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Live - Camino Francés My Trip along the Camino Frances

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tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
I intend to keep a blog of what I’m doing, seeing, experiencing and so on.

I have only posted Day 1 of my trip, First night in Bordeaux


I am posting photos on Instagram for those interested


I’ve written days 2, 4 (SJPdP to Roncleaves) and 5 (Roncleaves to Zubiri, but haven’t posted them yet.
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 5 - Unexpectedly easy

Woke again around 4:30 and failed to get back to sleep. First people getting ready around 5:40. By 6 the lights came on and the monastery started quietly playing music … ergh.

Nearly cramped up during the night but thankfully it quickly passed. Still not sure what I will do today, play it by ear/foot I guess.

Shockingly (to me) my heart was still pounding overnight. Normally when asleep my heart-rate is about 58-65. Today it was still 92-97 from midnight to 2am, then the lowest it dropped to was 79.

Not sure if breakfast is a good idea, i could be out and leaving now. Breakfast doesn’t start for another 40 minutes.



Shockingly (to me, and probably to the man who told me not to walk), I made it to Zubiri fine. A little over 5 hours of walking, that took 7h30 (long lunch, a stop to put 2 blister plasters on, and then a drink break 3km outside Zubiri)

I panicked a little in Zubiri as the main Alberque is shut, so went to the further one from the Center (Suseia), thinking it would be the last one people tried. Turns out to have been a good idea and it’s a lovely place. Host there is really friendly & helpful

I deeply regret not doing the communal meal. It was salad and vegetable soup, then sausage … the first two put me off, but I hear the food was delicious and the crac was good (good conversation, jovial).

I ended up in town with a disappointing meal. Some sort of fatty pork that which I thought from the picture was Chicken. I should have gone with my initial instinct of a cheese & ham toastie, or chicken paella. The Spanish sausage side & sangria were nice though.

Had a lovely conversation with a French lady who came in for food, and as my table had the only free space (was a table for 2) so she got stuck with me. Talked about languages, spirituality instead of religion, food and a bunch of other things. Was a lovely end to the day.

Although another fleeting interaction. Something I find a little hard, opening up, talking to someone & getting on with them and then boom, likely not seeing them again.

6am start tomorrow, roomies want to be awake then with aim to leave at 7. I might try and leave at 6:30 to get out ahead of the sun. Although I need to post this too (writing on iPhone but method for posting is on the iPad right now - doh!)
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 6 - bad day

Zubiri to Pampalona

What a day. Started off by sleeping badly. I woke at 1:20 and feel that I was still awake till st least 3:53, then I finally dozed off and woke at 6am as the alarm of one of the people in the room went off.

As I started to get ready, I realised I’d left my hat at the restaurant the night before. Which put a further damper on my mood. Thankfully it was still st the place, and it opened at 6am, so when I trundled past at 7am I was able to grab it.

The walk today was pretty good, not too much going up and down although definitely not flat.

So very surprised to not have obvious places to eat along the right. I basically walked the whole way without a stop for a drink of food.

Finding it hard to walk now with my right food. I’d like to see what’s happening to the blister under the comped but I know I can’t just take it off.

Also found a (probable) wart beside the comped. Right skinned spot with a little black strand. Don’t know where it’s come from, or why. It’s my first ever, Although my son has had them a few times.

So right now I’m thinking strongly of staying another night in Pampalona. Although as I’m in the “Jesús y Maria” I will have to leave at 8:30 with my stuff and come back at 12. Maybe move to somewhere else that opens sooner. Will see.

Getting more used to the pack, although I def need to ditch some things. Right now I’m thinking Rain MAC, light fleece, iPad & solar battery pack. All told that would take 2kg off my back.

Had a couple of conversations on route, was walking with a bloke from Ireland for a while (he had also stayed at Suseia in Zubiri), and had a brief chat with a lass from Ballynahinch in Northern Ireland, which isn’t far from my home town.

Despite they though I am feeling quite lonely today. The slow hobbling through Pampalona as I tried to soak up the atmosphere didn’t help, and I’m tired and hungry and yet not. The place is large as well, with high buildings which makes you feel very small.

Going to go to Miel Otxin for the pilgrims menu soon, in the hopes of … I don’t really know.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) Portugues(2013) San Salvador (2017) Ingles (2019)
Hope you can get the scent of lavender as you walk through Obanos...
that, and mint, are nice to have a few sprigs of in your hat or the strap of your rucksack, so you can sniff at them from time to time. sorry for your troubles thus far. Take it easy. Try to get that compeed removed, without doing yourself harm.
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Hope you can get the scent of lavender as you walk through Obanos...
that, and mint, are nice to have a few sprigs of in your hat or the strap of your rucksack, so you can sniff at them from time to time. sorry for your troubles thus far. Take it easy. Try to get that compeed removed, without doing yourself harm.
Thanks for the suggestions, I managed to miss both the lavender and the mint.

I did get the compeed off, and removed done of the skin which has helped. Just done Pampalona to Puente la Reina
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 7 - Taking a break

Well sort of. I’ve still ended up doing about 10-11km of walking 😂

So yes, woke up this morning a while before 6 but just stayed in bed. Foot felt better than the night before but wasn’t convinced enough to walk on it “long” distance.

Got up slowly, chatted with a lass from America called Amabelle who was studying in the UK and taking some time out to walk part of the Camino.

Left at 8:30 and pootled around the city, walking along the wall & such & had a very nice chocolate croissant and a only okay Cola Coa; disappointed it came looking nothing like the picture. Amusing the place also sold a Lemon Pie (written in English).

At 12 I checked in again to the “Jesús Y Maria” as it was comfortable enough.

After getting the compeed off the blister, I cleaned up the skin a bit and removed compressed bits which were causing pain when stood on.

I then proceeded to take everything out of my pack and sort into keep & go piles, and then went to post it which lead me into areas I wouldn’t have otherwise seen (like the Underground busstation … I was looking for a UPS store, turns out it was only an access point).

Decided it was too expensive to ship via the post office back to Germany (55€ for a small box), so went and found a “Mailboxes etc” another 25 minutes away.

I’m now 30€ poorer, but 1.75kg lighter!

Admittedly I could have been another 800g lighter if I had posted my iPad but I didn’t feel comfortable putting it into the box in front of the guy.

So for now I continue to carry it, and if I find that I still need lighter then I will post it and the fleece (300g) back to Germany, or ahead to Santiago (that would have been much cheaper, although after 15 days you pay €1 holding fee) … although I believe Ivar the forum owner of https://www.caminodesantiago.me does a parcel holding service that’s cheaper. Need to look it up again.

I know I can shave another 90g off by getting rid of 1 of the water bottles.

Anyway after that I just did some sight seeing.

And then wasted an hour trying some sandles on. *sigh* why can I not find anything I’m really happy with on my feet.

My current trail runners get too hot, esp compared to my old Asics Badminton shoes.

*face palm* I just remembered there was an Intersport i walked past and meant to go in.

‪After all the great things I keep hearing about REI’s selection, helpful staff and satisfaction policy; I wish they had had a store in Hamburg, Germany that I could have visited before starting the Camino de Santiago.‬
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 8 - It’s my birthday & I’ll cry if I want to

What a truly odd day. Today I turned 43, but it’s the least birthday like day I’ve ever had, and that’s counting last year when I turned 42.

*laugh* we’re what 13 hours into the day and my son still hasn’t wished me happy birthday … my daughter managed it at 7am. … oh oh son just phoned for the second time today and remembered this time :)

Anyway, the day started early, way earlier than I would have liked … 3:40am. A couple of people getting up and prepping to leave. Thankfully most of the rest didn’t till 5:30ish.

I started getting up around 6am, and was out the door at 6:40 using some new toe socks I had bought the night before (Injinji Performance 2.0 Runner) which amazingly actually fit my toes … unlike some Knitido ones I had ordered from Amazon (and promptly returned).

I was surprised that the walk went as well as it did considering the blister. I was in Puente la Reine in 5h26 (6h20 real time). A few stops here and there to take photos, get my pass stamped in a church and offer a prayer.

