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Pilgrim Rescue near Roncesvalles 6/1/21

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biarritzdon

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Year of past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
A German pilgrim had to be rescued by helicopter last Wednesday in the snow storm near Roncesvalles. A friend of mine Biarritz says the fine will be 12000 euros.
 
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Bristle boy

If not now...when? If not you...who?...........
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
A German pilgrim had to be rescued by helicopter Sunday in the snow storm hear Roncesvalles. A friend of mine Biarritz says the fine will be 12000 euros.
Good. I'm pleased on both scores.
Edit: The fine was a bit light...I'm not surprised he didn't know he should not have been there.
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
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For at least the last two years pilgrims have been warned that they will be fined heavily if crossing up and over the Napoleon route during winter and until April 1st.
 
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Marbe2

Active member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
I am glad the pilgrim was rescued and that He was fined.

However, I believe we all need to be mindful that rescue personnel put themselves at risk when they have to go out in such severe conditions.
This individual put others at risk by satisfying his own desires. 😟😟

Please when deciding/planning routes, especially in isolated areas, do consider what the consequences of your choices might be when circumstances do not go as planned. Taking an isolated route alone, or not stopping and pushing onward when you are already fatigued, or in poor weather, may not only put you in harms way but others as well.
 
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Bristle boy

If not now...when? If not you...who?...........
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
I am glad the pilgrim was rescued and that He was fined.

However, I believe we all need to be mindful that rescue personnel put themselves at risk when they have to go out in such severe conditions.
This individual put others at risk by satisfying his own desires. 😟😟

Please when deciding/planning routes, especially in isolated areas, do consider what the consequences of your choices might be when circumstances do not go as planned. Taking an isolated route alone, or not stopping and pushing onward when you are already fatigued, or in poor weather, may not nly put you in harms way but others as well.
You've said exactly what I think...I could add a little more but there is no point.
 

danielle aird

La vie est belle
Year of past OR future Camino
May 2018; September 2018; May 2019; Sept (2019)
A German pilgrim had to be rescued by helicopter last Wednesday in the snow storm near Roncesvalles. A friend of mine Biarritz says the fine will be 12000 euros.
Someone died a few years ago in February on that stretch.
You've said exactly what I think...I could add a little more but there is no point.
It is good to remind adventurers of the lives they are risking beside their own.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
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@Pelegrin, interesting to note...The Ibaneta pass is where both the Napoleon and Valcarlos routes join together to head down to Roncevalles. Possibly a person using either route if a rescue is required is fined heavily.

*I have edited and deleted a portion of my post, as @trecile has reminded me that purchasing travel insurance does not cover the the willful act of taking such risks as the man who was fined.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
cf (2), de la plata, cp. (2003 -2018)
It seems that the pilgrim was rescued at Puerto de Ibañeta that is on the Valcarlos route that I think is open the whole year.
The problem was that he didn't have rackets or ski boards, according to the news.

One has to take care even on the Valcarlos route. Previous comments apply. I was there the year all routes were closed when 3 people froze to death on the tops despite frantic efforts by all concerned. A fourth died in hospital after being brought down. I am ex mountain rescue and have carried the dead off in the cairngorms. Always sad.

samarkand.
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Possibly a person using either route if a rescue is required is fined heavily...one reason why it is good to purchase additional insurance, even in warmer months...I always do.
Yes, one should have travel insurance, but it's not going to pay the fine!
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Yes, one should have travel insurance, but it's not going to pay the fine!
Ooops, very true! My insurance plan was to cover if I were to break a leg! 😅 We will be lucky in the future if we can get one to cover covid...but I digress.
 

Bristle boy

If not now...when? If not you...who?...........
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
I don't think insurance companies should be responsible for "bad choices" or "fines".
Perhaps I missed a trick and should have claimed on my car insurance for my speeding ticket.
This story is difficult to comprehend on many levels.
 
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CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
It is because of these extremists that I never promote the "But it's MYYYYYYYYY camino" thing.

I do believe that in its original intent the meaning of that idea was that it was not op to someone else to one's work for the pilgrim, nor to tell him/her/them how to do that work. A sort of "to each their own" with a healthy dose of *responsibility* thrown in, including the responsibility to allow others to pursue pilgrimage even if they snore, or you find them in some way distasteful.

But it has become a sort of individualist/capitalist butchering in which if one can pay the price of admission they seem to think they can demand all their own desires be met, and that others be made to stay away from their "bliss".

