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Planning tips for Camino de Madrid

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2024 Aragones, Madrid, Portugues Coastal
I was going to suggest leaving in early March because I've read about the heat many times on the forum if you start out too late, but since I have not walked it, I felt I didn't have a voice. I'm glad you have chimed in with great advice.
I will be walking Madrid this year. I will walk the Aragones first starting around October 10. Probably start Madrid on about 19-20. I see you walked it last year. Any pearls of wisdom? Looks like a wonderful, quiet and pretty camino to walk with some really good albergues and donativos, like Ray and Rosa. Really looking forward to it. I did the Aragones once before and finished about October 27 or 8. It was a great time of year to walk. I think it may be tougher after November 1 as it seemed that some of the albergues/donativos I stayed at said they were closing at the end of October. Check out the Aragones you will not regret it.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
I will be walking Madrid this year. I will walk the Aragones first starting around October 10. Probably start Madrid on about 19-20. I see you walked it last year. Any pearls of wisdom? Looks like a wonderful, quiet and pretty camino to walk with some really good albergues and donativos,
My son and I started in Segovia for two nights (loved the aquaduct) in early October last fall and ended in Sahagan. We never saw any pilgrims while walking, but of the five albergues we stayed in there were also 2-5 other pilgrims staying. *My favorite was the muni in Santervas de Campos; a very nice repurposed stone building on two floors and the museum connected to it was a nice surprise. *My second favorite was a newer small 4 bed muni in Huertos, but the one open shower was in the large laundry room, so you had to mop the floor. *My final favorite was a cozy, very quirky hippie type muni with only 3 beds in the tiny town of Penaflor de Hornija. Not super clean, but sufficient and a nice bar was adjacent.

Do not miss the castle in Coco with a really nice self tour, including the climb up its tower.
Also, I enjoyed an overnight side trip to the beautiful city of Valladolid. The large gorgeous park and the Sculpture museum (recommended by @peregrina200) were my favorites, before taking a bus back to the camino.

I really enjoyed this more solitary Camino and it was mostly on trails and the terrain, while being more flat, was quite different than the Frances' meseta, with areas of pine forests, and some old adobe villages that I found very interesting. We had great weather and only one day of rain that I recall. I put my daily musings and pictures on a "Live on the Camino" thread. BTW, no one spoke English, except for the hospitaleros and a few pilgrims in the albergues until we were back in Madrid for three additional days of being tourists.
Hope this helps.🙂

P.S. I was asked a question about the Camino de Madrid, so answered, but now notice it had taken the thread off topic.😐
[Moderator note: Moved this discussion to a new thread]
 
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My son and I started in Segovia for two nights (loved the aquaduct) in early October last fall and ended in Sahagan. We never saw any pilgrims while walking, but of the five albergues we stayed in there were also 2-5 other pilgrims staying. *My favorite was the muni in Santervas de Campos; a very nice repurposed stone building on two floors and the museum connected to it was a nice surprise. *My second favorite was a newer small 4 bed muni in Huertos, but the one open shower was in the large laundry room, so you had to mop the floor. *My final favorite was a cozy, very quirky hippie type muni with only 3 beds in the tiny town of Penaflor de Hornija. Not super clean, but sufficient and a nice bar was adjacent.

Do not miss the castle in Coco with a really nice self tour, including the climb up its tower.
Also, I enjoyed an overnight side trip to the beautiful city of Valladolid. The large gorgeous park and the Sculpture museum (recommended by @peregrina200) were my favorites, before taking a bus back to the camino.

