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How Much Water are People Carrying and Drinking?

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
I was told agua no es gratis en Europa. Es verdad?

How are people carrying water and re-supplying?

How much water are people drinking each day?

Estoy en Florida. Today I walked with my backpack and nearly three liters of water and ran out. Got more though. Water really affects gear and carrying weight. Hence the question. Gracias!

I've been using the water bladder plus an extra bottle on the side for breaks and for refilling the water bag.
 
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Anemone del Camino

Guest
Depends on the route you are walking, and the time of the year.

On the Frances there are bars, albergue and fountain every 5km or so, except on a few occasions. You can fill ip your bottle/bladder often.

Onotnwr routes, and often much warmwr routes, you must carry all your water for the whole day since the morning.

On VDLP, I ended up drinking 1.5 l. per 10km, and that was making sure I only drank what I needed. That was HEAVY!

And water is free, just not in shops ;0). You will typically fill up at the albergue in the am, at the bars or fountains along the way.

Some websites and guides show where fountains are available.

Good for you for bech,arking your consumption now.
 

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
Depends on the route you are walking, and the time of the year.

On the Frances there are bars, albergue and fountain every 5km or so, except on a few occasions. You can fill ip your bottle/bladder often.

Onotnwr routes, and often much warmwr routes, you must carry all your water for the whole day since the morning.

On VDLP, I ended up drinking 1.5 l. per 10km, and that was making sure I only drank what I needed. That was HEAVY!

And water is free, just not in shops ;0). You will typically fill up at the albergue in the am, at the bars or fountains along the way.

Some websites and guides show where fountains are available.

Good for you for bech,arking your consumption now.


The plan is to walk the Frances starting next month. So along that route there are fountains? In public? That anyone may use? For free?

Or anyone may walk into a bar or cafe and just get water for free?

We don't really have fountains in public here. Many outdoor parks in Florida have no water fountains either.

Is 1.5 liter per 10 km the recommended intake?

Water is heavy. One liter weighs one gram. One liter weighs 2.2 lbs
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
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(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
Yes water is heavy. In fact one litre weighs one kilogram ;)

Everyone's water consumption varies. But it's important to stay hydrated to avoid injury. Dehydration actually increases the risk of blisters I think... But it certainly leads to aches, sore tendons and cramps.

You will work out what is right for you. It's easy to carry more if you need to. Just buy a couple more bottles of water in the store and when they run out refill them from a tap somewhere. Instant extra capacity. Or maybe carry a couple of empty ones just in case. They weigh nothing and can be filled as required.

I used a water bladder, with an extra bottle in a side pouch. The only downside of the water bladder was:

#1. I couldn't see how much was left. And I ran out once. Not pleasant at all.... But a cafe 'caravan' appeared on the trail an hour later!

#2. I tended to carry too much water and hence weight.

Next time I'll just use store water bottles. The ones you buy bottled water in. And refill them as I go. If you have a guide book, the water fountains are marked on the maps. Just be aware,that sometimes they might be dry, so don't leave yourself short.

If I found a water fountain, I tended to drink what water I had, and then refill. Loading up water like a camel :)

On the infamous 17 km section with no water fountains or villages, (after Carrion) I carried about 2.5 litres. The weather was quite warm. About 25 C I think. I only used 1.5 It's really hard to tell sometimes........

Mostly I carried about 1.5 litres on me. I could probably manage carrying 1 litre most days, where I was sure I could refill. 500 ml? I would get dehydrated .... frequently.....

There are plenty of places to top up water free (on the Frances Route). So don't ration it........ Just look at the guidebook maps so you know how far the next font/village is and plan accordingly.
 
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Felipe

Veteran Member
There is not a standard answer to your query. It depends on the season (meaning how hot or cold is the day...). Also, body constitutions and personal habits. If you use the "search" function of the forum, you will find lots of threads and mssgs abouts water intake; it is a very popular topic.
Basically, you can group opinions in three: the watervangelists that seem to be hydrating all the time; the camel group (I belong here, I walk with a single 500 ml bottle); and those lost souls :p who follow a Spanish saying (you can see it posted in bars): "Si el agua estropea los caminos, imagina que le hará a tus intestinos". That is, freely translated, why drink water when there are very good beers and wines in Spain?:)
I actually drink more than half a liter (I mean, of water:D) in my walking days, as you can suppose. I usually make at least one stop in bars to get a coffee (or a beer), go to the bathroom and refill my bottle. As for public fountains, in the Frances they are frequent in public squares and resting places built by kind ayuntamientos.
Ah, and there is the famous wine fountain at Irache...
 
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Mark Lee

Guest
Many, many places to get free water all along the Camino Frances.
Public fountains. Cafes. Bars. etc.
Only two fairly long sections with fewer water points....first day over the Pyrenees to Roncesvalles and the section between Carrion de los Condes and Templarios. Other than those two, it's everywhere and one really has to work hard at dehydration, yet it happens.
I carried two 1/2 liter water bottles and refilled them at every chance I could. There is no formula for water consumption. Too many variables at play. You drink till you are hydrated. The medics in the military and at the camps I worked in overseas had the rule of thumb that if your urine is clear, you are hydrated, so I follow that. Also remember that coffee and tea are diuretics.
I don't know if you have one yet, but I recommend getting a good Camino guidebook for the Frances. A good guidebook covers topics like water sources along the route. Don't forget, you are not doing a traditional hike. Not at all. Think of it as a series of long day walks between towns and you carry everything you need on your back. No camping. No water purification from streams, etc. Nothing like that.
ultreia
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
The plan is to walk the Frances starting next month. So along that route there are fountains? In public? That anyone may use? For free?

Or anyone may walk into a bar or cafe and just get water for free?

We don't really have fountains in public here. Many outdoor parks in Florida have no water fountains either.

Is 1.5 liter per 10 km the recommended intake?

Water is heavy. One liter weighs one gram. One liter weighs 2.2 lbs
Yup, on the Frances you'll be good. No need to panick. Just check your guidebook the night before and plan accordingly in case you need more than 1 liter or so.
No need to pay for water, and for the love of god, do not buy bottle water in plastic bottles.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
You drink till you are hydrated. The medics in the military and at the camps I worked in overseas had the rule of thumb that if your urine is clear, you are hydrated, so I follow that. Also remember that coffee and tea are diuretics.

Great point @Mark Lee. And the best hydration tip!

I learned the same in a previous life. The darker the urine the more dehydrated you are. And if you have not pee'd in the last 4 hours you are already dehydrated.

I think this is more of an issue for Women, as they are less keen on ducking behind a bush for a pee :oops:

My dearly beloved was horrified by the prospect, vowing to wait till the next village. OK I thought, let's see how long that lasts, as I ensured she was keeping up her water intake :D

30 mins up the first Hill :p

It was fine after that. I was charged with finding suitable 'discrete' places as required. 'Pee stop soon' would be my signal to start looking for a suitable spot.........within the next 5 mins :rolleyes:

She has a bladder about the size of a Kitten's ...........

