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Footwear and Path Condition

Jintray

New Member
Hi

Can anyone give us advice on the route from Le Puy ? We have previously walked the St Jean - Santiago route and found the paths mostly excelent. But I read that the paths in France are not so good. Are proper walking / moutaineering boots required, or are good walking shoes sufficient ? We would prefer the latter, if possible.

Also, it seems that the route from Le Puy involves a lot of up and down. Are the days pretty tough ? I remember the Spanish route over the Messeta, for instance, where you could get 30 k in per day no problem because it was mosly quite flat - and on good paths.

John
 

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)
Hi John,

I walked from Le Puy last year in the month of August. It was quite often hot in the lower altitudes, but higher up on the plateau it was cooler, making for easier walking. Another forum member sent me a message just before I left to say that I would need a step ladder to get in and out of Conques. Yes, parts of the path are very steep, and depending at what time of the year you are travelling they could potentially be quite hard - eg. summer and early autumn you have the heat to battle, and in the spring you could have snow and rain (like Kiwinomad had). I only had a couple of days of rain but on those days I was very glad of my boots, because I found that one day of showers (couldn't even call it rain) was equal to about 3 days of mud! It made it very difficult to walk (in the mud) and I am full of admiration for people like kiwinomad who battled days of it. Some of the paths are quite rocky too. I am always fearful of turning an ankle and so I would not consider anything but lightweight boots, however another woman I saw regularly on the journey (from Le Puy to Santiago) only wore boots for the three or four days when the mud was at its severest. The rest of the time she walked in sandals, and seemed to suffer no ill effects. The paths on the Le Puy route are much more like what I would call "bushwalking" or New Zealanders call "tramping" paths, and many of the Europeans described as being "in nature". Many of those paths in adverse weather conditions would, I am sure, turn into creek beds, making it difficult to walk up.

Hope this helps, Janet
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Jintray said:
Hi
Can anyone give us advice on the route from Le Puy ? But I read that the paths in France are not so good. Are proper walking / moutaineering boots required, or are good walking shoes sufficient ? We would prefer the latter, if possible. Also, it seems that the route from Le Puy involves a lot of up and down. Are the days pretty tough ?
John
Hi John,
I walked the route from Le Puy and used proper walking shoes, not boots. The route from Le Puy to Conques in particular is more rugged than most of what you meet in Spain, and it does go 'up and down'. But the paths are still in general quite good. It was very wet when I walked mid-April, and good grip on the soles of the shoes was important. It was quite rough underfoot in places as well, so I think good ankle support is a must, but I found my style of Merrell walking shoe gave me that.

I was 50, and of average fitness, slower than most, but I managed the Le Puy route fine. So long as you remember that it does not have to be a race, and that you can adjust how far you walk by how you are feeling, it does not have to be too tiring. I loved the route from Le Puy - the changes in altitude etc gave plenty of variety in landscapes to enjoy.
Margaret
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
jl said:
Many of those paths in adverse weather conditions would, I am sure, turn into creek beds, making it difficult to walk up.
Janet

They did just that Janet!!!! I spent a rest day in Estaing, recovering from the blisters I received from three days of basically walking up and down "streams" of water on the tracks!! However, the rest day did the trick, I never encountered quite such terribly wet tracks again, and never had another blister.
Margaret
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Walking out of Le Puy was pretty hard but waymarking was fine. There are steep sections-amen to the step ladder comment out of Conques! I wore light gore tex boots which were fine but have gravitated to leather boots-heavier yes but this year I had wet feet on the Granada-SDC route and vowed to change to leather.
Le Puy is a good route with some beautiful towns and not overrun like the CF
 

Jintray

New Member
Thanks for all the helpful advice on the Le Puy route. It seems to be not as bad as I thought, although the weather plays a part in the conditions. Only 9 days before we leave !

Another point : should we assume that we will need euros. Or do the gites take credit card ? Are there cash machines along the way ? We are walking from Le Puy to Conques or thereabouts.

John
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
You will need Euros, and gites don't usually have credit card facilities, so you do need cash. There are ATM machines in bigger places like Le Puy and Saint Alban sur Ligmanole, but you pass through many smaller villages that don't have one.

One other thing you may or may not know:- in Spain people often skip bits by taking the bus or train, but there is not much in the way of public transport between Le Puy and Conques. You can leave Conques using a bus that connects to a much later train...or else pay for a taxi.