When carrying the water separately from the backpack I can really tell that it’s lighter. Took much much longer before it became irritating. I’ll take that! And I know I can remove another 1.2kg (~2.6lb)

Met a lovely American family towards the end; Benny, Erika, and Karen who all apparently live in Florida. They too where find it hard going the last couple of KM. Especially as there was this junk where we went down hill and then had to go back up hill.

They where shocked when i said I had left at 6:40 from Pampalona when they had left at 5:30 from the next town on (about 5km away) … but given they stopped for food and I didn’t it kind of balances out.

Shocked at how cheap the Alberque was today. 5€! Admittedly I’m in a cramped room with 6 bunk beds (all men), so I imagine it will be hell tomorrow morning.

Not a single person here knows it’s my birthday, the room I’m in (tiny, 12 bunk beds).

Random tidbit, the last of the 100 beds were filled at 15:35. I happened to be in hallway to hear that. Was off into town to explore.

17:40 the first rain I’ve seen so far. After I sent the rainmac away (have the poncho, seems overkill to go for food)

Had panic I lost my expensive headphones. Thankfully in bag.

Only person in this bar/restaurant having the pilgrims menu. Which is surprising. I know the Albergue I’m in doesn’t do food, just has a kitchen. So it leaves me wondering where everyone else is. (I arrived at 6:30, food started at 7pm)

Had a lot of wine to myself. 2 glasses of house white (1€ each) and then about 350-400ml of red with the menu.

Tomorrow, in theory, is a walk to Estella BUT It’s supposed to rain tomorrow morning. So tomorrow i get to use my poncho but my shoes aren’t waterproof (by choice). Should be interesting. Esp as a stretch is supposed to be slippery when wet (yes yes, my second song lyric/title of this post)

Slightly surprised to find that room already has the door closed. A couple of people are already asleep. None of the 6 Asians who relaxed earlier are here.

Desperately want to put phone on charge, but too paranoid to do so. Only putting battery pack on charge. Phone, iPad and wallet continue to be in my sleeping bag liner with me.

A little sad, but that’s my own fault. my life could have been so different had I the where with all, drive and sense to run with it a few years ago. *smile* rather than a wannabe, I coulda been a contender. (Song & Film references)
 

nycwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF: (2001, 2002, 2004, 2014). Hospitalera: 2002, Ponferrada. 2004, Rabanal del Camino.
Day 8 - It’s my birthday & I’ll cry if I want to

What a truly odd day. Today I turned 43, but it’s the least birthday like day I’ve ever had, and that’s counting last year when I turned 42.

*laugh* we’re what 13 hours into the day and my son still hasn’t wished me happy birthday … my daughter managed it at 7am. … oh oh son just phoned for the second time today and remembered this time :)

Anyway, the day started early, way earlier than I would have liked … 3:40am. A couple of people getting up and prepping to leave. Thankfully most of the rest didn’t till 5:30ish.

I started getting up around 6am, and was out the door at 6:40 using some new toe socks I had bought the night before (Injinji Performance 2.0 Runner) which amazingly actually fit my toes … unlike some Knitido ones I had ordered from Amazon (and promptly returned).

I was surprised that the walk went as well as it did considering the blister. I was in Puente la Reine in 5h26 (6h20 real time). A few stops here and there to take photos, get my pass stamped in a church and offer a prayer.

When carrying the water separately from the backpack I can really tell that it’s lighter. Took much much longer before it became irritating. I’ll take that! And I know I can remove another 1.2kg (~2.6lb)

Met a lovely American family towards the end; Benny, Erika, and Karen who all apparently live in Florida. They too where find it hard going the last couple of KM. Especially as there was this junk where we went down hill and then had to go back up hill.

They where shocked when i said I had left at 6:40 from Pampalona when they had left at 5:30 from the next town on (about 5km away) … but given they stopped for food and I didn’t it kind of balances out.

Shocked at how cheap the Alberque was today. 5€! Admittedly I’m in a cramped room with 6 bunk beds (all men), so I imagine it will be hell tomorrow morning.

Not a single person here knows it’s my birthday, the room I’m in (tiny, 12 bunk beds).

Random tidbit, the last of the 100 beds were filled at 15:35. I happened to be in hallway to hear that. Was off into town to explore.

17:40 the first rain I’ve seen so far. After I sent the rainmac away (have the poncho, seems overkill to go for food)

Had panic I lost my expensive headphones. Thankfully in bag.

Only person in this bar/restaurant having the pilgrims menu. Which is surprising. I know the Albergue I’m in doesn’t do food, just has a kitchen. So it leaves me wondering where everyone else is. (I arrived at 6:30, food started at 7pm)

Had a lot of wine to myself. 2 glasses of house white (1€ each) and then about 350-400ml of red with the menu.

Tomorrow, in theory, is a walk to Estella BUT It’s supposed to rain tomorrow morning. So tomorrow i get to use my poncho but my shoes aren’t waterproof (by choice). Should be interesting. Esp as a stretch is supposed to be slippery when wet (yes yes, my second song lyric/title of this post)

Slightly surprised to find that room already has the door closed. A couple of people are already asleep. None of the 6 Asians who relaxed earlier are here.

Desperately want to put phone on charge, but too paranoid to do so. Only putting battery pack on charge. Phone, iPad and wallet continue to be in my sleeping bag liner with me.

A little sad, but that’s my own fault. my life could have been so different had I the where with all, drive and sense to run with it a few years ago. *smile* rather than a wannabe, I coulda been a contender. (Song & Film references)
Happy birthday.🎊🎂🎉🎈

Buen camino.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) Portugues(2013) San Salvador (2017) Ingles (2019)
Day 8 - It’s my birthday & I’ll cry if I want to

What a truly odd day. Today I turned 43, but it’s the least birthday like day I’ve ever had, and that’s counting last year when I turned 42.

*laugh* we’re what 13 hours into the day and my son still hasn’t wished me happy birthday … my daughter managed it at 7am. … oh oh son just phoned for the second time today and remembered this time :)

Anyway, the day started early, way earlier than I would have liked … 3:40am. A couple of people getting up and prepping to leave. Thankfully most of the rest didn’t till 5:30ish.

I started getting up around 6am, and was out the door at 6:40 using some new toe socks I had bought the night before (Injinji Performance 2.0 Runner) which amazingly actually fit my toes … unlike some Knitido ones I had ordered from Amazon (and promptly returned).

I was surprised that the walk went as well as it did considering the blister. I was in Puente la Reine in 5h26 (6h20 real time). A few stops here and there to take photos, get my pass stamped in a church and offer a prayer.

When carrying the water separately from the backpack I can really tell that it’s lighter. Took much much longer before it became irritating. I’ll take that! And I know I can remove another 1.2kg (~2.6lb)

Met a lovely American family towards the end; Benny, Erika, and Karen who all apparently live in Florida. They too where find it hard going the last couple of KM. Especially as there was this junk where we went down hill and then had to go back up hill.

They where shocked when i said I had left at 6:40 from Pampalona when they had left at 5:30 from the next town on (about 5km away) … but given they stopped for food and I didn’t it kind of balances out.

Shocked at how cheap the Alberque was today. 5€! Admittedly I’m in a cramped room with 6 bunk beds (all men), so I imagine it will be hell tomorrow morning.

Not a single person here knows it’s my birthday, the room I’m in (tiny, 12 bunk beds).

Random tidbit, the last of the 100 beds were filled at 15:35. I happened to be in hallway to hear that. Was off into town to explore.

17:40 the first rain I’ve seen so far. After I sent the rainmac away (have the poncho, seems overkill to go for food)

Had panic I lost my expensive headphones. Thankfully in bag.

Only person in this bar/restaurant having the pilgrims menu. Which is surprising. I know the Albergue I’m in doesn’t do food, just has a kitchen. So it leaves me wondering where everyone else is. (I arrived at 6:30, food started at 7pm)

Had a lot of wine to myself. 2 glasses of house white (1€ each) and then about 350-400ml of red with the menu.

Tomorrow, in theory, is a walk to Estella BUT It’s supposed to rain tomorrow morning. So tomorrow i get to use my poncho but my shoes aren’t waterproof (by choice). Should be interesting. Esp as a stretch is supposed to be slippery when wet (yes yes, my second song lyric/title of this post)

Slightly surprised to find that room already has the door closed. A couple of people are already asleep. None of the 6 Asians who relaxed earlier are here.

