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First time walker/hiker: Combine Camino Vadiniense AND Camino Primitivo?

Berlinhiker

New Member
Past OR future Camino
None so far!
Dear all,

I'm a little bit overwhelmed by this rich - yet fantastic- resource online. I am trying to figure out one thing before heading to Bilbao mid-July for my first-time camino and maybe one of you could help:

I'd like to see the Picos and then head to the mountainous Camino Primitivo. Has anybody done this before and could recommend it? I see it's quite common to do the Camino Vadiniense and then head to Camino Frances though the latter one does not attract me too much given the crowds. I think I'd start in San Vicente de la Barquera.

I unfortunately only have ca. 16 hiking days (from ca 17 July - 02 August as I'm flying into Bilbao in and out on, so I need to take at least two days of travel into account). I'm pretty fit and I love hiking in the mountains, so physically I think I could manage it...it's more on the practical side of things, where I'd appreciate any hints/tips & tricks.

Many thanks in advance!

Best wishes,
Nadja
 
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mikevasey

Guest
Hi Nadja have you thought about the San Salvador route, it starts in Leon is about 110 km long, goes through a mountain region connecting with the Primitivo in Oviedo. The British CSJ ( Confraternity of St James) do a very good guide, you can get a copy from the net. It will be busy but the Primitivo will be as well.

Buen Camino
 
Past OR future Camino
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
Doing the Vadiniense is not common at all. During my Vadiniense three years ago, I was the only pilgrim for the entire trek. I think that it would be sensible to do either the Vadiniense or the Primitivo--doing both would require about 20-25 days. Mikevasey's suggestion of the Salvador out of Leon, connecting to the Primitivo in Oviedo, would be more do-able. But note that they are both very demanding trails, and require that the pilgrim be very very fit. I would not say that the Primitivo is busy-- when I did it in October of 2013 and 2014, there were about 15-25 pilgrims per stage.
 

Markus Antonius

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Future - Frances -July (2015)!
Doing the Vadiniense is not common at all. During my Vadiniense three years ago, I was the only pilgrim for the entire trek. I think that it would be sensible to do either the Vadiniense or the Primitivo--doing both would require about 20-25 days. Mikevasey's suggestion of the Salvador out of Leon, connecting to the Primitivo in Oviedo, would be more do-able. But note that they are both very demanding trails, and require that the pilgrim be very very fit. I would not say that the Primitivo is busy-- when I did it in October of 2013 and 2014, there were about 15-25 pilgrims per stage.
 

Markus Antonius

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Future - Frances -July (2015)!
Hi mate - I pretty much asked the same question just now - except I have longer to do it - still not sure if it's enough - when are you going? I cannot possibly bypass the Picos and admire them from afar...
 
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Berlinhiker

New Member
Past OR future Camino
None so far!
Dear Mike, Oursonpolaire,

thanks so much for your speedy and very helpful answers! I think I got my route then! Starting in Leon going through mountains and then taking the Primitivo (I can't get enough of (high) mountains and I was not planning to end up in Santiago de Compostela anyway given the rather short amount of time I have). Thank you again!

And Markus: yes, the Picos look amazing and was wondering also for a long time how to plan it --I will do a little bit more research and then decide. I'll get into Bilbao on 16 July and then have time until 02/03 August (and I do not have the aim to be somewhere by someday - I just want to have a good time walking in hills/mountains). Good luck to you also with the research!

Best,
Nadja
 

Markus Antonius

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Future - Frances -July (2015)!
hi nadja

I am on my way now - v excited !

Check out the GR74 and GR71 trails - you might have to type spain into your search otherwise it comes up with French routes
 

angulero

Active Member
No sé si el traductor hizo bien su labor, pero entiendo que os queréis adentrar en Picos de Europa. Si es así os aviso que no es un terreno fácil y hay que preparar bien las rutas porque no es complicado perderse. Este enlace es de un foro dedicado a Picos de Europa. Ahí os pueden aclarar muchas dudas.

Las rutas que habéis puesto no son de Picos de Europa.

Hay sitios muy bonitos y menos complicados para hacer rutas de senderismo tanto en Asturias como en Cantabria. Os dejo un enlace donde se hay muchas opciones.


I do not know if the translator did his work, but I understand that you may want to delve into Picos de Europa. If so, be warned that it is not easy terrain and have to prepare well because it is not complicated routes lost. This link is a forum dedicated to Picos de Europa. There you can clarify many doubts.

http://www.foropicos.net/foro/index.php

Routes that have set are not Picos de Europa.