Enjoy yourself! There is some stunning scenery between Le Puy and Conques, and both these towns are very beautiful as well.
Margaret
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
omar504 said:
I wore light gore tex boots which were fine but have gravitated to leather boots-heavier yes but this year I had wet feet on the Granada-SDC route and vowed to change to leather.

omar, I am interested that the goretex boots never kept your feet dry. I loved my walking shoes, except when it was very wet! And as my shoes are now looking the worse for wear after 1500km, I am looking at replacing them - not an easy task when I have a big foot for a woman. I was thinking of getting goretex for the extra waterproofness, and I gather the new goretex shoes allow more ventilation than the older styles used to. But if I am still going to get wet feet maybe I need to think again.... When I was suffering with blisters in Estaing after three very wet days on the track, I met some Aussies with leather boots who had kept dry feet and had had no problems....
Margaret
 

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)
Hi Margaret, I have a very large foot (the latest pair of sneakers is size 12 women's!!!), and ended up with Scarpa Gortex boots. The little rain I met along the way caused no problems with my feet - we had one bad day sloshing through water up and down steep paths and there was no ill consequences because of that. Australians do tend to wear leather boots, but then so do New Zealanders for heavy tramping conditions. Of all the paths that I have so far walked on the Camino the path from Le Puy to Moissac was probably closest to those type of conditions (Grampians / Tassie / Arthurs Pass). Depending when one walks, hot feet can also be a problem. I was really glad of my boots on some of those rocky paths around Conques. regards, Janet

By the way John as a middle aged woman I had no trouble on this Chemin walking quite a number of days of 30km plus.
 

spursfan

Veteran Member
I've bought, but not yet had to use, a pair of waterproof socks - try asking in outdoor shops if they're any good for what you have in mind as an alternative to leather boots
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Margaret
Gore tex is probably ok but the walking shoes I used, a new pair each year, were Columbia trailmeister-very comfortable but stitching always came apart and were not waterproof.This year from granada my feet got wet so many times-some areas it was unavoidable to walk through water-even wet grass meant I had soaking wet feet. Several had leather boots and fared much better. I bought Asolo TPS 520 on the net for $180 + $45 postage (they are $399 in melbourne!). It's a trade off between weight,comfort and whether you anticipate rain-which I now do!
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Thanks everyone. I am quite keen to get a shoe rather than a boot: the Merrell shoes I had had good 'torsion' ie they didn't twist much, so provided very good support on rough terrain. But they certainly let in the water. I have seen a light Merrell goretex boot, and also a Merrell shoe said to be waterproof. But unfortunately not available in my size. Time is not an issue though, so I will keep visiting the outdoors stores everytime I visit somewhere!! I have seen both Scarpa and Asolo around, so will pay them more attention next time.
Margaret
 

Alan Pearce

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones 2008, del Norte 2009, VdlP 2011, Ingles 2014, Camino de Madri 2015, Frances 2017
This year on my camino I wore Scarpa Trek leather boots, purchased from Paddy Pallin in Canberra in January for $259. It took forever to break them in, mainly because I have different sized feet, and one foot kept getting blisters while the other one didn't hurt once. We walked through some atrocious weather in the early days of our journey [force 8 gales, from the west of course so we were heading straight into it , and rain horizontally into our eyes] and my feet stayed perfectly dry even if nothing else did. The only time they let water in was on the second last day of our 42 day journey, walking from Negriera towards Finistere, when it poured rain for hour after hour on what was one of the less enjoyable days of my time in Spain.
There is only one company in Australia that will re-sole Scarpa boots, and they charge $155 for so doing. Mine have some cracks in the leather uppers so I will not get them re-soled, but having got at least 5000km out of them, I feel they have served me well, and when I do my next camino in 2011, I will be wearing Scarpa leather boots.

Buen Camino

Alan
 

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)
Hi Alan, could you please post the details for Australians wishing to resole Scarpa boots. I am trying to decide whether I will resole or purchase another new pair for my next journey. They are fine at present, but my next Camino will be in the vicinity of 2,000kms and I will need new boots at about the 1,000 mark. Thanks, Janet
 

Alan Pearce

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones 2008, del Norte 2009, VdlP 2011, Ingles 2014, Camino de Madri 2015, Frances 2017
Hi Janet
The details are as follows:
Walkalong Leathers Travel and Shoe Repairs
515 Camberwell Rd., Camberwell, Vic. 3124
Phone 03 98892800, and ask for Michael.
When do you plan to leave on your next trip?
Buen camino
Alan
 

vjpulver

Crazy Chicken Lady with the Camino on my Mind!
Camino(s) past & future
Apr-Jun 2009 - I solo walked from Roncesvalles to Santiago. I hope to return as a hospitalera in 2016.
Intersting discussion on footwear. I will be interested in replie regarding my decision. I am planning to start my walk in early May 2008 from Pamplona. I am retired Air Force, so accustomed to wearing traditional, hard-leather combat boots. My dear old pair, which I wear daily when I am out trekking with my dog, are dying. So I must decide what kind of walking footwear to buy and break-in. I am inclined to get another pair of combat boots, but of course the wieght is something to consider. Any strong feelings/advise?

