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Packing for del Norte in June

Lihaseso

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
May 2023
I would like some advice on packing. I start in Irun beginning of June. I’m coming from Arizona where it’s close to a 100 degrees every day so hard to imagine chilly weather. I’m bringing a sweatshirt and rain gear of course but do I need long sleeve shirt?
Also even though I was married to a Asturian for many years I still do not speak Spanish. Terrible I know! :( Will this be a huge obstacle for me? Getting excited and nervous!
 
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Thank you that’s helpful. I’m surprised though that you wear trail runners instead of hiking boot. Is that the norm? I may need to, quickly, rethink my footwear.
 
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Don't rethink your footwear at the last minute.

You will see all types on the Norte. I wore Keen hiking sandals, my wife low cut Meindl trail shoes and the father and son we met most days on the Camino, full blown Meindl mountaineering boots.

Everyone was happy!
 
Ok thanks! I’ve been really chill about this whole trip until just tonight and starting to wonder what I’ve gotten myself into! Hahaha!! It’ll be all good once I get going I’m sure!
 
Don't rethink your footwear at the last minute.
You will see all types on the Norte. I wore Keen hiking sandals, my wife low cut Meindl trail shoes and the father and son we met most days on the Camino, full blown Meindl mountaineering boots.
Opinions vary.
There is so much pavement and asphalt on the Norte (less in the first week), that walking it is considerably more comfortable (and less tiring) wearing a shoe with a foam or airfilled sole. Trail runners are a good option and as you'll see on other threads, Altra and Hoka are probably the most popular brands.
The idea of having to spend weeks 'wearing in' a new pair of shoes is old hat left over from the days of sturdy walking boots. Lihaheso: I'd recommend switching over now.
 
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Very light, comfortable and compressible poncho. Specially designed for protection against water for any activity.

Our Atmospheric H30 poncho offers lightness and waterproofness. Easily compressible and made with our Waterproof fabric, its heat-sealed interior seams guarantee its waterproofness. Includes carrying bag.

€60,-
Ok thanks! I’ve been really chill about this whole trip until just tonight and starting to wonder what I’ve gotten myself into! Hahaha!! It’ll be all good once I get going I’m sure!
You’ll be fine! Buen Camino!
Madis’s list looks a pretty good minimalist one. I didn’t see a poncho on it though which I’d recommend. I got a lot of use out of it on my Norte last June. Weighs next to nothing, cheap, keeps the pack dry, easy (once you get the hang of it) to put on for a shower of rain (common on the Norte) and then take off roll up and stash in an outside pack pocket. I used it way more than my waterproof jacket.
 
Ok thanks! I’ve been really chill about this whole trip until just tonight and starting to wonder what I’ve gotten myself into! Hahaha!! It’ll be all good once I get going I’m sure!
It's an "urban trek" with a few challenges in between towns. If you need anything you don't have, it's, more than likely, easily obtainable along the way. The Camino provides ... there is very little to be concerned about. Buen Camino.
 
Arizona, ah nice and dry. I'm from Idaho a dry heat, not so much on del Norte. LOL I wasn't expecting and don't see it mentioned here, the humidity. Boy howdy, it got me good. Everything was always moist. I had to constantly wipe my hands because they would get really sweaty holding my poles. Just a heads up for you. It's going to be humid.

I started July 5, 2019 from Irun. I don't speak Spanish and I found some not so friendly locals if I didn't. At times, it was very polarizing. I've walked the Frances 2.5 times and it was so different there, more forgiving and helpful hosts, pilgrims, locals to help me communicate. Just have google translate available in situations where it seems difficult.

Foot wear, I wore Coleman country walkers. They were excellent for the constant inclines and declines. Into the mountains, out to the sea, some muddy trails and yes, hard surfaces but oh so beautiful.

Remember, getting there is the hardest part and you're almost there. You'll love it. Buen Camino!
 
Down bag (90/10 duvet) of 700 fills with 180 g (6.34 ounces) of filling. Mummy-shaped structure, ideal when you are looking for lightness with great heating performance.

€149,-
I walked the Norte from Bilbao to Llanes last June after switching from the CF where I walked from SJPDP to Pamplona before extreme heat set in. I wore Hokas and they were great although on the Norte I found rougher terrain than I had experienced on the CF. As others have said, I saw all sorts of footwear so what you are comfortable in will be perfect. I did wonder as I walked the CN if I would have been better off in boots or even had a rock plate in my shoes but not enough to seriously consider changing what I had on. I got a good deal of use with my poncho that covered my pack as well and was easy to store in an outer pocket on my pack. The temps were perfect and the views incredible. I used a Google translate to communicate with people and that worked well enough. I know some Spanish but in Basque Country? That was a whole different thing. Buen Camino! : )
PS I finished my Camino by doing the complete Camino Ingles from Ferrol to Santiago due to time constraints.
 
I walked the Norte from Bilbao to Llanes last June after switching from the CF where I walked from SJPDP to Pamplona before extreme heat set in. I wore Hokas and they were great although on the Norte I found rougher terrain than I had experienced on the CF. As others have said, I saw all sorts of footwear so what you are comfortable in will be perfect. I did wonder as I walked the CN if I would have been better off in boots or even had a rock plate in my shoes but not enough to seriously consider changing what I had on. I got a good deal of use with my poncho that covered my pack as well and was easy to store in an outer pocket on my pack. The temps were perfect and the views incredible. I used a Google translate to communicate with people and that worked well enough. I know some Spanish but in Basque Country? That was a whole different thing. Buen Camino! : )
PS I finished my Camino by doing the complete Camino Ingles from Ferrol to Santiago due to time constraints.
Thank you everyone for your replies! It really helps! It feels a bit daunting at times to do this alone at 65 yrs old but I can feel the camaraderie coming through this forum and I am sure I will find the same along the path! :)
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
Thank you that’s helpful. I’m surprised though that you wear trail runners instead of hiking boot. Is that the norm?
I personally can't imagine wearing boots on any Camino, but it's all personal preference. My preference is hiking sandals.
 
Thank you everyone for your replies! It really helps! It feels a bit daunting at times to do this alone at 65 yrs old but I can feel the camaraderie coming through this forum and I am sure I will find the same along the path! :)
Well said! Good to feel challenged. Alone? You won’t be if you don’t want to be. I started the Norte alone, had my 70th birthday in San Sebastián, by the time I reached Santiago I was in a Camino family of 6. But at times you might want to be alone and that’s ok.
A tip: do everything you can to avoid blisters.
 

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