And Yes, she would carry a zip lock baggie with wipes, leaving no trace behind........
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
Fat chance on carrying enough water for you pee to be clear. Works well as a guideline on diving trips, but not on Caminos. For that tomhappen, I would hve to drink 2-4 times more, if not more.
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I was told agua no es gratis en Europa. Es verdad?
Same as in Florida, water is free if you get it from the tap or a fountain, but not if you want bottled water. Tap water in Spain is safe to drink.
How are people carrying water and re-supplying?
I keep a small bottle (0.5 L) of water as emergency supply in my backpack and I have never needed it. On the VdlP in March-April, I carried 2 small bottles in outside pouches of my backpack. On the Camino Frances, in cool temperatures, I would only carry one 0.5 L bottle.

Public fountains will usually say "potable" if they are drinkable or "no potable" if not. I prefer to fill up from indoor taps as I feel more secure. Re-supplying is easy for me because I don't drink much water. I fill up my bottles from the tap in the morning and they last me all day.
How much water are people drinking each day?
I typically drink about 0.5 to 1.5 liters per day, depending on the temperature and exertion. Admittedly, I have rarely walked in temperatures higher than 25 C, and I generally walk only 20-25 km.

A lot of things are said about the need for water consumption, that have little evidence behind them. Try searching the internet for authoritative studies that connect water consumption, hydration, blister, tendonitis, colour of urine, etc. Certainly you need to drink enough to stay comfortable, which means you want to avoid getting very thirsty, but a little thirst won't damage you. Serious dehydration can kill, so you want to err on the side of caution, but that doesn't mean that excessive water consumption is necessary.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
A lot of things are said about the need for water consumption, that have little evidence behind them. Try searching the internet for authoritative studies that connect water consumption, hydration, blister, tendonitis, colour of urine, etc.

It would certainly be interesting to read. I just found a load of stuff from hiking organisations but no medical based studies yet. What did come up all the time was the need to drink 2 litres a day, just on a normal day at home. (Though I never drink that much at home) When hiking that should be increased.

The tips and experiences shared here, are of course just that mainly. Personal experiences. So some research would be nice to see.

I think you raise an interesting clarification. Being thirsty is not the same as being dehydrated. From my own experience, I know that if I don't drink enough water, I get headaches, very tired, and my Achilles tendons start screaming at me. I start to really slow down as a result. Sure I can keep walking for an hour or two, but it's quite uncomfortable. I'd rather avoid that.

I would guess I go through 3-4 litres during a warm walking day in April/May (about 20-25 kms a day) I'm not carrying that much! A mix of bottles carried, top ups at fountains, a can or two of Aquarius at Cafes....
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
Clare, you are a camel! I drink 2l. at least, 5 when diving. In Spain more than that.

As for potable sources lf water, many villages in Spain have springs in the village itself, with villagers driving down with bottles to be fillled.

The goood old dayd may still be with us ....
 

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
I fill up my bottles from the tap in the morning and they last me all day.

I typically drink about 0.5 to 1.5 liters per day, depending on the temperature and exertion. Admittedly, I have rarely walked in temperatures higher than 25 C, and I generally walk only 20-25 km.

A lot of things are said about the need for water consumption, that have little evidence behind them. Try searching the internet for authoritative studies that connect water consumption, hydration, blister, tendonitis, colour of urine, etc. Certainly you need to drink enough to stay comfortable, which means you want to avoid getting very thirsty, but a little thirst won't damage you. Serious dehydration can kill, so you want to err on the side of caution, but that doesn't mean that excessive water consumption is necessary.

How are people consuming so little water?

Yesterday I drank about 4 liters of water by 1pm. The electrolyte solution was extra, I'm not even counting that. Should I see a doctor?!
 

Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Year of past OR future Camino
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
I fill my Osprey bladder with only 1.5 l and have a ½ liter insulated bottle to resupply with the cold water from taps that I stumple upon on the way. In this way I have reserve for long stretches.
But as I live in a colder climate, I was surprised to find that I sometimes *forgot* to hydrate as much as I should.
It is a hard lesson....On one particular day , I forgot my extra neck bag with all my papers, twice, which is telling ...So I got into the habit to buying a new liter bottle when arriving at the albergue and drink it to fill up.c Shower on the outside, replenish on the inside ...
 
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Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
England Camino routes ?2024
If you are feeling thirsty you are already 3% dehydrated.
In very hot weather you may need to drink as much as 1l/hr. I averaged 250ml (1 cup) every 30 minutes as a MINIMUM on the VDLP, as well as stopping at all available fuentes and bars (which on the VDLP may be non-existent until your destination especially in Extremadura which is deservedly known as "the frypan of Europe") and I was peeing brown by the end of the day despite loading up before I left eg drinking 3-4 cups of water before I left, and carrying fruit juice poppers, Aquarius etc as well as a 3l water bladder. Sugar metabolises to water so citrus fruit and juice is handy for potassium and extra water. When you arrive at your destination, drink up again until you are peeing reasonably clear again. Do NOT judge the amount of water you need by how much you sweat because the sweat tends to evaporate straight off your skin. The heat tends to be a dry heat so you do not notice the loss.
Have a look at this thread https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/its-hot-get-a-hat.47221/
There are some useful guides to urine colour and heat stress there.
I've lived in the desert and in the tropics and I've seen too many people get into trouble in both places.
It takes 1-2 weeks to acclimatise so if you come from a cool climate and then get sunburnt as well you will be even worse off.
I never took electrolytes on the camino as I don't cramp easily and I made sure I ate trail mix and oranges to help with the electrolytes. However if walking more than 30km now I would probably add some electrolyte tabs to my water bladder in the mornings just to top up.
 
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Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
England Camino routes ?2024
How are people consuming so little water?

Yesterday I drank about 4 liters of water by 1pm. The electrolyte solution was extra, I'm not even counting that. Should I see a doctor?!
I'm with you but I drink 3 litres every day anyway just being a couch potato although admittedly it is 30 deg C in my house anyway. It's actually a good way to prevent injury.
(The drinking, not the couch ;) ) And I am one of those mad people that use silver hiking umbrellas.:D

Another point to consider is that if you are taking NSAIDs eg ibuprofen, voltaren etc. the risks of dehydration are greater and you run the risk of damaging your kidneys.

https://www-ncbi-nlm-nih-gov.www.ezpdhcs.nt.gov.au/pmc/articles/PMC2908954/table/T5/ (Popkin et al Nutr Rev. 2010 Aug; 68(8): 439–458. in case you can't open the link) has an estimate of fluid requirements based on energy intake required. I can tell you that to maintain my weight I had to more than double my caloric intake and was eating about 4000 kcal/day. By this table I would need 5.4 litres per day.
 
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Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Year of past OR future Camino
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
I'm with you but I drink 3 litres every day anyway just being a couch potato although admittedly it is 30 deg C in my house anyway. It's actually a good way to prevent injury.
(The drinking, not the couch ;) ) And I am one of those mad people that use silver hiking umbrellas.:D

Another point to consider is that if you are taking NSAIDs eg ibuprofen, voltaren etc. the risks of dehydration are greater and you run the risk of damaging your kidneys.

https://www-ncbi-nlm-nih-gov.www.ezpdhcs.nt.gov.au/pmc/articles/PMC2908954/table/T5/ (Popkin et al Nutr Rev. 2010 Aug; 68(8): 439–458. in case you can't open the link) has an estimate of fluid requirements based on energy intake required. I can tell you that to maintain my weight I had to more than double my caloric intake and was eating about 4000 kcal/day. By this table I would need 5.4 litres per day.