Life is good...
"Ginn"
 

Jintray

New Member
I'm doing final planning for our walk from Le Puy to Figeac. We have 12 days to do 10 days' walking, which means 2 days off. Can any of you who have walked this route recommend which are the nicest and most interesting places to spend an extra day ? We already have one day in Le Puy. I imagine Conques would be one suggestion.

John
 

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)
Hi John, Yes Conques is very beautiful (try and get to the last office of the day - from memory about 8.00p.m.ish and then stay on for the organ recital or whatever else it might be that night - I had a lovely violin and piano recital one night while there). I also really enjoyed St Come d'Olt. It is only a small town, but absolutley jam packed with history. The church has a "twisted spire". I only stayed overnight but I was wishing that I had set it as one of the rest days. There is a long and very steep descent from the previous village, and quite scenic. Enjoy! Buen Camino (or as the French say - Bon route) Janet
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
Ceratinly Conques. I recommend staying in the convent at st come d'olt-rooms like a motel! But also an atmosphere very much in keeping with the camino.
seems like st come d'olt has a few other recommendations too!
 

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Jintray

New Member
Thanks for the photo, Omar. We'll look out for it.

We've realised in the last couple of days that what we're attempting is a bit much : 3 days of 28 - 30 km. So we're considering cutting it back and ending our Camino at Conques.

Question : we fly back to the UK from Rodez airport. Is there any public transport between Conques and Rodez, or Rodez airport ?

John
 

Kitsambler

Jakobsweg Junkie
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy 2010-11, Prague 2012, Nuremberg 2013, Einsiedeln 2015, Geneva 2017-19
Ginn: regarding combat boots. The boots were originally specced for a combat infantryman's load (100 lbs or more), young man's strength, and military circumstances (comfort at the bottom of the list). I'm retired Navy, myself. Why not take advantage of the enormous improvements in boot engineering that are available now? Lightweight and comfortable, and you're carrying a much lighter load. Unless, of course, you're really into foot pain ...
 

Jintray

New Member
We are just back from walking Le Puy to Conques and thought it might be useful to give a summary of what we found out, which might be valuable for those planning this route. I got a lot of help from people during my planning, so here are some details that might be of interest.

Up front, the highlights of the walk were the people we met on the way : almost universally friendly and interesting. And the French countryside.

How far to walk per day ? It depends on your fitness of course, but we found the French GR paths more difficult than the Spanish ones. We walked 200 km in 10 days, cutting our plan by 50 km. We are fairly competent walkers, but found 25 km days a bit tiring. I was carrying too much stuff (maybe 12-13 kg) which didn't help. There are lots of bag-carrying services around, however (about 8 euros per day - quite expensive, I thought).

Boots or walking shoes ? I had walking shoes and they were fine. The paths are French GR standard,do liable to be stony and rough as well as muddy if there's been rain. No complaint about that since you go through quite remote and beautiful places.

Accomodation ? Quite easy to find in September using Mia Mia Do Do and a mobile phone. The hotels, if you need to use them,are much better value than in Britain. The gites are sociable and good fun, but you're laible to come across snorers. The first night in Pe Puy one guy was rattling the windows. I would recommend Gite a la Ferme in Sauges, but got bad service in Hotel le Floret in Estaing. You might come across some French beaurocracy at The Abbey in Conques - they make you queue for ages while they process groups for registration one at a time.

Travel ? We arrived in Lyons and got the airport bus; the woman selling us tickets at the desk tried to short-change me of 20 euros; this is increasingly common in my town - Edinburgh - but it's disappointing to come across it in France. Then train to Le Puy. Watch for big queues to buy tickets - it can take more that half an hour. On the way back we got a bus from Conques to Rodez; I was originally told the wrong time; make sure you confirm with the local Tourisme office. We flew back from Rodez. There's no public transport from Rodez to the airport except taxi (about 18 euros) - a fiddle for the local taxi drivers no doubt. You can book a taxi or wait at the main square for one to pass.