There are very beautiful and less complicated to hiking trails both in Asturias and Cantabria sites. I leave a link where there are many options.


http://losdelasclaras.blogspot.com.es/search/label/LISTADO
 

Berlinhiker

New Member
Past OR future Camino
None so far!
Hello all, I thought I give an update...in the end I did not choose any of these caminos, as I thought I needed high altitude (to escape a little bit the heat) and to have lots of nature. So I chose the GR11 trail in the Pyrenees (from Candanchu to La Guingueta d'Aneau) and it was just mindblowing. Physically of course challenging (two days in heavy rain and storm), but it was so worth it. Along the way, the route was actually joint with the Camino, so I frequently reminded about my original plan!
One day, I find my way to the Picos and maybe later on a different camino again.
Thanks and all the best to all for future caminos.
Cheers,
Nadja
 

John Pearce

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2015
Hello 👋 Please can someone give me an idea which is the most difficult, the Vadiniense, San Salvador or the Primitivo.
I have walked the Primitivo twice, but time is passing, I’m getting older and my left plantar is causing trouble. So I need a few references to work out if I can make the other the other two.
 
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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Hi, @John Pearce,

Welcome to the forum! It’s hard to compare the Salvador with the other two since it is so much shorter. It is a glorious walk with two days in the mountains and a fair amount of elevation on the other two days. You can do it in 4-5 days but there are also ways to break it up into as many as 9 days, which would make it very do-able for most fit people. Have you seen Ender’s guide?


The Vadiniense has two very different parts. The first part in the Picos is beautiful, glorious, not too strenuous but in the mountains. After you get through the Senda da Remoña, things really flatten out and have a lot of asphalt.

I’ve walked all these routes and would say that if your condition is not drastically changed from when you walked the Primitivo, you would be fine on either of these. Good luck, and buen camino, Laurie Reynolds
 

peregrino_tom

Member
Past OR future Camino
.
Hi John
I'd say the Salvador is the slightly more technical (esp in poor weather) and strenuous of the three. But as Laurie says, you can mitigate this by splitting it up into shorter stages.
I think the Primitivo has more ups and downs than the Vadiniense.
Looking at the Vad on Gronze I see they've redrawn some of the stages since I used it back in 2016. And it looks pretty good now. There are three demanding stages and the rest is standard fare.
For Cicera-Potes you should be able to miss out the second climb (if necessary) to Cabanes by turning off at Allende (though the lower track isn't fully marked on Gronze).
For Potes-Espinama you can walk along the road if you get tired by the up-and-down detours that run off it on either side.
For Espina-Portilla you can reduce the strain by starting from Fuente de instead (which means walking a bit further the day before - that was how Gronze used to present the stage). Also, although the climb from Espina to Horcada is going up 900m, it is never steep, in fact almost uniformly gentle! As is the going down the other side.
Cheers, tom
 

John Pearce

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2015
Thank you for your replies I am very grateful. I am thinking of using a trolley to carry my camping kit. It is a three wheeler, with numatic tyres, two wheels can be removed when the going gets tight. Do you think it would be impossible to get through or am I just dreaming. It helps when the foot hurts. Camping is in case the plantar fasciitis forces me to stop for a while to recover. I used it on the Ingles, Portugues, Frances and the Norte, but not the Primitivo Although I think it would have made it, It’s an Out n About Baby jogging buggy.
 

peregrino_tom

Member
Past OR future Camino
.
Hi John, that's hard to make a judgement on. For 85%+ you'd be fine but...
That stage on the Lebaniego after Cicera starts as a proper mountain path - quite narrow and steep in places, with occasional branches falling across it and a steep fall-off on one side, where you wouldn't want to lose control of your load. After Potes you pretty much always have road options, especially once you're over Horcada, when - big picture - it's more or less gently down hill all the way.
On the Salvador I remember a couple of tricky paths: a rocky almost scrambly bit up to the Collado del canto, after Poladura. And especially between Pajares and Campomanes - narrow, overgrown and in one case subsided down the steepish side, where I needed both hands grabbing roots as I side-stepped across.. And there, you are right in the heart of dense steep woodland on the side of the hills, so without an easy alternative way out. Also some stiles where you'd need to be able to lift your trolley up and over.
That was 5 years ago so it's possible paths etc have been widened and made more trolley-friendly since then....
 

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