Desperately want to put phone on charge, but too paranoid to do so. Only putting battery pack on charge. Phone, iPad and wallet continue to be in my sleeping bag liner with me.

A little sad, but that’s my own fault. my life could have been so different had I the where with all, drive and sense to run with it a few years ago. *smile* rather than a wannabe, I coulda been a contender. (Song & Film references)
Happy Birthday! Just imagine the chorus because although many will wish you that, not everyone will reply: but be sure best wishes reach out to you. You are just a wee guy, only 42!
 

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Bala

Veteran member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: SJPdP-Burgos, (2015); Burgos-Sarria (2018); Sarria-Santiago (2018).
Frances (2020)
Happy birthday, young man!! 🎉🎊🎈🎈🎊🎉 The Camino has many gifts in store for you, and I have a feeling this may well turn out to be your best year yet! 😊 Keep slogging through the tough stuff, rejoice in the good stuff, and Buen Camino!
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Happy Birthday! Just imagine the chorus because although many will wish you that, not everyone will reply: but be sure best wishes reach out to you. You are just a wee guy, only 42!
Thank you Kirkie!

43 now ;) but I tend to look like I’m in my 60’s. Kids in the neighbouring kindergarten ask if I’m my kids grandfather … 🙄

Happy birthday.🎊🎂🎉🎈

Buen camino.
Thank you nycwalking :)

Happy birthday, young man!! 🎉🎊🎈🎈🎊🎉 The Camino has many gifts in store for you, and I have a feeling this may well turn out to be your best year yet! 😊 Keep slogging through the tough stuff, rejoice in the good stuff, and Buen Camino!
Cheers Bala. Young? Nah. Grey as can be.

Thank you for the positive message.
 

Dancing Rain

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015)
Camino Salvado (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Buen camino! Enjoying hearing about your journey and visualising where you are. Can take at least ten day to “settle in”
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 9 - TWTFSSMTW

Day 9 of the trip, day 6 of the Camino.

Really tired today. Spent a lot of the night awake due to some amazing snoring from 2 men.

Got cold because bloke beside me had the window open, and then the rain kicked in loudly at 5am.

Headed out just after 7 into the rain, and for the next 2½ hours it continued to rain. Poncho held up well, although it was condensing more than I’d like. However my shoes were soaking … which wasn’t a surprise.

Can’t remember where i changed my socks, but it was after I hit a village & found a bench … about 3-3.5 hours into the walk.



Wow, only a day later and trying to resume and my mind is a blank.



The remainder of the walk was a mixture of rain & dry. Honestly it was a pretty good temperature to walk in, it was just the soggy feet and occasional Cold hand that made it unpleasant (cold hand from hand using walking stick in the wet & wind)

Had a couple of short conversations along the way, but rain didn’t really encourage it.

Hoping the young American man I saw leave this morning with no coat, just a rain cover on his bag is okay. Brave dude, and stupid.

Checked into the municipal albergue, which was a bargain at €6. Felt really nice inside, nice kitchen communal area & garden. Room had probably 8 bunk beds in it, but it felt spacious enough and the room had a nice touch with lockable (free) boxes to charges devices with a hole in the side to let the charging cables in.

Estella itself was lovely, ended up walking an extra 10km wandering all around. I like the park and how many kids seemed to be in it playing & scootering/skateboarding. I loved that between 7 & 8 there were a ton of kids just kicking a ball around playing football in the main square.

While wondering around a found a couple of places doing Pilgrim Plates, rather than Pilgrim menus. Also found a Chinese restaurant that i wanted to go eat at, but sadly they were shut for a rest day 😢

Ended up having a pilgrims menu in “The Diner”. Really wouldn’t recommend it. Paella was nice enough although only a couple of pieces of meat. The main was chicken & chips … which was kinda awful. Over cooked chips, and chicken cut ultra thin. Should have gone with my instinct and gotten half a chicken from the Dai/Dia supermarket.

All in all a good day despite the rain.
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Buen camino! Enjoying hearing about your journey and visualising where you are. Can take at least ten day to “settle in”
Cheers Dancing Rain :) only another 3 or so days to settle in then (just finishing day 10 of trip, day 7 of walk)
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
How thin can you cut the chicken :) Apparently VERY thin.

B2A3B8E2-5317-47C5-AE23-99AE3F355CF3.jpeg
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 10 - A fountain of wine

Day 10 of the trip, day 7 of the walk.

Today was Estella to Los Arcos

Slept better than last few nights, although still woke a few times from movement or snoring and insomnia. Gave up trying around 5:40 as a lot of people started to get ready.

I wasn’t planning to be out early today as I wanted to see the Wine fountain I’ve heard so much about. (Indeed it was the goal of the family with the 4yo & 1yo to get there with there special plastic wine glasses)

It was only a few KM away, and was only supposed to be open from 8am till 8pm, but thankfully it was open with a small crowd when I arrived about 7:30.

It’s lovely, and amazing that they give away up to 100l of wine a day. Also nice touch that there is a water fountain too.

Was pleased to bump into Erika & her family there. We walked & talked for a bit, and then she introduced me to a Northern Irish lass who had only just started the Camino. (Apparently she had had the flu which knocked her flat for a couple of weeks, so she rebooked and just started from Estella today.)

We talked for a few KM about all sorts, including schools & teaching (she’s a teacher), then I went on ahead.

Bumped into the American dude from yesterday that was out in the rain without a coat. Thankfully he’s okay, apparently another Camino Walker (Pepe) saw him after an hour odd walking in the rain and gave him his spare raincoat.

Also briefly bumped into the Japanese couple again today. The lady apologised from mentioning rain gear 2 days ago, as if it somehow brought on the rain :)

Found the walk really tough on my feet today, especially the last 5km. I was basically hobbling that last stretch.

I truly need to replace those shoes, and then leave them along the route in the same way I’ve seen others do. (One pair of shoes laced together hung over a distance sign, a single shoe was left on one of the Camino pillars with a rock in it, a sprig of a plant and a couple of other things)

Not sure I can do the full 27km to Logroño tomorrow. Might break it up, although I kinda hate that means not bumping into the few faces I’m getting to know.

I know I can do short stint tomorrow, but I’d rather be able to do 2 days in Logroño and have them be Fri & Sat, rather than Sat & Sun.

Anyway, stayed at CASA DE LA ABUELA, 12€ rather than the 9€ in what I’d read. Not a bad place, but didn’t live up to the hype either. Top bed of the bunks are too open for my tastes, ladders are hard to climb. Best bit about the place was that the washing only cost 50c

Wandered around the town for a while, out to the outskirts on the various sides. (So sue me, i like exploring)

Had an early Pilgrims Menu at Bar-Restaurant Buen Camino. Was pretty decent for the 12€, certainly much nicer than the night before! Plus came with way more wine. (And I had a sangria to finish)

After a 90+ minutes, i bumped into the N.I lass again, and chatted about how we’d found the rest of the walk and about lightening our bags.

The Catholic Church is absolutely stunning inside. You wouldn’t imagine something so ornate & beautiful for a town of 1200.

Had a little wander out to where we entered Los Arcos and sat for a bit, it was lovely out there listening to the birds (and the chickens & goats in the pen nearby).

Bumped into a slightly tipsy Erika who had had a couple of beers (4) :)

Anyway, time to sleep. I know I missed a couple of things, but I’ve probably put anyone reading this to sleep now.

Buen Camino!
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 11 - Frustrated

Day 8 of the Camino - Los Arcos to Logroño

Another early start and a mixed nights sleep. Didn’t fall out of the top bunk which was great, and was thankful for the blanket because the room was cold.

First people (I noticed) where up and out at 5:40 today, I caved and started getting ready around 6. Left somewhere around 6:45 by the time I got water and shoes on and so on.

Got 100m down the road and started questioning if I had everything so had to quickly check my pack. Becoming hyper paranoid about it.

Day was cool/cold, although I was largely fine in the trousers and shirt I’ve been wearing till now. The wind was bloody strong and near constant. There was barely any respite from it the whole journey.

Walked most of today alone, listening to the Critical Role podcast. That lovable group kept my spirts up and gave me energy to walk despite my feet being unhappy in the shoes.