I really enjoyed this more solitary Camino and it was mostly on trails and the terrain, while being more flat, was quite different than the Frances' meseta, with areas of pine forests, and some old adobe villages that I found very interesting. We had great weather and only one day of rain that I recall. I put my daily musings and pictures on a "Live on the Camino" thread. BTW, no one spoke English, except for the hospitaleros and a few pilgrims in the albergues until we were back in Madrid for three additional days of being tourists.
Hope this helps.🙂

P.S. I was asked a question about the Camino de Madrid, so answered, but now notice it had taken the thread off topic.😐
Thanks for all your info. I have walked some pretty quiet caminos and I was expecting no English all the way. I have enough Spanish to be ok. I too love quiet and beautiful caminos. In the last few years I have done the VDLP, Aragones and the Vasco. Next year the Mozarabe and who knows what after that. I am tired of all the crowds. Since I stay in albergues as much as possible I planned on staying at all three of the places you mentioned. Too bad you missed Ray and Rosa in Manzanares. I have heard and read many times how wonderful their donativo is.
I have only one question about this albergue:
Is this the one you stayed at. I ask because you said there were only 3 beds and Gronze says there are 14. They also say to call ahead and that even then the albergue may be closed. What was your experience? Obviously you slept there but did you call/whatsapp the day of your arrival? I have no problem calling as my Spanish is good enough. I was going to call the day before as it is 27k to get there and if closed another 9k more. Way too much for my tired body. If it is a risk I will stop in Cigunuela and then go to Castromonte the next day. I was also planning to sleep in Huertos to break up the long day out of Segovia. I would have preferred to go to Ane but that may be the biggest wildcard of any albergue on any camino. I have heard Ray and Rosa have great Madrid info so hopefully they can add some insight.
 
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My final favorite was a cozy, very quirky hippie type muni with only 3 beds in the tiny town of Penaflor de Hornija.
Gronze says there are 14 beds in 3 rooms. Is it possible that only one room was open when you were there, so you thought there were only 3 beds?

Thanks for your highlights - I've made notes, since this route is at the top of my list.
 
I ask because you said there were only 3 beds
In rechecking my spreadsheet and sequence of photos I'd taken, I see I told you wrong, so I apologize😞. The albergue with 3 beds was in Tamariz de Campos at the muni there. These Gronze photos are identical to my own.
Screenshot_20240610-095916~2.png

Edited to add my photos and one of the bar owner and his dog in the little square that connected it with the tiny albergue. The 3rd bed was in a small loft upstairs. I had to sweep the floor of debris,but I still liked it. We were the only two who stayed, so had the giant apartment to ourselves.😉😂 The food was great, but the bar was to be changing hands soon.
Screenshot_20240610-094743~2.pngScreenshot_20240610-094623~2.pngScreenshot_20240610-094853~2.png
 
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The albergue with 3 beds was in Tamariz de Campos at the muni there.
Thanks for the clarification. Since there are few places to stay on some stages, it is useful to know when one of the albergues has so few beds. Even on an untraveled Camino, one might runs into a "crowd" of 3 other people, so it is good to know what the implications might be!
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
In rechecking my spreadsheet and sequence of photos I'd taken, I see I told you wrong, so I apologize😞. The albergue with 3 beds was in Tamariz de Campos at the muni there. These Gronze photos are identical to my own.
View attachment 172111

Edited to add my photos and one of the bar owner and his dog in the little square that connected it with the tiny albergue. The 3rd bed was in a small loft upstairs. I had to sweep the floor of debris,but I still liked it. We were the only two who stayed, so had the giant apartment to ourselves.😉😂 The food was great, but the bar was to be changing hands soon.
View attachment 172112View attachment 172113View attachment 172114
Thanks so much. Again if my stages break down where I will stay in Tamariz de Campos I will be sweeping 🧹 in that albergue.
 
