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Fromista Canals? What was their purpose??

Year of past OR future Camino
cycled from Pamplona Sep 2015;Frances, walked from St Jean May/June 2017. Plans to walk Porto 2020
Hola, I have walked and cycled the Camino Frances and have marveled at the canal structures as you enter the town of Fromista. Can someone enlighten me? (Please) Why were they built and by whom. First correct answer gets my thanks (and maybe a coffee at some point). The reason I ask is that today's "forum media" shows those massive rock/stone formations. Cheers
 
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biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
If you keep following it from Fromista the one leg will take you to Palencia and then ends in Valladolid. It looks like an interesting walk!
It is interesting if you walk north but in going south you run out of places to stay in a short time. My own experience was there are areas where there is stagnant water and the mosquitoes are ferocious. It also has a branch that comes from Medina de Rioseca that operates a canal tour boat from time to time.
 
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jungleboy

Spirit of the Camino (Nick)
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés 2017
Primitivo 2018
Madrid 2019
Kumano Kodo 2019
Português 2020
There is also a great section walking along the Canal de Castilla from Medina de Rioseco on the Camino de Madrid. I really enjoyed it last year, and blue sky always helps!

Canal.jpeg
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Year of past OR future Camino
Many, various, and continuing.
There is a waymarked path of 11 etapas from Palencia north to Liebana (Potes), where you can connect to the Camino Vadiniense onward to Santiago. It's called the Camino Lebaniego Castellano, it follows along the Canal de Castilla (via Fromista) all the way to its end at Alar del Rey, and continues up and over the mountains with stops at some fabulous Romanesque sites.
 
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biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19

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mai

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF
Pamplona-S 4/18
SJPP-S-F/M 4/19
SJPP-S. (4/21)
I was fascinated by Canal de Castilla as well when I walked from Boadilla del Camino to Fromista last year!

From the map (https://palenciaromanica.blogspot.com) of the whole canal which was located mainly in Provincia de Palencia, we could see the magnitude of the engineering project constructed between 1753-1849.
 

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Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
What a marvellous resource. This looks like a walk I'd enjoy.
The canal was planned by the Marques de la Ensenada during Fernando VI's reign.[1] Its purpose was to boost trade by allowing Tierra de Campos' wheat grain production to be transported from Castile to the northern harbour of Santander and to other markets from there; vice versa, the canal was also meant to facilitate the inflow of products from the Spanish colonies into Castile.[1]

The Spanish War of Independence, budgetary constraints and the difficult passage of the Cantabrian Mountainshampered and eventually reduced the initial plan of a 400 km so the canal never reached the Bay of Biscay as initially planned.[1] Overall, its construction took almost 100 years (from 1753 to 1849) and was eventually halted when railroads were built in northern Spain in the nineteenth century, superseding the project.[1]

The canal was most used during the 1850-1870 period, when up to 400 barges plied the canal towed by beasts of burden.[1] Later on, the canal evolved into the spine of a huge irrigation system due to its relative inefficiency vs. railfreight as a means of transport. The locks on the canal were decommissioned in the twentieth century.
 
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