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Leon to La Robla

2020 Camino Guides

Mgardener

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept/Oct 2017
Hi everyone,
My son and I will be starting our Camino the Salvador on Saturday the 22nd of September. It's very exciting and getting close..! Hope to do it in 5 days which seems doable. But we'll have traveled the two days prior so i hope we'll be rested enough to walk the first day. Hence my idea was to take it slow the first day and stop in Cabanillas but it seems like that will really slow everything else down a lot, unless you want to do it over 7 or 8 days, with having to stay in La Robla the next day. We continue on to the Primitivo after and we won't have unlimited time. We are pretty strong walkers at home but of course the unknown environment etc will affect how fast we can walk. We walked part of the Frances last year and have to admit i haven't practiced with my backpack since! So the weight might be a bit of a shock, but it was the same last year and i guess you just get on with it and push on. So i'm just wondering about what the general consensus is about the first day from Leon to La Robla. I'm conscious of the days getting shorter but don't want to start in the dark. How long would it take on average? Last year we walked late Sept/Oct also and would start around 7.30am and that was fine. We don't mind walking long days but still i would really appreciate your advice and thoughts on the Salvador and the first day particularly. Many thanks
 

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018)-Frances, Baztan, San Salvador, Primitivo, Fisterra,VdlP, Madrid
I walked it with kids as young as 8 but they were accustomed to walking. That was in June so long days. That said, we did not rush but dilly-dallied around. We must have arrived between 2 and 5pm because I recall needing to wait for the fiends to open so we could buy something.
You could always take the bus the first 8 or 9km our of Leon to shorten the distance.
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
you should be fine. Almost all the distance is pretty near to civilization, so if you do run out of daylight you can get a cab or cadge a ride with someone to La Robla. September days are still pretty long... right now it is 9.45 p.m., and the stars are still just coming out!
 

Mgardener

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept/Oct 2017
I walked it with kids as young as 8 but they were accustomed to walking. That was in June so long days. That said, we did not rush but dilly-dallied around. We must have arrived between 2 and 5pm because I recall needing to wait for the fiends to open so we could buy something.
You could always take the bus the first 8 or 9km our of Leon to shorten the distance.
Hi Rachael
I walked it with kids as young as 8 but they were accustomed to walking. That was in June so long days. That said, we did not rush but dilly-dallied around. We must have arrived between 2 and 5pm because I recall needing to wait for the fiends to open so we could buy something.
You could always take the bus the first 8 or 9km our of Leon to shorten the distance.
Hi Rachael, thanks for your reply. You must be leaving soon too?! By sounds of it we should be fine, even if it takes a bit longer. We walk long distances very regularly at home, just not so used to our camino backpack weight until we get there but feel fit enough. We see how the journey goes but we plan to walk all the way, so taking a bus is not an option! Unless of course something happens on the way but i think my son would not be very enthused ..
 

Mgardener

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept/Oct 2017
you should be fine. Almost all the distance is pretty near to civilization, so if you do run out of daylight you can get a cab or cadge a ride with someone to La Robla. September days are still pretty long... right now it is 9.45 p.m., and the stars are still just coming out!
Thanks Rebekah that's good to know. Are you on the camino right now?
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Hi, Mgardener,
I agree with those who encourage you to start out with La Robla as your goal. If you stay off the pavement and take the river trail for the first 8.5 km to Carbajal, your feet will be in much better shape. It is not marked, but it is impossible to go wrong since it goes along the river. Gronze has a schematic map: https://www.gronze.com/etapa/leon/robla

There are about 450 m of elevation gain that day, which is mainly between Carbajal and Cabanillas, so by the time you get to Cabanillas you will probably be able to gauge whether you can deal with another 9 pretty flat kms.

