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LIVE from the Camino On my way on the Camino del Salvador

phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
Hi folks,

I may be too tired too follow up each day, but here's my day one on the Salvador today.

Very tired, but wanted to share three things that saved my day, all thanks to stuff I learned from the folks on this forum.

Food. Water. Flies (yes, you read that right, flies).

I took the river route to Carabajal and then came onto the road running through the village.

Was forewarned, so ate well before starting. River route was nice, nothing amazing but I'm guessing nicer than pavement.

Thought I'd grab a coffee at Bar Central but not open. I saw this was also the case for other people posting here. Checked the window but no there was no opening hours to share here.

Once you leave this village it's dirt road, then forest track for a loooooong time

So.. water, food, flies

The first place where there was any chance of eating or drinking today was the bar in Cascantes .. so at least 22 km.. I had been warned so was carrying lunch etc and no problem for me but be advised!

The bar at La Seca is closed Tuesdays from September until end June so no joy there today.

From Carabajal until Cascantes it's mainly a rough track though young oak forest.. very exposed if hot and hardly any shade..First water is the ruins of Fuente de Villalbura, just off the Camino but well signposted.. I was ok, but you should check how much you have when you get here cos it's a long walk with no shade until the next fountain in Cabanillas

So bring food, watch your water, and omg after Carabajal the f***ing flies

Again, I picked up something from this forum so packed a headnet I have in my daybag at home.. it saved my day, seriously

For the rest of the day more or less until La Robla I had my own personal cloud of flies (yes, I did shower that morning) trying to go in my mouth, up my nose etc etc.
With the net over my face I could walk without constantly trying to bat them away and pretty soon I forgot they were there... But they were, and they were persistent.. for hours

So.. bring your food for the day (at least).. watch your water.. and pack a head net

I thought it was a lovely day, not easy but not hard, glad to arrive in La Robla and was good, but wouldn't have wanted to go much farther

But then, I had a lot of advice and was organised for food, water, and the ******* flies
 
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josephmcclain

Active Member
Hi folks,

I may be too tired too follow up each day, but here's my day one on the Salvador today.

Very tired, but wanted to share three things that saved my day, all thanks to stuff I learned from the folks on this forum.

Food. Water. Flies (yes, you read that right, flies).

I took the river route to Carabajal and then came onto the road running through the village.

Was forewarned, so ate well before starting. River route was nice, nothing amazing but I'm guessing nicer than pavement.

Thought I'd grab a coffee at Bar Central but not open. I saw this was also the case for other people posting here. Checked the window but no there was no opening hours to share here.

Once you leave this village it's dirt road, then forest track for a loooooong time

So.. water, food, flies

The first place where there was any chance of eating or drinking today was the bar in Cascantes .. so at least 22 km.. I had been warned so was carrying lunch etc and no problem for me but be advised!

The bar at La Seca is closed Tuesdays from September until end June so no joy there today.

From Carabajal until Cascantes it's mainly a rough track though young oak forest.. very exposed if hot and hardly any shade..First water is the ruins of Fuente de Villalbura, just off the Camino but well signposted.. I was ok, but you should check how much you have when you get here cos it's a long walk with no shade until the next fountain in Cabanillas

So bring food, watch your water, and omg after Carabajal the f***ing flies

Again, I picked up something from this forum so packed a headnet I have in my daybag at home.. it saved my day, seriously

For the rest of the day more or less until La Robla I had my own personal cloud of flies (yes, I did shower that morning) trying to go in my mouth, up my nose etc etc.
With the net over my face I could walk without constantly trying to bat them away and pretty soon I forgot they were there... But they were, and they were persistent.. for hours

So.. bring your food for the day (at least).. watch your water.. and pack a head net

I thought it was a lovely day, not easy but not hard, glad to arrive in La Robla and was good, but wouldn't have wanted to go much farther

But then, I had a lot of advice and was organised for food, water, and the ******* flies
Hope to ready more from you. Very authentic sounding!
 

phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
Well, thankfully Bob was right.. no flies on day two :D

Cold start, 7 celcius but that's summer in ireland so I had a grand walk out of La Robla, nice and mainly off road and not too taxing until Pola De Gordon. This has the last supermarket/shop for 50 (yes that's FIFTY) km so I got some bits and pieces. Had coffee in Cafe España, nice place and then off again.

All road from Pola to Buiza.. once you pass Berberinos you're on a main road with not much of a shoulder, and at times needed to be on the wrong side (on the right with back to oncoming cars) because of blind corners. It's not too long, and then onto a minor road all the way to Buiza. No hard shoulder so you're up against the steel barrier but it's a quiet road. Still, didn't enjoy this much at all but read on folks....

Got to Buiza, stuck my head in the door of the albergue to say hi.. looks fine, fair number of beds. Buiza very cute village but nothing there for pilgrims apart from the albergue and a few fuentes.

Speaking of fuentes, FILL UP on water here. You start climbing right out of the village and it's up up up up.. very little shade so you'll need your water.. and there's nothing until St Martin de la Tercia except mountain

I've no words to describe the rest.. I was alone and I would stop, look around, and start laughing at how beautiful this camino is (and I hear day three is even better).. blew me away, I'm still buzzing.. had my lunch at the top of the pass and descended gradually to Poladura. Beautiful but parts are basically goat tracks and might be tricky after heavy rain.

