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Equipment list and opinions from recent camino

#1
This is what we took and what I thought of it….I hope it’s of some use to others doing their first camino.

Please bear in mind that these are personal opinions and a lot depends on your personal comfort levels, level of fitness, your own body’s reaction to a wide range of variables…and the fact that we did this in August whilst it was extremely hot!!!

Less busy times probably wont necessitate a sleeping mat (for instance), colder months probably wont benefit so much from the freeflow pack (in winter I would actually advise against it as you may get colder, faster). Like I say this is just what worked for us on a 13 day trek from Leon to Santiago in the first two weeks in August. Which I will definitely do again!!!

Pack: Berghaus Freeflow IV (for me 50 Litre for my partner Shell 32 Litre..and a womens design)

I know 50 litres sounds a lot and many people do this with way less but I found it perfect for two reasons. 1. The Freeflow packs have a weird design to keep the pack away from your back so its cooler (which is fantastic!!!) it works but it also makes it harder to pack so I say go a size bigger than you would normally choose to accommodate that. 2. It allowed me to carry more food which was very useful for those lunchtime hours when everything was shut!! I thoroughly recommend these packs for the warmer climates/months.

Boots: We both used Meindl Borneo Pro’s and loved them. This is despite them eating our feet in the first week because they weren’t sufficiently broken in. They are leather with NO gore-tex lining. I really don’t understand gore-tex in shoes. With a few exceptions its usually a very bad idea. Gore-tex is a PVU sheet with small holes in it, with a membrane on the back to protect it from the damaging effects of oils and sweat from the wearer. The idea is the holes will let water vapour out but not let water drops in. That’s it. eVent is the same thing but redesigned to do away with the protective membrane. Ok there’s a bit more science here but that’s basically it…. On a very hot dusty track (as a lot of the camino is) your boots will quickly get coated in dust. The dust will clog the pores. Your feet are then in plastic bags inside your boots. Not good. Some boots manage to deal with this but I’d recommend taking good advice on them first! Even leather boots need rinsing off each night to stay breathable. Whatever you choose, unless you are a very experienced walker (in which case why are you looking here) you need ankle support. For that I think you need decent boots. Spend the money!!! They don’t need to be leather like mine (but I will say my feet were happy in them and no hotter than in fabric boots) but they do need to be good. Cordura and similar fabrics are great…very tough, lightweight, very water resistant.

For those are about to take me to task on this and say “Why I did the camino in a pair of flip flops and was absolutely fine” – I congratulate you but I think it’s dangerous to suggest sandals/running shoes or similar to people doing this the first time. Imagine you’re a relative novice walker, imagine you’re going down into Molinaseca with no ankle support and your ankles are already weakened by the trek so far. Not good…. Each to their own of course but listen to your body. If you’re doing a long haul then you will be going down some steep slopes with loose rocks. If it’s raining it will be slippery. You can drive for months on motorways with bald tyres and no problems but would you take the risk if you had the choice?

Sleeping bag: Snugpak Travel Lite’s Cheap, pack small, not too hot but warm enough when needed. Not a lot else to say really! You could get by on a liner bag in the warmer months but I welcomed the bag, especially for the little extra padding and the warmth when we got into Galicia. Some of the nights were VERY cold. Personal choice as ever, but I think unless you’re going in the depth of winter a 1-2 season bag is enough. 20+ people in a room generates a lot of heat!

Sleeping mat: In the busier months I would say this is essential. We used Alpkit Slim Airic’s – a fraction of the price of Therm-a-rest but every bit as good I think! It packs small and doesn’t weigh too much. As I said earlier you probably wont need this in quieter months though – but July-Sept it would be advisable. I only used it once but I desperately needed a good nights sleep and a stone floor wasn’t going to provide that without the mat!! It was also nice to chill on :eek:)
Clothes: All (almost) specialist technical fibres but you don’t have to spend a fortune. For men Next (a UK high street store) do a range of men’s underwear called “Ultra Active” which does the whole wicking thing. And they’re great. Used them in horrendous temperatures and they worked a treat. They don’t seem to do a women’s range but almost any modern synthetic fibre should be ok. Just don’t use cotton!!!!!! (Unless it’s specially treated and even then I’d be suspicious) Cotton holds something like 4 times its own weight in water (ie sweat) and doesn’t give it up easily.

We had three sets of clothes (each bagged separately so as not to fish around for socks, shorts, tops etc – makes washing easier too!) but you could get away with two. No really….you can. This is a camino not a fashion show and you soon wont care anyway!! :eek:)

Trespass do a good range of t-shirts and zip-offs which are cheap and good quality. (Again UK high street) For socks we used smartwool and I probably wont use anything else now. I also tried bridgedale (ok but not great – but last longer than smartwool) and 1000 Mile (love em for trainers and light boots and short treks – but not for serious stuff).

Wash bag: Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Stick deodarant (use a crystal deodorant, ammonium dioxide I think…brand name is Crystal Springs. No smell, stops bacteria growing REALLY works and is very light. One stick will do two people about a month). All in one – hair/body/clothes wash from a specialist store. That’s it. What else do you need? (Note the word NEED) For a treat I had a very small travel size Lynx shower gel – didn’t need it in the slightest but I loved having a nice smell on my body once a day!!

First Aid Kit: You can buy a lot out there and a wider choice than the UK. For instance we can get Ibuprofen gel – which is good. There you can get Diclofenac Gel which is WAY better! Over here that’s prescription territory. It is fantastic stuff for swollen ankles/knees/bruises etc.
I needed to re-stock my kit twice but then it was used for a few people. Main things were: Compeed and Needle & Thread for blisters (if the blisters persists or keeps coming back then use the needle and thread it will heal much faster…just makes sure you keep it very clean) Antiseptic Spray, Crepe bandage (for strapping up swollen ankles – yours or someone elses!) Micropore or elastic, adhesive bandage; plasters; anti-histamines (for bites as well as stings); rehydration drinks (a few sachets wont hurt and they’re cheap), tweezers and scissors (I took a swiss army knife which was all the blade/screwdriver/scissors I needed)

This is essential, travelling on foot in countryside, especially places you don’t know, without a first aid kit is just plain dumb. End of.

Water bottle – you really only need one decent sports waterbottle. Very cheap to buy – about 75cl. I took two but one was a “proper” aluminium one – which tasted weird. So I used it to keep water in and then poured it into the other bottle to drink. On a side note – Isostar tablets make a fantastic tasting re-hydration and energy drink – they’re cheap and they don’t take up much weight/space. Only found them on the internet though.

trekking poles/walking sticks - are a personal choice. I really needed a stick and was glad I waited and got one out there. If you don’t know how to use trekking poles properly then I wouldn’t bother. The key thing with whatever you choose is that it supports your arm….if it’s a straight stick a loop of leather or something then your hand should rest comfortably in that loop at about 90 degrees. Otherwise you’ll get blisters from trying to grip a straight, varnished, pole. Mine had an inverted L shape so I had a form of handle on the top which was invaluable.

Whatever you take make it as little as possible….try putting a small bag with a 1kg weight on your back and then wearing it all day. See how you feel after that and then think how you’d feel with eight or 9 times that amount. Once you get past 10-11 (unless you’re quite big) it’s going to get crippling very quickly!. To keep documents in decent ziplock bags or see thru plastic pencil cases work well.
I’m sure many people will disagree with bits of this but I think for first timers it would work ok…. Hey if nothing else we might get a debate out of it!


Buen Camino!!!!!!!
 
#2
Martin0642,

Thanks for sharing your fantastic packing list, it is the most practical and well researched views on what was packed .... and most important why it was selected. I thing Ivar should put this up as a yardstick to follow for prospective pilgrims even though most items are UK brands.

To put a spanner in the works .... assume you had to reduce the packing list to the absolute bare minimum, could you reduce the packed stuff even more if you can restock as we did on the road and sent ahead a change of clothing to Santiago for the final return home? As a challenge reduce by 30%? How did the original pilgrims manage with sandals and a clothbag slung over their shoulder?

How critical is carrying sleeping equipment in summer? Is there a problem for the albergues to have sufficient blankets and mattress with pilgrims supplying their own liner --- or stay in hostals/hotels/B&B. We are not purists and we are at ease not having to torture ourselves to fight for the limited sleeping spaces during the summer peak.

We found that our body easily adapted to the weight and strapping/webbing of the backpack (10% of bodyweight) after a few days, with adequate washing and drying facilities we found that we overpacked and that one set of clothing could have sufficed in summer, the men could go commando or buy disposable underwear. The heaviest weight was the huge chip on our shoulder which rapidly dropped off during the journey.

These appear to be hypothetical questions but your posting are the most practical, unemotional and generous comments we have seen so far and the most useful.

Grandpa Joe
 
#4
Er....wow - thanks for the comments!! Didnt think it was THAT good!! However....turning to Jo's spanners in the works....

The best way to reduce that packing list I would say is DON'T GO AT THE BUSIEST TIME OF YEAR!

Had we not gone when we did the sleeping mat would have been pointless. Unfortunately EVERYTHING from O Cerebreiro onwards was booked well in advance and that left an awful lot of pilgrims fighting for the very limited municipal places. Personally I think the albergues should be licenced and not allow bookings, but I guess a prvate business is allowed to do as it pleases. Given all this the sleeping mat was very welcome. We did stay in B&B's on occasion but we also stayed in albergues that supplied no bedding at all and consequently the sleeping bags were also welcome. I think thats a personal comfort thing...how much do people want to step outside their comfort zone? I guess that may depend on your reasons for doing a pilgrimage but personally I feel no need to punish myself more than the walk itself (and the sun) did. And whilst I agree that the original pilgrims were indeed hardy people for not having all this stuff......i bet ya anything they would have leapt at it given the opportunity!

I think one set of clothing is possibly going too far though!! How exactly do you get from the shower to the washing machine and then out to the drying line without upsetting people??!!! He hee.....

