Search over 55.000 Camino Questions

A donation to the forum removes ads for you, and supports Ivar in his work running it


Advertisement
Camino Socks
Browse the Camino Socks collection on the forum shop
Silver Oxide Camino de Santiago pendent
Camino de Santiago pendant that has a shell on the front, and "Camino de Santiago" engraved on the back. Comes with a black cord. Pendent is slightly larger than a 50 euro cent coin, about 25mm.

Continuing on with El Burro

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
Hi to all real pilgrims.

After walking with my girlfriend from Andorra through the Spanish Pyrenees to Cantabria last winter and spring, I am now preparing to continue possibly alone. I will be heading towards Burgos which is roughly 130 km south of me. Then possibly south on the ruta de la lana or west along the horrible frances route.

I travel with my donkey and two large dogs, were not very tourist friendly if the cameras come out and you will never find us near an albergue. I like to travel as pilgrims once did before as this is a way of life for me, we sleep under the church roofs if one is near by or in the wild with our campfire. I've worked as a guide before and my gracious donkey will carry an extra backpack for friends or apples.

I'm looking for other (real) Pilgrims to share some adventures with before the next tourist season where i will then be hiring myself out as a guide once again.
I'm happy to give what advice i can to anyone with questions.

Anybody looking for a more wild adventure or tourist pilgrims wishing to walk the way with a donkey let me know.

Ciao
 
Create your own ad
Have a camino related project that you are interested in promoting on the forum? Create your own ad right now.
Holy Year Credential
Get the HOLY YEAR Camino Credential (Passport) here.

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
Intersting way to go. Please post pics of your unique pilgrimage.
Buen camino.

Oh, maybe everyone is a real pilgrim walking very different and real ways.

Won't argue with that, but in my opinion the camino frances is now just a tourist trail and has lost its creditably. Too many people see it as a cheap holiday rather than a true pilgrimage and this attitude is seen more and more every year.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Hi to all real pilgrims.

After walking with my girlfriend from Andorra through the Spanish Pyrenees to Cantabria last winter and spring, I am now preparing to continue possibly alone. I will be heading towards Burgos which is roughly 130 km south of me. Then possibly south on the ruta de la lana or west along the horrible frances route.

I travel with my donkey and two large dogs, were not very tourist friendly if the cameras come out and you will never find us near an albergue. I like to travel as pilgrims once did before as this is a way of life for me, we sleep under the church roofs if one is near by or in the wild with our campfire. I've worked as a guide before and my gracious donkey will carry an extra backpack for friends or apples.

I'm looking for other (real) Pilgrims to share some adventures with before the next tourist season where i will then be hiring myself out as a guide once again.
I'm happy to give what advice i can to anyone with questions.

Anybody looking for a more wild adventure or tourist pilgrims wishing to walk the way with a donkey let me know.

Ciao

Hi, Nomad Pack,
Welcome to the forum. As a new member, you probably haven't had the time to scroll through the many threads in which people debate the unanswerable and highly provocative question of who is or isn't a "real" pilgrim. Many of those threads wind up being closed by the moderators because they descend into personal insults, judgmental pontifications, or just general unhelpful bloviating. ;).

Wishing you well in your camino, and as you may know, wild camping in Spain can be problematic. Hope you figure it out. Buen camino, Laurie
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Year of past OR future Camino
C. Frances SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia (May 2016)
C. Frances (Sept 2017)
Camino Portugues (June 2019)
Bloviating! A new word for me, I like it. I had a donkey growing up and would love to travel with one again some day. Seems like there would be logistical problems in modern Spain, with all the privately owned farmland, etc. My other question is whether real pilgrims use the internet? ;)
 
Last edited:
John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
This guide is one of the ones that has been around for over 15 years. Updated yearly. Please read the reviews.
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.

scruffy1

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Holy Year from Pamplona 2010, SJPP 2011, Lisbon 2012, Le Puy 2013, Vezelay (partial watch this space!) 2014; 2015 Toulouse-Puenta la Reina (Arles)
Ho hum, Tim Moore did this years ago, "Travels with My Donkey" or "One Man and His Ass on a Pilgrimage to Santiago". I sincerely hope you have a more cooperative donkey than poor Tim!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2012
I like to travel as pilgrims once did before .....