Camino brought me through St Martin de la Tercia and then to Poladura.. looking on Camino ninja and wisepilgrim there appears to be a route that skips St Martin but I couldn't find it. Would be a better route if marked as it would save an unnecessary loop

An amazing day, but to note - this is a hike, in the mountains, so be prepared.. after Buiza it is not a walk.. but it is exquisite

Thanks once again to all on the forum who encouraged me when I was wavering. I'm loving this

PS.. staying in posada el embruja.. lovely but completo today so book ahead

Screenshot_20221005-153915.png
 
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BobY333

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino San Salvador/Primitivo May 2022 (planning!)
Good for you on all counts! I recall that exact same feeling. It really is difficult to put into words. Thanks to Ender for being the force behind this Camino! Keep up the posts - I'm loving them! Vicarious living at its best :)
 
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phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
Good for you on all counts! I recall that exact same feeling. It really is difficult to put into words. Thanks to Ender for being the force behind this Camino! Keep up the posts - I'm loving them! Vicarious living at its best :)
I had the pleasure of meeting the main man himself earlier this evening. I'll put it in the post tomorrow
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances x5, Portuguese VdlP12, Sanabres, Aragones, Norte,Salvador,Primitivo, VdlP 17,Madrid18Norte
Well, thankfully Bob was right.. no flies on day two :D

Cold start, 7 celcius but that's summer in ireland so I had a grand walk out of La Robla, nice and mainly off road and not too taxing until Pola De Gordon. This has the last supermarket/shop for 50 (yes that's FIFTY) km so I got some bits and pieces. Had coffee in Cafe España, nice place and then off again.

All road from Pola to Buiza.. once you pass Berberinos you're on a main road with not much of a shoulder, and at times needed to be on the wrong side (on the right with back to oncoming cars) because of blind corners. It's not too long, and then onto a minor road all the way to Buiza. No hard shoulder so you're up against the steel barrier but it's a quiet road. Still, didn't enjoy this much at all but read on folks....

Got to Buiza, stuck my head in the door of the albergue to say hi.. looks fine, fair number of beds. Buiza very cute village but nothing there for pilgrims apart from the albergue and a few fuentes.

Speaking of fuentes, FILL UP on water here. You start climbing right out of the village and it's up up up up.. very little shade so you'll need your water.. and there's nothing until St Martin de la Tercia except mountain

I've no words to describe the rest.. I was alone and I would stop, look around, and start laughing at how beautiful this camino is (and I hear day three is even better).. blew me away, I'm still buzzing.. had my lunch at the top of the pass and descended gradually to Poladura. Beautiful but parts are basically goat tracks and might be tricky after heavy rain.

Camino brought me through St Martin de la Tercia and then to Poladura.. looking on Camino ninja and wisepilgrim there appears to be a route that skips St Martin but I couldn't find it. Would be a better route if marked as it would save an unnecessary loop

An amazing day, but to note - this is a hike, in the mountains, so be prepared.. after Buiza it is not a walk.. but it is exquisite

Thanks once again to all on the forum who encouraged me when I was wavering. I'm loving this

PS.. staying in posada el embruja.. lovely but completo today so book ahead

View attachment 134176
On the dirt track going towards St Martin on the left, near the ground, is an arrow pointing into the meadow. Easy to miss . I have bypassed St Martin twice now. I agree, wonderful Camino.
 

phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
So day three.. a day of ups and downs quite literally.

Met Ender the previous evening at the Posada, lovely man. Asked about the "short cut" that avoids St Martin and he said it's no problem to walk it it's just the landowner won't allow it to be marked.

Lovely views at the start but then was walking in clouds for a while. Got to the turn for Arbas Del Puerto but didn't seem clear to me. Arrows on pylon seemed to point in wrong direction cos I could see the church at Puerto de Pajares straight ahead

Don't do what I did and go straight ahead.. it looks like a short cut but the way is blocked by barbed wire fence and no way to get over it. Follow the arrows even though it seems wrong!!!

Arrived at the point where you have a choice of Pajares or San Miguel.. took the San Miguel route to head for Llanos.. was going to see how I felt at that stage and maybe continue to Benduenos

After more than 3km and 300+ meters of steep descent on switchbacks (but with lovely views) I round a corner.. and there he was :mad: and he was not happy to see me

Enormous Spanish mastiff, spiked collar, sitting in the middle of what is a very narrow path.. I had virtually no time to react cos he charged me straight away

Lucky I didn't panic and run or things would have probably turned out very badly. I crossed my poles in front of me and he stopped short, snapping and snarling.. no way to pass and he wasn't giving up so I had to turn my back on him, cross the poles behind me, and slowly retreat up the mountain back the way I came, talking very softly pero bueno, tranquilo etc etc

He followed me for more than five minutes, snapping at the poles.. I was terrified and he knew it. Eventually he gave up and I had to climb back up those 300+ meters and take the Pajares route.

It was a horrendous experience.