On a more serious note there are valid reasons for having 2 sets I think. Clean clothes are psychologically helpful as well as just nicer than the sweaty ones! Its also much nicer for everyone else around you when you cant get your clothes washed that day. (which in the busy months does seem to happen)

Disposable underwear?!!!! Interesting idea....I think i'd rather have a couple of pairs of cheap technical fibres and wash them but each to their own :)

My pack weight started quite high but was about 9kg when I checked in at the airport on the way home so a lot of it was food and water. (or i had a small stowaway) which I didnt mind carrying. As you say you get used to the pack weight fairly quickly.

Which brings me neatly on to two points I should have added in the first post:

1. Whatever pack you take get it properly fitted. Both Shell and I had occasions when shoulder straps got caught and slightly adjusted..but didnt notice til the weird pain went down one side of our necks! The weight should be carried on the HIP BELT, not the shoulder straps. They are there to stop the pack falling off. So pack the heaviest stuff closer to the bottom or failing that as close to your back as possible. The higher the heavy things the more you will suffer. I had sleeping bag, mat and fresh change of clothes in the bottom compartment of my sack which meant i didnt have to empty everything out to get at it all. My washkit was at the top of the main sack so I could get sorted at albergues without too much unpacking/packing. The main body had the sundry stuff....torch (get a SMALL one!!! Headtorches are very invasive), Isostar tablets, Adaptors, phone charger etc...

2. Waterproof rucksack liners are a great invention - and horrendously overpriced. A rubble sack (or something similar from a garden centre) will do the job perfectly. They're light, tough and waterproof. And cheap :)
 
#5
Hi Martin0642,

Thanks for your added and useful comments, Yes I agree with Ivar that your posting is a classic and should remain on the top .. not only because it is excellent but you are maintaining the thread most promptly.

I must apologise when I wrote earlier on that carrying one set of clothes could suffice, I meant one SPARE set of clothing. I agree a 67 year old wandering around in the albergue in his/her birthday suit after a shower waiting for his/her only set of clothes to dry would stretch things too far.

It is good to have this debate off to a good constructive start.


Grandpa Joe
 
#6
:lol: Thank god for that!! I'll be honest I was beginning to wonder if maybe you'd become one of those people who'd one camino too many... :shock:

But I agree. I found havign a 3rd set was useful for me and I didnt mind the small weight increase but as with so many things its very personal. I think 2 sets of clothes in all is a good rule (with one extra pair of socks and undies maybe?). Sending a 3rd set on is also a good idea so you have an alternative for santiago.

On that note I should say...check the calendar before you send! We met people who didnt get their stuff picked up the day they arrived only to find the office was closed for the next two days for religious festivals! Ok if you have time to spare but many were on tight schedules.
 
#7
As ever there was something I forgot to mention on the list (and probably several other things but i can only remember one right now! :roll: )

Waterproof Jacket/Poncho/Fleece

As ever its your personal comfort levels that will make the decision but I took a Mountain Hardwear rainjacket and a microfleece from...er.....Mountain Warehouse (which is an internet shop not a brand..as far as i know!).

The fleece fitted nicely in the compression straps on the side of the pack and weighed virtually nothing. It was really welcome on a couple of nights but I could have done without it.

The jacket was lovely, perfect for wet weather and because it was a "proper" trekking jacket had under arm "pit zips" to help ventilate it on climbs. Which is a point.....no matter how "breathable" your coat fabric - if it's raining and you're exerting yourself you will get wet. From sweat. The breathability thing depends on differences in temprature and humidity between the outside and inside of the jacket. If its raining its more humid outside and if you're hot because you're climbing a hill...its colder outside. So the breathability thing doesnt work so well. There are jackets that can apprently deal with this but then you're talking SERIOUS money. Up to you..

Poncho's are a great compromise and will avoid the water going down your back between you and your pack (not nice when it starts to cool!) However spend a bit of money on them, the cheap ones ar just glorified carrier bags only much less useful. The only downside of a poncho is its not very warming.

So I would say Poncho + Microfleece....OR...decent lightweight breathable jacket. :lol:
 

lynnejohn

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2005), VDLP(2007), Madrid(2009), Ingles(2009), Sur (2011), VDLP(2011)-partial, VDLP(2014)
#8
I have always used a waterproof poncho with a fleece under it for cold rains, but I recall someone posting that they couldn't have survived without their waterproof pants. I usually tucked my pants into my socks or wore shorts if it was too muddy, but I wonder what you think of waterproof pants? We had so much rain on this last Camino that I kind of think they might have been of benefit. I haven't investigated them thoroughly, and I think they are quite heavy, which might keep them off my packing list.

I'd be interested in others' opinions and experiences. Thanks.

Peace.

lynne
 
#9
If i was going on a serious trek in the uk i would probably use waterproof pants. Chances are it would be a camping trip and even if it wasnt I would be staying in places unlikely to have a spare washing machine (we really do need albergues everywhere y'know!)

On the camino though...or at least the little bit we did...I'd use technical fabric trousers. Lightweight, wicking, quick drying. If they get soaked they get soaked...your legs are waterproof and the ones I had dried very quickly. Putting a soaking pair up to dry in a hotel bathroom had them dry by morning with ease.

But then i havent done the camino in pouring rain so that may change my mind!!! :shock:
 
#10
Waterpoof Overtrousers

It was me that mentioned the waterproof overtrousers.

I took them thinking I would probably ditch them quite soon but we had such bad wet weather this May in France that they proved invaluable for keeping me not so much dry as warm. There was one day when we walked acroos the Aubrac plateau (1,300 metres high) in freezing wind and rain and I hadn't put them on - my legs were soon soaking and so cold in the wind. My companion was in a similar state and could barely speak.

If you are walking in warm weather then they won't be necessary but if you are up high in less than summer temperatures then they make a lot of difference - especially if you are old and a bit rheumatic. Mine only weighed 200 grams and were absolutely waterproof. But I have since bought another pair that weigh only 110 grams - untested as yet.
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
#11
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

To a certain extent what you take is personal preference. I was often shaking my head at some of the cosmetics women took-moisturiser,cleanser,shampoo,conditioner,foot balm,nail polish (true!)etc etc.All this stuff weighed between half to 1 kilo! I took a bar of soap to wash me, my hair,shave with and wash my clothes. My main point is take what you like but limit your total weight to about 6kg.
 
#12
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Hi Omar, your first sentence says it all. Advise on packing based on past experience as given on first post gladly accepted but final decision is always yours. Personal choice dictates what one takes.
Grandpa Joe
 
#13
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I would definitely agree that the bare minimum of toiletries is needed - they're usually liquid so that means a lot of weight. I'd hesitate to say 6kg, I think thats where the packing becomes personal. My partner struggled a bit with about 8kg but for me it was like I had nothing on my back....when i was wearing her pack that is!

If you're going in a group it may be worth splitting some stuff so you all have a comfortable load. For me I was quite happy with 11kg and could easily have carried a bit more with no great disconfort.
 
#14
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I have heard of the need to take something to make hot water in the morning for a cup of tea. Is this something that is worthwhile or is it better just to find a place for a morning cup of tea or coffee?
 
#15
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

lcarmony said:
I have heard of the need to take something to make hot water in the morning for a cup of tea. Is this something that is worthwhile or is it better just to find a place for a morning cup of tea or coffee?
I haven't done the camino yet but from what I understand the cafes etc don't open until about 9.

We taking something to make coffee in the morning as my hubby cannot function before that first cup.
 
#16
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Yes it's true that in some places cafes that open early are thin on the ground - but, for instance, I can remember after Roncesvalles lots of walkers walking for a few km and stopping at the next village for coffee

And I'm not a coffee drinker but surely part of the pilgrimage just for a few days or weeks is breaking life down into what we really need and what we've grown into thinking we need purely by force of habit
 

lckgj

Active Member
#17
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I regard myself as a coffee addict when at home but preferred to start the day on the camino with orange juice (though sometimes had a coffee too if it smelled too good to resist!)
I used the John Brierley book to plan my breakfast break and was usually able to stop for breakfast after about 5kms-8kms of walking. It always tasted SO GOOD after an early start and a little exercise! It would be about 9am by this time so bars were usually open. I would check the night before that there was somewhere appropriate to stop within a reasonable distance from the albergue and if not would buy some bread, cheese etc and a carton of juice to take with me.
I thought about taking a coil water heater when I walked a section in November but the mornings were darker so it was not possible to set off before about 9am and so the bars were open then anyway. Personally I would not bother with the weight of a heater, mugs etc. I never went without breakfast and twice was accosted by spanish locals in the morning and fed and watered at their insistance.
Buen camino
Laura
 
#18
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

With a couple of exceptions we always managed to find somewhere to brew up - usually in the alberque kitchen. We took small sachets of all in one coffee and whitener; admittedly not the best coffee experience but very welcome at that early hour. And you could get quite a lot of sachets packed into the thermal mugs we had. Perfect. I would however, avoid the ones with sugar in, i have a sweet tooth but they were waaaayy over the top.

So - the short answer is: you can often make your drink in the alberque but failing that you wont have to walk for too too long to find somewhere. Most cafes dont open very early but to be honest - we never had to wait til 9 to find one. That was august though so it may make a difference.
 

Minkey

Active Member
#19
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

My kit list for my last few Caminos is as follows:

33 litre pack
Compact sleeping bag
Gore-Tex Paclite jacket
3 x technical t-shirts
3 x pairs of underpants
3 x pairs of socks
Shampoo
Toothpaste
Toothbrush
Sun cream
Paper
Safety pins
Pen
Hat
Small fleece jumper
sunglasses
Swimming shorts

Of the "3 x" items, I'll be wearing one set at any one time.

Zip-off trousers rock.