Hygiene : watch for fleas. We caught a bite or 30 in Domaine du Savage.

Overall, a fantastic trip. The people we met were just great.

John
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Glad to hear you had a great trip Jintray. Many of the places were 'remote and beautiful' I agree: walking from Le Puy to Conques is an experience I will always treasure.
Margaret
 

Jintray

New Member
Margaret

Of course we're now thinking of the next trip. Have you done any other sections in France ? We did Via de la Plata in Spain and that was great as well.

John
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Yes, I actually walked all the way from Le Puy to Santiago. You have walked the most dramatic bit landscape-wise until you reach the mountains of the Pyrenees. But there are some very beautiful villages and towns on the rest of the Le Puy route, many with obvious signs of their medieval origin. Moissac is especially interesting. The landscape gets a bit flatter as you get further south, and less dramatic, but there is still plenty to enjoy. I agree with you: I met many friendly people in France - there was a great sense of community amongst the walkers- perhaps partly because the route was less crowded.
Margaret
 

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)
Hi, I have done the same path as Margaret, and also from Toulouse to Santiago via Somport. When I walk in France my thoughts are always - "I must return to walk here again". The problem is that when I get into Spain I think the same thing - hence my reason for walking longer distances. That is, I walk about the same distance in France as in Spain. The friendship and camaraderie of fellow pilgrims is the same in both France and Spain, but there is a gentleness and green beauty about the countryside in France. This compares with a more austere and drier landscape in Spain (except, of course, in Galicia). However, despite that - there is a vibrancy about Spain and its people that is wonderfully appealing. I have found that the local people in both countries are wonderfully helpful (especially to a non French / Spanish speaking Australian).

One friend who walked from Le Puy to St Jean came home full of enthusiasm and palnned to walk a year later from St Jean to Santiago. She was a couple of weeks behind me in Spain and I happened to bump into her in Leon on my way home. Her response to my questions about how she was going was that for the first week she was "grieving for France". I think that sums it up well. If I only walked in one of these countries I would miss terribly the other - so I do both. One of the very special things about the le Puy route is that so many of the churches were open when I went through, many more than in Spain, and also that there were about a quarter of the people walking compared to the Camino Frances.

(Coming up the Valley from Oloron St Marie - on the Arles route - is very beautiful too.)

Cheers, Janet
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Janet... I sense another phone call to Oz coming on here!!! I bought the Gitlitz and Davidson guide from CSJ when I returned home, and the Aragonese route began to sing in my mind, as they described the route from Somport, through Jaca.... Then I found a thread on the forum about the route http://www.pilgrimage-to-santiago.com/board/camino-aragones/topic3393.html
and have since been reading a blog http://anna-en-route.livejournal.com/ by a young Kiwi who has just been walking it.....
I didn't realise you had walked it. The idea of spending a few days in Lourdes and then starting somewhere not too far from there is appealing. But I don't anticipate doing it until 2012 or so.
Margaret
 

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)
Hi Margaret, The CSJ guide book from Toulouse was a little innacurate when I did it in 2005. There were comments like "take the right hand path up hill" the only problem was that it was the LH one that went up hill. One was then faced with the dilemma of whether to take the ipmortant word as "uphill" or "RH" - in this instance I was wrong, and took the RH! However, it didn't matter as the road at the bottom of the hill led into the village anyway. There were a number of instances where this kind of thing occurred. Nonetheless, a beautiful Chemin - apart from the exit from Toulouse. As on the Le Puy Chemin the locals were very friendly and helpful. Holidays start today and so am home until Wed. Will call sometime. Cheers, Janet
 

vjpulver

Crazy Chicken Lady with the Camino on my Mind!
Camino(s) past & future
Apr-Jun 2009 - I solo walked from Roncesvalles to Santiago. I hope to return as a hospitalera in 2016.
Kitsambler said:
Ginn: regarding combat boots. The boots were originally specced for a combat infantryman's load (100 lbs or more), young man's strength, and military circumstances (comfort at the bottom of the list). I'm retired Navy, myself. Why not take advantage of the enormous improvements in boot engineering that are available now? Lightweight and comfortable, and you're carrying a much lighter load. Unless, of course, you're really into foot pain ...

I love my combat boots - they are my most comfortable footware. I was never a young man nor in the infantry, but I toted heavy tool boxes and test equipment during my many years on the flightline and went through many pairs of combat boots. I also have a thousand miles of offroad dogwalking (in both desert terrain and the foothills of South Carolina) on a couple pairs I own. They are very comfortable and I am familiar with their proper care and feeding. These boots are my old friends!