Got to Pajares, met another peregrino there. He didn't want to stay in the village, I said I'd a reservation in Llanos so he decided to come along.

Got there almost 3 hrs later than planned because of the dog problem. This is going to be the finish for today.

But everything seems shut?

Knock on the door and the hospitalero answers, wearing a mask. Explains he is sick, but he'll honour my reservation. However, he won't take my fellow peregrino

It's 3.30.. I'm tired and still stressed, but I'm not going to leave my new friend on the road.. and I'm not sure about the mask, maybe it's covid.. so time for another plan

I contact Sandra in Benduenos.. she wasn't expecting me that day but we'd been in touch a few times before I left Ireland so she knew who I was. Sandra said, come come, no worries about dinner, it's all ok

Descent from Llanos via the road was grand, and after 4km there's a choice just before Fresnedo.. Stay on road or go up..

My Camino apps both said up, so up we went.. for the first while the track is basically a goat track along a sheer drop and is not in good condition.. I think it would be dangerous if it had rained.. of course, the road may also be dangerous but I can't speak to that.

Then the track becomes ok, nice walk surrounded by trees.. up and down.. and very very long

It's "only" 10 km from Llanos to Benduenos.. and it took 3.5 hours

So after 40 km because of my detour due to the **** dog I arrived at 6.30

Sandra was waiting, what a welcome !! Such a wonderful person, her warmth and good humour washed away the travails of the day and all was good again.

A beautiful albergue run by an amazing human being. I can't say enough good things about Sandra. Had a lovely communal dinner and a fantastic sleep. Even had a lie in and didn't set off for Mieres until 10 am today.

Final note: apparently that dog is known, he has bitten at least one person and the cops were informed.. and yet he was there yesterday!

Having done most of the descent to San Miguel via that route, and then being forced to go to San Miguel via Pajares, I would say the Pajares route is easier - and definitely less chance of becoming dinner
 
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BobY333

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino San Salvador/Primitivo May 2022 (planning!)
Wow - that's quite a day. So sorry to hear about the dog. You may recall I had something very similar happen to me as I came off the highway and made the left just outside of Pajares. I used the same method with my sticks crossed and clicking. I'm glad you didn't have a repeat there! I was alone, so perhaps that dog doesn't bother pilgrims walking together. (Apparently, the spiked collars are so that if wolves attack and go for the dog's neck, they will be deterred).

The Llanos to Bendueños 10km is much longer than you expect, for sure. I'm a 5-6km/hour walker, and it took me about the same time as you. My knees did not like the downhill from Llanos! That was my worst stretch of the entire camino(s).

Bravo to you for sticking with your fellow peregrino! That was quite a commitment after your detour of sorts. And now that I write that, I do wonder if that was a real blessing in keeping that other dog away!

The upside is that you got to experience Sandra's incredible hospitality and really idyllic setting.

Enjoy the last few days of the San Salvador, and look forward to the Primitivo!

Bob
 

phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
I used the same method with my sticks crossed and clicking. I'm glad you didn't have a repeat there! I was alone, so perhaps that dog doesn't bother pilgrims walking together
At home you'd pick up a rock and the dog would run.

However, I had read up on this possibility so I'd know what to do if it happened. I learned that these dogs are built for wolves and have no fear. Threatening one is likely to escalate the situation and be a recipe for disaster.

Update is that the cops were informed yesterday. Didn't want to take a complaint, we'll speak our r boss and he'll sort it out

I'm 5'7 and 70kg or 155 lbs. The dog was bigger than me i.e heavier and could have put his paws on my shoulder and looked me in the face.

Thanks to this forum, I didn't do anything to make the situation worse and eventually was able to emerge unscathed (apart from my underwear :D)

I'd advise everyone - and solo trekkers in particular, to avoid the left turn and instead follow the Pajares sign
 

phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
Day 4 was a late start, chilled in Benduenos until 10.

First few km of the day was nice, walking to Iglesia de Santa Cristina de Lena. The church was open and it was beautiful.

Continued along the river to Pola De Lena and after that was not impressed with the rest of the day.

Rough and dirty route with lots of trash and right along the highway. From Uxo it's much better, and changed to an nice path along the river until you reach Mieres. However, it went on and on for ever and was pretty monotonous.

Stayed in the University, good value, got laundry done, Friday night so the students up late - bit it is their home and no more than I'd expect.

All in all, not an impressive day, and a mainly tedious slog to mieres.

The church was the only real highlight, apart from having nothing try to eat me which was also good
 
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BobY333

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino San Salvador/Primitivo May 2022 (planning!)
I do Bob, and now that I read again I think it's the same route?

View attachment 134359
This was where I went left and about 3+ km later met Cujo
Unfortunately, no - I took the Pajares route from the mountain. Cujo #2 came under the fence at the farm that was just outside of Pajares. You walk through town, go on the main highway for maybe 100m, then make a left down onto the tractor track. Farm with said monster on the right on that corner - looking at Google Earth, I'm pretty sure I can spot him!
 
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Colette Z

Happy Pilgrim
Time of past OR future Camino
CF; Norte; Ingles; Augustine; Portugues Central
So day three.. a day of ups and downs quite literally.