Here is my "Live in the Camino" thread for the Camino de Madrid for anyone who may be interested in skimming or looking at the pictures I posted.
Also, I just took a screenshot of my spreadsheet distances between the places I stayed. I think my itinerary worked out well. I never taxied or bussed ahead, but do remember skipping a stage or two, as I made a last minute decision to add in the side trip to Valladolid, which I loved and was glad I did it. I had mostly pre-booked everything ahead, so I had to stay on schedule.
All of my stages were very doable and mostly 20km or less and quite flat, and I liked everywhere I stayed; the majority booked on booking.com...for anyone interested for some help with planning shorter stages.
IMG_20240610_125850089~2.jpg
 
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Thanks for all your info. I have walked some pretty quiet caminos and I was expecting no English all the way. I have enough Spanish to be ok. I too love quiet and beautiful caminos. In the last few years I have done the VDLP, Aragones and the Vasco. Next year the Mozarabe and who knows what after that. I am tired of all the crowds. Since I stay in albergues as much as possible I planned on staying at all three of the places you mentioned. Too bad you missed Ray and Rosa in Manzanares. I have heard and read many times how wonderful their donativo is.
I have only one question about this albergue:
Is this the one you stayed at. I ask because you said there were only 3 beds and Gronze says there are 14. They also say to call ahead and that even then the albergue may be closed. What was your experience? Obviously you slept there but did you call/whatsapp the day of your arrival? I have no problem calling as my Spanish is good enough. I was going to call the day before as it is 27k to get there and if closed another 9k more. Way too much for my tired body. If it is a risk I will stop in Cigunuela and then go to Castromonte the next day. I was also planning to sleep in Huertos to break up the long day out of Segovia. I would have preferred to go to Ane but that may be the biggest wildcard of any albergue on any camino. I have heard Ray and Rosa have great Madrid info so hopefully they can add some insight.

They also say to call ahead and that even then the albergue may be closed. What was your experience? Obviously you slept there but did you call/whatsapp the day of your arrival? I have no problem calling as my Spanish is good enough. I was going to call the day before as it is 27k to get there and if closed another 9k more. Way too much for my tired body.
I stayed there October 1st and the Penaflor Albergue is a well equipped albergue just a short walk away from the really great bar in town. The only downside is the albergue doesn’t open until 2pm and the hospitalera won’t answer calls or texts until nearly 2. I think David Tallan or Alan Sykes had better luck getting in earlier, but when I walk it again (2027 maybe?) I’ll call her the day before to verify so I don’t have to be nervous about them being open. In October it was not busy anywhere and there were not any problems getting beds.
 
I stayed there October 1st and the Penaflor Albergue is a well equipped albergue just a short walk away from the really great bar in town. The only downside is the albergue doesn’t open until 2pm and the hospitalera won’t answer calls or texts until nearly 2. I think David Tallan or Alan Sykes had better luck getting in earlier, but when I walk it again (2027 maybe?) I’ll call her the day before to verify so I don’t have to be nervous about them being open. In October it was not busy anywhere and there were not any problems getting beds.
I stayed there on October 16th '23, and arrived at the albergue a little early, so we headed over to that nice bar and had lunch before checking in. It was not very busy and there was plenty of floor space to put our backpacks up against the wall near the table we were sitting at.
 
Hi, lt, a few thoughts. I walked many years ago, but I think these comments are still valid.

I know you are a “walk every step” kind of guy, but I will just say anyway that the exit from Madrid is incredibly painless. No industry, no congestion. Past a hospital, under the ring road, and bam you are in the country. Don’t forget to turn around to see the towers behind you.

In Cercedilla, I have stayed in both the pensión Hostal Aribel Longinos (which has a Civil War history that’s interesting) and the first youth hostel on the way out of town (there are two). When I stayed in the hostel, there was a group of lively middle schoolers, but they put the pilgrms in a separate wing where there were rooms with two beds. In any event, if you are going to go from Cercedilla to Segovia in one day, it’s a long day (especially the many flat kms at the end), and the youth hostel is in a very nice wooded environment. If I were to walk a third time, I would take the detour to La Granja. You can find some good recent threads talking about why that is so nice.

I also loved Valladolid. You can easily walk there from Puente Duero and then walk back to Simancas. But you may not want detours.

Since you always walk in late fall, the brown fields won’t be anything new, but there are kms and kms of emerald green in spring and probably brown in fall.