*) The Ibu angle, I did not know - though at a time, young well trained footplayers some yrs back in Denmark, mysterioussly died of strokes during matches due to them popping ibu pills like candy before and during matches. This practise has since - sensibly enough- been suspended !

**) your links cannot be read without signing in...
 

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
I'm with you but I drink 3 litres every day anyway just being a couch potato although admittedly it is 30 deg C in my house anyway. It's actually a good way to prevent injury.
(The drinking, not the couch ;) ) And I am one of those mad people that use silver hiking umbrellas.:D

Another point to consider is that if you are taking NSAIDs eg ibuprofen, voltaren etc. the risks of dehydration are greater and you run the risk of damaging your kidneys.

https://www-ncbi-nlm-nih-gov.www.ezpdhcs.nt.gov.au/pmc/articles/PMC2908954/table/T5/ (Popkin et al Nutr Rev. 2010 Aug; 68(8): 439–458. in case you can't open the link) has an estimate of fluid requirements based on energy intake required. I can tell you that to maintain my weight I had to more than double my caloric intake and was eating about 4000 kcal/day. By this table I would need 5.4 litres per day.

Your link did not work. Yes, it's a login site.

How much ibuprofen creates risk of dehydration and kidney damage while exercising in heat? I'm guessing a lot of people take NSAID's routinely.
 
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Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
England Camino routes ?2024
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2908954/ is an article that sums up the issues with NSAIDs for those who enjoy plowing through medical journals. The amount needed to cause a serious adverse reaction? Well that depends on too many factors (and I'm not a nephrologist :p). If you are very young or very old your risk is higher. If you are taking medications for other conditions your risk can go up both due to the other condition and/or the drug needed to treat that. Individual pharmacogenomics can make a huge difference. Eg if you are super sensitive to sleeping tablets and some antidepressants you may run an increased risk with some (but not all) NSAIDs. If you are a short older female taking them for muscle pain, you have a higher risk according to some studies. And of course the dose, duration and frequency of taking the tablets is also important. If NSAIDs potentially double your risk of renal injury whatever that baseline risk is, you do not need to introduce the highly significant risk of dehydration. Take home message: Keep your fluids right up :p
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
VDLP may be non-existent until your destination especially in Extremadura which is deservedly known as "the frypan of Europe"...

I never took electrolytes on the camino as I don't cramp easily and I made sure I ate trail mix and oranges to help with the electrolytes. However if walking more than 30km now I would probably add some electrolyte tabs to my water bladder in the mornings just to top up.
I have been carrying electropyte tablets for many caminos after getting terrible cramping on the last day of my first Camino. But this time I also asked mustard in reataurants and would eat a tea spoon or two of it, and had tonic water at aperitif time, or in my pack, as both apparently help with cramps.

My favourite liquid for VDLP while walking ended up being boxed gaspacho: liquid, refreshing, and a bit of energy. Made a delicious and refreshing second breakfast or pre-lunch on those long days withnothing for 20km. Unfortunately it was difficult to find because apparently even if it was 27C, it was not hot enough for stores to carry it! :eek:
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
If NSAIDs potentially double your risk of renal injury whatever that baseline risk is, you do not need to introduce the highly significant risk of dehydration. Take home message: Keep your fluids right up :p
Guess I should not post a pick of my pill cocktail I was taking twice a day!
 

Kitsambler

Jakobsweg Junkie
Year of past OR future Camino
Le Puy 2010-11, Prague 2012, Nuremberg 2013, Einsiedeln 2015, Geneva 2017-19
How are people carrying water and re-supplying?
I use a 1.5L water bladder and a re-purposed commercial-bottle-of-water bottle. In France there is always water available at the cemeteries for free, although one usually doesn't pass towns with restaurant/shopping services during the day. In Germany, Switzerland and the Czech Republic, carry at least 1.5L with you as there will normally not be re-supply points during the day. It doesn't get quite so hot in those parts, however.
How much water are people drinking each day?
Varies wildly with individual acclimatization, locale, and temperature. So be well-prepared, and if you find you still have more than 0.75L remaining at the end of the day, you could cut back a bit.
Water really affects gear and carrying weight.
Yes, it surely does! And so it must be planned for as you are working with your weight budget. Fortunately, the weight of a second liter of water for hot weather trades off with the weight of winter fleeces -- you only need to take one rather than both!
I've been using the water bladder plus an extra bottle on the side for breaks and for refilling the water bag.
This is an excellent strategy. It is hard to refill a bladder mid-day without unpacking the pack completely, which is not always convenient.

Another part of your hydration strategy is to drink a liter in the morning before setting off, and one in the afternoon upon arrival.
 

Patch

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
St Jean to Santiago and Porto to Santiago
On three trips I only found it necessary to carry water on two days - rest of the time I used fountains or had milky coffee or a beer in café on the way. But everyone to there own. I do however carry some water purification tablets in my wallet just in case I need to take water from a stream or other iffy source.
 
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CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
I use a 1.5L water bladder and a re-purposed commercial-bottle-of-water bottle. In France there is always water available at the cemeteries for free, although one usually doesn't pass towns with restaurant/shopping services during the day. In Germany, Switzerland and the Czech Republic, carry at least 1.5L with you as there will normally not be re-supply points during the day. It doesn't get quite so hot in those parts, however.

Varies wildly with individual acclimatization, locale, and temperature. So be well-prepared, and if you find you still have more than 0.75L remaining at the end of the day, you could cut back a bit.

Yes, it surely does! And so it must be planned for as you are working with your weight budget. Fortunately, the weight of a second liter of water for hot weather trades off with the weight of winter fleeces -- you only need to take one rather than both!

This is an excellent strategy. It is hard to refill a bladder mid-day without unpacking the pack completely, which is not always convenient.

Another part of your hydration strategy is to drink a liter in the morning before setting off, and one in the afternoon upon arrival.

Yes, refilling the bladder typically requires unpacking, even though I have the second bottle.

Great info about the water availability in France, Germany and in Central Europe.
 

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
On three trips I only found it necessary to carry water on two days - rest of the time I used fountains or had milky coffee or a beer in café on the way. But everyone to there own. I do however carry some water purification tablets in my wallet just in case I need to take water from a stream or other iffy source.

This is shocking. You don't usually carry water on Camino?!
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Thanks @Donna Sch for posting that article. It summarizes the importance of water, and outlines the individual variabilities and the gaps in knowledge.

There are a number of factors that might result in my low-ish consumption of water (size, exertion, consumption of water-containing foods, etc.) Perhaps a bit more water would be a good idea. I don't deny that. What bothers me is the proliferation of statements that are based on popular media repetition and become accepted as authoritative recommendations, and are then repeated as such. However, I can also see that a public service message has to be very simple and unambiguous to be effective, even if it cannot cover the topic in all its complexity. So, the message "drink before you are thirsty" can be useful, even though it may not be true that "if you are thirsty, it is too late to prevent harm."

