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Doing the walk in winter


I am planning to walk alone from Leon to Santiago in two weeks from 25 Nov this year. Just wondering if anyone has done it during those time? I understand that there will not be many pilgrims on the road. Will most of the refuge/restauarnt/bar/shops be opened? How safe for a single woman to stay in a near empty refuge? :roll:

Thanks heaps.


Peter Robins

Veteran Member
Donating Member
The last time I walked the Camino Frances, I split it into 4 sections. The 3rd section, Fromista-Astorga, which would be the 1st part of what you are planning, I walked in November. It was cold - woolly-hat and mittens weather throughout - but exceptionally clear. I was originally thinking of walking further in that week, but gave up as the snow in the mountains was knee-deep. This was unusual so early, but by no means unknown. If the weather is bad, you can use the road rather than the track over the Cruz de Ferro, and from Ponferrada, you could detour on to the Camino de Invierno, a low-level alternative route via Lemos, which should be ready by then.

There are unlikely to be many pilgrims around, but there will probably be some, so you should have company in the refuges. You will not however have heating. Partly for this reason, I stopped in hotels. Most of the facilities should be open. I'm not a single woman, but I would think your main problem will be not safety but what to do in the long dark evenings. Dark from around 18.30, light around 8.
Thank you Peter that was really helpful. Hopefully, I won't encounter snow on the way, but am prepared to change plan if it does snow. I was actually thinking of not bring any book to read because of the weight factor, after seeing your reply I think I will forego something else instead.

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