I've never felt entitled to a peaceful reverie on Camino, and I don't feel entitled to go in challenging times when the locals have expressly asked us not to. It's not *my* camino (it might be my journey in a philosophical sense). It is *our* camino and eeeejits like this ruin it for everyone because they think the camino belongs to them to conquer and capture.

On my first camino, the hospitalera who did our orientation in SJPdP cautioned us to be humble on the camino, and humble in the face of camino, not to treat it like a conquest of land and region....

Would that more understood that principle.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
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(2015): Astorga-SdC
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(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
One case; two happy endings...

Good choices come from experience. Experience comes from bad choices.
 

Bristle boy

If not now...when? If not you...who?...........
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Surely after all that he has heard and all that has been said, how long would it take before it "sunk in" that this was a very bad idea?
It has taken everyone to be restricted and told what to do to limit a camino which contains so many factors of poor viral containment....and there are still compostellas being issued. This is just not a good look.
 
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Juspassinthrough

in our minds, we're vagabonds, you and I
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Inglés 2019
Leon-Sarria, June (2019)
Camino Aragonés (2023?)
One case; two happy endings...

Good choices come from experience. Experience comes from bad choices.
True @alexwalker but we can’t forget that a little common sense goes a long way.
Happily, no one was injured.
 
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trecile

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One case; two happy endings...

Good choices come from experience. Experience comes from bad choices.
Luckily, two happy endings. Unfortunately, this pilgrim's bad choice led to putting others in a dangerous situation. Good choices can also come from listening to others and using common sense. I don't need to burn my hand in the fire to know that it's a bad idea to put it there.
 
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Marbe2

Active member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
Experience can often be gained through bad choices that were sometimes made as a result of ignorance in the first place, but not intentional...I'll be the first to raise my hand.🙋

Experience can be gained from bad choices, if one survives! In hurricanes in the USA, we now tell people, after prior warnings to evacuate, if they remain in their homes when the flooding comes, they should not expect emergency extraction because it is too dangerous for rescuers to come out.

Not only should there be signs indicating that the Napolean route is closed, but that emergency rescue services along this route are unavailable between November and April. If you choose to go, your on your own.
 
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Felipe

Veteran Member
Yes, as @Glenshiro said, Refugio Izandorre is in the Napoleon. Actually, when you have made to this place, the hard part is done. Just 1.6 km to Lepoeder by a gravel road, and then a 6 kms descent to Roncesvalles, by way of Ibañeta chapel, along a paved road. But a short, pleasant walk may turn into a hell with grim weather, and if you are exhausted.
Bad (and irresponsible) choice...
 
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Bristle boy

If not now...when? If not you...who?...........
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
For me, the positioning of the incident is not important. This walker was in the wrong place at the wrong time and showed an unbelievable ignorance and disregard to the times we live in.
The advice given by the administrator and moderators of this forum was that there should be no camino earlier in 2020, and the situation is much worse since then,
Why has the pilgrims office still been open in St.Jean and the issuing of Compostellas in Santiago and both closed until this pandemic was over and it was safe to do so? Most of the rest of the world has been.
This would have sent out a strong message to those whe even considered it a good idea and also a supportive message to the many who would have loved to be there but due to good sense, sacrifice and restriction made the important decision not to be.
 
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wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2012
The rescue services were, voluntary or paid, formed for the purpose of rescuing people in trouble, if these services start debating whether the person in trouble is there for genuine reasons or through stupidity they may as well disband.
I agree there should be a call out charge but that should be balanced enough to not have people in trouble call because of cost as this will cause loss of life.
 

DebR

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances:
2013; 2014; 2015; 2017; 2018; and counting down to Christmas 2019
I am glad the pilgrim was rescued and that He was fined.

However, I believe we all need to be mindful that rescue personnel put themselves at risk when they have to go out in such severe conditions.
This individual put others at risk by satisfying his own desires. 😟😟

Please when deciding/planning routes, especially in isolated areas, do consider what the consequences of your choices might be when circumstances do not go as planned. Taking an isolated route alone, or not stopping and pushing onward when you are already fatigued, or in poor weather, may not only put you in harms way but others as well.
Quite right.
The way will always be there; no need to jeopardise the lives of others.
Hoping for a personal reprise in 2022, but not at someone else’s peril.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Why is anyone walking the Camino at the moment, seems tome they are selfish individuals
We don't know. The local Navarra newspapers (Diario de Navarra and Noticias de Navarra) don't seem to take any interest in this because they are mum about it.