Met Ender the previous evening at the Posada, lovely man. Asked about the "short cut" that avoids St Martin and he said it's no problem to walk it it's just the landowner won't allow it to be marked.

Lovely views at the start but then was walking in clouds for a while. Got to the turn for Arbas Del Puerto but didn't seem clear to me. Arrows on pylon seemed to point in wrong direction cos I could see the church at Puerto de Pajares straight ahead

Don't do what I did and go straight ahead.. it looks like a short cut but the way is blocked by barbed wire fence and no way to get over it. Follow the arrows even though it seems wrong!!!

Arrived at the point where you have a choice of Pajares or San Miguel.. took the San Miguel route to head for Llanos.. was going to see how I felt at that stage and maybe continue to Benduenos

After more than 3km and 300+ meters of steep descent on switchbacks (but with lovely views) I round a corner.. and there he was :mad: and he was not happy to see me

Enormous Spanish mastiff, spiked collar, sitting in the middle of what is a very narrow path.. I had virtually no time to react cos he charged me straight away

Lucky I didn't panic and run or things would have probably turned out very badly. I crossed my poles in front of me and he stopped short, snapping and snarling.. no way to pass and he wasn't giving up so I had to turn my back on him, cross the poles behind me, and slowly retreat up the mountain back the way I came, talking very softly pero bueno, tranquilo etc etc

He followed me for more than five minutes, snapping at the poles.. I was terrified and he knew it. Eventually he gave up and I had to climb back up those 300+ meters and take the Pajares route.

It was a horrendous experience.

Got to Pajares, met another peregrino there. He didn't want to stay in the village, I said I'd a reservation in Llanos so he decided to come along.

Got there almost 3 hrs later than planned because of the dog problem. This is going to be the finish for today.

But everything seems shut?

Knock on the door and the hospitalero answers, wearing a mask. Explains he is sick, but he'll honour my reservation. However, he won't take my fellow peregrino

It's 3.30.. I'm tired and still stressed, but I'm not going to leave my new friend on the road.. and I'm not sure about the mask, maybe it's covid.. so time for another plan

I contact Sandra in Benduenos.. she wasn't expecting me that day but we'd been in touch a few times before I left Ireland so she knew who I was. Sandra said, come come, no worries about dinner, it's all ok

Descent from Llanos via the road was grand, and after 4km there's a choice just before Fresnedo.. Stay on road or go up..

My Camino apps both said up, so up we went.. for the first while the track is basically a goat track along a sheer drop and is not in good condition.. I think it would be dangerous if it had rained.. of course, the road may also be dangerous but I can't speak to that.

Then the track becomes ok, nice walk surrounded by trees.. up and down.. and very very long

It's "only" 10 km from Llanos to Benduenos.. and it took 3.5 hours

So after 40 km because of my detour due to the **** dog I arrived at 6.30

Sandra was waiting, what a welcome !! Such a wonderful person, her warmth and good humour washed away the travails of the day and all was good again.

A beautiful albergue run by an amazing human being. I can't say enough good things about Sandra. Had a lovely communal dinner and a fantastic sleep. Even had a lie in and didn't set off for Mieres until 10 am today.

Final note: apparently that dog is known, he has bitten at least one person and the cops were informed.. and yet he was there yesterday!

Having done most of the descent to San Miguel via that route, and then being forced to go to San Miguel via Pajares, I would say the Pajares route is easier - and definitely less chance of becoming dinner
Thanks, now I’m scared. So the Llanos de Someron Albergue was the Cascoux? I’ve had pleasant email communication with Chanos. Again, In order to AVOID encountering the dog I should NOT take the San Martin option? Much appreciated.
 

phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
Day 5 and a great day. Compared to yesterday I thought the whole walk was really nice, and handy enough although there were three hills so not just a flat walk.

Loved the roman roads after the league marker.. But 1 1/2 leagues was a bit further than expected :D

Seriously though, a nice morning at a steady pace with a nice bit of countryside, where there was road walking it was country roads, thoroughly enjoyed it.

Arrived to Oviedo and it was weddings a go go at the cathedral all day, so could not get in to pick up my Salvadorana until after 4pm.

Delighted to have it (and both arms and legs), but if I was doing this camino again I'd probably skip the section from Pola De Lena to Mieres if I could.

Once again, thank you to everybody who encouraged me when I was wavering.. apart from that 10 km stretch I thought it was a beautiful Camino

I met some amazing people, found out I could "speak" a lot more Spanish than I thought I could, and while I'm going to be sad tonight saying goodbye to some really cool folks, I do have the Primitivo to look forward to.
 

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phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
Thanks, now I’m scared. So the Llanos de Someron Albergue was the Cascoux? I’ve had pleasant email communication with Chanos. Again, In order to AVOID encountering the dog I should NOT take the San Martin option? Much appreciated.
Don't be scared Collette. Yes, Llanos is Cascoux and I had great communication with him too until the day I arrived in Llanos, but the guy was sick so fair enough - I'm not a people person when I'm ill. The mask could have been for any reason and he probably didn't want the hassle of an extra person to feed when he was feeling terrible himself. Had it been just me there wouldn't have been a problem.

So just check in with him a day ahead of time to be sure yourself that all is ok and it'll be good.