An interesting concept amigo. The historical evidence kind of contradicts that concept. The vast network of Hospitales that was established in the middle-ages purely to shelter and feed pilgrims and the numerous accounts of their experiences suggest that 'real' pilgrims made their way from shelter to shelter along the most easily accessed route and with one objective in mind - to arrive in Santiago. Your proposed route does not seem to have Santiago in mind. My pilgrimages are usually to Fisterra and the 'end of the world' but then my gods are older than most.

However, if your objective is to follow some ancient tracks through some spectacular landscapes then I wish you well. Just, please, don't promote the concept of free camping and camp-fires in a country where both are generally illegal and present a serious threat to the environment. I'm sure you are very good at what you do - most people aren't.

Buen caminos
 

G_the_D

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May 27 (2017)
October 1 (2017)
I'll be starting from Bayonne on October 11th. I'd be very happy to meet you along the way!
I'll keep an apple handy!

Gord
 

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
Hi, Nomad Pack,
Welcome to the forum. As a new member, you probably haven't had the time to scroll through the many threads in which people debate the unanswerable and highly provocative question of who is or isn't a "real" pilgrim. Many of those threads wind up being closed by the moderators because they descend into personal insults, judgmental pontifications, or just general unhelpful bloviating. ;).

Wishing you well in your camino, and as you may know, wild camping in Spain can be problematic. Hope you figure it out. Buen camino, Laurie

Hola Laurie, I apologize if my comment was problematic, As i said walking around is a way of life for me so i find it hard to consider tourists who spend six weeks on the trail, having hot showers and eating at every bar to be pilgrims, considering the history of the average pilgrim throughout the past 800 years. I hold no ill will to anyone who takes up the path, but its hard to keep that in mind when you are watching "pilgrims" throw rubbish and endless amounts of toilet roll where they walk. Anyhows, i won't mention the subject again if it displeases people.
However i must disagree completely with your understanding of "camping". I have never experienced any problems, the complete opposite is the truth. So long as you are respectful it is never a problem, on several occasions even the infamous guardia civil have helped me find suitable spots. Spain is different as they say and camping is camping whether you are in the wild or not.
I wish you all the best
 

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
Bloviating! A new word for me, I like it. I had a donkey growing up and would love to travel with one again some day. Seems like there would be logistical problems in modern Spain, even with all the privately owned farmland. My other question is whether real pilgrims use the internet? ;)

Haha, i like that. Truth be told this is the first time i have used the Internet for pilgrim purposes, to be honest i just wanted to search out other walkers to save me from loniless, my animals are good listeners but tend not to say much, although i always get a good eeeaww every morning. As to your other question, the only logistical problems i find is when my donkey doesnt fit through certain gaps. We once had to walk 40 km round a mountain to gain 200 meters of trail because of overhanging rocks along the river not leaving enough space. Farmers dont mind me, I respect the land and as one of my dogs is a spanish mastiff they take me as family. Wish you all the best
 
Camino Cups
Browse our selection of Camino Cups on the forum store
Camino Socks
Browse the Camino Socks collection on the forum shop

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
Ho hum, Tim Moore did this years ago, "Travels with My Donkey" or "One Man and His Ass on a Pilgrimage to Santiago". I sincerely hope you have a more cooperative donkey than poor Tim!

Thankfully mi burra is wonderfull, somewhat bigger than shinto. Although they share the same irrantional fear of small bridges but walking waist high through a frozen river isnt a problem.
 

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
An interesting concept amigo. The historical evidence kind of contradicts that concept. The vast network of Hospitales that was established in the middle-ages purely to shelter and feed pilgrims and the numerous accounts of their experiences suggest that 'real' pilgrims made their way from shelter to shelter along the most easily accessed route and with one objective in mind - to arrive in Santiago. Your proposed route does not seem to have Santiago in mind. My pilgrimages are usually to Fisterra and the 'end of the world' but then my gods are older than most.

However, if your objective is to follow some ancient tracks through some spectacular landscapes then I wish you well. Just, please, don't promote the concept of free camping and camp-fires in a country where both are generally illegal and present a serious threat to the environment. I'm sure you are very good at what you do - most people aren't.

Buen caminos
Very good, i cant disagree with the history you explain other than to say many pilgrims would still be spending many could nights under a tree inbetween these hospitales. And your right promoting camp-fires i shouldnt do considering how many people cant light one, let alone safely. However i will always promote camping as to pay to sleep should be illegal and we live in a very corrupted system which i will not support. Plus as i said in another reply the police support my camping.
 