I think the Madrid has fewer asphalt kms than any other camino I’vd walked. Some on the way out of Madrid is on a paved bike path, but there are very few on-road kms.

I think it’s your kind of camino.
 
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I stayed there October 1st and the Penaflor Albergue is a well equipped albergue just a short walk away from the really great bar in town. The only downside is the albergue doesn’t open until 2pm and the hospitalera won’t answer calls or texts until nearly 2. I think David Tallan or Alan Sykes had better luck getting in earlier, but when I walk it again (2027 maybe?) I’ll call her the day before to verify so I don’t have to be nervous about them being open. In October it was not busy anywhere and there were not any problems getting beds.
Thanks so much for that tip. I was thinking of calling the day before for every albergue even when Gronze says call the day of arrival. You have confirmed to me it is a better idea to call the day before. DId you always call or did you use whatsapp? I was thinking of calling first and if I never receive a response sending a whatsapp message in the afternoon.
 
I was thinking of calling first and if I never receive a response sending a whatsapp message in the afternoon.
I would send a WhatsApp first, and then if there’s no response, try calling.

A forum member walking the Madrid sent me a message telling me he could not make any contact with Ray and Rosa. He said he had tried calling and emailing, but no response. I suggested WhatsApp, and he got a response in a few minutes. The great thing about WhatsApp is that you also have a written record, just in case there are any mixups. The last time I saw this statistic, more than 95% of Spanish cell phones are on WhatsApp.
 
Hi, lt, a few thoughts. I walked many years ago, but I think these comments are still valid.

I know you are a “walk every step” kind of guy, but I will just say anyway that the exit from Madrid is incredibly painless. No industry, no congestion. Past a hospital, under the ring road, and bam you are in the country. Don’t forget to turn around to see the towers behind you.

In Cercedilla, I have stayed in both the pensión Hostal Aribel Longinos (which has a Civil War history that’s interesting) and the first youth hostel on the way out of town (there are two). When I stayed in the hostel, there was a group of lively middle schoolers, but they put the pilgrms in a separate wing where there were rooms with two beds. In any event, if you are going to go from Cercedilla to Segovia in one day, it’s a long day (especially the many flat kms at the end), and the youth hostel is in a very nice wooded environment. If I were to walk a third time, I would take the detour to La Granja. You can find some good recent threads talking about why that is so nice.

I also loved Valladolid. You can easily walk there from Puente Duero and then walk back to Simancas. But you may not want detours.

Since you always walk in late fall, the brown fields won’t be anything new, but there are kms and kms of emerald green in spring and probably brown in fall.

I think the Madrid has fewer asphalt kms than any other camino I’vd walked. Some on the way out of Madrid is on a paved bike path, but there are very few on-road kms.

I think it’s your kind of camino.
Thanks so much. Good to hear it is not a painless exit from Madrid. I was a little worried about that as once we leave a city center it can get progressively worse until you are completely clear of the city. I first thought of staying in the Hostel Arbel. Then I discovered the Villa Castora youth hostel and planned on that one as it is the same price as Arbel and includes breakfast. But when you mentioned the Civil War history...... Not sure what to do. I was planning on staying at the second youth hostel. As it is further up the hill and the stage from Ray and Rosa is short. I will most probably stop by the Hostel Arbel and look around and take a coffee break, buy some food for the next long day and go to the second youth hostel
I have been thinking about the trek to Segovia and may take a right at the fork. I will just have to see how I feel when I get there.
I will have to seriously consider the detour to Valladolid. As you speculated, I am usually a walk and stay on the camino guy. But you and @Camino Chrissy both love it so it is now under advisement. Think it would be pretty easy to get back on the camino after a day there.
I have strong feeling you are right about this being my kind of camino. I am excited to get on it, especially after a lovely start walking the Aragones. I know I will want to get in and out of Madrid as quickly as possible. Thanks again!
 
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I would send a WhatsApp first, and then if there’s no response, try calling.