Regarding the use of urine colour as an indicator, early in the paper it is stated "Urine indices are used often but reflect recent volume of fluid consumed rather than a state of hydration... Currently we feel there are no adequate biomarkers to measure hydration status at the population level."
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
This is shocking. You don't usually carry water on Camino?!
@Patch didn't say that he didn't drink any water. He said he didn't carry it except for two days. Water and other beverages are available every 5-10 km along the Camino Frances, except for a couple of stretches. He walks 5-10 km, has a good drink, and then walks another 5-10 km.
 

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
@Patch didn't say that he didn't drink any water. He said he didn't carry it except for two days. Water and other beverages are available every 5-10 km along the Camino Frances, except for a couple of stretches. He walks 5-10 km, has a good drink, and then walks another 5-10 km.

Right, that's what I meant. Carry water.

But a 5k is still just over 3 miles, and a 10k is more than six miles. I cannot imagine making it that far with a backpack before drinking more water. I would need an ambulance. He must be hiking in cool temperatures with low humidity?

I wonder if I need to see a doctor about my kidneys!?! Or maybe it's just Orlando temperatures:
https://weather.com/weather/tenday/l/USFL0372:1:US
 
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Mark Lee

Guest
How are people consuming so little water?

Yesterday I drank about 4 liters of water by 1pm. The electrolyte solution was extra, I'm not even counting that. Should I see a doctor?!
I wouldn't put much weight into any advice from anyone that touts being dehydrated. I don't know if some people actually believe it's okay to be dehydrated, or it's just a way of dealing with not wanting to pee outdoors, and BTW nobody walking the Camino even takes notice when someone is going to the loo along the route.
I drank from every type of water source available along the Camino Frances. Fountains. Albergues. Cafes, and bars. I never got sick from it. I would say on average I drank 4-5 liters of water in a 24 hour period while walking the Camino. Even at home I try to drink 3 liters a day.
I did actually see a couple of pilgrims faint during July and August along the Camino due to what I assume was dehydration and overexertion, and one day I underestimated the heat and got pretty dehydrated myself. That was a hot day. In the 90's F. Caught me off guard.
Isn't the human body composed of about 70% water? That alone should signify the importance of hydration, and most people suffer from chronic dehydration. Water helps the joints, skin, muscles and aids in digestion.
ultreia
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
On three trips I only found it necessary to carry water on two days - rest of the time I used fountains or had milky coffee or a beer in café on the way. But everyone to there own. I do however carry some water purification tablets in my wallet just in case I need to take water from a stream or other iffy source.
No offense man, but if that's advice to future pilgrims, it's bad advice.
To any future pilgrims reading this, there are many, many, many free potable water sources along the Camino Frances. There is no need to carry water purification tablets so you can drink out of ditches or streams. o_O
You are not on a wilderness hike.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
This is a fabulous and hugely useful thread. Without addressing specific comments, here is my hydration rationale:

I started using a 2-liter water bladder with my Osprey Kestrel 48-liter rucksack on my first Camino in 2013. But, when I discovered that the empty bladder weighed 11 ounces (@ 312 grams), the empty bladder was mailed ahead to Santiago, cleaned and sold to a good home. That is too much 'dead weight' IMHO.

My situation is a little unique. A chronic health condition compels me to supplement my daily diet with medical quality, powdered protein, three times daily. I mix the powdered protein from packets into water. I use one .5 liter water bottle that I obtain locally, already filled with water...imagine that! I carry a collapsible silicone funnel that rides in a rucksack pocket.

Starting with breakfast, I reuse this bottle refilled with water and another packet of protein throughout the day. I must consume one each 4 hours. After the third cycle, the bottle is well rinsed and prepared to the next day. BTW, the need for supplemental protein adds about .5 kg per week to my carried weight. So I try to mail replacement supplies to a reserved accommodation along my route-of-march.

Further, I carry THREE additional .5 liter, locally obtained bottles filled with water. Some also have additional ingredients.

One bottle always has an electrolyte replacement tablet dissolved in it. I use Nuun brand, fruit flavored tablets obtained in runner shops locally. There are MANY other brands available. I must crack the tablet in two to fit through the bottleneck. You can also obtain electrolyte replacements at most any farmacia along the Camino.

Additional great natural sources for electrolyte replacement are oranges and bananas, obtained locally each day and consumed as mid-morning or lunchtime snacks. I PACK THE PEELS OUT.

The remaining two .5 liter bottles are filled, rinsed and refilled with potable water throughout the day as necessary.

I have learned from experience, trial, and very embarrassing errors in judgement to consume .5 liters of water, or similar liquid, every hour, EVEN IF I AM NOT THIRSTY. I call it forced hydration. Others practice the same thing by saturating themselves before they start walking.

Yes, as stated by several colleagues above, water is heavy. One liter equals one kilo. However, it is still lighter than my unconscious body. THAT (face planting) happened three times in one week in 2015, when I last walked from Porto to Santiago in early May. My medical team later determined that it was rapid onset syncope (fainting) caused by dehydration. In other words, stupid me...:eek:

FYI, I use Nite-Ize 'Clip-n-Sip' stainless steel clips to fasten my four bottles to the front of my rucksack harness or waist belt when walking. This shifts weight balance from the rear to the front, and keeps my water and nutritional replacements readily available without asking another pilgrim to fetch a bottle from a side rucksack pocket.

Use the urine chart, provided below to assess your urine output. Clear is good, less clear, less good. Add water and electrolyte replacement as necessary.

Consult the below images too. I also saved them to my iPhone as .pdf or .jpg files.

- heat_stress-index.jpg
- Urine Chart.pdf

heat_stress-index.jpg
I hope this helps someone.
 

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good_old_shoes

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés ('15, '19)
Via Coloniensis ('16)
Trier-Nancy + Le Puy-Fisterra ('17)
Aragonés ('18)
I found out the hard way how important it is to stay hydrated. No wish to repeat the experience. If you're dehydrated it doesn't matter that the next fountain is only a few kms away... because you may not be able to crawl that far. Electrolytes are important, also (dried fruit and salted nuts are your friends).

We all have different bodies, of course. Some people need more water/food to function well, some less. For those of us who are not very experienced hikers, it's probably good advice to better drink a bit more than usual – especially if you're not used to physical exercise (even more so in the heat). Better to carry too much and feel silly afterwards for carrying a kg more weight for a while than to risk getting into trouble.

Yes, I know... on the Francés it's not much of an issue. There are fountains, bars and shops everywhere and other people who can help also. But on some other routes it can be dangerous if you don't carry enough water. With more and more people walking other ways than the Francés, I think that's important to make clear.


(I'm thinking of the Via de la Plata or the Mozarabe – haven't walked there, but I know the south of Spain and how hot it can get – I don't even want to imagine running out of water there on a summer or even warm spring day with hours to walk to the next town – the thought alone is terrifying).
 
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Buzz Gray

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2014, 2015, 2016
I was told agua no es gratis en Europa. Es verdad?

How are people carrying water and re-supplying?