SYates

Camino Fossil AD 1999, now living in Santiago de C
Year of past OR future Camino
First: Camino Francés 1999
...
Last: Santiago - Muxia 2019

Now: http://egeria.house/
... as to pay to sleep should be illegal ....

Sure, buying or renting an albergue is for free, cleaning material, toilet paper, electricity and water likewise. I am shaking my head here, BC SY
 
Last edited:

Pingüigrino

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances, Aragones, Vasco del Interior, Baztanes. (Frances Winter, La Plata, Camino de Invierno, Mozarabe, Norte, Primitivo.)
No free food. If you are not paying for your food, any other person is doing it for you. Maybe one of those "infamous" Guardia Civil menbers that are supporting you.
 
Camino Socks
Browse the Camino Socks collection on the forum shop
Camino Maps
A collection of Camino Maps from the Camino Forum Store

G_the_D

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May 27 (2017)
October 1 (2017)
The Camino isn't free. We who walk support the local economy.
I understand trying to look for the best price, but a price is to be paid. There is the effort and time of the people and organisations that support us on the Camino.
I have had a hospitalero try to tell me that I did not have to donate at a donativo. (Yes, really it happened) That did not stop me from contributing a fair share.
Albergues are also run for the betterment of the pilgrim. Hospitaleros do not always benefit (some do of course).
 
Last edited:

Pingüigrino

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances, Aragones, Vasco del Interior, Baztanes. (Frances Winter, La Plata, Camino de Invierno, Mozarabe, Norte, Primitivo.)
The Camino isn't free. We who walk support the local economiy.
I understand trying to look for the best price, but a price is to be paid. There is the effort and time of the people and organisations that support us on the Camino.
I have had a hospitalero try to tell me that I did not have to donate at a donativo. (Yes, really it happened) That did not stop me from contributing a fair share.
Albergues are also run for the betterment of the pilgrim. Hospitaleros do not always benefit (some do of course).
Myself, as a hospitalero alwais say: "This albergue is runned by the work of volunteers and the pilgrim´s donations. If you can´t affor a single coin to the box, don´t do it, you are welcome in this house anyway. But if it is possible, please be as generous as you can, because you are paying for you and for the less fortunate than you.
 

G_the_D

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May 27 (2017)
October 1 (2017)
Myself, as a hospitalero alwais say: "This albergue is runned by the work of volunteers and the pilgrim´s donations. If you can´t affor a single coin to the box, don´t do it, you are welcome in this house anyway. But if it is possible, please be as generous as you can, because you are paying for you and for the less fortunate than you.
Well said. In my future I will likely be a hospitalero. For now I am content to be a pilgrim.
As a pilgrim, I will be as generous as my Camino will allow me to be. Hospitaleros are the backbone of the Camino.
Not every pilgrim will use albergues or hostels or hotels. Those who live "wild" are to be respected as well.
We all walk to the same destination. We all contribute in our own way.

Buen Camino
 

grayland

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
Yes
The moderators truly appreciate the restraint the members have shown in this thread.
We have been making efforts to allowing threads to remain open..

This first thread by a new member would seem to test the tolerance level of long time forum posters.
Again, thanks for your civil replies.
 
Camino Maps
A collection of Camino Maps from the Camino Forum Store
John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
This guide is one of the ones that has been around for over 15 years. Updated yearly. Please read the reviews.

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I have always found it interesting to read all the various opinions on the topic of being a "true" pilgrim, "real" pilgrim, "fake" pilgrim, plain pilgrim, or tourist. I personally don't understand why so many on the forum often have such passionate opinions about the intent of an individual who walks the Camino paths. We each walk for our own reasons and personal satisfaction, different as they each may be. I think "it's all good.":)
 
Last edited:

long trails

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2012
Won't argue with that, but in my opinion the camino frances is now just a tourist trail and has lost its creditably. Too many people see it as a cheap holiday rather than a true pilgrimage and this attitude is seen more and more every year.

Is it really an issue if people treat it as a cheap holiday? Not everyone can afford an African safari or renting an apartment by a beach for two weeks. People should be encouraged to use their holiday time walking Caminos. They are doing themselves a lot of good, both physically and spiritually. They also contribute to the economies of the destinations along the Camino, many of which would be very poor otherwise.

Nice first post! Good to hear that people are enjoying an alternative kind of Camino. I too have camped along the Caminos and never had an issue. It makes a nice alternative to sleeping in crowded rooms and a way of saving a few Euros.

