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Newbie with some basic questions

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
Hello :)

So, i just booked my trip. 9th of March head to Bordeaux, and then with bus to Bayonne. The next day, on the 10th i go with train to SJPdP. The train arrives at 1 PM, so i hope to start my walk before 2 PM. A bit late maybe? But im a fast walker, and will do the first 23 km to Roncesvalles in 5-6 hours.

So, this is my basic newbie questions :)

1. Do i need reservations for the albergues?
I guess since is the low season, i dont need to? Or is it some places that are more critical than others?

2. Budget
What is the minimum budget i should have? Im a experienced backpacker who have been on a budget trip to more than 50 countries, so im used to primitive standards. Is there a "free food shelf" in the albergues, they they usualy have for the hostels around bigger cities around the world? I hope to make it on 20 euro a day, with accommodation and diet.

3. Backpack and equipment
I have a 22 liter backpack i will fill with this:

Clothes
- 3 pairs of underwear and 3 pairs of socks
(I clean 1 pair in the shower with me, in the shower 😆), then a fresh one on. And while the second is drying - i have one in backup.)
(The BEST shoes i have ever used for hiking!!!)
  • 1 jacket (waterproof)
  • 1 waterproof cover for legs
Stuff
  • Wallet
  • Headlight
  • Cell phone with charger
  • Earplugs (for music)
  • Sun glasses
  • Waterproof cover for backpack
  • Hiking cutlery
  • Pen & paper
  • Sleepingbag
  • Towel
Toiletries
  • Soap
  • Tooth brush & paste
  • Deodorant
  • Nail scissors
  • Hand disinfection
  • Toiletpaper
  • Earplugs (for a good night of sleep)
4. Toilets at the albergues
I have Crohns disease. I read that you need to leave around 6 AM at the albergues? I need 1-2 hours to get "ready" in the morning, and when i need to use the restroom. I NEED to go! So i cant wait for 5 people to go in front of me. And i always feel so stupid when i ask to jump ahead in the line. This is also one of the reasons why im walking at the low season. Less stress, less people.... and so on.
So my stupid question is - are there a lot of waiting in the morning; to use toilets & showers at the albergues?

Okay, thats it. Thanks for reading my long-long post.

🆒
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
The good news is, you are in a forum with a wonderful group of people. Most are here to help people like you to achieve their pilgrimage goals. We can offer you encouragement, knowledge, and point you in the direction that will help you help yourself.

My suggestion to start is this for questions to help you research:
  1. Go to the Search Engine at the top of the Forum pages.
  2. Enter the words or phrase that you want more information about. You will get a huge amount of information to explore.
There is a ton of information related to your questions already there. Here are some quick answers, though, to help you get started.

1. It depends on the type of alburgue as to whether or not you can even make a reservation. In general, the private alburgues do sometimes take reservations.

2. Your budget will be based on your accommodations. Free food is not a usual. Personally, 20 Euros is a bit lean.

3. Back and equipment is personal preference. I do not know if you are asking for advice or just letting us know what you're experience has guided you to do.

4. Yes, in general, toilet facilities are first come first served in alburgues. The size of a bathroom and number of toilets varies. I've found that the official check-out time is somewhere from 8 to 9 am.

In connection with question 4, I would like to gently broach a thought with you. Crude and vulgar terms are refreshingly absent from the Forum as a matter of course. :)
 

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
davebugg... thanks for your answer

Yeah, i know how bothering i can be when new members just jump in and ask the most obvious questions. I tried to read, watch Youtube videos and all that, but seems like everybody have there own opinion based on personal preferences. I did not find a lot of information on "minimum users" - if i can say it like that? Thats also why i listed up my backpack, so other people who find my treath can have a look. Not to "brag & tell", or ... whatever. =)

Anyway, thanks a lot. I still try to get to know this forum. Its a BIG site, with A LOT of topics. And that its NOT a big thing. And its so much FUN to write with big capitals some times. :))

THANK you! :)
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
davebugg... thanks for your answer

Yeah, i know how bothering i can be when new members just jump in and ask the most obvious questions. I tried to read, watch Youtube videos and all that, but seems like everybody have there own opinion based on personal preferences. I did not find a lot of information on "minimum users" - if i can say it like that? Thats also why i listed up my backpack, so other people who find my treath can have a look. Not to "brag & tell", or ... whatever. =)

Anyway, thanks a lot. I still try to get to know this forum. Its a BIG site, with A LOT of topics. And that its NOT a big thing. And its so much FUN to write with big capitals some times. :))

THANK you! :)

Please do not misunderstand my intent, Kris. . . there is absolutely no problem with asking your questions.; I encourage you to do so. :) It sounds like you have already been doing quite a lot of research.

My mention of the Search Engine was in case you missed seeing it. It is a wonderful compendium of the Forum's knowledge base. It allows you to browse through search results at leisure as another tool for your use.