Didn’t really stop anywhere, was too focused on trying to get to Logroño before the beds might be gone, so I missed out on places I might otherwise have stopped at.

Bumped into the N. Irish lass a couple of times, once early on and then coming down into Viana. We walked for a bit together, but I left her to have a drink & cake while I tried to amble on … fearful that if I stopped for too long I wouldn’t get going again.

I was already having a hard time walking and should have stopped the night in Viana … I realised this about 2.5km out, but stubbornly carried on to Logroño stopping ever so often to flex my left foot.

A few km later, my tendons? Above the back on my ankle got really sore and that started causing me to pause too.

A Belgium couple saw this and offered some gel to help ease the pain and basically walked with me the last 6.5km. They where lovely, and ending the Camino this year in Logroño, aiming to pickup from there next year. The man insisted on finding a stick for me so I could have a second effective pole :)

Got to the municipal Albergue and must have looked pretty bad as one of the staff carried my bag up the stairs for me. Wouldn’t let me do it, and made sure I had a bottom bunk (went downstairs and changed the bag of bedding for bag with the bottom number. I am still incredibly grateful.

Rested for a bit, and about 45-60 minutes after I arrived, the N. Irish lass arrived and got the bunk above mine which I thought was hilarious.

The other nearby bunk was filled by a woman cycling the Camino from Aus, and turns out she’s a member of the forum. Failed to find her username to tag her. (Boo me)

About 4 I walked over to where Planeta Aqua was, because google said it would open at 4:30. Waited & waited and it finally opened at 5. Quickly looked at stock and left.

Aimed to go to intersport but came across a sports shop in the Center. Tried on a few pairs on trainers and a pair of North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GTX (grr) … and despite how my feet felt, they seemed pretty good. I walked around in them a while, tried them with one and two pairs of socks on and then sat and read some reviews of them before finally purchasing them.

Should I have carried on to Intersport to look? Possibly. Probably.

It was already 6:30pm so want a lot of scope to debate, and no way I could face the 45 minute walk out to Decathlon and back again.

I don’t know anymore, and quite honestly I’ve been on the verge of crying throughout the day, a tear did roll down my face as I walked back to the Albergue after dinner.

I’m conscious of the money wasted on shoes. I’m incredibly frustrated because I had easily done the distances in my old Badminton trainers without issue. My feet didn’t hurt in them in the way to have with the shoes I got .
I’m frustrated that I’ve been unable to find something I really liked and felt comfortable in (before I left). I really don’t know how many pairs I tried on but it was a lot. Different sizes, makes, cuts and not a one of them was “that’s it” (except the Merrell Vapor Glove, i’d like to get a pair when I’m done, but they didn’t strike me as useable for the Camino … maybe they are?)

When I arrived back at the Albergue I sat and talked & listened to some ladies (aforementioned forum member … kayabout?) and a kiwi lady (never got her name, might tomorrow if I only go to Navarrete). They even played Dr (physcaitry) with me at one point 😂

Dinner was The Good Burger which was pretty decent. As i was feeling fed up I figured I’d eat “badly”. Would have been fantastic had it all been hot. Instead chips & burger where tepid, but side order of epic chicken was piping hot. I think one bit was ready way ahead of the rest.

Anyway, G’night.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
I truly need to replace those shoes, and then leave them along the route in the same way I’ve seen others do. (One pair of shoes laced together hung over a distance sign, a single shoe was left on one of the Camino pillars with a rock in it, a sprig of a plant and a couple of other things)
Please don't leave your shoes along the trail to add to the other detritus. There is a good chance that another forum member walking the route behind you, or even the ditch pigs who do this annually, will have to pick them up to dispose of them. There is more than enough to pick up without another pair of shoes.
 

Bala

Veteran member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: SJPdP-Burgos, (2015); Burgos-Sarria (2018); Sarria-Santiago (2018).
Frances (2020)
Please don't leave your shoes along the trail to add to the other detritus. There is a good chance that another forum member walking the route behind you, or even the ditch pigs who do this annually, will have to pick them up to dispose of them. There is more than enough to pick up without another pair of shoes.
Yes, leave them in the donation box at the albergue! It's far more likely someone will see them there and be able to use them. If left on the side of the trail they become nothing but trash. 🙁

As for your walk, hang in there!! It sounds like it's been tough going. Maybe consider booking a bed for tomorrow so you don't feel the pressure of arriving early. And don't be afraid to stop for a day, or walk a few very short days, until you get your feet straightened out. May tomorrow be a better one. I wish you all the best!
 

Nana6

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
France ( 2020)
Day 11 - Frustrated

Day 8 of the Camino - Los Arcos to Logroño

Another early start and a mixed nights sleep. Didn’t fall out of the top bunk which was great, and was thankful for the blanket because the room was cold.

First people (I noticed) where up and out at 5:40 today, I caved and started getting ready around 6. Left somewhere around 6:45 by the time I got water and shoes on and so on.

Got 100m down the road and started questioning if I had everything so had to quickly check my pack. Becoming hyper paranoid about it.

Day was cool/cold, although I was largely fine in the trousers and shirt I’ve been wearing till now. The wind was bloody strong and near constant. There was barely any respite from it the whole journey.

Walked most of today alone, listening to the Critical Role podcast. That lovable group kept my spirts up and gave me energy to walk despite my feet being unhappy in the shoes.

Didn’t really stop anywhere, was too focused on trying to get to Logroño before the beds might be gone, so I missed out on places I might otherwise have stopped at.

Bumped into the N. Irish lass a couple of times, once early on and then coming down into Viana. We walked for a bit together, but I left her to have a drink & cake while I tried to amble on … fearful that if I stopped for too long I wouldn’t get going again.

I was already having a hard time walking and should have stopped the night in Viana … I realised this about 2.5km out, but stubbornly carried on to Logroño stopping ever so often to flex my left foot.

A few km later, my tendons? Above the back on my ankle got really sore and that started causing me to pause too.

A Belgium couple saw this and offered some gel to help ease the pain and basically walked with me the last 6.5km. They where lovely, and ending the Camino this year in Logroño, aiming to pickup from there next year. The man insisted on finding a stick for me so I could have a second effective pole :)

Got to the municipal Albergue and must have looked pretty bad as one of the staff carried my bag up the stairs for me. Wouldn’t let me do it, and made sure I had a bottom bunk (went downstairs and changed the bag of bedding for bag with the bottom number. I am still incredibly grateful.

Rested for a bit, and about 45-60 minutes after I arrived, the N. Irish lass arrived and got the bunk above mine which I thought was hilarious.

The other nearby bunk was filled by a woman cycling the Camino from Aus, and turns out she’s a member of the forum. Failed to find her username to tag her. (Boo me)

About 4 I walked over to where Planeta Aqua was, because google said it would open at 4:30. Waited & waited and it finally opened at 5. Quickly looked at stock and left.

Aimed to go to intersport but came across a sports shop in the Center. Tried on a few pairs on trainers and a pair of North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GTX (grr) … and despite how my feet felt, they seemed pretty good. I walked around in them a while, tried them with one and two pairs of socks on and then sat and read some reviews of them before finally purchasing them.

Should I have carried on to Intersport to look? Possibly. Probably.

It was already 6:30pm so want a lot of scope to debate, and no way I could face the 45 minute walk out to Decathlon and back again.

I don’t know anymore, and quite honestly I’ve been on the verge of crying throughout the day, a tear did roll down my face as I walked back to the Albergue after dinner.

I’m conscious of the money wasted on shoes. I’m incredibly frustrated because I had easily done the distances in my old Badminton trainers without issue. My feet didn’t hurt in them in the way to have with the shoes I got .
I’m frustrated that I’ve been unable to find something I really liked and felt comfortable in (before I left). I really don’t know how many pairs I tried on but it was a lot. Different sizes, makes, cuts and not a one of them was “that’s it” (except the Merrell Vapor Glove, i’d like to get a pair when I’m done, but they didn’t strike me as useable for the Camino … maybe they are?)

