Hi All. My wife and I are planning a three month tour in Europe next year including cycling the camino. I have read that some walkers find cyclists a nuisance. Other than not taking our bikes , what can we do to be less of a nuisance? If you have hiked the camino what was your reaction to cyclists and why?
Because of an injury to my leg a walking Camino turned into a bicycle in Camino. And for the most part I rode the trail. If the trail was very thin and there were walkers about, I either walked the bike or found a road. You definitely feel like you’re harassing walkers, if you’re a polite person. But for the most part, walkers were friendly towards me, But I’ve bent over backwards to be polite.
I would call out ahead in both Spanish and English, and then ring my bell if I didn’t get a response. I would always go slowly when I was passing walkers unless the trail was extremely wide. But I would still startle people and sometimes they would jump off the trail!
Someone else mentioned this, but I definitely felt I didn’t get the true Camino experience because I didn’t really develop a Camino family.
You can of course take the road route, and then you won’t bother any walkers. But why bother to do the Camino? And the few times I did, it could feel dangerous because of the fast cars.
There’s a lot of hills in parts of the trail, and I spent a lot of time pushing my bike up hills. Sometimes even down hills because it seem to rocky and fast.
It also depends on what time of year you go. I’m thinking September and may be May 15 through June 15 are the busiest times. If you’re off-season, it’ll be a lot easier. My bike ride was approximately April 15 through May 15, and only towards the end after Sarria did I feel the trails were really crowded. In the beginning, sometimes they were desolate.
And my comments are about the Camino France. Some other routes, from my understanding , (the Via Del Plata comes to mind) are really suited to bicycles.
But overall, if your polite and willing to slow down when necessary , it’ll be a good experience.