You are correct that you will have a large variety opinions about virtually every topic. Poncho vs rain jacket, trekking poles vs no trekking poles, best way to get to Spain and then SJPdP, Merino wool vs synthetics . . . . well, the list could go on and on. :)

You also have available the private messaging function. This allows you to contact a Forum member directly if you think s/he can provide additional advice or help.

Also, in the RESOURCES menu item at the top of the page, you will find loads of help. For instance, a list of alburgues describing whether they are private, municipal, or parochial. Whether they have amenities like kitchens, private rooms, etc, and an approximate cost.

Again, a most warm welcome, Kris.
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
'CP, Frances,Norte,Salv/prim;Le puy, Inglés, CDM, Invierno, Fin/Mux, Vdlp 2019>Táb/ Prt Levante 2020
Only the obvious (IMO) from me!

Take a hat and suncream ..
Jeans are very heavy and hard to dry. Not a usual on the caminos.

Also, you won’t have a lot of daylight hours left leaving 2pm from Sjpdp ?
On that stage to Roncesvalles., I would not factor keeping to your normal kph average.
Either stay the night in Sjpdp or Bayonne and recover from your travel.
Buen Camino
Annie

Ps. You don’t have to leave albergues at 6am btw.
Usual time to leave is before 8am but if you choose to stay in a private somewhere (sharing cost possibly with others you meet).. then time will be different again.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
No shelves with goodies on them in the albergues, just worthless equipment pilgrims off loaded that they no longer need or want to carry anymore.
20 euros is a very tight budget.
Beginning on 10 March means you will be walking the Valcarlos route and starting at 2pm means you will run out of day light before you reach Roncevalles.
 

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
davebugg ... yes, X vs Y is always a endless discussion based on age, physical form, health, weight, nationality, experiance, sex, standard of convenience etc etc etc :) The good thing here, is that its always a store note so close, its worst when you do hiking in the montains for weeks and then figure out that you forgot matches after a full day of walking (!) ;p

OzAnnie ... yeah, i tought jeans should be nice to wear after a day of walking, as a comfy set of pants... I dont like the idea of having syntetic stuff around my legs for weeks - i think i will just bring a pair and throw it away when my alburgues-neighbor give me nasty looks because of the smell ;P

Hat & suncream... yeah! noted :)

biarritzdon .. you did A LOT of walking i can see :) kudos to you

Yeah, im a bit 50/50 if i should take the 7 AM or 12 AM train to SJPdP. Maybe i should make a soft start and spend a day at SJPdP - i guess its not a bad idea. Its something refreshing with the idea of starting from early on with no fancy transport (train), right before.
 

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
20 euros seems low TO ME. However halfway through the Camino Frances in 2015 we encountered a young woman who said her target had been 10 and was surviving. I've gotten the feeling that the folks on the forum with grey hair (and a bit more in the bank) spend about 35.

Well, i will make a controversial answer to that. Im quit active on Couchsurfing and have hosted 300+ people back home in Norway. And young womans (in the 20s), get it SO easy in many terms. Take one example, i tried to hitchhike a couple of times, and ended up standing for hours. One time, a saw two good looking young girls standing 50 meter in front of me, hickhiking at the same spot... getting picked up after 5 min. HAH!

I dont know this woman, but in general - i would say that young girls moving around solo, by using a smile and some charming factors, can get around with 0 euro a day.

I will try to keep it betwen 20 and 30. :) Lets see.

Fun fact & with a littel self brag:
In Albania in 2017 i survived on 5 euro a day for 12 days (even not as a girl ;p trust me,.)
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
davebugg ... yes, X vs Y is always a endless discussion based on age, physical form, health, weight, nationality, experiance, sex, standard of convenience etc etc etc :) The good thing here, is that its always a store note so close, its worst when you do hiking in the montains for weeks and then figure out that you forgot matches after a full day of walking (!) ;p

Yeah, im a bit 50/50 if i should take the 7 AM or 12 AM train to SJPdP. Maybe i should make a soft start and spend a day at SJPdP - i guess its not a bad idea. Its something refreshing with the idea of starting from early on with no fancy transport (train), right before.

:) You are right. Equipment and clothing choices are a snap for me, given my backpacking background. Even the stuff I took when doing my 5.5 month long thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail is what I use on Camino. I just leave out the tent, air mattress, food, cooking gear and stove, fuel and a few backpacking-specific items that are not needed on Camino.

My pack weight goes from about 22 pounds/9.9 kg for multi-week backpacking trips, down to around 9.8 pounds / 4.4 kg for my Caminos.

As to a starting time, I usually will get into St Jean Pied de Port by around 11:00 am after flying from Seattle's airport to Paris; then flying to Biarritz, then taking the shuttle to SJPdP. I like using the rest of the day to relax, wander around, do a final organization of my backpack, and catch a bit of extra nap time.