When I arrived back at the Albergue I sat and talked & listened to some ladies (aforementioned forum member … kayabout?) and a kiwi lady (never got her name, might tomorrow if I only go to Navarrete). They even played Dr (physcaitry) with me at one point 😂

Dinner was The Good Burger which was pretty decent. As i was feeling fed up I figured I’d eat “badly”. Would have been fantastic had it all been hot. Instead chips & burger where tepid, but side order of epic chicken was piping hot. I think one bit was ready way ahead of the rest.

Anyway, G’night.
Sorry you have had shoe problems. Wishing you better tomorrow
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Will respond to comments in the morning

Day 12 - An unexpected port

Day started very early as people were getting ready before 5 today. For those following stage it’s a another LONG day, this time about 29.5km.

I don’t really mind that, what I take issue with is the 10+ people (I counted, not hyperbole) who just let the room door slam shut rather than quietly closing it (and 2 who just left it wide open). Pre 6am people really ought to be more considerate.

Not sure when I have up trying to sleep and just got up. Prob around 6-6:30.

I was feeling pretty miserable and so just sat in the exit area waiting for the 8am kickout time. I couldn’t bring myself to leave, I couldn’t trust myself about the shoes I’d bought the night before.

At some point Victoria, a lady I had met walking on the previous day appear and I talked to her for a bit. She asked for me if it was possible to stay another night without leaving and coming back, sadly it wasn’t. (Unlike Estella) But I could leave my backpack.

She had wanted to also go to Decathlon, so we walked out that way together (it’s near the Camino route as you leave Logroño) stopping for a breakfast & coffee. (Felt like a serious bargain to get a small sandwich toll, Orange juice & Coffee for 3€)

We have a great chat about life, the Camino, technology & kids usage of it. Sadly it was over too soon and she went off to Navarrete, and I tried on more shoes and trainers.

The great thing about that testing showed the ones last night where the best fitting and largely the most comfortable.

Bought a couple of bits (boxers, energy tablets for water, gel insoles for my water shoes and to test in the trainers). Came very close to a usb headtorch (20€) / wind up keyring torch (5€) and a new sports t-shirt as the one I’m wearing is getting pulls & attracts insects sometimes. Will wait for now, maybe at the next Decathlon (when one is close to the Center)

Got back to Albergue at 1:40, with a queue outside and nearly too late. I got the 1st bed in the last room. Eek!

After getting sorted i retried the new shoes up & down the stairs and landings at varying speeds to get a feel, and trying them with the gel insoles (prefer not having them in the new shoes).

Honestly they’re as close as I’m going to get to perfect for now. Left foot feels great, right there slight movement at the back. the only real negative is they’re Gore-Tex which I wanted to avoid. Man in shop had tried to say they’re a summer Gore-Tex!?!

Then I ambled out to see if I could find an Intersport or something to see if I could find my Badminton shoes. Here Apple maps failed miserably. Two locations it claimed as Intersport shops were long closed. Google showed 1 location of somewhere else completely & showed they were shut till Monday because of the festival. (Boo)

Stopped in Case La Laurel, the famous little street with lots of food bites. Many varied, fantastic looking bites. Had a yummy huge ham Croquet (2€) and Fried Chicken (2.5€) and glass of red wine (0.80€). Should have tried the pork with pineapple & teriyaki sauce.

On the way back to the Albergue I bumped into a festival procession of people in medieval garb, swords, hatchets, spears and live firing muskets (lots of shots going off that made my ears ring.

http://instagr.am/p/BydXc10lk6P/
Tomorrow is walking. Not sure if just to Navarrete or the long day to Nájere. Part of me wants to take it easy, part of me wants to zoom off.

I’m grateful that Victoria suggested trading contact info.
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 13 - A second wind … sorta

Logroño to Nájera

… not writing these entries at the end of the bad is a bad idea. It’s now 2 days later and the day is kinda gone from my mind.

Today was the first day using the new shoes.

Arrived in Nájera at 2pm an hour early for the Donation Albergue. There were about 4-5 people there at that point. As more started to arrive we put our backpacks down to form a queue without us having to stand (which mostly worked, a few people ignored it and jumped the queue when it was forming)

Place was fairly pleasant, definitely the staff. Mind for 1 room with 90 beds, there were only 2 toilets & 2 showers for the men and i assume the same for the women.

When I arrived they where just finishing up celebrating the festival. They had obviously had a street party as there was a long line of tables and chairs down a street (sadly I didn’t get a photo of it as I passed through, when I went back a couple of hours later they were taking it apart)

Bumped into Erica & Benny briefly as they collected their bags from the albergue. They had opted to stay somewhere else.

Had a couple of conversations with Victoria about how where she is they have this father / son bonding event where the son is “grows up”. Kinda fascinating.

Sadly missed going to the church here as it had closed when I went out. Apparently it has an interesting history, and contains a recessed cave & altar. Maybe a next time?

Washed clothes but because of the cold weather they hadn’t dried by bed time.

Managed to find a Chinese “restaurant” which was pretty decent. Too late for the menu of the day (which would have been a bargain) I had some chicken fried rice with crispy chilli beef (note it was a dry crispy chilli beef, no sauce) and some dumplings.

When I got back to the albergue a poor French man had “lost” his socks and a pair of boxer shorts. They had been removed from the line and no one knew where they had gone too. I offered him a pair of mine, but the albergue staff had already given Him some.

Earplugs in, let’s see how sleeping goes.
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 15 - can’t think of a subtitle yet

Santo Domingo to Belorado

People started getting ready at 4:50 today, and there was a steady stream until 6am of people coming in & out … which with my bed right beside the door got a little tiring/annoying.

Started the walk around 7am with Erica, Benny & Karen having to take a brief detour out of Santo Domingo. Normal street out is closed for some reason.

It was darn cold today, and wet on and off. You could see the rain off in the distance moving past hills/mountains. Thankfully it was never a long shower, nothing like the soaking from a few days ago.

The rain poncho keeps getting condensation inside it while I walk. Ended up putting my fleece on to a stay warmer, and b to do get my shirt so damp feeling.

Ended up leaving Erica & co after a little while as I realised I needed some alone time. Regretfully I didn’t say goodbye, I just drift further away as my pace picked up.

A while later I ended up walking with Victoria and getting some coffee before setting off in the rain.

We ended up going wrong at one point, we were positive we had followed the route and so did Yolanda a Cuban American who was walking a ways behind us. Her phone showed we were still on the route, and mine showed we where off course at the top of a field & private road.

We ended up taking the private road down into either Villamayor del Rio or Viloria de Rioja (don’t remember which now, GPS on a pic would).

The three of us ended up having a mixed conversation about politics, Yolandas studies, future job, tv & movies. Pleasant way to finish the walk to Belorado.

Once in town Victoria disappeared off to a parochial albergue, Yolanda and I went to the Cuatro Cantones which had been recommended.

I admit to being a little fearful that there might now be any beds. I had tried to reserve this morning but it was no longer available, and there was a sizeable queue when we got there.

Queue was a little slow to be processed, but thankfully we all got beds :)

For the first time this whole trip I actually had a lunch, rather I ate the pilgrims menu at lunchtime along with Nachos with bacon & queso. All of it was delicious!

Walk was a bit slower today, part weather and part Victoria & Yolanda didn’t go at the same pace as Charles did.

Didn’t do much after lunch, hung in the room for a while. Had a conversation in German, and then had a wander around town, popped into the church during mass, found out too late about the castle ruins I could have visited but I’m kinda glad I didn’t as it was still cold.

Spent a bit of time in the garden watching the chickens 🐓 , peacocks 🦚, rabbits 🐇 and pigeons eating. Made me think of all of the different nationalities that are walking the Camino, eating and sleeping together. A little symbolic.

Day ends with lots of thudding in the room above us, again I’m sleeping beside the room door and the bathroom on the other side of the wall :) 10pm and people are already snoring 💤 oh and occasional peacock calls …

Tomorrow the weather begins to improve, v cold on the morning but should be sunny and 21°c by the afternoon.

I’m just not sure how far I’ll go. Could be Agés, Villafranca-Montes, San Juan de Ortega, or Atapuerca.

A rarity, I have opted to have the buffer breakfast here for 5€ at 6:30am. Hope I’m awake enough!
 
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tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Please don't leave your shoes along the trail to add to the other detritus. There is a good chance that another forum member walking the route behind you, or even the ditch pigs who do this annually, will have to pick them up to dispose of them. There is more than enough to pick up without another pair of shoes.
Noted, I ended up leaving them in the donativo albergue in Nájera.