Oh... and TOILET PAPER!
 

notion900

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
>
#20
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Thanks to all of the above posters for stressing the importance of keeping it LIGHT... I see so many lists of 'must-takes' on websites and every shop you go in has some new and useless travel gadget. I agree about the airflow bag, they are wicked, if you use a water bladder they also keep the water off your back so it stays cooler. I love mine. I walked from St Jean to Santiago with a bag that weighed 8kg - it was a 35 litre Berghaus. I spent more to get a very light sleeping bag and never regretted it. I took a pillow case which I thought was a luxury but was well worth it as some of the pillows are grotty. I took no mobile phone and didn't miss it. My tip on clothing is to look at running and cycling gear: Saucony t shirts are superb: pack into nothing, wick sweat and dry in 5 seconds flat, you can even put them on straight from the wash. Rare Species make great womens treousers. Don't take cotton if you can possibly help it, and remember: denim is the work of satan!!
 

Minkey

Active Member
#21
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Good stuff. I'm with you on the technical t's... They take up so little space and they dry quickly, although I get quite fed up with wearing them by the end, so tend to take a cotton one as well, just for a bit of variety.
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
#22
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I've got quite a few shirts made of....well I'd call it polyester but it's more high tech as these shirts now feel as comfortable as cotton but dry quickly. I prefer the shirts because I find the t shirts a bit clingy. The shirts are good for evenings too and I go for long sleeved incase it gets cold or hot when I walk and sleeves can be rolled down for sun protection,,,,the collars can be rolled up to to protect the neck. The shirts I bought via the net were all advertised as fishing shirts so have plenty of pockets.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 was Camino #14
#23
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I posted my list elsewhere, but I'll put it here too, since it fits the Topic:

Pack: 35 liter Acteryx Atmos

Shoes: New Balance Trail Shoes, water resistant and quick drying. I bought a padded inner sole from New Balance for $35 which made all the difference in the world on the rocky parts of the trails.

Sleeping bag: I took a Marmot Pounder Plus (1.5 pounds) and Joe simply took a fleece bag liner. We both slept fine.

Sleeping mat: We took sleeping mats and never used them even once.

Clothes: I took only ONE change of clothes: zip-off pants, shirt, socks, underwear. In addition I took a fleece long sleeved shirt and a rain suit AND a lightweight packable polyfiber jacket/windbreaker.

Wash bag: Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Stick deodarant, 1/4 bar soap for both bathing and shampooing. I purchased a small kitchen microfiber towel for drying after the shower. I took a comb.

First Aid Kit: Compeed and gel tubes. No other first aid kit was needed. You can buy anything you need in Spain. There is a pharmacy in nearly every village.

Water bottle – I bought plastic bottles of water and refilled them. I only carried one. That way no worries about it getting pinched or lost.

trekking poles/walking sticks - I bought a "palo" in SJPP. I loved it!
 
#24
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

cheers for confusing me some more guys lol, i work in an outdoor shop and my shopping list is getting bigger by the day, i was planning on taking a 100ltr berghaus bio flex bag as i'm not planning on returning back home but finding myself a new home somewhere, but now i don't know. i have however brought a vango treking tent, only 700 grams, do you think i need this? its just that i hear the b and bs in budapest (where i'm starting from) are expensive and research tells me that campsites are a third in price
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 was Camino #14
#25
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Nobody needs a tent on the Camino Frances.
I don't know about the other roads.
I plan on taking a mosquito tent on the Camino VLP simply because I plan on sleeping outdoors as much as possible and it only weighs 1.5 pounds. We also plan on continuing down the Portuguese Camino and the last time, the mosquitos were in good form.

But a camping tent?
You don't really need one - that's a LOT of extra weight.

The less you take, the happier you'll be!
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
#26
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Minkey said:
Oh... and TOILET PAPER!
We can all come up with the "ideal" packing list and those here are among the best I've seen and, believe me, I've trekked all over the world and made many an adjustment to what I'm willing to carry.

That said, toilet paper IS the most critical...especially on the Camino, for this reason. With the exception of your initial stuff...i.e. pack, boots, sleeping bag or silks (time of year dependent) and appropriate clothing...anything else you can get as you make your Way. Even medical items...with the exception of prescription items you bring from home. Sure, take a few blister blockers with you, but if you need more the next town will have it. Water is also big on my list...I chose to carry a Katahdin water bottle which has a filtration capability. Why take the chance of getting the trotts. Other than that the TOILET Paper. Time and again, I found when leaving in the morning...ALL the paper had been taken by those that either didn't have any with them...or had an event prior to departure.

Buen Camino
Arn
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 was Camino #14
#27
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Oh, please take a hankerchief instead of toilet paper, if you are female, for urinating along the Way... Then you can wash it out each evening.

And please, try to use TOILETS to defecate in, not the trailside?
And if you MUST have a BM along the Way, please walk well off the trail?
I can't tell you many human "logs" I had to step over as I walked.
Disgusting!

If you INSIST on taking toilet paper... please also take a plastic sandwich bag and CART IT OUT.
If you bury it, animals will dig it up.
If you leave it on the ground, it will NOT disappear... it will create an eyesore and a stink and a health hazard.

Spain is not a 3d world country.
They have toilet paper and they have modern conveniences.
I didn't find one single toilet that did not have toilet paper.
Maybe I was just lucky... but I DID carry a hankerchief.

By the way, there are some great varieties of toilet flushing mechanisms along the Way.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
#28
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

...and back to the waterproof trousers thing: I´ve noticed during the winter AND in wet warmer weather pilgrims are increasingly using gaiters. They keep the wet out of your boot-tops and keep your legs dry ankle to knee, where most of the water and muck goes anyway. They´re lighter than a pair of pants, and can double for a carry-bag or neck-warmer or laundry sack when the weather is nice. They keep your regular pair of pants cleaner for longer, but I´ve also seen some hikers wearing gaiters with shorts! (add a pair of Crocs and you have a real Camino Fashion Victim!)
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
#29
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Rebekah said:pilgrims are increasingly using gaiters.
For the most part, I am a winter person. When ever I can, I will wear shorts unless I'm going to Church or there's a freezing sleet or rain. On my longest hikes I wore shorts and gaiters. They are good for all seasons and all the reasons indicated by Rebekah and they're very light weight.

A good pair of gaiters come in mid calf or ankle length, can be opened at the side to reduce sweating (a major problem with wet gear) and allow you to use a poncho to best effect.

I personally don't like cockle burrs or pebbles in my boots...gaiters to the rescue!

Buen high stepping Camino

Arn
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 was Camino #14
#30
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I've noticed that men often wear shorts here in Portland, even in the snowy weather.

Most (not all) women I know, however, get cold in the hip area, me included.
Gators are nice, but they don't cover my hips.
I started the Camino with a poncho, but the wind whipped it up around me and I got chilled.
I tried belting it... too much of a hastle.

Joe wore a poncho and loved it (with his shorts!).

I found a featherweight pair of rainpants to be ideal... my rainsuit is made by Moonstone, weighs next to nothing, and the jacket doubles as a windbreaker. It packs down to about 5" by 6" and is worth its weight in gold.

Everyone's different. I think the key is to know your own body and how you respond to various weather.
 
#31
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

One item I really appreciated bringing when I walked the Camino Frances in September 2008 was a dress. It is a dress I have worn all over the world in all seasons. I would put it on the end of the day, sometimes I slept in it and that with a pair of sandles, I felt dressed up. I really only wore my shorts and my dress and near the end I attached the rest of the pants to the shorts. The dress I have never wrinkles and fits in my fist. It felt like a luxury and I looked forward to putting it on always. I only met one other woman who changed into her skirt in the evening....
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
#32
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

That I would like to see...a dress that you can ball up into your hand.

You must have been the bell of the ball.

Good on ya!

Buen can we go dancing Camino
Arn
 

jl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances('05, '07), Aragonese ('05), del Norte / Primitivo ('09), Via Tolosana (Toulouse '05), Via Podiensis (Le Puy '07), Via Lemovicensis (Troyes '09), VF ('12), Winter Camino ('13/'14) Cammino d'Assisi ('14) Jakobseweg (Leipzig - Paris '15) San Salvador/Norte ('15) Ignaciano ('16) Invierno ('16)
#33
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Hi Marjorita, I too change into a skirt at the end of the day. It is a little more dressy going out to restaurants (particulalry in france) and in the summer it is cooler than wearing trousers. Mine is a black travel skirt that rolls up to a very small size - wouldn't be without it on the Camino! My other piece of luxury is a long silk scarf - hopes to brighten my evening as well. Cheers, Janet
 
#34
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I'll pass on skirts but, I agree, it's nice to feel a bit special in the evenings after a long, sweaty and/or muddy walk. I really enjoyed showering and getting into clean clothes and the one item I decided that I had missed off my equipment list and that I would take with me another time was a very, very small plastic bottle of perfume to apply after the shower. I don't wear perfume normally but I will take some in my washbag on my next long walk.
 

alipilgrim

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2005), Frances (2007), Madrid/Frances (2011), 1/2 VdP (2012),
#35
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I hope you can be persuaded not to take the perfume. I agree it is lovely to dress nicely and know you smell nice, but albergues are such close quarters that I'm sure many of your bunkmates would not appreciated a strong scent, and many people are allergic to perfumes.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 was Camino #14
#39
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

windeatt said:
I would take with me another time was a very, very small plastic bottle of perfume to apply after the shower.
Please do not take perfume on the Camino.

Before you ever put another cologne or perfume or even scented lotion on your body, do some research into the ingredients of the chemicals that are used in today's perfumes.
I'll be happy to provide you with links.

Or, you can read The 100 Year Lie, which talks about the chemical cocktails that are causing such high rates of cancer and disease since WWII.

Then consider all that walking you'll be doing and how anything you've put on your skin will end up in your bloodstream, in your liver and kidneys, and up my nose! :lol:

Honestly, if you can smell it, you are literally ingesting it. And there are more and more people who are having severe reactions to scents.