I start walking to Roncesvalles the next morning by around 7:00 am.
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
Well, i will make a controversial answer to that. Im quit active on Couchsurfing and have hosted 300+ people back home in Norway. And young womans (in the 20s), get it SO easy in many terms. Take one example, i tried to hitchhike a couple of times, and ended up standing for hours. One time, a saw two good looking young girls standing 50 meter in front of me, hickhiking at the same spot... getting picked up after 5 min. HAH!

I dont know this woman, but in general - i would say that young girls moving around solo, by using a smile and some charming factors, can get around with 0 euro a day.

I will try to keep it betwen 20 and 30. :) Lets see.

Fun fact & with a littel self brag:
In Albania in 2017 i survived on 5 euro a day for 12 days (even not as a girl ;p trust me,.)

UH OH.... (ducking and watching from the sidelines). :)
 

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
UH OH.... (ducking and watching from the sidelines). :)
[/QUOT
UH OH.... (ducking and watching from the sidelines). :)

52508
You right now i guess... hehehe

Just to clarif; before i get killed by angry feminists.

I see nothing wrong with what i wrote. From a early stage, men are the "hunter/provider". Its in our blood. So when we see a young girl who need / can be provided for - its in our blood, biologically speaking. We can talk as much about equality as we want. But it is huge differenses - and this is one of them.

Yes, it can be a benefit to be a young girl out solo on the road. But she is also out for a bigger risk than me, when it comes to to be exploited.

Yeah, i LOVE my Osprey 22 Talon backpack. Its never more than 6-7 kilo. Perfect. :)

Bonus: You dont buy a lot of crap on the road as well, since you dont have space for it. Saving the planet, your wallet and your back. Win/win/WIN. (Win98?)

Hmmm, if i was you davebugg - go with Norwegian Air next time. You will be suprised if you have not used them yet. :) They have a route from Seattle to London


AND, for 450 USD for a round trip. Go go go :)
 
D

Deleted member 43780

Guest
Welcome to the best Forum. With the greatest people on here.
Welcome to the Camino..s...

Good/interesting comments given back.
I would read, study and consider what others tell you on this forum.
No better place than here.

Arriving on/about 1 pm and heading out on/about 2 pm? May be rushing it. And leaving too late in the day. Most head out about 8 am +/- each day.
Why not stay the night in SJPP? Great town! Then have whole day to hit the Camino.

Making it to Roncesvalles in 5-6 hours? The days are not that long yet.
5 hours mmmm. may be wishful thinking.
Being a slow walker, I cannot really say if possible or not.
Others may be able to say if such will be ok or not.

20 Euros is, IMHO, not enough per day. By the time you stop and buy coffee, juice, water, tip for using the head (yes, please leave a few cents on the bar for using their toilet -- they do have to restock the place, clean, etc -- they appreciate this. Many times I have over heard a Spanish bar tender say bad things about the "cheap xx"), TP, hand wipes, fruit, etc etc you have blown about 8 to 10 Euros already. Or more. Then eating out once get to over night place. And pay for your stay.

And surely you will want to grab a beer or two and some wonderful Pinchos..no not Tapas. That will run you a few Euros...

Gonna be real tight. Not saying can't be done. But just don't think it will work.

Most draw about 100 Euro from ATM. Take it day-by-day. To judge how much is needed.

The Camino(s) is NOT a CREDIT CARD world. Unless you stay in upper class hotel or some sort. All of the small stores, bars, cafes, etc along the walk are CASH driven.

Clothing. Each to their own. I noted you mentioned "jeans." I have walked a few Caminos...and I never remember anyone wearing jeans. Not the choice of material to wear walking day and day out. Not a good material to wash and dry.

Most of the Alurgues you hand wash. Put your rags on the line outside. Or on rack inside. So jeans would not, IMHO, be dry by the morning.

You can have your laundry done by the ladies down stairs at Roncesvalles. But, more Euros spent. Or you could do them yourself down stairs there and hang on line outside (or inside line).

Horrible to be in jeans and it rains. Suck your body heat big time.
Wear what you like.

Why two T-shirts? Cotton? ughhh
If possible look into getting like a light weight Moreno wool long sleeve and/or one short sleeve Moreno shirt. You know about wool. Doesn't smell. Warms when wet. Keeps you warm and also cool. Best way to go.

Sweater? Most take a light weight pull over fleece.

Again, dress as you like. But read and learn from the many on here who have the Camino...Caminos...

I personally take one watch cap (fleece or wool), one neck gaiter (wool) and gloves. All three of these were used on every Camino I did. And I was thankful to have them.

Head light: please have one that has RED also on it. Keeps the complaints down in the Alburgue at night or early morning. People hate it when your bright LED WHITE light lights up the place and in their face!

Back pack cover: all packs, sooner or later, will get wet inside. Even with a pack cover on the pack. Been there -- done that.
IF it rains hard enough and long enough your stuff inside will get wet. Best to have items in water proof bags inside your pack. Cant afford the fancy REI, MSR, etc small gear bags? Then even use bread bags, condoms, trash bags, etc if needed. Seen it done. Especially have bag for your sleeping bag.

Read on here the comments about pack covers. They work to a point.