How much water are people drinking each day?

Estoy en Florida. Today I walked with my backpack and nearly three liters of water and ran out. Got more though. Water really affects gear and carrying weight. Hence the question. Gracias!

I've been using the water bladder plus an extra bottle on the side for breaks and for refilling the water bag.
I have walked St. Jean to Finisterre 3 times in July and August. I averaged about 16 oz. of water a day, but I don't need much. I filled my flask at the alburgues in the morning and , when needed, I bought bottled water in a mercado. It's very inexpensive. I would advise against using water from the fonts, especially in the final 2 weeks. Folks get sick, and the culprits seem to be water from the fonts and unwashed lettuce. Neither my wife nor my son would eat salads the last 2 weeks. Yogurt and yogurt drinks are a popular way to settle stomach issues. Hopefully it won't happen, but if you do acquire some stomach issues, The Pharmacies ( and they're everywhere ) have stuff to help. There are also medical clinics along the way that are free to perigrinos. Good luck.
Buzz
 

kmrice

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Santiago - Fisterra 2008
St. Jean Pied de Port - Santiago 2013
My wife and I carry 2 liters each, most days. Very. occasionally, 1.5 liters each or 2.5 liters each. We usually drink every bit of it and refill when the opportunity presents. Dehydration can, and does, kill. We take it very seriously.

We've had times when expected opportunities to refill did not work out, such as last fall when all public water over more than 30 kilometers on the Le Puy was marked non potable due to some problem with the water plant. Last fall we saw pilgrims hospitaled in Larrasona for dehydration.

Our advice is to not take any chances. This is one area where lightening our packs does not take priority.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
"2011" Portuguese "2012/13/16"Frances X 2 + Finistere" 2015" Porto "2017"Primitivo "2019" Norte
Yup, on the Frances you'll be good. No need to panick. Just check your guidebook the night before and plan accordingly in case you need more than 1 liter or so.
No need to pay for water, and for the love of god, do not buy bottle water in plastic bottles.
Plastic bottles?? What is the problem. I have done many caminos using them and refilling without any problems. They get a good rainfall to maintain fountains etc in northern spain. Glass weighs more!
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
[
Plastic bottles?? What is the problem. I have done many caminos using them and refilling without any problems. They get a good rainfall to maintain fountains etc in northern spain. Glass weighs more!
As in don't buy one, drink it, buy another, drink it, etc. It blows my mind how much bottled water is consumed in Spain. Absolutely unnecessary.
 

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
I have walked St. Jean to Finisterre 3 times in July and August. I averaged about 16 oz. of water a day, but I don't need much. I filled my flask at the alburgues in the morning and , when needed, I bought bottled water in a mercado. It's very inexpensive. I would advise against using water from the fonts, especially in the final 2 weeks. Folks get sick, and the culprits seem to be water from the fonts and unwashed lettuce. Neither my wife nor my son would eat salads the last 2 weeks. Yogurt and yogurt drinks are a popular way to settle stomach issues. Hopefully it won't happen, but if you do acquire some stomach issues, The Pharmacies ( and they're everywhere ) have stuff to help. There are also medical clinics along the way that are free to perigrinos. Good luck.
Buzz

Wow! Great information! So the fountains are sometimes not the best source of water, especially near the end.
 
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Deleted member 67185

Guest
I was told agua no es gratis en Europa. Es verdad?

How are people carrying water and re-supplying?

How much water are people drinking each day?

Estoy en Florida. Today I walked with my backpack and nearly three liters of water and ran out. Got more though. Water really affects gear and carrying weight. Hence the question. Gracias!

I've been using the water bladder plus an extra bottle on the side for breaks and for refilling the water bag.

I will carry a two liter bladder with drinking tube while backpacking in terrain with water at varying distances. Given the ease and frequency of obtaining water on the Camino, I will take the two liter bladder, and fill it with either one or two liters depending on the day, the temperature and the expected ease at getting water refills. It seems to me thattThree liters is too much to carry on the Camino Frances.
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
....snip...

This is an excellent strategy. It is hard to refill a bladder mid-day without unpacking the pack completely, which is not always convenient.

Another part of your hydration strategy is to drink a liter in the morning before setting off, and one in the afternoon upon arrival.

It can be easy to refill a bladder if you modify your drinking tube to incorporate a quick disconnect with a refill.
https://www.rei.com/product/858765/...ehAjqamRVqufvUDayVljI5m5TcEupQ1t5IaAjiW8P8HAQ

There are different brands, but they all work the same way. When you need to refill the bladder, quick disconnect the drinking valve. Then after refilling a flexible water bottle or bag (I use flexible bags, like those from Sawyer) onto which you screw the cap which also has a quick disconnect. Then just gently squeeze the water from the refill bag into the bladder. It takes me all of about a minute to do the task. :)
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
Wow! Great information! So the fountains are sometimes not the best source of water, especially near the end.
Nah, that's not true.
Nothing wrong with the water from the fountains. I've walked over 120 days on the Camino and drank gallons and gallons of water from the fountains from one end of it to the other. I never got sick and didn't meet anyone that did.
I bought two 1/2 liter bottles of water in SJPdP and used those same two all the way to Santiago, refilling them along the Way. I don't recommend buying a bottle of water every time you get thirsty. No need to, and it's bad for the environment.
I also ate plate after plate of mixed salad. Never got sick off of it. Spain is far from a third world country. Besides, one would be missing out if one was always afraid to eat local food when traveling because of the dreaded "what if". Be like going to Bangkok and avoiding the street food vendors. Missing out on some good food.
ultreia
 
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D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
Nah, that's not true.
Nothing wrong with the water from the fountains. I've walked over 120 days on the Camino and drank gallons and gallons of water from the fountains from one end of it to the other. I never got sick and didn't meet anyone that did.
I bought two 1/2 liter bottles of water in SJPdP and used those same two all the way to Santiago, refilling them along the Way. I don't recommend buying a bottle of water every time you get thirsty. No need to, and it's bad for the environment.
I also ate plate after plate of mixed salad. Never got sick off of it. Spain is far from a third world country. Besides, one would be missing out of one was always afraid to eat local food when traveling because of the dreaded "what if". Be like going to Bangkok and avoiding the street food vendors. Missing out on some good food.
ultreia

Well stated :)
 
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CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
It can be easy to refill a bladder if you modify your drinking tube to incorporate a quick disconnect with a refill.
https://www.rei.com/product/858765/...ehAjqamRVqufvUDayVljI5m5TcEupQ1t5IaAjiW8P8HAQ

There are different brands, but they all work the same way. When you need to refill the bladder, quick disconnect the drinking valve. Then after refilling a flexible water bottle or bag (I use flexible bags, like those from Sawyer) onto which you screw the cap which also has a quick disconnect. Then just gently squeeze the water from the refill bag into the bladder. It takes me all of about a minute to do the task. :)

disconnect the bite valve?

i dont get it. is there a video that explains this?

it takes me forever to transfer water in the middle of a hike.
 

jo webber

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Sept 9th 2017
The first thing I did was get rid of the hydration bladder in my pack. Don't need the weight. In past trips to Europe (several countries) I get a heavier duty plastic water bottle (.5 liters) after passing security, carry it all over for 3 weeks refilling as I go. Toss it before I get to security for the trip home. I've drunk water from taps and fountains where ever I find them. For the Camino I will buy two and carry one empty most of the time as water availability seems very frequent.