Perfumes, scented fabric softener, and FEBREZE are three of the most difficult for us.
They are all extremely toxic.

If there was a person wearing perfume in a refugio where I wanted to sleep, I would have to sleep outdoors because of my MCS (which is one reason I go prepared).

Please simply take a shower.
Showered bodies smell lovely!
Perfumed bodies are painful for many of us.

Thank you, thank you.... thank you...
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
#40
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

JW indicated: Fungal - a "jumper"
Well, I sure misread that one and I do speak English.

Perfume may cause a problem for some...but, considering what "pure body odor" can mean...I'll take perfume every time. My only caveat is that it leave when the wearer does.

Buen Camino,
Arn
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#42
Perfume can be intrusive, but we are surrounded with enough toxic chemicals that a scent is unlikely to be the proximate cause of your demise. Everyone shares getting progressively more "grubby" as the days pass, so I don't think anyone notices whatever would be disguised by perfume. It's not like snoring!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 was Camino #14
#43
Perfume

Mr. Falcon,

You are 100% correct.
We are surrounded by more toxic chemicals than we can control.
When we have a choice, why not choose wisely?

I would like to be kind to you.
However, I find it presumptuous that you think you know my body better than I.
You do not.
I've been diagnosed by a Specialist who pinned down the chemicals causing reaction. Perfume and scented products rank #1.

If you are allergic to peanuts, you might ask pilgrims not to serve you food with peanuts.
I'm asking fellow pilgims not to wear chemicals that cause me and other pilgrims high levels of distress.

We all walk the Way for different reasons.
I walk to seek healing, both physical and spiritual.
The exercise pumps cleansing blood through my organs,flushing out chemicals lodged there so hopefully, one day, I can have a more normal life.

The solitude gives me time to reflect on what is and is not important to me.
The Camino teaches me what I NEED to be happy, rather than what I've been brainwashed to WANT.
How much do I want to engage in consumerism and destruction?
How much do I want to engage in healing others and being helpful?

I carry the prayers of others to their resting place in Santiago.
I also carry my own prayers.
One of them is to be able to enlighten others about the dangerous use of chemicals.

I do not ask for a lot from other pilgrims.
Only clean air to breathe while I sleep, free of intentionally applied chemicals.

People cannot help it if they snore.
That is something I need to train myself not to hear.
But people CAN choose not to wear perfume.

If you cannot divorce yourself from your perfume on the Camino, I'd simply ask you "Why?"

Do you want to cause peace, health, and happiness?
Or do you want to cause pain, distress, and sickness?

It's that simple.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#44
Yes, but not everyone is allergic. A neighbor is allergic to cinnamon and swells like he was stung by a bee if he ingests any. Since cinnamon is hidden in hundreds of desserts, he basically has given up dessert. But the rest of us eat heartily!
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
#45
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I'm sure Anniesantiago has enough trouble in her normal life trying to avoid irritations such as perfume. Surely it's not asking too much that once an allergy is known others would avoid excerbating it by using a product that would bring on a reaction. Perfume on the camino seems a bit silly anyway.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 was Camino #14
#46
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Thank you, Omar.
The cinnamon in your dessert is different, Falcon, because I am not forced to ingest it, as I AM the perfume... if you can't see that, then I give up... and hopefully, so does this topic. :p

::Annie closes the book, hopefully::::
 

ksam

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese '08, Frances '11, del Norte '14, Invierno '16, Ingles '17, Primitivo October 2018
#47
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I agree w/Annie...enough..Although you've got me thinking now about how my asthma seems to be getting progressivly worse...Just had my presrip. strenght doubled yesterday!! Hmmm perhaps I need to do some looking into "scents" etc!

NOW on to other topics... Where do we help Ian find a light weight black kilt!! and then get Rosie to take pictures!! I personally Love a man in a kilt!! Best moment was when watching the Boston Marathon, and there went a lovely pair of gams in a kilt!! Totally made my day (besides seeing my sister-in-law go by!!)

Any thoughts folks... Or pehaps... Men in Tights??

:mrgreen:
Karin
 

notion900

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
>
#48
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Kilts, dresses, perfume..I've heard everything now! Why not just take the kitchen sink!
I have one thing to say to the prospective kilt wearer: Thigh Chafing!!!!
 

Portia1

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2009, Portuguese 2012
Frances 2016, (Frances 2019)
#49
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I will be hiking in early September and hopefully reach Santiago in early October. Here is my proposed list. Looking for suggestions, feedback. I have hiked over half of the AT so I am familiar with what works for me. I've also broken both legs while descending mountains so I am very partial to taking care of my feet and legs along the way. I am nearing retirement age so this is no spring chicken making this journey!

Packing List - Camino Frances (September/October)

Osprey Exos packpack, 3300 cu in
Mountain Hardware sleeping bag, polyfil for washing
Silk sleeping bag liner (to wash, keep bag cleaner)
Tyvek “ground cover” treated with permethiran (to spread on cot under sleeping bag)
Small pillowcase
Min-compass with temp
Leki hiking poles with rubber tips (taking carbide tips too)
New Balance hiking shoes (I’ve decided to forgo my Garmont leather hiking boots, sob)
Short gaitors (my feet are very sensitive, small stuff inside my boots makes me crazy!)
Bandana (VERY handy with multiple uses)
Sun hat
Altus poncho
Marmot Precip Rain jacket (for evenings and extra layer)
Prescription sunglasses on keepers, prescription reading glasses
Plastic water bottles (2-3)
3 pairs wool socks (either Smartwool or Bridgedales); also use as mittens when cold
3 pairs sock liners
Chaco sandals (for evening and I can hike short distances in these with socks)
Cheap flip flops for shower
3 pair panties
2 sports bras
Lightweight fleece pullover
Fleece cap
Quick dry zip pants - 1 pair
Quick dry capri - 2 pair
Very lightweight fleece pant - 1 pair
Smartwool long sleeve undershirt
Quick dry long sleeve shirts with sunblock - 2
Quick dry, wicking Columbia Titanium short sleeve tees - 2 (anti-body odor)
LED mini-light
Digital camera, extra SD cards
USB SD reader (to transfer photos)
Cell phone, charger
European adapter #4
Spanish phrase book, Camino guidebook (with unneeded pages removed)
Journal, pen
Book of Common Prayer, mini Bible (I am an Episcopal priest)
Passport, ATM Card, Credit Card, Cash, airline ticket
Belly pouch (it also has long cord so can be used as a purse)
Handiwipe
Spork (spoon on one end, fork on the other)
Lightweight soup/mug
Mini-knife
Cork screw - simple pull
Net grocery bag
Bungee cord, clothespins (5), blanket pins (4)
Deodorant (travel size)
Dry bag for shower (to hold passport, camera, money, etc.)
Quick dry travel towel (MSR - med size)
Shampoo (Liggett’s - solid, 1/2 bar)
Comb, brush (travel size)
Toothbrush, toothpaste (travel size)
Dental floss (travel size) also useful for other things
Castile soap (1/4 bar) for bathing, laundry
Nail clippers
Lip balm with sunblock
Sunblock - travel size
Mosquito repellant - 3 individual small wipe packets
Body lotion
Razor
Ear plugs (3 pair)
Toilet paper (with cardboard removed in baggie with hand sanitizer)
Extra baggies/ziploc bags
Collapsible bucket (luxury but for foot soaking on the fly, etc. it is worth the 4 ounces)
Meds: sleep, pain, allergy
Blister Shield in small squirt bottle/tube (to squirt into liner socks each morning)
Foot repair kit in small baggie: compeed, bandaids, antibiotic cream, alcohol wipes

Total weight: 18.5 pounds
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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:
#50
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Hi there Portia1,
If this list works for you - and if you can carry 8.5kg without food or water - then I say go for it.
I walked in September 2007 and my pack weighed just under 6kg with water.

Here are the things from your list that I didn't carry:

sleeping bag
ground cover
Small pillowcase
Min-compass with temp
Bandana
flip flops for shower
Fleece cap
Quick dry capri - 2 pair
Quick dry long sleeve shirts - 2
Cell phone, charger
European adapter #4
Book of Common Prayer, mini Bible (I am an Episcopal priest)
Cork screw - simple pull
Collapsible bucket

Buen camino!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
#51
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Portia1 said:
Altus poncho
Marmot Precip Rain jacket (for evenings and extra layer)
Portia1 said:
Lightweight fleece pullover
Fleece cap
Quick dry zip pants - 1 pair
Quick dry capri - 2 pair
Very lightweight fleece pant - 1 pair
Smartwool long sleeve undershirt
Quick dry long sleeve shirts with sunblock - 2
Quick dry, wicking Columbia Titanium short sleeve tees - 2 (anti-body odor)
Portia1 said:
Total weight: 18.5 pound
Hi Portia

Interesting to see your list. It seems a bit heavy to me. You don't have a lot of spare weight for picnic stuff and evening meal shopping - a few pieces of fruit can mount up. I'm wondering if you need all those clothes.

Why not have just one long sleeved and one short sleeved top? On a hot day the short sleeved will do, on an overcast day the long sleeved, if it gets cold the fleece goes on top, and if its very cold, both shirts and the fleece. If they are quick drying you can rinse them out overnight.

In the first week in March, in Galicia,(wind, rain, hail, sunshine) I found that I was warm enough with a long sleeved base layer (made of 'poly' whatever), a fleece jumper over the top (one left in our house years ago by some teenager, so not classy outdoor gear at all) and the Altus poncho even while while walking in the hail. I was only doing one week, so all I had for the upper half was the one long sleeved base layer, one sleeveless base layer (because it was reduced to ridiculously low price due to one washable dirt mark), the fleece and the poncho. if I was going for longer I would probably want a long sleeved shirt with buttons (maybe like your ones with sunblock) for both sun protection and evening strolling. One of everything should be enough, because they will rinse out easily, and if the worst comes to the worst you can war them for more than one day.