Also sun hat is a must. Along with sunscreen/block.

Nope no free food hand outs in the Alburgues. There may be a community meal. You pay for it. OR there may be a few cooking in the community kitchen. You may be invited to join. But expected to put something into the effort. I.e. bottle(s) wine or water. Salad. Bread. etc.
Never seen a free food stand or free food.

The price of each Alburgue is different. Read on here about that.
So there goes another drain on your 20 Euro per day.

There is a campground in SJPP. Across the river. Walk across the foot bridge. Ask at TI where it is. Has hot showers, kitchen set up etc.
Many hikers and bikers stay there. Cost is few Euros.

I have used hammock in the Camino. Even stealth camped few times. Slept outside Alburgue few times too. Love it.

When the train does not run from Bayonne to SJPP, you catch the bus. Bus is outside the train station. To your left (as you have back to the station). May be more than one bus in the lot. So be sure you are on right one.
Last time I rode the bus it was pay driver. There may be other ways to pay now. i.e. kiosk, ticket window, etc. Ask around.

If you want to stay in Bayonne for the night. Hotel Basque is directly across from the train station. Not a bad place. Breakfast, etc.

Making it from point A to point be in XX hours / XX minutes....mmmm may work for you. But for most no. Most have idea when will make it to point B on a certain day. But don't operate off a clock/time schedule.

Not a good way to do the Camino.
 
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Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
martyseville

Cash is king! Yeah.

When i backpack
Mostly; i buy water, bread and chesse or butter at a normal store. Should be 2,50 euro. Thats enough for breakfast and food for the evening. Then, a big meal in the middle of day with vegetables, some high-end carbs with sace/dressing and what ever is available. Mostly it cost me 5-6 euro when i do that. So less than 10 euro a day in food - if normal minimarkeds is open.

Yeah, i guess i will look like a noob on the road. I dont have technical super clothes. I live a nomad life, with very minimalistic way of living. So im stuck to cotton shirts and jeans. :) I have had some looks "are you crazy or just stupid" -kind of looks on me before. But I dont mind that.

I need to sleep one night at Bayonne, yes, so i hope to get my luck at Couchsurfing.

Even im on a budget; im not a freeloader. So if invited to a dinner table or so - i will always have something to give, for sure. Never ever take hospitality for granted. Sharing is caring. :)

Thanks for all the answers guys !!! I did not exspect so many answers after just a few hours. Lots of helpful tips and things to consider. Thanks a lot.

Its soon 2 am here in Portugal, so good night people. ;)
 
D

Deleted member 43780

Guest
martyseville

Cash is king! Yeah.

When i backpack
Mostly; i buy water, bread and chesse or butter at a normal store. Should be 2,50 euro. Thats enough for breakfast and food for the evening. Then, a big meal in the middle of day with vegetables, some high-end carbs with sace/dressing and what ever is available. Mostly it cost me 5-6 euro when i do that. So less than 10 euro a day in food - if normal minimarkeds is open.

Yeah, i guess i will look like a noob on the road. I dont have technical super clothes. I live a nomad life, with very minimalistic way of living. So im stuck to cotton shirts and jeans. :) I have had some looks "are you crazy or just stupid" -kind of looks on me before. But I dont mind that.

I need to sleep one night at Bayonne, yes, so i hope to get my luck at Couchsurfing.

Even im on a budget; im not a freeloader. So if invited to a dinner table or so - i will always have something to give, for sure. Never ever take hospitality for granted. Sharing is caring. :)

Thanks for all the answers guys !!! I did not exspect so many answers after just a few hours. Lots of helpful tips and things to consider. Thanks a lot.

Its soon 2 am here in Portugal, so good night people. ;)


Most important: good luck and enjoy YOUR camino!
Blessings.
The Camino provides! It really does.
You will be surprised just when you thought "oh, sXXX" someone comes along and helps.

Then you may be interested in the city campground at SJPP.
Has over hang roof by the kitchen area. So would be a good cheap sleep. Even without a tent or hammock.
 

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Camino(s) past & future
2019 Biarritz-Pamplona-Lourdes
2018 Aragon/Frances/Finis
2018 Operation Sabre
2018 Marin Ramble
Random answers:
  • 20 Euros is doable if you frequent the bakeries and stores vs. restaurants, stay in munis or camp, avoid bars, etc
  • everything said about taking jeans is true, but my camino buddy swore that he was happiest every evening once he put his on; if you don't mind the weight, then make yourself happy
  • tick socks? Never heard of ticks being an issue on the Camino
  • I walked in April/May and never waited for a shower or a toilet
  • couch surfing may work in the larger cities, but many of the villages you'll walk through have so few people in them that it's likely not a possibility outside of Leon, Santiago, etc.
  • one's pack size is "ideal" as long as it fits what one needs
  • munis don't take reservations, but definitely check what albuergues will be open when you walk
  • most publics kick you at by 8am, but I found that waking up at 7am allowed me to shower/sh-t/shave and repack in almost complete solitude since everyone else seemed to think they had to leave by 6am

Overall, I am sure you'll do fine - the younger you are, the easier it is to make it through the hard parts that us older folks might consider unbearable. I walked a day with a German who had started in Berlin and made it on 5€ a day....not the Camino I wanted to walk, but it was the journey that he was seeking.