And yes, I would absolutely avoid the direct San Miguel option if alone.

After Puerto de Pajares you cross into Asturias. There's a gate by an electricity pylon and then you head downhill to a highway.. it will be very obvious when you get there, you'll go "ah, this is the place".

You cross the highway (not a problem) and within a minute or two you will see the sign giving you two options.

Swing left for San Miguel (the path I met the dog on) or go straight ahead for Pajares... And from Pajares you go to San Miguel (via a different route) and then to Llanos etc

Having done both, I think the Pajares route is far easier, dog or not

If you are still nervous about Llanos, just go to Pajares and then you could go the next day Benduenos.. I cannot say enough good things about Sandra, you won't be disappointed
 
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Colette Z

Happy Pilgrim
Time of past OR future Camino
CF; Norte; Ingles; Augustine; Portugues Central
At home you'd pick up a rock and the dog would run.

However, I had read up on this possibility so I'd know what to do if it happened. I learned that these dogs are built for wolves and have no fear. Threatening one is likely to escalate the situation and be a recipe for disaster.

Update is that the cops were informed yesterday. Didn't want to take a complaint, we'll speak our r boss and he'll sort it out

I'm 5'7 and 70kg or 155 lbs. The dog was bigger than me i.e heavier and could have put his paws on my shoulder and looked me in the face.

Thanks to this forum, I didn't do anything to make the situation worse and eventually was able to emerge unscathed (apart from my underwear :D)

I'd advise everyone - and solo trekkers in particular, to avoid the left turn and instead follow the Pajares sign
Don't be scared Collette. Yes, Llanos is Cascoux and I had great communication with him too until the day I arrived in Llanos, but the guy was sick so fair enough - I'm not a people person when I'm ill. The mask could have been for any reason and he probably didn't want the hassle of an extra person to feed when he was feeling terrible himself. Had it been just me there wouldn't have been a problem.

So just check in with him a day ahead of time to be sure yourself that all is ok and it'll be good.

And yes, I would absolutely avoid the direct San Miguel option if alone.

After Puerto de Pajares you cross into Asturias. There's a gate by an electricity pylon and then you head downhill to a highway.. it will be very obvious when you get there, you'll go "ah, this is the place".

You cross the highway (not a problem) and within a minute or two you will see the sign giving you two options.

Swing left for San Miguel (the path I met the dog on) or go straight ahead for Pajares... And from Pajares you go to San Miguel (via a different route) and then to Llanos etc

Having done both, I think the Pajares route is far easier, dog or not

If you are still nervous about Llanos, just go to Pajares and then you could go the next day Benduenos.. I cannot say enough good things about Sandra, you won't be disappointed
Thanks for the reassurances. Sandra closes Benduenos Oct 15 until March 2023 hence my reserving at Someron. Anyway, I plan to call ahead 24 hours to assure my bed is still available. Plus praying to meet another pilgrim. Thanks again.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2022
Day 5 and a great day. Compared to yesterday I thought the whole walk was really nice, and handy enough although there were three hills so not just a flat walk.

Loved the roman roads after the league marker.. But 1 1/2 leagues was a bit further than expected :D

Seriously though, a nice morning at a steady pace with a nice bit of countryside, where there was road walking it was country roads, thoroughly enjoyed it.

Arrived to Oviedo and it was weddings a go go at the cathedral all day, so could not get in to pick up my Salvadorana until after 4pm.

Delighted to have it (and both arms and legs), but if I was doing this camino again I'd probably skip the section from Pola De Lena to Mieres if I could.

Once again, thank you to everybody who encouraged me when I was wavering.. apart from that 10 km stretch I thought it was a beautiful Camino

I met some amazing people, found out I could "speak" a lot more Spanish than I thought I could, and while I'm going to be sad tonight saying goodbye to some really cool folks, I do have the Primitivo to look forward to.
Thank you for your story and congratulations on arriving in Oviedo. Nice filmclip! Good luck on the Primitivo.
 
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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Continued along the river to Pola De Lena and after that was not impressed with the rest of the day.
Ender has marked a new route that avoids that awful road. If you had done it on a weekday, it would have been a lot busier and much more dangerous. I’d say it was one of the 5 or 6 most dangerous roads I’ve walked on my Caminos.

Too late for you of course but for anyone coming behind you, look at pages 60-62 of Ender’s guide.

That incident with the dog sounds awful. I had never heard of dog incidents on the Salvador before. I’ll see if Ender has any information.

Buen camino, Laurie
 

LavanyaLea

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances (May/June 2022)
Again, In order to AVOID encountering the dog I should NOT take the San Martin option? Much appreciated.
I took the Pajares route about a week before Phil/OP did the Salvador, no vicious dog there. Track can be narrow and slippy and there was one segment going into the Forrest where it was muddy and my friend slipped and fell on his bum but all okay. So just take your time, don’t rush. There were cows and horses grazing on the fields.
That incident with the dog sounds awful. I had never heard of dog incidents on the Salvador before. I’ll see if Ender has any information.
Laurie, I think you may have received messages from other pilgrims about this. I only have second hand info, but all the pilgrims stories corroborate the same picture - basically about 2 weeks ago an American woman was bitten by a dog, Sandra tried to help her contact the police etc, and since then she has been harassed by the dog owner including getting her car window smashed. It’s so terrible. I hope if Ender has some godfather-like power in that area he can mediate something between the locals…
 

Colette Z

Happy Pilgrim
Time of past OR future Camino
CF; Norte; Ingles; Augustine; Portugues Central
Ender has marked a new route that avoids that awful road. If you had done it on a weekday, it would have been a lot busier and much more dangerous. I’d say it was one of the 5 or 6 most dangerous roads I’ve walked on my Caminos.