They are also mum about fines and they are mum about any reimbursement of the cost of the rescue operation.

They just take the twitter feed from the First Responders and flesh it out a bit and that's it. They did mention this time, though, that this part of the trail is off limits for Camino walkers during the winter months and that there are signs that say so.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
BTW, since we discuss this topic every winter, I noticed the tag #GRT in the bomberos' twitter feed (hey, were is @KinkyOne, haven't 'seen' him for ages). It's something new, it stands for the Grupo de Rescate Técnico (GRT) del Servicio de Bomberos de Navarra. I thought at first that it stands for the GR10 trail. ☺️
 
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Marbe2

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2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
For me, the positioning of the incident is not important. This walker was in the wrong place at the wrong time and showed an unbelievable ignorance and disregard to the times we live in.
The advice given by the administrator and moderators of this forum was that there should be no camino earlier in 2020, and the situation is much worse since then,
Why has the pilgrims office still been open in St.Jean and the issuing of Compostellas in Santiago and both closed until this pandemic was over and it was safe to do so? Most of the rest of the world has been.
This would have sent out a strong message to those whe even considered it a good idea and also a supportive message to the many who would have loved to be there but due to good sense, sacrifice and restriction made the important decision not to be.
Your point about closing the offices in well taken, Bristle boy. But, I do not want to second guess French and Spanish officials with regard to their economy....
In addition, ask yourself, how likely it would be for someone, who defies local ordinance, and takes a closed route, clearly marked, not to come on the camino because the pilgrims offices were closed? Surely, the issue is broader. I would think that this pilgrim previously did some checking that accommodations, and/ or supplies would be available in the middle of the winter in a pandemic.
 

Bristle boy

If not now...when? If not you...who?...........
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Your point about closing the offices in well taken, Bristle boy. But, I do not want to second guess French and Spanish officials with regard to their economy....
In addition, ask yourself, how likely it would be for someone, who defies local ordinance, and takes a closed route, clearly marked, not to come on the camino because the pilgrims offices were closed? Surely, the issue is broader. I would think that this pilgrim previously did some checking that accommodations, and/ or supplies would be available in the middle of the winter in a pandemic.
I dont wish to continue a debate on what constitutes a pilgrim..or whether he may, or may not, have visited the office.
It is the broader message I hoped to get across...
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
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The pilgrim's office in Santiago is still open as Ivar mentioned the other day. It is a hopeful ending for many who walk the camino, no matter the season, but having it open during a pandemic seems to encourage walking a pilgrimage when it should be discouraged, in my opinion.
 

Marc S.

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Since 2012: CF, CdN, CP, Salvador, Aragones, Via Regia, Elisabethpfad, Jakobsweg NRW, Jakibspaad.
I dont wish to continue a debate on what constitutes a pilgrim..or whether he may, or may not, have visited the office.
It is the broader message I hoped to get across...

Your broader message is clear by now, I guess. But every winter there is the occasional person walking the Napoleon route when the route is actually closed. So I am not sure how this incident is particularly related to the pandemic situation, and particularly not to the question whether pilgrim offices are open or not.

As much as I am interested in broader messages, I prefer facts.

Why has the pilgrims office still been open in St.Jean and the issuing of Compostellas in Santiago and both closed until this pandemic was over and it was safe to do so?
The pilgrim office in St Jean been closed since October (at least that is what I understand from their website).

This would have sent out a strong message to those whe even considered it a good idea and also a supportive message to the many who would have loved to be there but due to good sense, sacrifice and restriction made the important decision not to be.

Consequently, I think is not is really fair to blame the St Jean office for not sending out stronger messages, or for not being supportive. (and I think it is not correct to make this kind of accusation on a public forum, without checking facts first)
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
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Since Covid-19 has come into our lives, on this forum there will always be two main camps of thought regarding walking, and apparently "never the twain shall meet".
 
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Someone mentioned that there should be a sign notifying closure . There is a very large sign in different languages at the point where you can walk one way for Napoleon or the other for Valcarlos . In fact there are also a couple further up the Napoleon. Plus all the guidebooks, if up to date, give the dates of closure. As well as loads of information on this matter on the WWW

Also the rescue was NOT on the Valcarlos route, which seemingly can also be closed on the Spanish side if the regional government decide to do so . It is within their remit.

This Man was selfish. He could have got away with it as so many do, but he didn't. He quite deliberately put others at risk through his selfishness. Hopefully this experience will help others to make their decisions. Not all experience has to be acquired first hand.
 
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