Buen Camino
 
D

Deleted member 43780

Guest
Random answers:
  • 20 Euros is doable if you frequent the bakeries and stores vs. restaurants, stay in munis or camp, avoid bars, etc
  • everything said about taking jeans is true, but my camino buddy swore that he was happiest every evening once he put his on; if you don't mind the weight, then make yourself happy
  • tick socks? Never heard of ticks being an issue on the Camino
  • I walked in April/May and never waited for a shower or a toilet
  • couch surfing may work in the larger cities, but many of the villages you'll walk through have so few people in them that it's likely not a possibility outside of Leon, Santiago, etc.
  • one's pack size is "ideal" as long as it fits what one needs
  • munis don't take reservations, but definitely check what albuergues will be open when you walk
  • most publics kick you at by 8am, but I found that waking up at 7am allowed me to shower/sh-t/shave and repack in almost complete solitude since everyone else seemed to think they had to leave by 6am
Overall, I am sure you'll do fine - the younger you are, the easier it is to make it through the hard parts that us older folks might consider unbearable. I walked a day with a German who had started in Berlin and made it on 5€ a day....not the Camino I wanted to walk, but it was the journey that he was seeking.

Buen Camino


mmmm or did he mean "thick socks" ??
also never heard of tick socks. And never saw a tick on the Caminos.
 

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Camino(s) past & future
2019 Biarritz-Pamplona-Lourdes
2018 Aragon/Frances/Finis
2018 Operation Sabre
2018 Marin Ramble
Morning, noon, and night if possible!!! With just a sheet to keep me warm at night, I needed a morning warmup to defrost sometimes. 😜
 

Mugatu

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, Finisterre, Muxia (2018)
Camino Frances or Norte (2019 , June 27-Aug 8)
My sister and I did the crossing over the Pyrenees under six, but that was during the summer... as people have mentioned, looks like you’ll be short on daylight, personally I spend 3 hours in the morning hiking in the dark but that’s what I like... is there a reason why you want to undertake this all in one day... especially on a travel day from what you’ve outlined?
 

Delphinoula

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C. PdC 2018 Finisterre Muxía 2018
C.Franconia 2019 C.Algeciras Sevillia 2019
Swabian C. (2020)
You seem to be very hospitable. Not a Francés experience and the people living on the Camino are sure different. From Portugal.
I did it a stretch on the Portuguese with about 20 Euros a day.My card was not working and I had to make it with the cash I had on me. Later on in Spain my card worked and I could not have made that way, because of the cost of the albergues.
Most costly is the overnights.
Foodwise:
Morning some kind of oatmeal cooked if there was a facility and raw if the was not. Peanuts on the way and some sort of fruit. After walk red lentil with small noodles in broath (cubes). Coffee in form of Nescafé sticks shaken in water bottle . Under 5 Euros.
Refilled my water bottle on the way when I bought maybe a smal item or offered to sing for the water. According to the galopera: dame un poco de agua fresca de tu cántaro de amor. I always got a smile and water.
About asking for a ride. Aproach a drive on a gas station or ask in a bar , then
they get to know you a bit and you see what kind of a person it is. Is he 😵 drunk?

I got lost one time so hopelessly I asked an older couple for directions, but I did not speak Portuguese. So the took me first to their granddaughter , she spoke English, to ask me if it was ok for her grand parents to bring me to the Albergue and when I answered I did not want to inconvenient her grand parents. Their son came by starting to laugh and said his doing it for the grace of god and then they got me to the Albergue. I could not have reach it without “ that grace of god”.
So Buen Camino.
 

Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
Love the minimalist style, my lowest post pr day was 25 euros in ´14, 20 sound relly expert, could be met , I suppose....
I heard about bed bug sheets, but never heard about tick socks....!! ( tongue in cheek)

best of traveling luck and buen Camiono
 
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Stroller123

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning Italy to Finisterre and back (20xx)
Yeah, i guess i will look like a noob on the road. I dont have technical super clothes. I live a nomad life, with very minimalistic way of living. So im stuck to cotton shirts and jeans. :) I have had some looks "are you crazy or just stupid" -kind of looks on me before. But I dont mind that.

You don't "need" super technical clothes, but you gonna be more comfortable in them. If you are on a budged Decathlon is your friend.

Few examples:

I can vouch for the T-shirts, they're good for the price, they wick the sweat decently and they are almost dry as soon as you get them out from the washing machine. I use them daily to do my 8Km walk with the dog. The cons are that they tend to loose color after few washes and the elastic gets loose after awhile.

