seeing the numbers of pilgrims now and thinking for THIS particular year, it might be a smart item to carry. You can buy really lightweight CHEAP ones ($6) at Walmart... blue foam... and it's something that if you find you do not use, you can leave behind in the free box for someone else to use.

If I were going THIS year, I'd take a mat.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
The albergues in Galicia no longer allow more than the allotted number of pilgrims to sleep over. Even at San Roque which is not a municipal albergue, we were not allowed to accept even one extra pilgrim. (there was lots of space - but as Fiddletree said, fire regulations and insurance cover dictated the policy.)
There are many albergues on the camino that will make space for extra pilgrim. Some of these, like my favourite at Grañon, never turn anyone away. Can't imagine what would happen if they had a fire there!
 
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A

AJ

Guest
In this Holy Year, walking in June/July I am trusting in God...and taking my camping mat.
 

JohnnieWalker

Nunca se camina solo
I think it is a little early in the year to give a definitive answer to this question. Although the routes are still quiet numbers are double for this period last year. There are plans at the height of the season to set to tented villages and use sports halls etc. It may well be by that point that carrying a mat will give greater flexibility. I'm sure we will see more posts on this as the year progresses.
 

mmonomm

Member
hi,

that was the first thing to throw away from my backpack (among others, on the first day, when i realised i won't be able to carry 8 kg-s for 2 weeks). i walked from Porto this year in May, and no crowds were on the route, more exactly i was walking alone in Portugal, in Spain i met some groups, but there was not yet a problem of crowded albergues.
and in some of them i have seen extra mats in storage spaces...
so i should not take a mat roll with me one more time- even if it wasn't heavy- it toook a little bit of my backpack space.
 

Tangaa

New Member
I´m interested in this question as well, since I´m going on saturday the 26th of june from Saint Jean.
Sleep mat or no sleep mat?
All the reports on the overwhelming number of pilgrims makes you wonder...
What is your last minute recommendation for me?
Yours
Tangaa
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
Hello Tangaa, Considering that you are going to leave at the beginning of the really high season (on a Saturday as well)- and will be walking right into the hight of the season, I think that you would be advised to take a sleeping mat with you. I guess that you are fairly young and don't mind sleeping outside, or bedding down somewhere? If you find that the amount of people thins out, which I doubt, you could always discard it somewhere along the Way! Anne
 
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