Again, on the bottom half, surely one capri length and one zip-off would cover all eventualities, and allow for a change in the evening. I have lightweight base-layer leggings-type pants (another discounted discovery) that are my extra layer for warmth (under whatever by day and as pj bottoms by night)

The poncho AND the jacket seems unnecessary to me. If its really raining in the evening the poncho will be better because it'll cover more of you, and if its just a bit drizzly, layers with the fleece on top will do.

Pillowcase? don't forget in Spain they have the long bolster pillows. I took a rayon sarong to wrap around whatever shape pillow I came across. And the sarong will do as a skirt if you want a change after a shower, or even a sun dress (hold it behind you, cross the top two corners above your bust and tie behind the neck - don't dismiss it, I am a bigger than I should be 50-something but I can wear one like this without my adult children disowning me)

Do you need all the BCP? You'll be duplicating Psalms etc with the Bible! And you can probably remember by heart a lot of it!! I prepared some material for evening prayers for the two of us, printed it out in as small a font as necessary and took in one of those folders with clear plastic pockets which was useful for other paper stuff which would quickly get crumpled or dog eared otherwise - eg useful tourist info collected on the way, a printout of journey times, a copy of the travel insurance details, my favourite hymns for singing in empty churches en route etc.

And personally I don't think I'd bother with the ground sheet. I'd examine the mattresses as best I could and hope for the best. I'm not convinced that protection between me and the mattress would stop them from crawling around the protection and into my sleeping bag or my backpack anyway!But that's another debate. (And you have got an antihistamine in your drug supplies in case anything bites you and makes you itch!)

However, I'm being very bossy and you have done more long distance walking than me, so, as you say, you know what works for you, and how much weight you are comfortable with.

God bless you on Good Friday
love
Bridget
 

Portia1

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2009, Portuguese 2012
Frances 2016, (Frances 2019)
#52
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Thank you, Sil and Bridget. That is the kind of feedback I'm looking for. I am moving things out of the take column. My objective was 16# so your suggestions are very helpful. I'm real close to that right now after making some changes. I do get cold pretty quickly so I guess I was letting the yearning for layers have their way with me! Bridget--I made a sarong and it's still in the possibility column. It weighs 6 oz so maybe I could make one in a different fabric for a lighterweight one. And I like your idea about printing things out in smaller font. I have the BCP on CD so I could definitely print only what I want. Thank you for that. And a blessed Good Friday--from one who is doing some avoidance behavior as the sermon for tonight comes together slowly and with wandering.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
#53
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Portia1 said:
And a blessed Good Friday--from one who is doing some avoidance behavior as the sermon for tonight comes together slowly and with wandering.
I was wondering how come an anglican priest had time today to be planning her packing for September! We are ahead of you, of course, and have already done both ecumenical walk of witness through our small town, with hot cross buns, and a more solemn afternoon service, so I am now spending a happy evening researching ferries home from Santander in October while ''him at the cooker'' makes fish pie!
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
#54
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

The small pillowcase will probably not be suitable: pillows in spain are usually much longer than you use. Much better to take something like I take-an arab keffia (chequered head covering) very light,covers the large pillows and doubles as a scarf if cold.
 
#55
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

May I assume that when you write how many pounds or kilos weighs the pack, that you are wearing a change of clothes and shoes? I never asked this before and have not seen anyone ask it either.
So, if you are wearing pants and shirt, underwear and socks and shoes, that is not included in your pack weight?
Just wondering
Lillian
 

Portia1

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2009, Portuguese 2012
Frances 2016, (Frances 2019)
#56
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Lillian: I do not include the clothes I am wearing in my pack weight but I do include the weight of the pack and anything I will be carrying. I also consider the weight of my shoes/boots as the old adage is: a pound on the foot is like five pounds in the pack.

The pillowcase I'm talking about is a very lightweight "travel" pillowcase that I stuff with my fleece or clothes. That keeps whatever I'm using as "stuffing" a little cleaner and keeps it together as I sleep. It weighs 1 oz. I guess it would be a good place to stuff my valuables while I sleep too--stuck deep inside. I don't intend to use the provided pillows.
 
#57
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

sillydoll said:
I walked in September 2007 and my pack weighed just under 6kg with water.

Here are the things from your list that I didn't carry:

sleeping bag
Can you easily do without a sleeping bag in September? I am considering not bringing a sleeping bag, more because of their size (they are somewhat bulky) rather than their weight. Would a silk liner be enough in September, or do the (cheaper) albergues have blankets available? Is there another alternative to a sleeping bag?
 
#58
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

So if you have clothes on and also carry what you mentioned then it seems like you have too many clothes.
I would carry a sleeping bag in September
Lillian
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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:
#59
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I took a silk sleep liner in September - but, the weather is unpredictable, one year warm and the next year snow in October! The liner weighs about 190g. You can get sleeping bags that weigh about 500g. Don't roll it up. fold it flat and keep it in a large zip-lock bag so that you can press all the air out - like a vacum seal.
Most albergues have blankets. They usualy only give them to people who ask for them so when you arrive ask for one - "hay manta por favor?"
 

andy.d

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino de Levante 2009
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2011
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2014
Pilgrims Way Winchester - Canterbury
Camino Ingles (Ferrol) 2015
Cistercian Way (Wales) 2016
#60
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I've just put out everything I intend to take on the bed and put the photo on my blog here (it is too large to attach):

http://pilgrimpace.wordpress.com/2009/08/21/packing/

Advice would be useful, but please remember I am walking the Camino de Levante, a solitary route with some long stages with no water,

Andy
 

nellpilgrim

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SDC-Fisterra 08/Camino Frances SJPP to SDC 09/Nuremburg-SDC 11- ongoing
#61
Re: Waterpoof Overtrousers

windeatt said:
It was me that mentioned the waterproof overtrousers.

I took them thinking I would probably ditch them quite soon but we had such bad wet weather this May in France that they proved invaluable for keeping me not so much dry as warm. There was one day when we walked acroos the Aubrac plateau (1,300 metres high) in freezing wind and rain and I hadn't put them on - my legs were soon soaking and so cold in the wind. My companion was in a similar state and could barely speak.

If you are walking in warm weather then they won't be necessary but if you are up high in less than summer temperatures then they make a lot of difference - especially if you are old and a bit rheumatic. Mine only weighed 200 grams and were absolutely waterproof. But I have since bought another pair that weigh only 110 grams - untested as yet.
I am with you on the waterproof trousers We had snow, rain, hail, and more snow when walking the CF in April so the overtrousers were a 'need to have' item in those conditions. They proved especially essential on the Meseta where the freezing wind blowing through our lightweight technical trousers actually dried out and abraded the skin from the front of our thighs (very sore and unexpected!) So we wore our overtrousers for both warmth and protection. I 'left' my fantastic paclite trousers in Ciraqui :evil: but got a good pair of replacement overtrousers in the Decathlon store in Logrono not quite as light but a quarter of the price of the paclites :) .Bonne route
 

oursonpolaire

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
#62
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I've just noticed this thread: Portia should certainly know matins and vespers by heart, so should only need her collects, psalms and lections printed out. With one sheet each day, she can ditch the expired sheet the next day. She could go even further, and throw in an extra few psalms each day, so that she could go through the entire psalter in her Camino. That will shut them up at the next deanery great chapter.

Her wardens may wish to follow the example set by the Dean and Chapter of the Diocese of Edmonton when Victoria Matthews went off on her seventh (!!) Camino-- they gave her a set of purple polka-dot boxers so that episcopal decency could be retained in the privacy-challenged conditions of most albergues. Portia, as a simple priest, can make do with clerical black, with white polka dots.
 

andy.d

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino de Levante 2009
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2011
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2014
Pilgrims Way Winchester - Canterbury
Camino Ingles (Ferrol) 2015
Cistercian Way (Wales) 2016
#63
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

oursonpolaire said:
I've just noticed this thread: Portia should certainly know matins and vespers by heart, so should only need her collects, psalms and lections printed out. With one sheet each day, she can ditch the expired sheet the next day. She could go even further, and throw in an extra few psalms each day, so that she could go through the entire psalter in her Camino. That will shut them up at the next deanery great chapter.
I'm taking a small New Testament and Psalms:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/NRSV-New-Testam ... 746&sr=1-2

This is much lighter than Common Worship Daily Prayer or other Office books, and an Office can easily be constructed from this

Andy
 

andy.d

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino de Levante 2009
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2011
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2014
Pilgrims Way Winchester - Canterbury
Camino Ingles (Ferrol) 2015
Cistercian Way (Wales) 2016
#64
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Here is a list of the kit I intend to take on my two month pilgrimage from Valencia to Santiago:

Crux AK57 rucksack
Raichle Scout boots
Keen Walking sandals


Snugpak Jungle Sleeping Bag
silk liner
alpkit hunka bivi bag
alpkit slim airic mat
balaclava


2x long sleeve technical shirts
1x t shirt
2x light walking trousers
shorts
3x technical underwear
light fleece
3x socks and liner socks
waterproof jacket
waterproof trousers
2x 1.5l waterbottles
camera
spare camera battery
2m cord
toilet roll
washing powder
Spanish Dictionary
glasses, prescription sunglasses, cases
mobile phone
clockwork charger/torch
CSJ Pilgrim Passport
notebook and pencil
New Testament and Psalms
Camino Guidebook
mapcase and compass
prayer rope
penknife, spork, mug, bowl
washstuff and towel
First Aid Kit (whistle, micropore, sheepwool, 2nd skin, crepe bandage, antiseptic cream, ibuprofen, allergy tablets, safety pins, lip balm, sunscreen, scissors, knee support bandage).
Total weight approx 10.5kilos.

A couple of words of explanation.