Too late for you of course but for anyone coming behind you, look at pages 60-62 of Ender’s guide.

That incident with the dog sounds awful. I had never heard of dog incidents on the Salvador before. I’ll see if Ender has any information.

Buen camino, Laurie
Yes hoping Ender can notify us here about the dog at the farm entering Pajares.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Laurie, I think you may have received messages from other pilgrims about this. I only have second hand info, but all the pilgrims stories corroborate the same picture - basically about 2 weeks ago an American woman was bitten by a dog, Sandra tried to help her contact the police etc, and since then she has been harassed by the dog owner including getting her car window smashed.
Yes hoping Ender can notify us here about the dog at the farm entering Pajares.

I was walking till Sunday and haven’t been as plugged in as usual. I have bits and pieces of several stories, but I did not know that the dog incident was connected with the window smashing incident.

I also have some more info on the alleged bed bug incident in La Robla. Ender has been to El Mundo and there is no sign of bed bugs anywhere. I will also try to get more details on this because there are inconsistencies. If anyone knows who this pilgrim is, it’d be great to have more specific info.

One last question —is it possible that the two dog incidents involve the same dog, though they occurred at different places?
 

BobY333

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino San Salvador/Primitivo May 2022 (planning!)
My dog incident happened just outside of Pajares on the far end of town. It sounds like Phil's was near San Miguel. So, I doubt ours was the same dog. I'm not sure where the American woman had her incident.

Not all of these dogs are fierce! There's a huge one right as you get to Sandra's in Bendueños, and he's a friendly, happy, big beast with that same spiked collar.
 
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LavanyaLea

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances (May/June 2022)
I also have some more info on the alleged bed bug incident in La Robla.

If anyone knows who this pilgrim is, it’d be great to have more specific info.
I’m walking the Primitivo with this pilgrim who claimed to get bed bugs in Pension Mundo a week ago on Friday. I’ll ask him if he’s happy to be contacted and will DM you his details.

Likewise about the pilgrim bitten by a dog, if she’s happy to be contacted I’ll DM you her details.
 

BobY333

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino San Salvador/Primitivo May 2022 (planning!)
@peregrina2000 did you encounter the problem of flies on day 1 Leon to La Robla? Don’t want to buy a head net unless necessary Thanks
it seems to be a pretty consistent problem on that day. I had them in May, and when I wrote about it I recall other people saying they had the same issue on earlier Caminos. I didn't have a head net, and didn't find it necessary. They were annoying, but fortunately it was only for one day!
 

LavanyaLea

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances (May/June 2022)
@peregrina2000 did you encounter the problem of flies on day 1 Leon to La Robla? Don’t want to buy a head net unless necessary Thanks
I did too! Mid Sept (2weeks ago). I was walking with a friend and the flies seemed to prefer me and was following only me in circles!

I also had problems with mosquitos - this continued on the Primitivo too until mid way, maybe a combination of cooler weather now plus going into larger places (Lugo) stopped the mozzy problems. I didn’t need my insect repellent in May for Frances and nearly ditched it from my pack, glad I didn’t! But then again I’m still getting bitten so 😅
 
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Jeff B

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, Primitivo, Fisterre and Ingles
Well, thankfully Bob was right.. no flies on day two :D

Cold start, 7 celcius but that's summer in ireland so I had a grand walk out of La Robla, nice and mainly off road and not too taxing until Pola De Gordon. This has the last supermarket/shop for 50 (yes that's FIFTY) km so I got some bits and pieces. Had coffee in Cafe España, nice place and then off again.

All road from Pola to Buiza.. once you pass Berberinos you're on a main road with not much of a shoulder, and at times needed to be on the wrong side (on the right with back to oncoming cars) because of blind corners. It's not too long, and then onto a minor road all the way to Buiza. No hard shoulder so you're up against the steel barrier but it's a quiet road. Still, didn't enjoy this much at all but read on folks....

Got to Buiza, stuck my head in the door of the albergue to say hi.. looks fine, fair number of beds. Buiza very cute village but nothing there for pilgrims apart from the albergue and a few fuentes.

Speaking of fuentes, FILL UP on water here. You start climbing right out of the village and it's up up up up.. very little shade so you'll need your water.. and there's nothing until St Martin de la Tercia except mountain

I've no words to describe the rest.. I was alone and I would stop, look around, and start laughing at how beautiful this camino is (and I hear day three is even better).. blew me away, I'm still buzzing.. had my lunch at the top of the pass and descended gradually to Poladura. Beautiful but parts are basically goat tracks and might be tricky after heavy rain.