A forum member walking the Madrid sent me a message telling me he could not make any contact with Ray and Rosa. He said he had tried calling and emailing, but no response. I suggested WhatsApp, and he got a response in a few minutes. The great thing about WhatsApp is that you also have a written record, just in case there are any mixups. The last time I saw this statistic, more than 95% of Spanish cell phones are on WhatsApp.
I usually call because I am lazy and my spoken Spanish is better than my written Spanish but I will use whatsapp thanks
 
Then I discovered the Villa Castora youth hostel and planned on that one as it is the same price as Arbel and includes breakfast. But when you mentioned the Civil War history..

Here is a link to an older thread with some discussion and pictures of the Civil War history in this place.


The article linked to in that post has some historical “now and then” pictures that are interesting.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
I think you mistakenly put a “not” in that sentence. 🤣
Thank you. Now I can add you to my list of people who are keeping me on the straight and narrow. Let's see there is my wife, my kids, her kids, my college friends, my Bronx friends and now you!!!!! You have joined excellent company, welcome!!!!
 
It’s worth calling ahead to let people know you are coming. You often have to collect a key and it makes life easier for everyone if you warn them first. We once waited 3 hrs outside the albergue because the guy with the key was on his tractor and didn’t hear his phone ring,
 
Thanks so much. Again if my stages break down where I will stay in Tamariz de Campos I will be sweeping 🧹 in that albergue.
@It56ny, I stayed there last May, and yes a bit of sweeping was a good idea!😊. But I really enjoyed my stay in this ancient pueblo with its romantic church ruin. Ivan and Alex, who ran the bar and checked me in to the albergue, were lovely people, and I believe someone (maybe @Bachibouzouk) reported that the new folks also gave him a warm reception.
 

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@It56ny, I stayed there last May, and yes a bit of sweeping was a good idea!😊. But I really enjoyed my stay in this ancient pueblo with its romantic church ruin. Ivan and Alex, who ran the bar and checked me in to the albergue, were lovely people, and I believe someone (maybe @Bachibouzouk) reported that the new folks also gave him a warm reception.
What you described here is one of the big reasons I love the quiet Caminos where are not seen all day, every day. Of course there is warmth and generosity on Caminos line the CF and CP. But somehow I feel that your experience you had here, and ones I have had actually feel even more personal and intimate than similar experiences on more popular Caminos. Some say it could be in my head, but that’s just how I feel.
 
Thanks so much for that tip. I was thinking of calling the day before for every albergue even when Gronze says call the day of arrival. You have confirmed to me it is a better idea to call the day before. DId you always call or did you use whatsapp? I was thinking of calling first and if I never receive a response sending a whatsapp message in the afternoon.
I would text using Whatsapp first and if no response then call. Usually I could call using WhatsApp as well. Same thing worked for albergues on the Lana in May. These “isolated” caminos are really enjoyable, there are still occasional peregrinos, but sometimes no peregrino has been to the albergue for 3-4 days so it’s worth giving the person with the keys a heads up!
 
I would text using Whatsapp first and if no response then call. Usually I could call using WhatsApp as well. Same thing worked for albergues on the Lana in May. These “isolated” caminos are really enjoyable, there are still occasional peregrinos, but sometimes no peregrino has been to the albergue for 3-4 days so it’s worth giving the person with the keys a heads up!
You are right about that for sure.
 
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Gronze says there are 14 beds in 3 rooms. Is it possible that only one room was open when you were there, so you thought there were only 3 beds?

Thanks for your highlights - I've made notes, since this route is at the top of my list.
When I was at Penaflor last year - there was only one room open in the albergue, with one set of bunks and maybe 2 or 3 single beds. There is at least one other room, but it is reserved for (I think) seminary students?????? Very nice, at the time new, hospitalera. You definitely need to call or send a message in advance.

If you need wifi -- there is a password on the wall inside the albergue door and you borrow the (weak) signal from a building across the street. I was able to connect sitting on a little wall beside a building that is kitty-corner to the front door.