If it's hot or a long day between, I'll fill both.
 
P

Pabloke

Guest
I have walked St. Jean to Finisterre 3 times in July and August. I averaged about 16 oz. of water a day, but I don't need much. I filled my flask at the alburgues in the morning and , when needed, I bought bottled water in a mercado. It's very inexpensive. I would advise against using water from the fonts, especially in the final 2 weeks. Folks get sick, and the culprits seem to be water from the fonts and unwashed lettuce. Neither my wife nor my son would eat salads the last 2 weeks. Yogurt and yogurt drinks are a popular way to settle stomach issues. Hopefully it won't happen, but if you do acquire some stomach issues, The Pharmacies ( and they're everywhere ) have stuff to help. There are also medical clinics along the way that are free to perigrinos. Good luck.
Buzz

I don't know a clinic free to pilgrims. And I find this very important. If you're from the EU or some associated countries, such as Norway, you should get an European Health Card. If you're from other countries you should get a private insurance.

If not, you'll have to pay.
 
P

Pabloke

Guest
I was told agua no es gratis en Europa. Es verdad?

How are people carrying water and re-supplying?

How much water are people drinking each day?

Estoy en Florida. Today I walked with my backpack and nearly three liters of water and ran out. Got more though. Water really affects gear and carrying weight. Hence the question. Gracias!

I've been using the water bladder plus an extra bottle on the side for breaks and for refilling the water bag.

Domestic water isn't free, that's why taking a coffee, a beer or something is a good idea before asking for refilling our bottle or bladder in a bar.

Public fountains are free indeed.

And the Spanish water is as safe as in France, Germany or the UK since it is the same regulation for the whole European Union.
 
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whariwharangi

Guest
I was told agua no es gratis en Europa. Es verdad?

How are people carrying water and re-supplying?

How much water are people drinking each day?

Estoy en Florida. Today I walked with my backpack and nearly three liters of water and ran out. Got more though. Water really affects gear and carrying weight. Hence the question. Gracias!

I've been using the water bladder plus an extra bottle on the side for breaks and for refilling the water bag.

Tap water is free and available at all albergues. Lots of bars will fill bottles with tap water too.

There are fountains at every village along the way. Just be careful that some are marked 'no potable' which means the water from that fountain is not safe to drink.

And, oh yeah, as a common courtesy ... don't wash yourself in the public drinking supply. No splashing water in your face, etc, any place its going to get back into the pool.

I found even in late fall I wanted at least 2 liters daily and probably should have had more. On a long hot day 3 or 4 and still not enough.

Don't ever drink the last mouthful of water. When you know you have no water you start dwelling on it and you get thirsty faster.
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
disconnect the bite valve?

i dont get it. is there a video that explains this?

it takes me forever to transfer water in the middle of a hike.

Here's a YouTube clip demonstrating installation and how it works.
https://www.google.com/search?sourceid=chrome-psyapi2&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8&q=install sawyer fast fill&oq=install sawyer fast fill&aqs=chrome..69i57.10063j0j7#kpvalbx=1

I also add a bit of tubing so that I never even remove my pack to do a refill. The clip shows the refilling process with a water filter, but you don't need to use it with a filter. Simply attach the same refill cap with the quick connect to a refill bag (or flexible water bottle) which you have filled with water, minus the filter. Then connect the refill bag or bottle to the quick disconnect in the same way you see in the video.

I don't even have to take my pack off to do this. And other than stopping to fill the refill bag or bottle, I can refill my bladder while walking.
 

Glenn Rowe

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
.
I would guess I go through 3-4 litres during a warm walking day in April/May (about 20-25 kms a day).

That's consistent with my own experiences here in the US, though there was one very hot/humid day in south Mississippi when I went through my entire supply (one gallon) in about 3 hours. I had to use my water-filter to resupply from a small running stream.
 

november_moon

Veteran Member
I always made sure to drink a good amount of water first thing in the morning to start well-hydrated. I carried two 0.5L water bottles - fill them up in the morning, top them off along the way at fountains if needed. My water bottles are the nalgene reusable ones and I am still using them :) I'd also stop for coffee, tea, hot chocolate, aquarius, etc. along the way to supplement my water intake. On hot days, downing a can of aquarius is very nice.
 

CaminoJoy123

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
Here's a YouTube clip demonstrating installation and how it works.
https://www.google.com/search?sourceid=chrome-psyapi2&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8&q=install sawyer fast fill&oq=install sawyer fast fill&aqs=chrome..69i57.10063j0j7#kpvalbx=1

I also add a bit of tubing so that I never even remove my pack to do a refill. The clip shows the refilling process with a water filter, but you don't need to use it with a filter. Simply attach the same refill cap with the quick connect to a refill bag (or flexible water bottle) which you have filled with water, minus the filter. Then connect the refill bag or bottle to the quick disconnect in the same way you see in the video.

I don't even have to take my pack off to do this. And other than stopping to fill the refill bag or bottle, I can refill my bladder while walking.

Thanks, I watched but was still confused! Maybe I will ask more questions about this later. Seems useful for conditions here in the South. Maybe less relevant for Camino.
 
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Deleted member 67185

Guest
Thanks, I watched but was still confused! Maybe I will ask more questions about this later. Seems useful for conditions here in the South. Maybe less relevant for Camino.

Not less relevant at all. However, folks have their own preferences on hydration containers. Sorry that the video seemed confusing. It is actually a far simpler system for me than using water bottles. :)
 

Paddington Bear

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May 2017
Thanks, I watched but was still confused! Maybe I will ask more questions about this later. Seems useful for conditions here in the South. Maybe less relevant for Camino.

You buy the refill system and use it to adapt your drinking tube. You need all the parts to do this.
Then you can refill the backpack hydration bag through the drinking tube without taking the hydration bag out of your backpack.
 

Thornley

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances x 2 , Norte x 2 , Le Puy x 3 , Portuguese x 2,
Mont St Michel , Primitivo .
Paralysis by Analysis
 

Thornley

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances x 2 , Norte x 2 , Le Puy x 3 , Portuguese x 2,
Mont St Michel , Primitivo .
Wow! Great information! So the fountains are sometimes not the best source of water, especially near the end.

Not many use the fountains.
Buy a coffee at a bar/cafe and fill your water.
You use their property give them a few dollars for the drink and refill at your leisure.

This walk is done by 70=80 year old people , we have accompanied same from Geneva , it does not require rocket scientists.
 