I've included the bivi bag, mat and balaclava to give myself the option to sleep outside if I want to (and I do enjoy wild camping). I am happy to carry the extra 1kg. This will also mean better sleep if it is colder than I expect at the end of October and beginning of November.

I have included the water bottles as the Levante has several very long days with no water at all en route. They won't be full unless they need to be, but I want to avoid dehydration at all costs.

My friends Roy and Karen are coming to see me when I reach Toledo (roughly half way) . I will ask then to bring some extra layers for me for colder weather.

The only luxury I can see is the notebook. I'd be grateful for opinions on this list. I have been training as much as I can with it and am confident that I can manage to carry it. (although please remember that I am walking the seriously solitary Levante and not the Frances - I would take much less on the Frances).

thanks,

Andy
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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.
#65
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I am fortunate to walk with Adriaan, so although I carry the following items, everything is shared. One hint that I would suggest is to really cut down on all these "personal hygene" products: Over the year, I save a few sachets of shampoo or little bottles of it (the type that you find complimentary in hotels) which I fill up from home. The usual hard plastic bottles contain probably more shampoo than you need and weigh much more. If you run out along the Way, then buy a smallish size bottle, fill up your "Mini bottles" and leave the rest at the albergue for others to use. I also did this with the soap powder for washing our clothes. Actually I took a half piece of washing soap from home, but lost it along the way, so then reverted to buying one kg hand wash soap powder, filled a small plastic bag with what I considered would last a while and left the remainder at the albergue. Sunscreen is another product that usually come in those large hard plastic bottles. I start out with a tube of Nivea sunscreen (number 30)and replace in Spain when we run out. It's way lighter and fits nicely in your trouser pocket. I never take face cream, etc. on my walk, instead I use the Nivea sunscreen As far as medical supplies are concerned, just in case of an emergency between pharmacies, I take 4 acetominofen tablets and 4 Voltaren tablets, plus a mini bottle of Betadine for cuts, etc.,and 4 Ibuprofeno tablets, plus a couple of plasters and a few Compeed. All these things fit nicely in a mini zip-lock bag. You can buy small packets of paper tissues (pocket size) instead of taking toilet paper with you (lighter and less bulk).
Out of curiosity, I weighed my full pack last week and was very pleasantly surprised that it only weighed 5 kgs!! Last year it weighed 6 kgs. I put it down to having acquired over the year, "Hiking friendly" fabric clothes (mainly second hand), we don't have much on offer here in Costa Rica. Added to the 5 kgs, will be a small bottle of water and some of the day's food supply. Adriaan's pack weighs in now at 7 kgs, as he takes some of the heavier shared items like the cel. phone and camera, plus all our documents.Anne
 

Portia1

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2009, Portuguese 2012
Frances 2016, (Frances 2019)
#66
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

I am now home from the first and physical part of my Camino--I came to understand that wishing folks in Santiago "Buen Camino" was still appropriate as our experience does not end at the Cathedral! As far as my equipment list, I changed two things right before going to Spain. I carried a silk liner and a homemade polarfleece blanket (it was a heavier fleece than the 201, it also made a nice roll to put under my knees when I couldn't get comfortable) rather than a sleeping bag. This served me very well. There were only TWO things I did not use: my tyvek "bedbug" protector mat--luckily I was both behind and in front of the bedbug sieges (but I still examined mattresses before I accepted a bunk/bed) and most of my first aid supplies (I had no blisters, no nothing). I did use my meds: tylenol PM each evening which also helped going to sleep, and ibuprofen for the usual leg aches. I gave away some bandaids and some compeed (so taking some of this really is important) but other than that, I used everything on my list and was thankful for each. My pack weight was just under 16 pounds without food or water and it turned out to be a good weight for me to carry.

From my experience (and I want to be emphatic about that point), there were several things I would definitely do again with absolutely no question:

My Osprey Exos 58 pack. It was a delight and fit my back "like a turtle." I did not regret anything about it.

Eyeshades and heavy duty earplugs. Can I say that again with passion and emphasis? Without these two things, I would not have been a very nice pilgrim. They saved my sanity and sleep when all conspired to ensure that neither would exist. I took a few extra pairs of earplugs and was able to give them away to others.

A small pulsar LED on a soft twine necklace (I wore this almost constantly around my neck) so no head light for me. It worked just fine for walking in the dark to find arrows, was extremely lightweight, and "albergue friendly" (although I never had to use it in an albergue. There was enough ambient light to do whatever I needed to do).

A lightweight collapsible bucket: I cannot tell you how many times this was used by me and others for foot soaking. At 5oz, it was often a lifesaver when hot feet could take no more even along the path. I also used it in crowded refugios to take my newly washed laundry from one place to another.

Three performance short sleeve tee shirts, three pairs of underpants, three sets of socks. With the amount of rain and dampness, there were frequently times when laundry either couldn't be done or was soaking wet, so having an "extra" of these made a huge difference to me. I can walk in damp pants but a wet shirt makes me chill very quickly. And later, when a laundry lost one set of shirt and underpants, it meant I still had a change possible.

I can't remember who suggested a sarong type garment. I made one from quilting cotton and I used it everyday. It meant I didn't have to drag a wardrobe into the showers. I simply wore it to and from the showers. I used it a couple of times as a "skirt" when my two pairs of hiking pants/shorts were drying. I also was able to figure out how to get dressed "within it" in crowded refugios.

A reusable grocery bag (the very lightweight polyfabric ones they sell in the US grocery stores now with the plastic bottom stablizer removed). It was my "haul all your valuables/necessaries to the shower" bag--and the handles meant it could be easily hung from a shower hook (which by the way, I always found something to hang it from). I used it at the tiendas to reduce the plastic bag consumptions. It was also my laundry collection bag when I was gathering stuff to wash. At a couple of ounces, it was invaluable and could be washed. It folds up into almost nothing. I could easily stuff it in a side pocket for use during the day. Unfortunately the handles are starting to come apart so this one won't be used a whole lot longer!

My Kindle. At 10 ounces, it allowed me to take many, many books with me and was a relaxing thing to do when I was either surrounded by non-English speakers who acted as though I did not exist (which happened more than I expected) or when I was unable to sleep but needed to put my feet up.

A lightweight covered mug/bowl. The lid served as a cutting board for tomatoes and cheese; I used the mug for heating soup, tea and for drinking wine at lunch. Many albergues did not have glasses or mugs so having my own meant that others could access the few that might be available. It meant I had a place to pour out a package of olives if I was so inclined. I also knew it was clean and its history! It weighed 2.3 ounces so again, a weight I gladly would carry again.
 
#67
Hi all.
I would be interested in hearing some packing tips from people who continued their travels after the camino. Does doing this influence what you pack for the camino? Would you pack all the stuff for your travels before you go on the camino or buy the other things afterwards?

Cheers Patricio.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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:
#68
Patricio,
In 2007 I walked from Roncesvalles to Santiago. I posted a parcel of 'holiday' clothing to the post office in Santiago.
My husband joined in at Sarria and walked to Santiago and we then hired a car and spent a week driving along the caminos back to Pamplona to get our flight home.
Unfortunately, the Correos now only keeps parcels for two weeks but, Ivar stores parcels for 60 days and more at his centre in Santiago.

In June last year I posted a parcel of 'work clothes and personal items' to Ivar's Camino centre in Santiago from Lourdes. When I got to Santiago, I posted it to Corcubion. I collected it a few days later after walking to Finisterre.
 

Tia Valeria

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Pt Norte/Pmtvo 2010
C. Inglés 2011
C. Primitivo '12
Norte-C. de la Reina '13
C. do Mar-C. Inglés '15
#69
Hi Patricio,
I met Terry in Santiago at the end of his camino (2009) and took him some spare clothes; a pair of lightweight trousers and a couple of shirts. I need not have taken them as he was able to have his camino clothes laundered even before I met up with him.
We do not plan to take 'holiday' clothes for the end of our camino in 2010, although we will have 2 changes of socks and underwear, 1 pair trousers and 2 shirts each (all light weight hi-tec) as well as what we are wearing. As we plan to walk in May we will not be carrying sleeping bags, just liner-sheets so have the space for the 'extra' clothes. We also have our Crocs for when we are not wearing our walking boots. If desperate for anything else then we will buy as needed. However I guess this is a very personal thing. It all depends on where you plan to go, or are staying.
Buen Camino,
Tia Valeria
 
#70
Thanks for the replies.
I'm planning on going into Portugal, Morocco and who knows where after that, but I don't fancy wearing Camino gear all for the rest of my travels. Has anybody had a particularly uncomfortable experience on the Camino from wearing ''normal'' non-specialist clothes?
 

ivar

Administrator
Staff member
#71
Patricio83 said:
Thanks for the replies.
I'm planning on going into Portugal, Morocco and who knows where after that, but I don't fancy wearing Camino gear all for the rest of my travels. Has anybody had a particularly uncomfortable experience on the Camino from wearing ''normal'' non-specialist clothes?
You could ship a box of clothes ahead to Santiago? We can store it for you here:
http://www.caminotravelcenter.com/lugga ... ompostela/
Greetings from Santiago,
Ivar
 
#72
Patricio83

If by "normal non specialist" clothes, you mean tshrits, or shirts (be they cotton or linen), a lot of people walking the camino do use them. No disadvantages other than that they may not dry well in wet or cold weather conditions, unless there is a dryer in the albergue you happen to stop for the night. Some wear older clothes which they may discard at the end of the trip.

I had walked in Oct, in slightly cooler weather, and I had used active-wear base layers as my tops. They are light weight, and easy to dry.

I know this sounds really girlie but by the end of 30 days I really really felt I needed fresh clothes other than the 3 set of tops, trousers, and underwear I had worn (and no, laundering would not do!). I ended up shopping in Santiago. The next time I walk the camino I will send some clothes ahead.