Instead of jeans, if you want something comfy and not 100% synthetic you could try this:

https://www.decathlon.it/pantaloni-pallavolo-uomo-v100-id_8407975.html

For the food I'm with you, I'm the kind of guy who prefers to eat a sandwich sitting on the grass than going for a 3 courses meal in a posh restaurant, not to save money as I usually splurge on good quality beer and chocolate, just because I enjoy it more.

Hope this helps.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
Leave out the jeans if you want to keep your pack weight down - they are heavy!

Wearing jeans on my first Camino was the greatest mistake I ever made on the Camino. I have very reluctantly come to the conclusion that technical fabrics are the way to go. I gave them to a homeless man in Logrono and bought myself some fine technical pants which kept me all the way.

About Kris85's comments on women; I know too many women with military training to even think that for more than a second. And many of them are on the Camino..... and they will leave the Kris85s of the world in the dust as they speed ahead.
 
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Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
I want to know how all your stuff fits in a 22l pack. Please post pic. I’m impressed.

No problem. I will post pictures later. :) It sounds like a lot, from my list to be - but its really not. I used the 22l pack for a 3 month backpacker trip to Asia with way more stuff than this + a 14 inch laptop.

So, i did some changes after this forum threat.

  • NO jeans, after 924823 votes for no jeans. No jeans it is. ;P
  • I booked a Airbnb in Bayonne for 22 euro, and will then take a early train to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port and start my hike at 9 AM the next day.

In Norway we say "tykke sokker" for THICK socks, a bad translation for warm socks. ;p

Decathlon is great !! Yes. :))
 
D

Deleted member 43780

Guest
No problem. I will post pictures later. :) It sounds like a lot, from my list to be - but its really not. I used the 22l pack for a 3 month backpacker trip to Asia with way more stuff than this + a 14 inch laptop.

So, i did some changes after this forum threat.

  • NO jeans, after 924823 votes for no jeans. No jeans it is. ;P
  • I booked a Airbnb in Bayonne for 22 euro, and will then take a early train to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port and start my hike at 9 AM the next day.
In Norway we say "tykke sokker" for THICK socks, a bad translation for warm socks. ;p

Decathlon is great !! Yes. :))

wow a place in Bayonne for 22 Euro ? interesting...

very interesting....

Who back packs with a 14" notebook? interesting....
and only a 22 L pack to boot?
 

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
wow a place in Bayonne for 22 Euro ? interesting...

very interesting....

Who back packs with a 14" notebook? interesting....
and only a 22 L pack to boot?

Well, i did 3 months in Balkans, europe and central-asia. I type like a 80 year old on a smart phone (i hate smart phones, only use it for GPS and camera) - so to make all my planning, tickets, Chouchsurfing requests, emails, reading news etc. I had had to, and i did not regret it. :)

To touch all this info in a tiny 5 inch mobile screen makes me suicide. Laptop is way better. :))
 

AlwynWellington

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
please see signature
Jeans are very heavy and hard to dry

stay the night in Sjpdp

@Kris85 , lots of good advice above. However:

If you are super-dupa match fit, that's grand. If not, it is most probably best to treat the first week or so as a training trip and expect to have shorter stages. For example Saint-Jean to Valcarlos, then Valcarlos to Roncesvalles and so on.

Jeans and t-shirts and anything cotton would normally be avoided at all costs. The clothes you mention and your talk as an experienced backpacker in cities suggest, to me, that you might train or bus between cities.

If so, then the Camino may become an interesting experience for you.

And, if so, then my wish of kia kaha (take care, be strong, get going) will be most applicable to you.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
Why do you need to allow more than 20 euros a day?
Note that not all albergues have a kitchen, in fact even getting hot water can be tricky. I took teabags and seldom got to use them. You may be lucky, but often not, especially in the cheaper ones
We sometimes did a shared dinner , note the emphasis on shared, everyone contributes.
With the number of people as the Camino, there isn't free food, there are just too many people.
Walking all day can build up an appetite as well, many of us lose weight whilst eating more than normal. Walking every day needs fuel.
Because bathrooms in cafes are used by pilgrims there is , quite rightfully, the need to buy something in order to have access to them.
You may be injured and need rest days, thus taking more days - that can happen to anyone.
 

habanerocat

Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013 Camino Frances
2014 Camino Frances again
2015 The Rheinsteig
Hello :)

4. Toilets at the albergues
I have Crohns disease. I read that you need to leave around 6 AM at the albergues? I need 1-2 hours to get "ready" in the morning, and when i need to use the restroom. I NEED to go! So i cant wait for 5 people to go in front of me. And i always feel so stupid when i ask to jump ahead in the line. This is also one of the reasons why im walking at the low season. Less stress, less people.... and so on.
So my stupid question is - are there a lot of waiting in the morning; to use toilets & showers at the albergues?

Okay, thats it. Thanks for reading my long-long post.

🆒

I think most of your questions have been answered. Here's a few comments.