The book by Tim Moore was a good read. It's pretty much how I first found out about the Camino as it's not that well know in the UK.
 

NinjaRob

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino France's to Muxia then Finisterre. May June 2016
Man travelling with a donkey and two large dogs complains about the waste left behind by human pilgrims.
Does a brown dog Sh/7 in the woods?
 

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
The moderators truly appreciate the restraint the members have shown in this thread.
We have been making efforts to allowing threads to remain open..

This first thread by a new member would seem to test the tolerance level of long time forum posters.
Again, thanks for your civil replies.

Thats wonderful, i didnt think things could get so heated, I live in northern spain, my partner is spanish and we know the region very well yet i didnt realise so many people would have such strong opinions about somewhere they dont necessarily live.
 
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.
2021 Camino Guides
Most all Camino authors have decided to use 2020 guides for 2021, with free PDF files with updates coming in the spring. Get yours today.

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
Thank you for everyones inputs, My opinions are strong, but i respect any other view someone has. We live here, we have also lived in other regions in the north so i'm talking from the experience of living in the area as well as walking. We do not live within the system, those who understand what that truely means, well they get it. For those who dont yet realize whats really going on around you, i hope all the best for you and urge you to wake up. Or watch the matrix, open your eye to the message, not the action and compare with reality.

Can i post the facebook page where i have all the photos for people interested to view?

Best wishes to everyone
 

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
I'll be starting from Bayonne on October 11th. I'd be very happy to meet you along the way!
I'll keep an apple handy!

Gord[/QUOTE

That would be awesome, if were on the way at the same time you will find us easily, just ask the locals, elderly but still quicker than facebook
 

VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
May you have good luck in finding company, @Nomad Pack .
I'll willingly admit to being a totally fake pilgrim - so I'm no help at all. Except to poke fun at how seriously we (myself included) are all taking this. ;):cool: If we learn to laugh at ourselves and are all considerate and conscientious towards others, all will be well. Besides a burra in full bray is pretty funny, unless she happens to do that at close quarters with no warning.

I'll be starting from Bayonne on October 11th
Off topic, but I hope you enjoy the Baztan, Gord...it's a real gem.
Buen camino to all, on either 2 or 4 feet!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2012
@Nomad Pack you are welcome to post a link to your Facebook photos so long as such a posting doesn't breach the forum rules on commercial posts. I'm sure there are many members who would be delighted to see some pics of you and your dogs and burro. Pilgrim or not many of us live an itinerant lifestyle in one way or another.
 

long trails

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2012
Man travelling with a donkey and two large dogs complains about the waste left behind by human pilgrims.
Does a brown dog Sh/7 in the woods?

Humans should know better. I think it's discusting when you see the side of the trail littered with toilet paper.
 
Camino Magnets
A collection of Camino Fridge Magnets
John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
This guide is one of the ones that has been around for over 15 years. Updated yearly. Please read the reviews.

possie

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Cf 2 times
Cp oct. (2017) Via francigena (starting in Lucca 2018)
Hi NomadPack,
I like your pictures and I see you forgot to mention there's also a cat :)
As a matter of fact, your post was particularly interesting for me because I just finished the Portuguese Caminho, got back to the Algarve and I'm now planning to do the Caminho again in spring next year, leaving from Faro but this time with Balthazar and Melchior, my two donkeys. Have you got any practical advice for me about your daily "mileage"? Feeding, hooves etc ?
So, any practical info on the donkey part would be very much appreciated.
I also see you carry a tent. Good for you but I'm 78 and I do like from time to time to sleep in a "real" bed and take a hot shower. Have you got any info on cheap lodging with stabling/overnighting facilities for two donkeys ?
Thank you very much. And btw, I understand your reactions to "tourists" but you know, we're not all the same. I trekked thru the Sahara for a year and a half and I had exactly the same reaction about "tourists" then, but that was 50 years ago ! We all travel for our own reasons and we have to accept that one way of travelling has not necessarily more merit than another.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Is it really an issue if people treat it as a cheap holiday? Not everyone can afford an African safari or renting an apartment by a beach for two weeks. People should be encouraged to use their holiday time walking Caminos. They are doing themselves a lot of good, both physically and spiritually. They also contribute to the economies of the destinations along the Camino, many of which would be very poor otherwise.

Ivar needs to give us a thumbs up emoji!
 