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Deleted member 67185

Guest
This is a fabulous and hugely useful thread. Without addressing specific comments, here is my hydration rationale:

I started using a 2-liter water bladder with my Osprey Kestrel 48-liter rucksack on my first Camino in 2013. But, when I discovered that the empty bladder weighed 11 ounces (@ 312 grams), the empty bladder was mailed ahead to Santiago, cleaned and sold to a good home. ....snip

A good post, thank you. 11 ounces for a water bladder is heavy. I don't know why a 2 liter Osprey brand bladder weighs that much, but my empty 3 liter Platypus brand bladder weighs just over 3 ounces. My 2 liter Platypus weighs just over 2 ounces. If folks are going to use ANY piece of equipment, it definitely pays dividends to compare weights prior to purchase. Thanks for the heads up :)

Ounces equal pounds, pounds equal pain. :)
 
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Rod Murray

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2016) Portuguese Coastal (Sept 2019)
Fountains are good, everywhere, even near the end, except if it says they are not. And ensalada mixta is a Camino stapple as a meal, one of the rare ways to get veggetables.
Eating lots of ensaladas on your way is a good hydration strategy! I carried a 1.5 L bladder and filled it each morning. If need be, I refilled it at a bar or albergue midday. I avoided the fountains. A water bladder means you can sip frequently, meaning you don't have to stop and pull out your water bottle when you feel thirsty, thereby staying hydrated as you go. Drinking from a bottle means that your hydration level fluctuates, that is if you wait until you feel thirsty, whereas with the bladder, such as a Camelback, you are constantly drinking as you go. TIP- do not stop at your half way point for the day and costume large amounts of beer, sangria, etc., especially on your first day on the Camino!
 

Penny Kingma

Never Stop Trying !
Year of past OR future Camino
2016
I never carried more than 500mls from St Jean to Santiago . I took sips along the way and drank more at rest spots. Never had a problem.... everyone's different.
Buen Camino
 

Thornley

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances x 2 , Norte x 2 , Le Puy x 3 , Portuguese x 2,
Mont St Michel , Primitivo .
TIP- do not stop at your half way point for the day and costume large amounts of beer, sangria, etc., especially on your first day on the Camino!

If you walk 6-8 hours per day and you start around 7am , yes it is too early to start on the sangria etc at your half way point.
However if you have walked many Camino paths then you'll find 5-6 hours is a lovely number for walking.....slowly.
Commence early , stop in a village /town after noon and before 1pm , shower then go and have a beautiful meal in the best restaurant with the locals.
Most pilgrims miss the Spanish as they don't eat till 9-10pm .
They are locked in their albergue , doors closed at 10.
TIP... When in the larger cities where they have special tapas areas book into a Pension or Hotel and take in the culture.
We took 3 days to leave San Sebastian on one particular Norte.....loved every minute.
 

Patch

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
St Jean to Santiago and Porto to Santiago
@Patch didn't say that he didn't drink any water. He said he didn't carry it except for two days. Water and other beverages are available every 5-10 km along the Camino Frances, except for a couple of stretches. He walks 5-10 km, has a good drink, and then walks another 5-10 km.

Yep that's spot on.
I have walked 2 Caminos in June and one in October. The weather in all three trips was about the same as a UK summer, maybe slightly hotter. I wouldn't walk in July and August in Spain as its just not fun as it can get to hot for me - tbh if its going to be a really hot day then I simply would not bother or even cut my distances down to a bare minimum. I retired some years ago now so time isn't an issue and from the UK to Spain is just a cheap short plane ride.
I also regularly run 5km here in the UK and never carry water and also do long day walks in the Lakes and Wales just carrying a small flask of Tea - there is water everywhere here.
On the Camino my pack weight is under 5 kg as that's a nice and comfortable and has everything I need for a month or so. I don't walk fast and keep my daily distances below 15 miles, never pre book accommodation so I have no pressure to get anywhere.
I put some purification tablets in my wallet as if I have to get a drink (which I never had to do on any of my Caminos) from streams and even some of the fountains I would now consider it to risky in any farmed areas.
I do keep an eye on my urine as that's a really good sign of dehydration. But I have done a lot of long distance walking and also know my body well as I do have health issues - kidney function not being one of them. If I carried the packs some of the pilgrims have and walked the distances some do then I would do it differently.
This is not advice as people are so different its difficult to do, its was just discussing what I do.
 
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Everyone has different needs.
I carry an 8 ounce bottle on the Camino Francis, and fill it at a fountain when I need more.
Most villages will have a fountain and the water is safe, imo, unless posted otherwise or unless it's raining so hard the streams are running brown.
 
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Lance Chambers

Lance Chambers
Year of past OR future Camino
Sarria (2015), SJPdP (2016), Burgos (2017), SJPdP (2018), Burgos (2019), SJPdP (2020?).
I carried 2 * 750 ml bottles and never ran out because there are fountains and other places to fill up if needed. Walked in August/Sept twice and back again this year same time but starting in Castrojeriz - lovely place.
 

wcsjms

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
(2016) ; 1st Camino Frances September 2016-November 2016 ; Camino Frances August 2017-October 2017
I'm with you but I drink 3 litres every day anyway just being a couch potato although admittedly it is 30 deg C in my house anyway. It's actually a good way to prevent injury.
(The drinking, not the couch ;) ) And I am one of those mad people that use silver hiking umbrellas.:D

Another point to consider is that if you are taking NSAIDs eg ibuprofen, voltaren etc. the risks of dehydration are greater and you run the risk of damaging your kidneys.

https://www-ncbi-nlm-nih-gov.www.ezpdhcs.nt.gov.au/pmc/articles/PMC2908954/table/T5/ (Popkin et al Nutr Rev. 2010 Aug; 68(8): 439–458. in case you can't open the link) has an estimate of fluid requirements based on energy intake required. I can tell you that to maintain my weight I had to more than double my caloric intake and was eating about 4000 kcal/day. By this table I would need 5.4 litres per day.

I carried 3 litres of water and many times it was not enough but thankfully there were places to refill. I will bring my Nuuns tablets for keep up electrolytes and maybe even a "Lifestraw" for an emergency since it weighs very little.
 

Thornley

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances x 2 , Norte x 2 , Le Puy x 3 , Portuguese x 2,
Mont St Michel , Primitivo .
many times it was not enough but thankfully there were places to refill.

Are you saying you consume 3 litres plus per day?
How much did your bag weigh as this alone is 3kg?
With villages and cafes every 5-10km and 15 km max , 4 hours max walking [ except for Meseta ] how was it not enough ?
Intrigued
 
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Patch

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
St Jean to Santiago and Porto to Santiago
Came upon a lovely mobile food stop halfway along the Meseta - one of the places I actually carried a can of coke (so that was a waste of time) - which sold food, tea and loads of cold drinks. As I remember their were lots of flowing streams along the way as well but they probably dry up in the peak summer months. I was intrigued by the Nuuns tablets that someone mentioned earlier so looked them up, must admit I have never had to use such a thing before I was wondering if anyone else had? I remember going on course about mountain walking and one of the guys had a sack full of gadgets including a "Lifestraw" after carrying it for the best part of a week he had to use it to take water from a dirty puddle - we just used to just dip our canteens in the mountain streams (was in the Welsh mountains) it did make me smile :)

I climbed (well shuffled really) Aconcagua a few years back now with a load of other Brits, one of them got the record for the highest ironing of his shirt (extreme ironing club :) ) I remember one of the other parties guides going through peoples bags at the base camping removing all the gadgets - he had a huge pile of hand warmers amongst other things.
 

kerdi

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino del Norte at the moment, Camino Frances, Camino Ingles in 2013 - 2014, Camino Lebaniego
Hi
I have a 1.5liter bottle on my backpack. I tend to drink a sip every 20 minutes (when warm) and refill whenever possible - if half empty. In bars, public building (washroom)... on fountains -unless it says "no drinking water" or similar. If the locals can drink it, so can I. This has worked well and I never had a "stomach bug" or dehydration problems. On Camino Frances, Ingles, Liebana and my ongoing Norte). -I am not using any purifier tablest or similar stuff
Enjoy your Camino
 

Herbito

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances
I was told agua no es gratis en Europa. Es verdad?