Hope the weather is glorious for you. I walked my first Salvador at the very end of September and it was great!
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
Hi everyone,
My son and I will be starting our Camino the Salvador on Saturday the 22nd of September. It's very exciting and getting close..! Hope to do it in 5 days which seems doable. But we'll have traveled the two days prior so i hope we'll be rested enough to walk the first day. Hence my idea was to take it slow the first day and stop in Cabanillas but it seems like that will really slow everything else down a lot, unless you want to do it over 7 or 8 days, with having to stay in La Robla the next day. We continue on to the Primitivo after and we won't have unlimited time. We are pretty strong walkers at home but of course the unknown environment etc will affect how fast we can walk. We walked part of the Frances last year and have to admit i haven't practiced with my backpack since! So the weight might be a bit of a shock, but it was the same last year and i guess you just get on with it and push on. So i'm just wondering about what the general consensus is about the first day from Leon to La Robla. I'm conscious of the days getting shorter but don't want to start in the dark. How long would it take on average? Last year we walked late Sept/Oct also and would start around 7.30am and that was fine. We don't mind walking long days but still i would really appreciate your advice and thoughts on the Salvador and the first day particularly. Many thanks
Hola!

If you want to do shorter first day and wish further stages to be approximately of the same length then 6 days would be ideal:
1.) Cabanillas, 18,3 (stock up in Carbajal or 2km further and over the river in Seca),
2.) Buiza, 23,9 (stock up in La Pola de Gordon),
3.) Pajares, 22,6,
4.) Benduenos, 17, 0 (shorter but you could enjoy Sandra's albergue, one of the best on many Caminos),
5.) Mieres, 24,4,
6.) Oviedo, 17,9 (shorter day gives you enough time for afternoon sight seeing if you want to start the Primitivo in the morning).

Buen Camino!
 

Pieces

Veteran Member
wow great Link Lauren, this is sxactly what i was looking for.

2 questions what is the difference between the atapa 3 & 3b please?

also, I want to do the 5 stages but stay at Benduenos is there any way to make day 1 & 2 longer in order to make day 3 (which is the hard one?) shorter? I really would prefer the short day on day 5 to have time in oviedo?
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
wow great Link Lauren, this is sxactly what i was looking for.

2 questions what is the difference between the atapa 3 & 3b please?

also, I want to do the 5 stages but stay at Benduenos is there any way to make day 1 & 2 longer in order to make day 3 (which is the hard one?) shorter? I really would prefer the short day on day 5 to have time in oviedo?
Hi, Pieces,

That's a bit tougher:
1.) La Robla, 27,3
2.) Poladura de la Tercia, 23,5 (call a day in advance for a supper in CR)
3.) Benduenos, 30,9 (or 2 km less if you arrange that Sandra pick you up in Herias by the lavadora/fuente. But it's the toughest stage both by length and elevation!)
4.) Mieres, 24,4
5.) Oviedo, 17,9.

Variante 3B is 2km uphil and downhill to the valley from Buiza to Villamanin (I took it in downpour) where you have many infrastructure but also heavy traffic. It's almost all road walking after Villasimpliz and especially after Villamanin. In good weather go over the mountains :)

Buen Camino!
 

Pieces

Veteran Member
Thank you Kinky

so no way to shorten stage 3 by lengthening stage 1 & 2?
 
Last edited:

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I personally would not want to take the national highway from Buiza to Villamanin in a downpour. It is a route travelled almost exclusively by trucks, and even though it was a Sunday when I got out there on the highway (by mistake, things were then very confusing in Buiza) and it was sunny it was god awful. I can’t even imagine it in a pouring rain, surely it is extremely dangerous.

Kinky has given you one option. Here’s another, which is silly because of the uneven stages but would keep it to 5 days and preserve the Bendueños night.
First day to Pola de Gordón where there is a pensión or two. That makes the first day very long, but I have found it very do-able if you start early from León and are in good form and the weather cooperates.
Second to Pajares
Third to Bendueños, which would be a very short 14 km day.
Then your original 4 and 5.

The one drawback with this stage other than the uneven kms is that you collapse all the mountain walking into one day. The best mountain walking is between Buiza and Pajares. So it’s nice if you go Buiza to Poladura and Poladura onward the next day. Of course you never know about the weather, but it’s good to know you can mix it up if things are either really glorious or really bad, to adjust stages in response with the weather.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Thank you Linky

so no way to shoren stage 3 by lengthening satge 1 & 2?
Have you looked at Ender´s guide? I think you can see all the options really clearly there, and he offers a pretty good exploration of all the possible combinations at the beginning.
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B61VvtkuNOwEMXpaM280YWtTTXM/view?pref=2&pli=1

You have places to stay after Buiza in Poladura, Pajares, Bendueños, Campomanes and Pola de lena before you get to Mieres. I think those are the only options.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
yes I tried to make to puzzle, but my brain will not make the pieces fit
It is hard to puzzle it because you don't know what to expect or is it because your moniker ;) That's why Laurie emphasizes the weather also.