Re: the apparently great bar in town -- not open on Wednesdays!!!! The other okay, but foodless, bar was open....I think I had a bag of chips for dinner that night. :)
 
When I was at Penaflor last year - there was only one room open in the albergue, with one set of bunks and maybe 2 or 3 single beds. There is at least one other room, but it is reserved for (I think) seminary students?????? Very nice, at the time new, hospitalera. You definitely need to call or send a message in advance.

If you need wifi -- there is a password on the wall inside the albergue door and you borrow the (weak) signal from a building across the street. I was able to connect sitting on a little wall beside a building that is kitty-corner to the front door.

Re: the apparently great bar in town -- not open on Wednesdays!!!! The other okay, but foodless, bar was open....I think I had a bag of chips for dinner that night. :)
We had good luck sitting out front of the albergue and using the “towns” wifi. I noticed at the other bar if your Spanish was good there were other food options, I was able to order a bocadillo, but those fluent were able to get a nice meal from the other bar. I’m surprised that the good bar (Bar Hornija) was closed but I suppose they have to take a day off sometime…

2e255f4e-55ce-4740-934f-ef7839c2d789.jpeg
 
I usually call because I am lazy and my spoken Spanish is better than my written Spanish but I will use whatsapp thanks

Whatsapp actualy has a speak to text option where you speak and it writes in text.
might help if your spoken spanish is better than written


I am looking at doing stages 2-5 this october but a little nervous about the walk into Segovia
 
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Whatsapp actualy has a speak to text option where you speak and it writes in text.
might help if your spoken spanish is better than written


I am looking at doing stages 2-5 this october but a little nervous about the walk into Segovia
Thanks and I did know about the speaking whatsapp. Why I don't use it who knows haha. When it comes to going to Segovia. Yes it is a rough day. I am not sure what I am going to do. I do know I will take lots of food and snacks and water. When I get to the top of the hill I will take a long break. Stretch, take my shoes off, kick back even if it is just on my backpack. Eat and drink. When I get to the fork I will then decide if I will go right to one of the closer towns or try for Segovia. It will be a really long day, either way.
 
Whatsapp actualy has a speak to text option where you speak and it writes in text.
might help if your spoken spanish is better than written


I am looking at doing stages 2-5 this october but a little nervous about the walk into Segovia
That stage to Segovia wrecked my knees, however it may be the most beautiful stage of the Madrid especially once you’re on top.
It was the Roman Road part that was the issue and when I go back in 2026 or 2027 I’ll take what appears to be a forest road “Cordel de Fuenfria” thats off to the side to be kind to my knees. Below are photos of the Roman road, the beautiful part on top and that side road I’ll try next time to avoid the Roman section.
 

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That stage to Segovia wrecked my knees, however it may be the most beautiful stage of the Madrid especially once you’re on top.
It was the Roman Road part that was the issue and when I go back in 2026 or 2027 I’ll take what appears to be a forest road “Cordel de Fuenfria” thats off to the side to be kind to my knees. Below are photos of the Roman road, the beautiful part on top and that side road I’ll try next time to avoid the Roman section.
View attachment 172726
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Yes, and you photos appears to be from one of the smoother sections!
 
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It is a long time since I did that (2017), and certainly the Roman road up to the pass is a bit of a challenge.

Two things might help.

Here is my account of that day. https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/a-short-walk-from-madrid.47865/post-514181

If you stay the previous night in one or other of the two Youth Hostels albergue juvenil (one on the left and one on the right) on the way up out of Cercedilla, rather than in Cercedilla itself you do cut off [well you anticipate] a significant good 2 km of solid climbing on the road. I was (pleasantly) surprised when I got to the top a good bit sooner than I was expecting.

They are listed here https://www.gronze.com/etapa/cercedilla/segovia Villa Castora (where I stayed) and Las Dehesas. There was a hot set meal served, and breakfast was provided in a picnic bag. There was a coffee vending machine for the morning.