There really are a fair few shoes along the route. We passed a pair today on the way to Belorado

Yes, leave them in the donation box at the albergue! It's far more likely someone will see them there and be able to use them. If left on the side of the trail they become nothing but trash. 🙁

As for your walk, hang in there!! It sounds like it's been tough going. Maybe consider booking a bed for tomorrow so you don't feel the pressure of arriving early. And don't be afraid to stop for a day, or walk a few very short days, until you get your feet straightened out. May tomorrow be a better one. I wish you all the best!
Thank you, the change of show has helped quite a lot. While my pads still hurt towards the end of the walk, my feet aren’t straining in the way they were and I feel more relaxed about walking … and my pace has improved a lot.

Yesterday I was close to 6km an hour at times, overall was 5.4km/h (11:06min/km) which is damn close to my normal fast walking without a pack; which ranges from 8:50-11min/km

Sorry you have had shoe problems. Wishing you better tomorrow
Thank you, all your wishes helped!
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 16 - off to the races

Belorado to somewhere (Agés)

Day started early as usual. First people getting ready at 5am, I managed to doze again till 6 when my vibrate alarm (on the Fitbit) went off.

Was able to get ready quickly and be upstairs in time for 6:30 breakfast. Really wasn’t too bad; had a couple of sausages, some bacon, a little cereal, toast that had been totally dried out and some juice. Yolanda joined me for most of breakfast which was pleasant.

Then at 7:20 it was off to the races, although not before a German man told me that I was (apparently) snoring loudly through my nose.

I left no knowing where I was going to stop. Basically it was going to be either Villafranca 11.9km, San Juan 24.1km, Agés 27.7km Or Atapuerca 30.2km. I put it down to how I felt about where I was & how I was feeling.

The first hour of the walk was bitterly cold, a mere 4°C. I’m glad I put the fleece on and had one buff covering the top of my head and the other covering nose & mouth. Just my poor hands that were left freezing. The sky though was a beautiful clear blue.

Like the last couple of days I was able to set off walking quickly doing the first 11km at 11min/km … or in other words I walked 11km in 2 hours.

I briefly talked with Yolanda on route when I bumped into her, but I wanted to walk alone today, so left her.

The walk itself was pretty bland with long stretches of not really seeing anything (certainly a good chunk of the 12km to San Juan). Some up hills the slowed me down, and an annoying one where we go up, then nearly immediately down, and then back up again … I mean come on!

Tried to go to the church in Villafranca but it was sadly closed, the place itself didn’t really speak to me so I carried on to San Juan.

There were some interesting little quirky bits along this stretch, people had written bits with stones along the path, including I love U, and there were some sculptures of sorts one of which with tons of direction arrows.

I found San Juan a little odd (arrived about 12:20, left around 12:30), had a wonder in the church and sat and ate some crisps I had with me. Reviews of the monastery put me off so I carried on to Agés.

I found this little 4km stretch quite pleasant and it too had some “art” with stone spirals with balanced stones in the middle, and then later I got to walk through cows grazing.

Started talking to a New Zealand couple who had both taken a year off from their life & jobs to travel. Doing the Camino and then some other things.

We didn’t get chatting too long as I bid them adieu and opted to stay in the tiny (65 people) village of Agés.

I walked up the street and arrived at what I though was the Albergue I wanted … but it turns out that was next door slightly further up the street … doh.

No real harm, both are the same price … although I feel the municipal albergue would have shut the guys up by now.

Ended up In a room of 5 bunk beds, but only 6 of us in this room. Which is actually pretty nice.

Partook of the washing machine & drier (3€) to do the clothes fora change, grabbed a tasty and large bacon & cheese baguette & wine at the other albergues bar before wandering around the village.

Church was pretty run down in comparison to others, but pleasant enough, there isn’t really anything else here.

After the washing was done I spent the rest of the evening just reading in the room. Didn’t feel like even attempting to mingle or seeing if there was anyone I knew about.

Couple already asleep by 21:15, it’s now nearly 22:00 and I’m shocked anyone in the room is asleep with the noise going on above us. People are chatting REALLY loudly, and possibly the floor isn’t thick enough to mask sounds.

Anyway tomorrow Burgos, and I want to do a post of stats, pull some stuff I wrote on FB today into a post.

A tease, In the last 23 days I’ve walked 472km, roughly 346 of the since I started the Camino.
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 17

So it’s day 17 of the trip and day 14 of the Camino (day 12 if you take out 2 rest days)

Woke at 6 pretty impressed that I didn’t hear the 2 women in the room leave. They were apparently stealth ninjas.

Was out the door for 7am after being handed a banana by the guy looking after breakfast (I didn’t have any, just asked for water)

It was again cold today, a measly 6°C, the sky was completely clouded over and there was a mist over the hills. Thankfully there wasn’t much wind so it didn’t feel quite so cold today compared to yesterday … I wasn’t cursing a lack of gloves :)

Heading out of Agés and the walk to/through Atapuerca was very easy going, mostly along the road. If it wasn’t so early I could have gone and see the museum on early man.

Heading out of Atapuerca was quite so pleasant. The uphill was a bit rocky and a little unpleasant in the light mist.

However having crossed the top, the sun was breaking through the clouds and lighting the fields below. It looked beautiful. (Photo on Instagram http://instagr.am/p/BypZolRCa1f/ … still need to sit and figure out adding photos to these posts)

The walk towards Burgos was uneventful, although I was amused that we had to walk away from it for a time.

Was a little puzzled when entering Cardeñuela de Riopico why there was a sign that included a British flag and the text “Local Login”

As I got closer to Burgos I opted for the more scenic route in rather than the traditional path (now through industrial areas).

The scenic path takes you past the bottom of the airport and you can see everything there. I was very puzzled, the only plan I saw was a small private jet, absolutely no other planes and nothing moving. Left me wondering if the place was even open today.

Scenic route was lovely although it felt really long walking straight below Burgos following beside a river. It just seems to go on and on. At one point I was shocked to find I still had 3.8km to go.

Amusingly there is a beach at one point right on to the river, although the water is freezing.

Arrived at Municipal couple of minutes before it opened. Woot

Have a German above me, who has slept above me in 2 other places. Complete chance. Amusing as hell.
He finished today.

Discovered I forgot my soap 🧼 in Agés … noooo. It was nice & minty … however I am not going back for it. Don’t care how nice it is / was.

Had a dander around the city, although not too far away. Visited a supermarket and then spent 90+ minutes touring the cathedral.

It’s stunning inside, and while the audio tour makes some assumptions about that you know what parts of the church are or reliefs, it was worth listening to. I could easily have spent longer in there.

Afterwards I went to have a snack at 100 Montaditos but turned out it was my dinner (lunch and breakfast … sssh now, stop tutting, I’ll eat when I feel hungry!)

After that I wandered back to the Albergue to get my washing in and had fully intended to go back out to the pub just a minute away (had rock music, open to 3am most nights, 4am on weekend nights) but ended up not going.

Instead I read a little about tomorrow’s options. Again not sure how far I go. The book stage is Burgos to Hontanas which is 31.4km, could stop 5km sooner at San Bol, or 5.5km later at San Antón. (Tardajos 11.0km, Rabé 13.0km, Hornillos 20.9km, San Bol 26.5km, Hontanas 31.4km, San Antón 37.0km)

I would like to see the festival in Burgos but it doesn’t start to the 15th (it’s on 15th & 16th) which would mean staying an extra 3 nights which I don’t really think is feasible.



For those interested in some numbers, this is the daily km walked for Camino stage and for the day.

You can view but can’t change anything. I intend to put the steps in there at some point.

 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
(My notes are a day behind, and I could add more)

Day 18

Burgos to Hornillos del Camino ~22km

Weather was pleasant but cool

Terrain most flat, gravel & roads

Woke up at 3am freezing and no blanket to put on top to warm me up. Found out later that someone had left the nearby fire escape door open and it was letting a cool breeze in.

Neighbors were up and out a little after 4am. Seriously don’t know how anyone leaves at that time of the morning, I get maybe wanting to see a sunrise and make sure you get a bed at the next place but that’s just too fricken early!

