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May 2008

#1
Our group of 6 is planning to do the Camino leaving Iowa on May 1st. We are going to do the El Camino Frances. Have started training and buying gear. Walked our first long hike (12 miles) yesterday. We are in our 40s and 50s and want this to be a religious pilgrimage as we are all very devout Catholics. Would like suggestions with special interest in knowing the temperature range to prepare for, shoe/hiking boot suggestions and pack information. We have never done this before so we are excited and apprehensive. Want to be as well prepared as possible.
Ruth
Dubuque, Iowa, USA
 

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#2
rujobec said:
Our group of 6 is planning to do the Camino leaving Iowa on May 1st. We are going to do the El Camino Frances. Have started training and buying gear. Walked our first long hike (12 miles) yesterday. Would like suggestions with special interest in knowing the temperature range to prepare for, shoe/hiking boot suggestions and pack information.
Ruth
With regard to your equipment whilst you should be well prepared this does not mean you need to buy every new gadget or tool that the shops have. Well fitting boots/shoes and a well fitted back-pack are the two most important things.

With regard to shoes/boots if you have searched past posts you will see that there is no boot that is right for everyone. I find a very light-weight hiking boot suits me but other prefer different things and one manufacturers last may suit your foot but not your friends. Go to a good local outdoor supplies shop with a good selection of boots and try as many on as you can. Fit is very important. Buy three pairs of the same socks you will be using before or at the same time so that you have a consistent base.

The same shop should have a good selection of back-packs and what you are looking for is a reasonably small one with good hip belt support. Tell the shop you are going to be wearing it for a straight month and that you do not need to carry any tents or cooking equipment etc. Again look at old post here for the type of thing that other people use. What you really need to do is cut down on what you are to take so the pack is as small as possible. I use a larger pack but carry stuff for my wife so hers is smaller, perhaps you can organise the same?

The temperature in May can be very varied. It can still snow in the mountains (if so keep to the roads) and the meseta can be pretty hot. Spring and Autumn are the periods with the greatest variation in temperature but try and cover this by layering rather than taking one big thick heavy item of clothing. A waterproof shell with a fleece over a base layer (or layers) should cover nearly everything and with any luck you will only be wearing the base layer most of the time.

Buen Camino
William
 

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