Storing your 'care package' with Ivar at the Camino Travel Center would be an excellent option.

Buen Camino
Rebecca
 

lynnejohn

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2005), VDLP(2007), Madrid(2009), Ingles(2009), Sur (2011), VDLP(2011)-partial, VDLP(2014)
#73
Not girlie at all, Rebecca. I usually throw out the top I wore most of the camino and buy a new one. A couple of times I've bought a new skirt or shorts as well. And :) ....I keep a couple of items of makeup down in the bottom of my pack and pull them out once I get to Santiago. It just makes me feel better as we spend a couple of days in Santiago and/or move on to holidays.

lynne
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
#75
Hi all I have just finished revising my packing list which should be perfect for May June on the Camino Frances. I have walked the Camino Frances, 1/2 of the Austrian Route, 400 km through the Czech Republic and the Le Puy Route since 2006 and have gradually refined the gear I take. Love, Gitti
 

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falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#76
A 3" loop of rope through the backpack lift loop to hang the backpack on the corner of the bunk helps avoid bedbugs. A carabiner works well, too.

Take a dry bag for the shower. Everything goes into it while you shower (old clothes, new clothes, valuables).

If you find a deodorant that works for eight hours of walking, by all means, take it. Otherwise, settle for natural aromas. You might want to be careful about being the only good-smelling person in a 100 bed dorm. It could lead to a feeling of superiority, and I am not sure that the Compostela forgives you for that.

I will be taking the spork once I figure out how to cut something with the serrations on one end and the fork on the other. Until then, my titanium .6 oz knife, fork, and spoon set will find a space in my backpack.

Since there is a part of me that has completely resisted the lessons of the Camino, I never give the time to someone who is not wearing a watch. Either you really do not care about time, or you carry your own watch. Smokers who are quitting, but keep borrowing cigarettes, also fall in that category.

Avoid curmudgeons!
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
#77
Do I detect a little cynicism here? The bedbugs were a major problem on the Le Puy route in September and I saw several people covered in huge welts from face to feet, some ended up on steroids, it was really horrible.
A string of albergues reported problems and some had been closed on several occasions for fumigation.
I know not to ask you for the time in future! Not that I ever asked anyone anyway, because frankly I don't care about the time. Usually though not everyone has everything they might need and one freely exchanges...
I liked the spork with serrated edge thing, the serrated part was in the centre, not part of the fork bit. It did cut through salami of sorts, not as good as a knife, but good enough.
Gitti
 

Tia Valeria

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Pt Norte/Pmtvo 2010
C. Inglés 2011
C. Primitivo '12
Norte-C. de la Reina '13
C. do Mar-C. Inglés '15
#80
Terry's rucksack is a 40+10 from Berghaus and he was able to fit everything in that he needed with a total weight of 7k without water in the 2 bottles. Mine is a Berghaus 20 and I have added a 10l Podsac for my fleece and Crocs. It is OK because Terry is going to take my sheet and towel in place of his sleeping bag.
My experience so far on practise walks is that while the 30l total is right for me for size and weight (4.5k) it would be too small if I was on my own and Terry's is a more realistic size.
As others have said elsewhere on it depends on what is comfortable and has enough capacity to take all that you really need. You don't have to fill a bigger pack, but if the pack is too small having odd bits hanging off, and swinging around , as you walk is not helpful (hence my Podsac).
 

lynnejohn

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2005), VDLP(2007), Madrid(2009), Ingles(2009), Sur (2011), VDLP(2011)-partial, VDLP(2014)
#81
I agree - don't get your pack totally jam-packed full before you begin - you won't have any room for food and any other items you might pick up along the way, plus it will be impossible for you to find and extract anything. IMO it's just easier to go up in size a little and carry a "loosely full" pack.
lynne
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
#82
Hi I am trying to add my packing list and for some reason I can't make it show on this site, it is there as an attachment. See if you can open it. This has been refined after 3 Caminos all during May/June/September. Regards, Gitti
 

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gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
#83
Oops sorry guys, just realized I have posted this already a few weeks ago. Gitti
 
#84
Re: Equipent list and opinions from recent camino

Anniesantiago said:
Pack: 35 liter Acteryx Atmos

Shoes: New Balance Trail Shoes, water resistant and quick drying. I bought a padded inner sole from New Balance for $35 which made all the difference in the world on the rocky parts of the trails.

Sleeping bag: I took a Marmot Pounder Plus (1.5 pounds) and Joe simply took a fleece bag liner. We both slept fine.

Sleeping mat: We took sleeping mats and never used them even once.

Clothes: I took only ONE change of clothes: zip-off pants, shirt, socks, underwear. In addition I took a fleece long sleeved shirt and a rain suit AND a lightweight packable polyfiber jacket/windbreaker.

Wash bag: Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Stick deodarant, 1/4 bar soap for both bathing and shampooing. I purchased a small kitchen microfiber towel for drying after the shower. I took a comb.

First Aid Kit: Compeed and gel tubes. No other first aid kit was needed. You can buy anything you need in Spain. There is a pharmacy in nearly every village.

Water bottle – I bought plastic bottles of water and refilled them. I only carried one. That way no worries about it getting pinched or lost.

trekking poles/walking sticks - I bought a "palo" in SJPP. I loved it!

Nice pack - LOVE Acteryx stuff...... can't afford it mind but I love it anyway :)

Fair enough list but I'd argue a couple of points on it.......although as with so many things it's a very personal thing....

The New Balance trail shoes - very good gear but i'd argue in favour of more ankle support, especially for people who don't do a lot of hillwalking usually.

Sleeping mats - yep - I didn;t use mine last time either..... but like a first aid kit, you hope you never need it but are very glad of it when you do. I wouldn't take a full fledged thermarest though - too heavy.

Which brings me neatly on to.....FIRST AID KIT. Yep - you're absolutely right there IS a pharmacy in NEARLY every village. But there are also plenty of places that don't have them and either way the next village could be several miles away when you need a first aid kit - and the pharmacy could be shut. Last time I went I wanted to restock on Voltaren - it took me 2 days to find a pharmacy that was open. Also...the first time I needed my first aid kit was coming out of Rabanal at about 6.30am (no pharmacy open) when someone fell over and bust their head open. At that point you need immediate treatment not a walk (or a carry) to the next village. I would strongly urge people to carry a proper first aid kit - i've only done the camino twice and both times I had to almost completely re-stock the first aid kit because i used it on other people who didn't have anything.

Bottom line..... you're walking up and down the sides of steep, rocky and occasionally slippy mountains in what are sometimes hazardous conditions...and thats before you take into account personal fitness etc. You will often be far from the nearest help (if you're injured "far" can be 200m) and you have to be able to be self sufficient to some degree.

Proper first aid kit - absolutely indispensable. It is a must have. If you carry it without ever opening it - then thank St James you didn't need to..... If you carry it and find you need it thank yourself for making the effort with a small extra burden.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#85
You never plan to use a first aid kit. That is why it is important to have one. Duplicate supplies are unnecessary, certainly.

Take a whistle. No one can use their first aid kit on you if they do not know you need help, or cannot find you! You will tire from yelling for help, but you can effortlessly blow a whistle with every breath. You will carry a whistle on one hundred Caminos and never use it. Like the first aid kit, that is why you take it. Whistles have become mandatory gear on kayaks where I live for that same reason.

I have never been sure how it fits in with an appropriate Camino spirit, but why not borrow a sleeping mat if you ever need one? The lender might feel better because it is no longer a useless weight that they have dragged along for weeks, and you get to avoid ever having carried the weight! You may be offered dozens of mats, if you ask. Donation boxes toward the end are filled with sleeping mats, most of them in new condition.
 
#86
This is interesting. I must confess I don't carry much more than my own personal medication, some plasters, a cleanser, needle and thread for blisters should they occur - what do others carry in their first aid kit?
 

Tia Valeria

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Pt Norte/Pmtvo 2010
C. Inglés 2011
C. Primitivo '12
Norte-C. de la Reina '13
C. do Mar-C. Inglés '15
#87
JohnnieWalker said:
This is interesting. I must confess I don't carry much more than my own personal medication, some plasters, a cleanser, needle and thread for blisters should they occur - what do others carry in their first aid kit?
We carry a whistle, hung from the rucksack so easy to reach and a tubi-grip each. Terry is carrying our joint first aid kit:-
Needle and thread
Eye ointment
Savlon (15mg)
Latex gloves
Water purification tablets
Emergency dental kit
Safety pin
Loperamide tablets
Dioralyte sachets
Toothbrushes, small pot toothpaste;
Swiss-card - includes file, small scissors etc; nail clippers;
Sheep's wool - to prevent blisters

Sticking plasters, small bandage + wipes (cleansing and anti-mosquito)

Plus - foot/boot powder (bought in Spain)

Total weight excluding foot powder was 450gms.


Tia Valeria

(List edited and photos added)
 

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#88
My first aid kit (based on a combination of Camino and UK wet weather trekking) is:

Waterproof Plasters
Dry antiseptic spray
Lint free dressing pads
Self Adhesive bandage
Tubigrip
Compeed (OBVIOUSLY!)
Needle & Thread
Sterile wipes (only a couple)
Small bottle eye drops (came in VERY useful)
Anti Histamines (great for bites, stings etc)
Ibuprofen
Voltaren (absolutely invaluable.....barely used it on me but many other people benefited!!)
Rehydration sachets (my walking partner on the first trip got the early signs of sunstroke..it's amazing what good these sachets do!)
Loperamide tablets (look it up...... :? )
Small swiss knife which I guess is technically part of the kit

Errr.......I think that's it. However it does cover pretty much every main possibility and like I say I used it all - mostly on others..... but it's an interesting way to meet people I find!