Camino brought me through St Martin de la Tercia and then to Poladura.. looking on Camino ninja and wisepilgrim there appears to be a route that skips St Martin but I couldn't find it. Would be a better route if marked as it would save an unnecessary loop

An amazing day, but to note - this is a hike, in the mountains, so be prepared.. after Buiza it is not a walk.. but it is exquisite

Thanks once again to all on the forum who encouraged me when I was wavering. I'm loving this

PS.. staying in posada el embruja.. lovely but completo today so book ahead

View attachment 134176
Agree with your comment on the route to St. Martin - just finished the del Salvador and I tried to find the shortcut but there was nothing even remotely obvious while using GPS.
 

DMaynard

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
My first Camino will be the Frances on 18Apri2022
Well, thankfully Bob was right.. no flies on day two :D

Cold start, 7 celcius but that's summer in ireland so I had a grand walk out of La Robla, nice and mainly off road and not too taxing until Pola De Gordon. This has the last supermarket/shop for 50 (yes that's FIFTY) km so I got some bits and pieces. Had coffee in Cafe España, nice place and then off again.

All road from Pola to Buiza.. once you pass Berberinos you're on a main road with not much of a shoulder, and at times needed to be on the wrong side (on the right with back to oncoming cars) because of blind corners. It's not too long, and then onto a minor road all the way to Buiza. No hard shoulder so you're up against the steel barrier but it's a quiet road. Still, didn't enjoy this much at all but read on folks....

Got to Buiza, stuck my head in the door of the albergue to say hi.. looks fine, fair number of beds. Buiza very cute village but nothing there for pilgrims apart from the albergue and a few fuentes.

Speaking of fuentes, FILL UP on water here. You start climbing right out of the village and it's up up up up.. very little shade so you'll need your water.. and there's nothing until St Martin de la Tercia except mountain

I've no words to describe the rest.. I was alone and I would stop, look around, and start laughing at how beautiful this camino is (and I hear day three is even better).. blew me away, I'm still buzzing.. had my lunch at the top of the pass and descended gradually to Poladura. Beautiful but parts are basically goat tracks and might be tricky after heavy rain.

Camino brought me through St Martin de la Tercia and then to Poladura.. looking on Camino ninja and wisepilgrim there appears to be a route that skips St Martin but I couldn't find it. Would be a better route if marked as it would save an unnecessary loop

An amazing day, but to note - this is a hike, in the mountains, so be prepared.. after Buiza it is not a walk.. but it is exquisite

Thanks once again to all on the forum who encouraged me when I was wavering. I'm loving this

PS.. staying in posada el embruja.. lovely but completo today so book ahead

View attachment 134176
I'm following your journey. I'm heading to the Primitivo in April and decided to add on the San Salvador! After watching Efrin's YouTube on the San Salvador I was worried about the trail being overgrown.
 

DMaynard

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
My first Camino will be the Frances on 18Apri2022
So day three.. a day of ups and downs quite literally.

Met Ender the previous evening at the Posada, lovely man. Asked about the "short cut" that avoids St Martin and he said it's no problem to walk it it's just the landowner won't allow it to be marked.

Lovely views at the start but then was walking in clouds for a while. Got to the turn for Arbas Del Puerto but didn't seem clear to me. Arrows on pylon seemed to point in wrong direction cos I could see the church at Puerto de Pajares straight ahead

Don't do what I did and go straight ahead.. it looks like a short cut but the way is blocked by barbed wire fence and no way to get over it. Follow the arrows even though it seems wrong!!!

Arrived at the point where you have a choice of Pajares or San Miguel.. took the San Miguel route to head for Llanos.. was going to see how I felt at that stage and maybe continue to Benduenos

After more than 3km and 300+ meters of steep descent on switchbacks (but with lovely views) I round a corner.. and there he was :mad: and he was not happy to see me

Enormous Spanish mastiff, spiked collar, sitting in the middle of what is a very narrow path.. I had virtually no time to react cos he charged me straight away

Lucky I didn't panic and run or things would have probably turned out very badly. I crossed my poles in front of me and he stopped short, snapping and snarling.. no way to pass and he wasn't giving up so I had to turn my back on him, cross the poles behind me, and slowly retreat up the mountain back the way I came, talking very softly pero bueno, tranquilo etc etc

He followed me for more than five minutes, snapping at the poles.. I was terrified and he knew it. Eventually he gave up and I had to climb back up those 300+ meters and take the Pajares route.

It was a horrendous experience.

Got to Pajares, met another peregrino there. He didn't want to stay in the village, I said I'd a reservation in Llanos so he decided to come along.

Got there almost 3 hrs later than planned because of the dog problem. This is going to be the finish for today.

But everything seems shut?

Knock on the door and the hospitalero answers, wearing a mask. Explains he is sick, but he'll honour my reservation. However, he won't take my fellow peregrino

It's 3.30.. I'm tired and still stressed, but I'm not going to leave my new friend on the road.. and I'm not sure about the mask, maybe it's covid.. so time for another plan

I contact Sandra in Benduenos.. she wasn't expecting me that day but we'd been in touch a few times before I left Ireland so she knew who I was. Sandra said, come come, no worries about dinner, it's all ok

Descent from Llanos via the road was grand, and after 4km there's a choice just before Fresnedo.. Stay on road or go up..