Why not take advantage of new technology? I am trying to "shop at home first" as I prepare for this pilgrimage. I want to simply use what I have. I like to live simply. I consider purchases carefully. For both spiritual reasons and other reasons.

Life is good...

"Ginn"
In Sunny Santa Fe
 

aussiejames

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Apr 2003 - Lourdes to Burgos via Jaca, August 2006; Le Puy to La Faba 2016
[quote="The idea of spending a few days in Lourdes and then starting somewhere not too far from there is appealing. But I don't anticipate doing it until 2012 or so.
Margaret[/quote]

Hi Margaret,

I have just added a blog under the Piedmont Route regarding starting a Lourdes. You might find it interesting.

Cheers James
 

lastra

New Member
Ginn, I guess you already made your walk (May 2008) but I thought I'd chime in on my footwear evolution. I've gone from heavy boots (in the US mountains) when I was young, to medium Gore Tex boots (in the Himalayas), to lightweight boots (the Alps and the Camino in France), and most recently to sandals for the Camino in Spain (twice). This progression to lighter shoes was coupled with lighter packs also, which was critical; my two Spanish Caminos were walked with a super light pack from GoLite and minimal gear.

So far I've been happy with the sandals. No blisters at all because my feet have stayed cool. The only caution still in my mind is that the Camino in Spain is pretty dry, so I haven't had to walk for days of rain in the sandals. In France I remember plenty of rain!

Any other hikers that use sandals?
 

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:
Lastra I walked about 650km of the camino frances in sandals in September 2007. The only inconvenience was that my socks were filthy at then end of the day (yes, I walked with socks and sandals!)
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
Hi John, great to read your summary of your walk from Le Puy. I am planning to walk this route in September 2009. Do you think lightweight walking shoes are sufficient? I have a light pack, no more than 6 kg. Do you think I can get away without a sleeping bag, with just a silk liner or is the bedding likely to be a bit grotty and would a sleeping bag be a better idea. I averaged 22 km on the Camino Frances, it sounds like the early parts of the Le Puy route are harder? How much harder?
Would love to get your feedback, regards, Gitti
 

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)
Hi Gitti, The Le Puy route is hard at the beginning only because there is a lot of ups and downs initially. In August (when I walked) you would have been fine with silk inner sheet, but remember that you will be quite high in the first couple of weeks and so the temperatures will be affected by the altitude. Even in August there were a couple of days when I got out a jumper at the end of the day! There are numerous light weight sleeping bags available here in the Southern Hemisphere (there is a Roman and I have a One Planet - both only weigh 500 grams). Once you drop down off the Aubrac Plateau it will be warmer, but then it will also be later in the season and potentially colder, and so I would think that you might be glad of a bag. That said, many of the gites had blankets.

I used Scarpa boots when I walked, but it is my intention this time to wear some "mid" boots - neither boots nor sneaker type shoes. I read a post from one of the Americans on this forum that - and I hope I have it right - something like a pound (500 grams) saved on your feet is equal to something like a couple of kilos on the back! With that in mind I am changing my approach for footwear on my next Camino. If it rains there are parts that are unbeleivably muddy and you will grow 6"! But again, September should be quite a stable time weather wise I would think.

September should be a lovely time to walk as with luck you will get some autumn foliage on the way.

Cheers, Janet
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
Hi Janet, thank you for your feedback. I saw the Roman Palm 1 sleeping bag, which looked like a good option. I will probably use my off trail Solomon waterproof running shoes and take a gamble on the mud front! These shoes were great in Austria and very lightweight. Not one blister and I wore them from new without walking them in. Best regards, Gitti
 

Javier Martin

Veteran Member
sillydoll said:
Lastra I walked about 650km of the camino frances in sandals in September 2007. The only inconvenience was that my socks were filthy at then end of the day (yes, I walked with socks and sandals!)

Sil, Had you any problem when raining with wet socks? How do you avoid the ampollas then? Which one in your opinion is the biggest problem while walking with socks and sandals?

Buen Camino,

Javier Martin
Madrid, Spain.
 

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:
Javier - I was SO lucky that after Logróno there was no more rain until we got to Santiago.

Using the Brierley guide for the Camino Frances, which splits the miles for each day into “paths –quiet roads – main roads” the 798kms from St Jean works out like this:

505 km on paths/tracks (some very rocky, river boulders, gravel, mud ruts etc)
202.6km on quiet roads (mostly through small villages)
90.6km on main roads (walking into and out of main cities and towns)
 

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