And then as you say, there were huge numbers of cyclists to be seen (it was a Sunday in May when I walked) and they are using a cycle track. But although it will be much easier, it looks significantly longer. Swings and roundabouts!

See it here, the 'official' cycle track it is very long. Are you seeing a more direct forest path? (The thin black line is my addition - the regular camino walking path.)

la dehesa.jpg
 
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Oh and I am seeing now that it is clearly marked on Gronze. The first bit, parallel to the roman road is clearly tempting..... but it is quite a lengthy excursion.

Screenshot 2024-06-21 at 08.14.39.png
 
Oh in fact there is a useful note in the "Al loro" section on the Gronze page. So it is an extra 6km.

En lugar de subir por la calzada romana, impracticable para bicicletas, los ciclistas deberán seguir la variante que va por la carretera de la República (o Senda de los Poetas). Es una agradable pista con firme de tierra que, a cambio de pendientes moderadas, alarga el trayecto en unos 6 km hasta coronar el puerto, tras lo cual la bajada es fácil y rapidísima… para ellos.

Instead of going up the Roman road, which is impassable for bicycles, cyclists should follow the variant that goes along the Republic Road (or Path of the Poets). It is a pleasant track with a dirt surface that, in exchange for moderate slopes, lengthens the journey by about 6 km until reaching the pass, after which the descent is easy and very fast... for them. (courtesy of el señor Google)
 
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And of course you could compensate for the long diversion on the cycle path by then taking the diversion through Valsaín and on to La Granja de San Ildefonso and staying there. It is a very interesting place. 7km instead of 11km direct to Segovia. No albergue in La Granja any more (there was in 2016), though there is a Parador 😊.

It is a very easy walk to Valsain and La Granja, and a very easy short walk along a quiet road to Segovia the next day.
 
Yes, and you photos appears to be from one of the smoother sections!
You’re right on that, a lot of it is loose rock about the size of baseballs!
I took that photo trying to capture how steep some of those sections are, and all on rock.
I was thinking about adding La Granja like TIMR said next time. Is that section as beautiful as the section after the Roman Road? (It’s one of my favorites)


IMG_6510.jpegIMG_6507.jpeg
 
Is that section as beautiful as the section after the Roman Road? (It’s one of my favorites)
I think the most beautiful section is the downhill after the top of the pass of Fuenfria. It is a little hard to find the exact turning for the road to Valsaín - you will see a lot of people mentioning that, but it is not difficult to find Valsain, you can see it in the distance. And maybe it is better signposted now?

Your second picture @DTCamino looks very much like the place where I met the bull, if it is on the way donw? Or maybe that is the summit?. https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/a-bovine-incident-todo-toro.47949/

From Valsaín on to La Granja is a country road. All in all it is a very nice days walking.
 
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@timr, I just re-read your bovine incident thread and turned the 2017 "Like" I'd given it into this 😍 because I loved the way you shared your story and much of it really tickled my funny bone this time!
You and @gerardcarey could get together and collaborate to team-tag chapters in a book.😉😆
 
Roman roads are always a challenge to me, and this one was no exception, as I remember noting at the time. It didn't help that it was raining. But it wasn't my knees that I was so worried about. I always found the downhills much more challenging than the uphills for my knees. And, as timr notes above, the downhill for this section was much nicer than the uphill. The sun came out for the downhill in a bit of pathetic fallacy.
 
I think the most beautiful section is the downhill after the top of the pass of Fuenfria. It is a little hard to find the exact turning for the road to Vailsaín - you will see a lot of people mentioning that, but it is not difficult to find Valsain, you can see it in the distance. And maybe it is better signposted now?

Your second picture @DTCamino looks very much like the place where I met the bull, if it is on the way donw? Or maybe that is the summit?. https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/a-bovine-incident-todo-toro.47949/

From Valsaín on to La Granja is a country road. All in all it is a very nice days walking.
It is probably where you met your bull, as it is on the way down!
 
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