Left around 7:25 but somehow iSmoothRun messed up and started and then paused tracking. I didn’t realise for about 5km. Was a little annoyed by that.

The walk was good, lots of energy and setting a good pace (average pace 11:43min/km … 5.12km/h). As usual I skipped breakfast & mid morning snack.

When I got to Hornillos del Camino I popped into the church, and thought I’d take a chance and ask in the municipal albergue if I could use the toilet.

Before I could ask, I ended up in a conversation with a Londoner called Jess (with Spanish & Greek parents) and had a good old chat for 10-20 minutes till the Albergue opened. (She was limping badly at this point, she’d pulled the muscle over the hip, I think similar to what I did last year when I was beginning the walking, she had only just started from Burgos that day)

Anyway I said goodbye as she went to check in and began to head off towards Hontanas.

I got about 1km our of town and found myself stopping (and letting a bus load of German tourists walk past me. They literally got off a bus, and were walking the 10km to Hontanas). Physically I could carry on to Hontanas, and my brain was telling me to carry on … to stick to the stages … but a different part of me was staying to just stop here.

I ended up standing there for 10 minutes, staring at the countryside, listening to the birds before listening to the quiet voice and turning back to the municipal albergue.

After checking in, I found Jess outside tanning on the wall, and we talked further and shared some bread & pork she had and some ham crisps I had.

She was lots of fun to chat too, ahe has no filter when she’s talking (like I have at times) which was quite appealing and I’m jealous of her ability to switch between fluent English & Spanish, and can also speak French. Weirdly at times she sounds South African!

She told a very dark joke about (snipped joke)



We chatted with some others then she went off for a rest (and massage of her hip) and I went & spent a lovely relaxed afternoon in that tiny village of 61 people (saw a tiny fraction of them). I sat outside in a square across from a bar sipping on wine & reading.

After a little while i bumped into Karen & Susan (who are walking with Erica & Ben, but not related, Met on plane), who were also staying here & ended up chatting with them. Then Alberto joined for a while, It was amusing watching him flirt with Susan. Then Jess came out (she was waiting for friends who were driving up from Pampalona to walk with her for a day).

Around 6pm Erica & Ben arrived knackered after walking through the afternoon heat; they hadn’t left Burgos till midday … sillybillies!

Had dinner sorta with Jess and her friends, and Erica, Ben, Susan, Alberto and Ramon (split over two tables)

Food & Service were the worst we’ve experienced. They messed up my order (I wanted pasta & sausage, waitress wrote down lentils because Jess was explaining the menu to me … when I said that wasn’t what I ordered the boss lady came & said no more pasta in a grump voice. I was just going to pass but Ramon took it and gave me his remaining pasta), others found the food bland and just not nice.

We ambled back to albergue and talked outside for a little while. Some filtered to bed earlier. Two girls from Minnesota joined us. We got chased to bed at 22:15 … oops 🙊

Erica 35! Surprised me. Thought she was younger. Has 2 dogs, 8 & 3 years old

Jess only walking to Leon (if she can walk, pulled muscle over hip, I think like I did last year), she has to return to translate at a conference.

Apparently I MUST go to a particular bar in Religiös a town/village before Leon

I’ll be amazed if Jess makes it Castrojeriz tomorrow. Even with the help of her friends, she has really messed her hip up.

Today was the most alcohol I’ve drink this entire trip. 3 glasses of wine before dinner and then 2 there.

Tomorrow the plan is to get to Castrojeriz. A nice easy hop (18-19km) and it’s where most others are going to.
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 19 of trip

Day 16 of walk.

Today was Hornillos del Camino to Castrojeriz (19.47km)

Weather: cool, grey and minimal sun (nice to walk in)

Terrain: light off-road, couple bits a bit stony, and then road.

Another poor sleep, a common theme of the Camino but managed to sleep till 6:25.

45 minutes later I was out the door and onto the The Way

It was a weird mix of grey and sun, looked like it was going to rain although it never did.

I walked for a while with Jess & her friends but felt a little like a fourth wheel, especially when they spoke Spanish, so I made my excuses and headed off on my own and honestly I needed some space to myself.

That said I was amazed that the gel & massage had really helped Jess’s hip. She wasn’t going as quick but was able to walk unlike the evening before were she was limping horribly.

Once i started off on my own, i moving quickly. It didn’t take long before I passed both Susan and then Bill. (Turns out that one of my roommates this day saw me at some point and said I was flying 🤪)

Average pace was 11:32min/km / 5.2km/h although most of the walk was between 10:20 & 11:30min/km, just slowed at the start by keeping pace with Jess & co, then at the end keeping pace with Gerald (German bloke I met, only really speaks German and a tiny amount of English. I struggle to understand his german accent)

Stopped for breakfast in Hontanas for a change at El Puntido because someone recommended it. (Toast, Marmelade and coffee, sadly no OJ)

Soon enough I was back in the path heading to Castrojeriz.

Somewhere along the way I bumped into Gerald, and we walked and talked till we got to Castrojeriz.

It was a strange place as it’s long as drawn out around the side of a hill. At the top was a ruin of a castle that I wanted to go to but didn’t. The place just seemed to go on for a while.

Debated Municipal vs Rosalia, and in the end let the reviews sway me. Got a room for just 5 people, 12€ a single bed (no bunks \0/ … 10€ a bed in the attic, with 19 beds). Room had Bill who I had bumped into a couple of times (he suggest we could share a room sometime down the road for privacy), Rollo (Argentina bloke I met last village, I had misheard his name as Ramon), Patricia (elderly American woman, really friendly) and another bloke who’s name I forget but boy could he snore.

Rosaliá was pretty decent, I love the single beds and the Pilgrim statue you could stand behind. Shower was pretty decent (At least in the middle Landung bathroom). Didn’t really make use of kitchen or the mostly enclosed terrace (except to dry clothes). Owner seemed pretty nice.

Went to lunch with Jess & co, ended up joining tables with Bill, Thomas (from Denmark) his 2 sons and the Belgium man who was in yesterday’s albergue (has lost 18kg walking from Belgium to France to begin the Camino)

Most went for a late siesta (around 5) but I went for a walk. Visited a supermarket and then bumped into Karen & Susan. We had a chat then I waked with Susan back to the albergue and chatted about old movies (Noises off, Arsenic & Old Lace, Topper) & theatre.

At the Albergue we saw Erica and decided to go for tea/dinner. So ended up with a second Pilgrims Menu. Most food I’ve eaten this trip.

I made poor dinner choices. I absolutely should have had a soup (Castilian or Zucchini … both were delicious - apparently the Zucchini soup was the best an American chef had ever had and wrote a glowing review of it in an article)

Had a lovely time, then they went to bed. I walked back to my albergue on the other side of the village and went back to the bar from the afternoon meal to join the same crowd from earlier for drinks (and then eating)

There from like 8:15pm till 9:45pm. At one point we did a toast, which got amusing with all the different languages. Danish, Dutch, German, English, Spanish, Argentinian and something else.

Then it was off to bed to be ready for walking to Frómista.
 
Last edited:

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Day 21 of trip

Day Frómista to Carrión de los Condes. 18.88km according to app. 19.18km with Phone GPS (minor detour). Was walking quickly. Which Fitbit doesn’t like 🙂

Weather: pleasant to warm
Terrain/: pretty damn flat, easy going

Shocked I only woke at 6:40, was hard to get to sleep

Bolted along. A little over 5.5km an hour for 3 hours 26 minutes, with only 4 minutes rest / stopping for photos.

It was a very boring walk, weirdly not many on the path, only passed a handful. Road was very long and straight, walking right beside it virtually the whole way. (I missed that there was an alt route). It kind of does the head in after a while. Esp when Fields are mostly yellow and only bits of green.

Arrived way to early at Albergue. While they let me in at 10:50, I wasn’t able to check in I’ll 11:30 (I was first).

Was left confused a couple of times when a nun came and asked me a question only in Spanish. Thankfully google translate eventually saved me (she wanted to know if a blanket was mine).

Lovely place, and 6€ for a single bed was great.