Generally most people get up and out in the mornings. Most don't bother with any sort of breakfast in the Albergue. People just want to get going. I never saw anybody shower in the morning. Never. Shower when you come in, when the sweat is flowing off you. I'd always be targeting the first town about 5KM away for a coffee and whatever is available to eat.

I always waited around until it was fully bright to leave. This meant I was normally last out, so all the toilets are free. If you wait around for 1-2 hours in the morning you won't have any trouble at all. Most people are up and gone in 15 minutes.
 

Bob P

Member
Camino(s) past & future
First timer, leaving April 3rd from SJPDP
With SJPDP being the "first day", make it a casual full day. The route is beautiful, many opportunities for first contacts and the "change of mind" are worth a full relaxed day.
I am a fast hiker, always have been, but I enjoyed 9 hours on trail the first day and it was great!
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
A morning shower is a rare site and IMHO from a logistics standpoint, if your bag is not completely packed at the time you take the shower, you stand the chance of some bleary eyed pilgrim inadvertently packing some of your stuff in their bag.
 

tomnorth

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: September 24 - October 31 (2015)
View attachment 52508
You right now i guess... hehehe

Just to clarif; before i get killed by angry feminists.

I see nothing wrong with what i wrote. From a early stage, men are the "hunter/provider". Its in our blood. So when we see a young girl who need / can be provided for - its in our blood, biologically speaking. We can talk as much about equality as we want. But it is huge differenses - and this is one of them.

Yes, it can be a benefit to be a young girl out solo on the road. But she is also out for a bigger risk than me, when it comes to to be exploited.

Yeah, i LOVE my Osprey 22 Talon backpack. Its never more than 6-7 kilo. Perfect. :)

Bonus: You dont buy a lot of crap on the road as well, since you dont have space for it. Saving the planet, your wallet and your back. Win/win/WIN. (Win98?)

Hmmm, if i was you davebugg - go with Norwegian Air next time. You will be suprised if you have not used them yet. :) They have a route from Seattle to London


AND, for 450 USD for a round trip. Go go go :)
When you’re already deep in a hole, it’s best to stop digging.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
A morning shower is a rare site and IMHO from a logistics standpoint, if your bag is not completely packed at the time you take the shower, you stand the chance of some bleary eyed pilgrim inadvertently packing some of your stuff in their bag.
To me the biggest problem of a morning shower is not having time for your towel to dry.
A couple of times when I stayed in a private room with towels provided I did splurge on an afternoon shower and a morning shower - such luxury!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2017), Primitivo (2019)
Only the obvious (IMO) from me!

Take a hat and suncream ..
Jeans are very heavy and hard to dry. Not a usual on the caminos.

Also, you won’t have a lot of daylight hours left leaving 2pm from Sjpdp ?
On that stage to Roncesvalles., I would not factor keeping to your normal kph average.
Either stay the night in Sjpdp or Bayonne and recover from your travel.
Buen Camino
Annie

Ps. You don’t have to leave albergues at 6am btw.
Usual time to leave is before 8am but if you choose to stay in a private somewhere (sharing cost possibly with others you meet).. then time will be different again.
Yup, agreed. Jeans are heavy, dry slowly (especially at this time of year). That said, I brought a pair in April 2017, and really enjoyed them at night. Crazy, but my weighty extravagance. Also agree that an overnight in StJean would be best. Take breath, meet some people and start fresh in the morning!
 

bokormen91

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF, Via Podensis, Baztan, Coastal Portugese, sections on others...
You do not need «tech» clothes, a lot of people like them, but no need... I detest dinousaur/plastic clothes and do without... Cotton is heavy, get some wool - perfect opportunity to ask for presents from family/friends in Norway - good deals to be had atm...

Budget - Doable, I just spent 6 weeks otr starting early Jan, finishing mid-Feb, averaged 28 € a day, could have been more if shops/bars/restaurants were open. Mainly stayed in Albergues, splashed out a few times on single/separate accomodation. (And yup, I do eat. Love a good meal!!! Chocolate... Also drink coffee, wine, clara/radler... smoke... - Budget includes vices)

Some places wanted pilgrims to leave by 8, others by 9. Some places only had 1-2 toilets open. If extra time is needed in morning - just ask...

Have a wonderful time... Feminist (too tempting...) greetings-, lykke til på turen, puss & kram mt 🙂
 

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
Thanks for a lot of great answers people !!!

So no morning showers. That would be intersting since i always start the day with a shower, i feel more "fresh" after that - and its a great way to woke up. But it make more sense to shower after arrival in late afternoon; yes! I guess i need to change my 20 year old habbit with showering in the morning. =)

I booked a new train ticket, so i will arrive early in StJean - so i have a soft start on my first day.

I feel quite ready now. Again; thanks a lot for all your answers. =)
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
'CP, Frances,Norte,Salv/prim;Le puy, Inglés, CDM, Invierno, Fin/Mux, Vdlp 2019>Táb/ Prt Levante 2020
Hola Kris @Kris85
Wondering how you went. Have you just walked Day1?

Interested to hear whether the jeans remained in the pack and generally if it all turned out as you expected.