I'd add in isostar tablets as previously mentioned as proper use of such things make rehydration drinks unecessary.
 

renegadepilgrim

Veteran Pilgrim and Traveler
Camino(s) past & future
2010: Camino Frances, 2011: Santo Domingo de la Calzada (Hospitalera), 2012: Camino Portuguese from Porto, 2015: Camino Norte
#89
I work in healthcare and will be carrying a fully stocked first aid kit as well. My plan is to administer aid if needed. I also am using the Camino as a starting point for an around the world trip, so there may be things in here not needed for the Camino per se. I am still in the process of putting it together, but it will include:

Meds
Ibuprofen
Tylenol
Immodium
Sudafed
Claritin
Vicodin
Cipro
Z-Pack

Bandages/Etc
Assorted Bandaids
Steri-Strips of various sizes w/adhesive
Coban (1 in/3 in)
2X2 Gauze Pads
4X4 Gauze Pads
Abd Pads
Kerlix (2 in/4 in)
Antibiotic Ointment
Alcohol Wipes
Betadyne (small bottle)
Moleskin/Blister Management Tools (I have some special wound care stuff for this)
Suture Kit (http://www.rei.com/product/784611) w/extras from work
CPR Mask (http://www.redcrossstore.org/Shopper/Pr ... ItemId=522)
Nitrile Gloves

Again, this is a starting point for me. I will put it all together, then probably scale it down. Once I get all of my stuff together, I will post pictures and lists before I leave. I like to be prepared which is why keeping my pack light is such a problem for me! :)
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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:
#90
Spain is a first world country and has more Green Cross farmacias than bottle stores!
Take small quantities of what you think you might need and buy anything else on the way.

Compeed used incorrectly can be disaterous!
Don't put it on broken skin.
Stretch the outer edges to take it off or you'll pull your skin off with the plaster.
When it starts to dissolve it can stick to your socks and you'll never get it off!
 
#91
sillydoll said:
Spain is a first world country and has more Green Cross farmacias than bottle stores!
Take small quantities of what you think you might need and buy anything else on the way.

Compeed used incorrectly can be disaterous!
Don't put it on broken skin.
Stretch the outer edges to take it off or you'll pull your skin off with the plaster.
When it starts to dissolve it can stick to your socks and you'll never get it off!

Again...yes there are lots of pharmacies....but not necessarily where you want them or when you want them or open when you need them to be. If you could rely on them completely there would be no need for any first aid kit. Whch would be rather like saying "Well i've never gone through the windscreen in all my years of not wearing a seat belt" or perhpas "I've run across this motorway a thousand times and i've never come close to harm"

Sorry if that sounds a bit fatuous but - whilst I accept the idea of travelling as light as possible - it can easily turn into some kind of holy crusade all on it's own. Some things - I would argue - are essentials....a well stocked first aid kit is one. I used mine almost exclusively for others on my last trip, barely used anything on me and I was exceptionally glad to be able to do so. I had to administer genuine first aid (as opposed to just helping out with bruises and inflamed ankles/knees or shin splints) on several occasions and.....and I really feel I must stress this but please don't take my intention the wrong way..... NO PHARMACIES WERE AVAILABLE ON ANY OF THOSE OCCASIONS.

None.

So what I had in my kist was all we had to rely on. the first occasion was a korean woman in her 50's who tripped whilst walking out of Rabanal very early in the morning. She face-planetd, hit her head on a small rock and received a large bruise and a fairly deep cut to her head. It took a while to clean it up and sort her out enough for her to carry on. Another occasion happened on a sunday, in a fairly remote stretch, when again someone fell and this time went down a ditch. Which had some lovely metal bits stuck in teh side of it on which they ripped open their leg. Again - the nearest pharmacy was about 2 miles away - only by foot - and wasn't open anyway.

So my argument will always be - How can you "buy what you need along the way" when you don't know what you need in a sudden accident/emergency until it happens. At which point it may not be possible to buy it in time.

Just my opinion of course.... I'll say again i'm all for keeping the load carried as small as possible - but i prefer to call it "as small as comfortable". Absolute weight/volume is only one measure for how much you really carry.

Completely agree on the compeed though. I saw so many people stick it on blisters - and then of course do as you say and just rip it off......ripping open a large blister. I also saw lots of people who had then put MORE compeed on, little realising they'd gone well past the point where compeed was a viable option.

Hey ho..... I think they mostly survived :D
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
#92
sillydoll said:
Compeed used incorrectly can be disaterous!
Don't put it on broken skin.
Stretch the outer edges to take it off or you'll pull your skin off with the plaster.
When it starts to dissolve it can stick to your socks and you'll never get it off!
I think it actually says on the Compeed instructions that you shouldn't take it off.... that after three or four days it will come off naturally. I left mine alone and it came off naturally after a few days in the shower, and the skin was nicely healed up underneath.
I know that you had big problems with compeed sil, but it worked well for me.
Margaret
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
#94
Prior to the Camino I'd never used Compeed..rather Second Skin was my first choice. I made the mistake of running out of SS so I got some Compeed in Pamplona. I didn't use the correct size and it grew into the blister on the ball of my foot.

While in Estella at the ambulatoria very beautiful Nurse saw my foot the first day and indicated that, if I would come back the second day she would be happy to cut it out and repair my foot.

To bridge the two days...she and I had a fantastic Supper that night!

Nothing like a blister story with a happy ending.

Arn
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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:
#96
Yep - I did think that was a bit fatuous Martin. I wasn't suggesting that people go to Spain with no first aid items at all. That would be irresponsible. I said that they should take small quantities and could restock almost anything in Spain should they run out.

I believe that a well stocked first aid kit is only as good as the knowledge one has to use its contents! I did a level one first aid course with the St John's Ambulance a few years ago but would never presume to treat anybody with a serious injury - I just don't have the expertise and I'm sure the majority of pilgrims don't either. Those pilgrims who had their injuries, wipe outs, wounds etc when you were around were the lucky ones.

The Spanish Federation of Hospitalero Volunteers warns volunteers NOT to treat pilgrims in the albergues either. Hospitaleros can make First-Aid materials available, but must NOT provide treatment unless they are qualified and ready to assume the legal risk themselves. (The albergue insurance does not cover mis-treatment!)

So, carrying a fully loaded, well stocked First Aid kit is fine for the expert or paramedic, but not neccessary for the average pilgrim.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
#97
I'm with Sil on this one, I think - not being a health professional or highly trained First aider.

What I have taken away from the basic first aid training I have had over the years has been that 'less is more'. I remember being told 'DO NOT' a lot, (do not use creams, do not take embedded foreign objects out of wounds, do not put anything on burns etc). It all boiled down to washing surface dirt off only, pressing something clean and absorbent (a shirt?socks?flannel?) over open wounds, and immersing in cold water for burns, then loosely covering with something cleanish (as above)and seeking professional help.

Martin0642 said:
So what I had in my kist was all we had to rely on. the first occasion was a korean woman in her 50's who tripped whilst walking out of Rabanal very early in the morning. She face-planetd, hit her head on a small rock and received a large bruise and a fairly deep cut to her head. It took a while to clean it up and sort her out enough for her to carry on. Another occasion happened on a sunday, in a fairly remote stretch, when again someone fell and this time went down a ditch. Which had some lovely metal bits stuck in the side of it on which they ripped open their leg. Again - the nearest pharmacy was about 2 miles away - only by foot - and wasn't open anyway.
I take your point Martin, but your help on these occasions was made up of two parts, the equipment being the less important - firstly and most important surely the time and attention; calming down, cleaning up, waiting for the blood to stop flowing and helping her on her way. If the wound needed a temporary binding, a hanky and duct tape or some other Heath Robinson (google him if you don't know him, he's wonderful) dressing would have done. If the wound needed medical attention then a trip to a casualty department or minor injuries unit could have been arranged as soon as you got to somewhere with a bar or similar.

We take a very few little plasters for cut fingers etc, antihistamine cream for bites, antihistamine pills (Peter gets hayfever sometimes), ibuprufen painkillers and my tweezers (but that's because I am obsessive about the hairs growing out of my chin!). Oh, and some cream for dry bits, and an expensive sunscreen lipstick which I bought in a very posh pharmacy on the Chemin in France because I needed it - which proves Sil's point that you can buy what you need when you need it.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#98
Dial 112 on a cell phone for emergency services in Spain. I am told that you can get service in English. A huge portion of the Camino Frances is very close to vehicle access. Of course, it will help to know where you are if you need an ambulance. Obviously you enlist the help of others in a critical situation; half the pilgrims are Spanish, so there will be somebody nearby to help with an emergency phone call.
 
#99
I agree. Most routes are simply a series of day walks from departuire point to arrival - on the Camino Frances as Falcon says you are never far from the next village. In case anyone new reading this thread is alarmed that they might need a mighty first aid kit and a crash course in emergency treatment they should be reassured that most of us simply carry a few plasters and our own personal medication - just as I would at home. For example tomorrow I am walking 22 kms of the Thames Path on my own and I'm not taking a first aid kit at all!

Falcon is quite right 112 is the emergency number in Spain. It works even if your phone has no credit and if you dial it your phone will seek out any network not just the one to which you subscribe. The operators are multilingual.

Spain is a highly developed country and in my experience over many, many trips the health care is excellent.
 

andy.d

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino de Levante 2009
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2011
Camino Ingles (Coruna) 2014
Pilgrims Way Winchester - Canterbury
Camino Ingles (Ferrol) 2015
Cistercian Way (Wales) 2016
I agree with this too.

If you are doing a very solitary route, such as the Camino de Levante, it might be worth taking a little bit more, but you don't need too much. I carried:

whistle, micropore, sheepwool, 2nd skin, crepe bandage, antiseptic cream, ibuprofen, allergy tablets, safety pins, lip balm, sunscreen, scissors, knee support bandage, needle and thread, mobile phone.

The knee support was because my knees are dodgy. The crepe bandage because I sprain ankles from time to time.

Andy
 

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