How are people carrying water and re-supplying?

How much water are people drinking each day?

Estoy en Florida. Today I walked with my backpack and nearly three liters of water and ran out. Got more though. Water really affects gear and carrying weight. Hence the question. Gracias!

I've been using the water bladder plus an extra bottle on the side for breaks and for refilling the water bag.
 

Herbito

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances
We did the Camino Frances in 2015 and just carried two empty plastic water bottles which we filled at each village/town. Most had fountains or taps in the square, or somewhere in the town along the route. Never had a time when we lacked any. Also, the water was very good and usually cool.
 
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Charles Zammit

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
St Jean Pied de Port - Finisterra 2017
GR70 France 2018
Via Francigena 2019
Urine colour is subjective but is still a good general indicator .
A slightly more accurate and personal indicator is the elasticity of the skin on the back of your hand , obviously when pulled up gently by a younger person the skin will almost invariably twang back quickly and correspondingly so much more slowly as age increases .
Whatever the variation between people the base line indicator of the resilience of your own skin is easy to determine . Simply pinch the skin upwards in the middle of the back of your hand and release , count slowly until it returns. My personal base line is two seconds when fully hydrated . Any increase in this time indicates one of two things , dehydration or sunburn , both of which can be remedied quickly if treated early enough .
 

Thornley

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances x 2 , Norte x 2 , Le Puy x 3 , Portuguese x 2,
Mont St Michel , Primitivo .
Urine colour is subjective but is still a good general indicator .
A slightly more accurate and personal indicator is the elasticity of the skin on the back of your hand , obviously when pulled up gently by a younger person the skin will almost invariably twang back quickly and correspondingly so much more slowly as age increases .
Whatever the variation between people the base line indicator of the resilience of your own skin is easy to determine . Simply pinch the skin upwards in the middle of the back of your hand and release , count slowly until it returns. My personal base line is two seconds when fully hydrated . Any increase in this time indicates one of two things , dehydration or sunburn , both of which can be remedied quickly if treated early enough .

Hi Charles,
You will not run out of water , we carry 2 / 500ml .
The stops, villages are too close
The sun still rises in the east;) and we are heading west , sunburnt could occur on head or neck.
I wear a neck scarf , have since France in 2010 which helps with the wind and sun.
We never walk past 1pm , thats normally 6 hours on the hoof for us oldies and we have never had a water or sunburnt problem.
My wife who was born in the UK 69yrs ago [ but an Oz resident since 1949 ] really protects her skin and she has never had problems over the past 10 camino's in either Spain or France and we had one in July/August .
The Oz rays are stronger she believes,
Have a great journey and keep safe
 
Last edited:

Lynda t

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPP to Santiago May 2010
Lisbon to Santiago May 2012
Yes water is heavy. In fact one litre weighs one kilogram ;)

Everyone's water consumption varies. But it's important to stay hydrated to avoid injury. Dehydration actually increases the risk of blisters I think... But it certainly leads to aches, sore tendons and cramps.

You will work out what is right for you. It's easy to carry more if you need to. Just buy a couple more bottles of water in the store and when they run out refill them from a tap somewhere. Instant extra capacity. Or maybe carry a couple of empty ones just in case. They weigh nothing and can be filled as required.

I used a water bladder, with an extra bottle in a side pouch. The only downside of the water bladder was:

#1. I couldn't see how much was left. And I ran out once. Not pleasant at all.... But a cafe 'caravan' appeared on the trail an hour later!

#2. I tended to carry too much water and hence weight.

Next time I'll just use store water bottles. The ones you buy bottled water in. And refill them as I go. If you have a guide book, the water fountains are marked on the maps. Just be aware,that sometimes they might be dry, so don't leave yourself short.

If I found a water fountain, I tended to drink what water I had, and then refill. Loading up water like a camel :)

On the infamous 17 km section with no water fountains or villages, (after Carrion) I carried about 2.5 litres. The weather was quite warm. About 25 C I think. I only used 1.5 It's really hard to tell sometimes........

Mostly I carried about 1.5 litres on me. I could probably manage carrying 1 litre most days, where I was sure I could refill. 500 ml? I would get dehydrated .... frequently.....

There are plenty of places to top up water free (on the Frances Route). So don't ration it........ Just look at the guidebook maps so you know how far the next font/village is and plan accordingly.
Don't drink all your water at a fountain until you are sure it can be replenished...
 

notion900

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
>
I carry a 2 litre platypus with a hose, and a spare 2 litre one with no hose (it's an old one that the hose broke and I replaced it with a push/pull cap.

It makes me cringe seeing people with thin water bottles from the village shop about to fall out of the side pockets of their backpacks - they are so flimsy - I have walked the hot part of the Via de la Plata where there is no water at all for 28 or 30 km in places and breaking a water bottle could be actually dangerous.

As for the amount, I would normally take 2 litres but on occasion have run out just before the end of the day, it's not a nice feeling. I would take 3 or 4 litres on an extremely hot day with a long stage and no water points. I agree with the 'big drink with breakfast' theory too.

My fantasy, which is unlikely ever to happen, is to freeze ice into sticks and put it in the bottle! Sometimes as I sip my tepid water, I imagine it's iced.
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
My fantasy, which is unlikely ever to happen, is to freeze ice into sticks and put it in the bottle! Sometimes as I sip my tepid water, I imagine it's iced.
While on holiday in Rome, I was lucky to stay with friends, and having access to a freezer. I would fill bottles with water almost to the top and let the water freeze overnight. During the day I would top up my giant ice cubes with water from the many fountains.
 
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Lance Chambers

Lance Chambers
Year of past OR future Camino
Sarria (2015), SJPdP (2016), Burgos (2017), SJPdP (2018), Burgos (2019), SJPdP (2020?).

In Australia, we have a product called 'Berrocca.' They are tablets that quickly dissolve in water and they supply a wide array of electrolytes that help a lot if you become too dehydrated. Have used them in the Frances - mostly while on the Meseta - and they have helped a lot.
 

wcsjms

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
(2016) ; 1st Camino Frances September 2016-November 2016 ; Camino Frances August 2017-October 2017
In Australia, we have a product called 'Berrocca.' They are tablets that quickly dissolve in water and they supply a wide array of electrolytes that help a lot if you become too dehydrated. Have used them in the Frances - mostly while on the Meseta - and they have helped a lot.

In the US we have the same thing called Nuuns .. we always use them.
 

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