Buen camino
Annie
 

Kris85

Backpacker & traveler
Camino(s) past & future
Planning a trip from Bordeaux to Santiago de Compostela in march, april, may 2019.
Hello.

Yes, im on day 3 now. Jeans was left home, and my backpack ended on comfy 6 kg (8 with some food and water).

I had a fantastic start on the camino, and im now in Pamplona. But even the , nature and everything is perfect my health is not. I wrote before that i have Crohn's, and my stool is not good... so i have a intense diarrhea going on. And that is not nice.

i found a Couchsurfing-host here in Pamplona. I will rest for a couple of days and see how i feel... If not - i cant go to Santiago. My body will say no. And that make me sad to think about.

Anyway, beside this "small" problem. Soooo nice to be here, walking - even i just started. I want to keep walking so bad...... :/
 

Charlotte Helbig

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés Sept. 2017
Camino Portugués May-June 2019
Hello :)

So, i just booked my trip. 9th of March head to Bordeaux, and then with bus to Bayonne. The next day, on the 10th i go with train to SJPdP. The train arrives at 1 PM, so i hope to start my walk before 2 PM. A bit late maybe? But im a fast walker, and will do the first 23 km to Roncesvalles in 5-6 hours.

So, this is my basic newbie questions :)

1. Do i need reservations for the albergues?
I guess since is the low season, i dont need to? Or is it some places that are more critical than others?

2. Budget
What is the minimum budget i should have? Im a experienced backpacker who have been on a budget trip to more than 50 countries, so im used to primitive standards. Is there a "free food shelf" in the albergues, they they usualy have for the hostels around bigger cities around the world? I hope to make it on 20 euro a day, with accommodation and diet.

3. Backpack and equipment
I have a 22 liter backpack i will fill with this:

Clothes
- 3 pairs of underwear and 3 pairs of socks
(I clean 1 pair in the shower with me, in the shower 😆), then a fresh one on. And while the second is drying - i have one in backup.)
(The BEST shoes i have ever used for hiking!!!)
  • 1 jacket (waterproof)
  • 1 waterproof cover for legs
Stuff
  • Wallet
  • Headlight
  • Cell phone with charger
  • Earplugs (for music)
  • Sun glasses
  • Waterproof cover for backpack
  • Hiking cutlery
  • Pen & paper
  • Sleepingbag
  • Towel
Toiletries
  • Soap
  • Tooth brush & paste
  • Deodorant
  • Nail scissors
  • Hand disinfection
  • Toiletpaper
  • Earplugs (for a good night of sleep)
4. Toilets at the albergues
I have Crohns disease, and my ass is like a volcano in the morning. I read that you need to leave around 6 AM at the albergues? I need 1-2 hours to get "ready" in the morning, and when i need to use the restroom. I NEED to go! So i cant wait for 5 people to go in front of me. And i always feel so stupid when i ask to jump ahead in the line. This is also one of the reasons why im walking at the low season. Less stress, less people.... and so on.
So my stupid question is - are there a lot of waiting in the morning; to use toilets & showers at the albergues?

Okay, thats it. Thanks for reading my long-long post.

🆒
Forget the jeans.....too heavy, take too long to dry after washing. You are better off with the hiking pants. I assume they have zip off legs? Also a fleece isn't as heavy as a sweater so would recommend taking a fleece instead. BC
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Forget the jeans.....too heavy, take too long to dry after washing. You are better off with the hiking pants. I assume they have zip off legs? Also a fleece isn't as heavy as a sweater so would recommend taking a fleece instead. BC
You may not have noticed that @Kris85 is already on the Camino, and didn't bring the jeans.
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
'CP, Frances,Norte,Salv/prim;Le puy, Inglés, CDM, Invierno, Fin/Mux, Vdlp 2019>Táb/ Prt Levante 2020
Hi Kris @Kris85
Some tough times for you. I’m hoping you can get some help for your body.
I’m impressed that you fine tuned your backpack weight down to 6kg ..
You have done well with the walk too, considering your health. You’ve experienced the camino now though and if you can’t get all the way on this occasion, you can work on resting before trying to move further just now. Wherever or whenever you feel that it is all you can manage this time ., will be the perfect time to stop and go home (that’s listening to your body)... no shame in returning to finish or even in deciding that was it for you.
Many of us on the forum are thinking of you.
Buen camino
Annie
 

Charlotte Helbig

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés Sept. 2017
Camino Portugués May-June 2019
Forget the jeans.....too heavy, take too long to dry after washing. You are better off with the hiking pants. I assume they have zip off legs? Also a fleece isn't as heavy as a sweater so would recommend taking a fleece instead. BC
You may not have noticed that @Kris85 is already on the Camino, and didn't bring the jeans.
Gee so sorry!
 

twh

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances May/June, 2018
Porto-Muxia-Finisterre Oct (2019)
Good luck Kris, I hope your internals calm down so you can keep moving towards Santiago.
 

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