My Camino apps both said up, so up we went.. for the first while the track is basically a goat track along a sheer drop and is not in good condition.. I think it would be dangerous if it had rained.. of course, the road may also be dangerous but I can't speak to that.

Then the track becomes ok, nice walk surrounded by trees.. up and down.. and very very long

It's "only" 10 km from Llanos to Benduenos.. and it took 3.5 hours

So after 40 km because of my detour due to the **** dog I arrived at 6.30

Sandra was waiting, what a welcome !! Such a wonderful person, her warmth and good humour washed away the travails of the day and all was good again.

A beautiful albergue run by an amazing human being. I can't say enough good things about Sandra. Had a lovely communal dinner and a fantastic sleep. Even had a lie in and didn't set off for Mieres until 10 am today.

Final note: apparently that dog is known, he has bitten at least one person and the cops were informed.. and yet he was there yesterday!

Having done most of the descent to San Miguel via that route, and then being forced to go to San Miguel via Pajares, I would say the Pajares route is easier - and definitely less chance of becoming dinner
My biggest fear 😫 And since I'll be solo this sounds worrisome!!
 

Colette Z

Happy Pilgrim
Time of past OR future Camino
CF; Norte; Ingles; Augustine; Portugues Central
Those bug nets can be a lifesaver if you are a fly hater like me. Inexpensive and lightweight so even if you don't need it, it seems like a worthwhile addition to the gear. Ours fits over our hats.
Found one today super light. Is just the mesh without the hat. Probably won’t need it but 🤷‍♀️
 

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phildimashq

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CP coastal then central then spiritual June 22
Hi folks, been offline for a good bit.

Just to give two clarifications..

The dog is/was on the route to San Miguel from Puerta de Pajares and not on the route to Pajares. I understand he is known, and Sandra told me he has bitten someone before. We went to the cops, not interested.

The other is the route from.La Pena.. it was off road so I'm assuming it is the route marked by Ender (I would not have liked to be on that road), I simply didn't like it although grateful to be separated from the traffic.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
My biggest fear 😫 And since I'll be solo this sounds worrisome!!
A formal denuncia/complaint has been filed about the well-known dog on the way to San Miguel. The police are now involved. So things may change before you go. This dog appears to be located on or near the route directly to San Miguel, avoiding the town of Pajares. I have always walked to Pajares, and by all accounts that route is dog-free.

@BobY333 is talking about another dog. This one was encountered leaving Pajares. I have asked @BobY333 for more info and will contact Ender about this one. So it may also be a non-issue before you walk.

I’ve walked the Salvador four times and have thankfully never had an issue, but of course it can happen on any route.
 

Colette Z

Happy Pilgrim
Time of past OR future Camino
CF; Norte; Ingles; Augustine; Portugues Central
A formal denuncia/complaint has been filed about the well-known dog on the way to San Miguel. The police are now involved. So things may change before you go. This dog appears to be located on or near the route directly to San Miguel, avoiding the town of Pajares. I have always walked to Pajares, and by all accounts that route is dog-free.

@BobY333 is talking about another dog. This one was encountered leaving Pajares. I have asked @BobY333 for more info and will contact Ender about this one. So it may also be a non-issue before you walk.

I’ve walked the Salvador four times and have thankfully never had an issue, but of course it can happen on any route.
Thanks for the reassurances. I hope to meet Enders in La Robla and get an update. Thanks again.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances; Aragones; VdlP; Madrid-Invierno; Levante
I am in Leon, after completing my two week stint as a hospitalera at Gaucelmo in Rabanal. I am getting rested and ready to walk the San Salvador, starting on Monday. I hope to avoid flies, dangerous dogs and any other hazards of the route. I should enjoy meeting any others walking the route at the same time. And "Buen camino" to all.
Albertagirl
 
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Colette Z

Happy Pilgrim
Time of past OR future Camino
CF; Norte; Ingles; Augustine; Portugues Central
I am in Leon, after completing my two week stint as a hospitalera at Gaucelmo in Rabanal. I am getting rested and ready to walk the San Salvador, starting on Monday. I hope to avoid flies, dangerous dogs and any other hazards of the route. I should enjoy meeting any others walking the route at the same time. And "Buen camino" to all.
Albertagirl
Good luck Louise, I hope we will meet. I start from Leon this coming Friday, if you’re doing shorter days/distances maybe we’ll meet on the Salvador. I hope to arrive in Oviedo Oct 26 staying two nights at Hospedaria de Oviedo and start Primitivo the 28 or 29th October.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances; Aragones; VdlP; Madrid-Invierno; Levante
Good luck Louise, I hope we will meet. I start from Leon this coming Friday, if you’re doing shorter days/distances maybe we’ll meet on the Salvador. I hope to arrive in Oviedo Oct 26 staying two nights at Hospedaria de Oviedo and start Primitivo the 28 or 29th October.
That sounds very much like my plan, except that I am starting a little ahead of you. I want to spend more time in Oviedo, so we are likely to overlap. I, too, shall be continuing to Santiago on the Primitivo.
 

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