After showering, washing clothes and stuff I wandered around the corner and had a breakfast at 1pm ‪¯\_(ツ)_/¯‬

Then met up with Erica, Ben, Karen & Susan for lunch (nice paella but seemed expensive). Showed them the ad for a horse & cart ride to the next village/town which interested them.

After that I just ambled around a bit, visited the supermarket & got bits for tomorrow.

I spent a bit of the afternoon hiding in the dining area away from the heat and honestly from people too. Had been feeling moody/moopy all day and didn’t fancy really interacting.

In the evening I attended fully my first mass of the trip, had a pilgrims blessing and was given a paper star to carry with me.

After church I ambled some more and I bumped into Ben, Susan & Karen again. Like a bad penny I keep turning up. We talked for a bit & got a class of wine (with a small free tortilla snack) and I got Ben to reserve me a spot on this horse & cart.

While it’s now 20€ and not the 15€ on the digital book I’m using, it’s seems like a unique thing to do. I could get the bus if I _really_ wanted, or I’m happy to walk the 17km stretch to the next town … but this is different.

I dashed back to make sure I was in for 21:30 just in case they closed the gate early. As it is when the nuns came to check in at 22:05, 3 people where missing from the room. One arrived at 22:24, the others are still missing.

From what I’ve read some of the albergues here are shut and won’t let you in. So no idea what is going to happen for the missing 2.
 

Bala

Veteran member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: SJPdP-Burgos, (2015); Burgos-Sarria (2018); Sarria-Santiago (2018).
Frances (2020)
Great posts. I'm enjoying following along with you. Buen Camino!
 

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)

tarasis

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan Camino Frances (May-June 2019)
Still alive. Have a bunch of posts in nearly complete form that I need to post. Currently in Astorga … didn’t really see any of it (naughty boy!). Tomorrow Rabanal del Camino … place is like to check in to isn’t open till 2pm Refugio Guacelmo and likely I’ll arrive at 11am if I keep at my usually pace and leave at 7am … erm.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
Day 15 - can’t think of a subtitle yet

Santo Domingo to Belorado

People started getting ready at 4:50 today, and there was a steady stream until 6am of people coming in & out … which with my bed right beside the door got a little tiring/annoying.

Started the walk around 7am with Erica, Benny & Karen having to take a brief detour out of Santo Domingo. Normal street out is closed for some reason.

It was darn cold today, and wet on and off. You could see the rain off in the distance moving past hills/mountains. Thankfully it was never a long shower, nothing like the soaking from a few days ago.

The rain poncho keeps getting condensation inside it while I walk. Ended up putting my fleece on to a stay warmer, and b to do get my shirt so damp feeling.

Ended up leaving Erica & co after a little while as I realised I needed some alone time. Regretfully I didn’t say goodbye, I just drift further away as my pace picked up.

A while later I ended up walking with Victoria and getting some coffee before setting off in the rain.

We ended up going wrong at one point, we were positive we had followed the route and so did Yolanda a Cuban American who was walking a ways behind us. Her phone showed we were still on the route, and mine showed we where off course at the top of a field & private road.

We ended up taking the private road down into either Villamayor del Rio or Viloria de Rioja (don’t remember which now, GPS on a pic would).

The three of us ended up having a mixed conversation about politics, Yolandas studies, future job, tv & movies. Pleasant way to finish the walk to Belorado.

Once in town Victoria disappeared off to a parochial albergue, Yolanda and I went to the Cuatro Cantones which had been recommended.

I admit to being a little fearful that there might now be any beds. I had tried to reserve this morning but it was no longer available, and there was a sizeable queue when we got there.

Queue was a little slow to be processed, but thankfully we all got beds :)

For the first time this whole trip I actually had a lunch, rather I ate the pilgrims menu at lunchtime along with Nachos with bacon & queso. All of it was delicious!

Walk was a bit slower today, part weather and part Victoria & Yolanda didn’t go at the same pace as Charles did.

Didn’t do much after lunch, hung in the room for a while. Had a conversation in German, and then had a wander around town, popped into the church during mass, found out too late about the castle ruins I could have visited but I’m kinda glad I didn’t as it was still cold.

Spent a bit of time in the garden watching the chickens 🐓 , peacocks 🦚, rabbits 🐇 and pigeons eating. Made me think of all of the different nationalities that are walking the Camino, eating and sleeping together. A little symbolic.

Day ends with lots of thudding in the room above us, again I’m sleeping beside the room door and the bathroom on the other side of the wall :) 10pm and people are already snoring 💤 oh and occasional peacock calls …

Tomorrow the weather begins to improve, v cold on the morning but should be sunny and 21°c by the afternoon.

I’m just not sure how far I’ll go. Could be Agés, Villafranca-Montes, San Juan de Ortega, or Atapuerca.

A rarity, I have opted to have the buffer breakfast here for 5€ at 6:30am. Hope I’m awake enough!
That brought back my memories of Cuatro Cantones , sitting around the pool chatting all afternoon in the hot sun, hoping for cloud the next day. And watching a girl catch a chicken which we hoped wasnt dinner.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis SJPP
April 2016, August 2017, May 2018
Camino PortuGUESE
May 2019
Day 8 - It’s my birthday & I’ll cry if I want to

What a truly odd day. Today I turned 43, but it’s the least birthday like day I’ve ever had, and that’s counting last year when I turned 42.

*laugh* we’re what 13 hours into the day and my son still hasn’t wished me happy birthday … my daughter managed it at 7am. … oh oh son just phoned for the second time today and remembered this time :)

Anyway, the day started early, way earlier than I would have liked … 3:40am. A couple of people getting up and prepping to leave. Thankfully most of the rest didn’t till 5:30ish.

I started getting up around 6am, and was out the door at 6:40 using some new toe socks I had bought the night before (Injinji Performance 2.0 Runner) which amazingly actually fit my toes … unlike some Knitido ones I had ordered from Amazon (and promptly returned).

I was surprised that the walk went as well as it did considering the blister. I was in Puente la Reine in 5h26 (6h20 real time). A few stops here and there to take photos, get my pass stamped in a church and offer a prayer.

When carrying the water separately from the backpack I can really tell that it’s lighter. Took much much longer before it became irritating. I’ll take that! And I know I can remove another 1.2kg (~2.6lb)

Met a lovely American family towards the end; Benny, Erika, and Karen who all apparently live in Florida. They too where find it hard going the last couple of KM. Especially as there was this junk where we went down hill and then had to go back up hill.

They where shocked when i said I had left at 6:40 from Pampalona when they had left at 5:30 from the next town on (about 5km away) … but given they stopped for food and I didn’t it kind of balances out.

Shocked at how cheap the Alberque was today. 5€! Admittedly I’m in a cramped room with 6 bunk beds (all men), so I imagine it will be hell tomorrow morning.

Not a single person here knows it’s my birthday, the room I’m in (tiny, 12 bunk beds).

Random tidbit, the last of the 100 beds were filled at 15:35. I happened to be in hallway to hear that. Was off into town to explore.

17:40 the first rain I’ve seen so far. After I sent the rainmac away (have the poncho, seems overkill to go for food)

Had panic I lost my expensive headphones. Thankfully in bag.

Only person in this bar/restaurant having the pilgrims menu. Which is surprising. I know the Albergue I’m in doesn’t do food, just has a kitchen. So it leaves me wondering where everyone else is. (I arrived at 6:30, food started at 7pm)

Had a lot of wine to myself. 2 glasses of house white (1€ each) and then about 350-400ml of red with the menu.

Tomorrow, in theory, is a walk to Estella BUT It’s supposed to rain tomorrow morning. So tomorrow i get to use my poncho but my shoes aren’t waterproof (by choice). Should be interesting. Esp as a stretch is supposed to be slippery when wet (yes yes, my second song lyric/title of this post)

Slightly surprised to find that room already has the door closed. A couple of people are already asleep. None of the 6 Asians who relaxed earlier are here.

Desperately want to put phone on charge, but too paranoid to do so. Only putting battery pack on charge. Phone, iPad and wallet continue to be in my sleeping bag liner with me.

A little sad, but that’s my own fault. my life could have been so different had I the where with all, drive and sense to run with it a few years ago. *smile* rather than a wannabe, I coulda been a contender. (Song & Film references)
Hope you had a satisfying birthday....love
 

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