I knew there would be a lot of traffic on the 3B variante but I was also a rock climber/mountaineer in my youth and I really don't want to get caught in the (unknown) mountain area in that kind of weather, although I have excellent sense of orientation. Once the fog sets in even I would be lost in matter of minutes. Just don't want to be up there in that kind of weather. And I had a lot of it that year ;)
The Italian couple that went over the hill that day were washing themselves and entire gear for almost 3 hours being all muddy. I don't remember how many slips they had but there was a count number :)

I don't like to shave off any distance on my Caminos and I also don't like to encourage people to do so but IF you decide that could help you with shortening the stages that would be on only two stages in my eyes:
1.) Pola de Lena - Mieres del Camino (13,5km)
or
2.) Leon - Carbajal del Camino (8,5km)
 

Pieces

Veteran Member
no i think you misunderstand, I want 1st & 2nd stage longer than 27 & 24 so 3rd stage become shorter than 30 but I still end up in Benduenos day 3 and complete in 5 days with the last dag being 19 km into oviedo...
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
no i think you misunderstand, I want 1st & 2nd stage longer than 27 & 24 so 3rd stage become shorter than 30 but I still end up in Benduenos day 3 and complete in 5 days with the last dag being 19 km into oviedo...
Then it would be:
1.) La Pola de Gordon, 36,6 (2 Pensions and 1 Hotel)
2.) Pajares, 28,2
3.) Benduenos, 17,0 (or 2 km less if you arrange that Sandra pick you up in Herias by the lavadora/fuente.)
4.) Mieres, 24,4
5.) Oviedo, 17,9.
 
Last edited:

Mgardener

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept/Oct 2017
Hi, Mgardener,
I agree with those who encourage you to start out with La Robla as your goal. If you stay off the pavement and take the river trail for the first 8.5 km to Carbajal, your feet will be in much better shape. It is not marked, but it is impossible to go wrong since it goes along the river. Gronze has a schematic map: https://www.gronze.com/etapa/leon/robla

There are about 450 m of elevation gain that day, which is mainly between Carbajal and Cabanillas, so by the time you get to Cabanillas you will probably be able to gauge whether you can deal with another 9 pretty flat kms.

Hope the weather is glorious for you. I walked my first Salvador at the very end of September and it was great!
Thanks so much for your advice and positive response. It seems to make a lot of sense to go to La Robla and i think we be fine on the first day, even if tired!
 

Mgardener

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept/Oct 2017
Hola!

If you want to do shorter first day and wish further stages to be approximately of the same length then 6 days would be ideal:
1.) Cabanillas, 18,3 (stock up in Carbajal or 2km further and over the river in Seca),
2.) Buiza, 23,9 (stock up in La Pola de Gordon),
3.) Pajares, 22,6,
4.) Benduenos, 17, 0 (shorter but you could enjoy Sandra's albergue, one of the best on many Caminos),
5.) Mieres, 24,4,
6.) Oviedo, 17,9 (shorter day gives you enough time for afternoon sight seeing if you want to start the Primitivo in the morning).

Buen Camino!
Thanks for your great suggestion. It's definitely something to consider. We are aiming for La Robla on the first day as we hope to walk the Salvador in 5 days but you never know, so it's helpful to have an alternative. I would really like to stay in Benduenos (like everyone else it seems!) but it seems quite tricky if your first stop is La Robla unless you walk 30km from Poladura and that seems like at lot considering the terrain. I probably prefer to stay in Pajares and then Pola de Lena instead, to divide the distance a bit within the 5 days and to enjoy the best bit, but yours is an option if we don't make it to La Robla the first day and we would be happy to stay in Benduenos. And thanks for showing the distances, it definitely sounds appealing and very doable. Nothing set in stone yet..
 
Last edited:

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018)-Frances, Baztan, San Salvador, Primitivo, Fisterra,VdlP, Madrid
We comfortably do 30+km days (and did Pola de Lena to Oviedo in one day which surprised the hospitalero considering we had an 8 year old!) but we were delighted to have short days through the mountains so we could linger and play in the rocks and catch tadpoles and just savour the landscape. Unless your goal is to go fast I would highly recommend enjoying those stages for as long as you can allow.
 

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