Camino Maps
A collection of Camino Maps from the Camino Forum Store
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.

Nomad Pack

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1497
Hi NomadPack,
I like your pictures and I see you forgot to mention there's also a cat :)
As a matter of fact, your post was particularly interesting for me because I just finished the Portuguese Caminho, got back to the Algarve and I'm now planning to do the Caminho again in spring next year, leaving from Faro but this time with Balthazar and Melchior, my two donkeys. Have you got any practical advice for me about your daily "mileage"? Feeding, hooves etc ?
So, any practical info on the donkey part would be very much appreciated.
I also see you carry a tent. Good for you but I'm 78 and I do like from time to time to sleep in a "real" bed and take a hot shower. Have you got any info on cheap lodging with stabling/overnighting facilities for two donkeys ?
Thank you very much. And btw, I understand your reactions to "tourists" but you know, we're not all the same. I trekked thru the Sahara for a year and a half and I had exactly the same reaction about "tourists" then, but that was 50 years ago ! We all travel for our own reasons and we have to accept that one way of travelling has not necessarily more merit than another.

hello there,
Sorry the reply is so late I haven't been online over the winter months.
Its great to hear from another donkey trekker.
So as to some basic advice of the top of my head...
I guess you already have a good knowledge with donkeys, their eating habits etc. Vannii gets all the food she could want, whenever we stop for a break we do it where nice long green grass is available, I camp everywhere so again i make sure ts always in a grassy area. I also sleep many nights under church roofs or in hermitas and usually there are plenty of overgrow patches of grass around. I keep her on a long rope at night to stop her wandering too far away though in the day like for lunch I'll just show her some grass and leave her to it. On the rare occasions there's no grass say because we've camped in woodland then I'll go find her a bunch of hazel or other tree leaves she enjoys such as ash. As to stabling, this isn't even worth thinking about. There are of course stables along the Camino but many are 10 plus kilometers from the trail. Just ask around the village for somewhere to tie her with grass. If this is in a village along the Camino itself then make sure to check on them often or leave a note for the donkeys not to be disturbed as otherwise some pilgrims won't respect their space. Fortunately for me everybody respects my mastiff and keep their distance from the animals. Personally if you are staying in a hostal I would seek out a local farmer for a quiet spot to tie them for the night so they can graze in peace.
When it comes to the hooves there are several factors to consider. How far you go every day, what surface you mostly walk on, the weight they carry and the condition of the hooves when you start out. For me, I'll walk between 15 to 30 kilometers a day but its really up to the donkey. She usually follows along behind me freely occasionally stopping to tear up some grass but generally keeps me in sight. If you find yourself having to walk along the road or long distances on stony paths then allow the donkey to walk along the verge where possible. They will most likely choose the softer ground themselves anyway. Make sure to clean the hooves before and after walking to remove any pebbles that get stuck.. Just keep a good eye on them and give them a couple of days a week without walking. They shouldn't require shoeing as donkeys hooves are much tough than a horses. If you do require a farrier then I advise again to ask a local farmer just make sure the farrier knows donkey hooves and not just horses as there is a big difference in shoeing.
I can give you much more advice if you require, send me a private message and I can give you my telephone number.

Ah and yes the cat.That is Buddha the pilgrim cat, he walks along and when he's tired jumps up onto the donkeys back and goes to sleep. Spends most nights out catching mice or looking for other cats and comes back to the tent in the morning for his breakfast. He knows the routine and is always nearby when I'm ready to leave.
 

possie

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Cf 2 times
Cp oct. (2017) Via francigena (starting in Lucca 2018)
Thank you very much. I might call on you for more info.
 

Similar threads

Camino Conversations

Camino Conversations

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Forum Donation

Forum Donation
For those with no forum account, it is possible to donate here as well. Thank you for your support! Ivar

Follow Casa Ivar on Instagram

Most downloaded Resources

When is the best time to walk?

  • January

    Votes: 16 1.2%
  • February

    Votes: 10 0.7%
  • March

    Votes: 60 4.3%
  • April

    Votes: 207 14.9%
  • May

    Votes: 338 24.4%
  • June

    Votes: 101 7.3%
  • July

    Votes: 27 1.9%
  • August

    Votes: 29 2.1%
  • September

    Votes: 399 28.8%
  • October

    Votes: 171 12.3%
  • November

    Votes: 19 1.4%
  • December

    Votes: 10 0.7%

Camino Forum Store

Camino Forum Store
Top