A donation to the forum removes ads for you, and supports Ivar in his work running it

Ad

Luggage Storage in Santiago

- Ship your things to Santiago, pick them up when you arrive.


Advertisement

Proposed stages for Invierno

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#1
There is lodging available on all these stages. The distances might seem too short to some of you , but it fits the length of time that we want to take and with the Plantar Fasciitis problem that I developed last year on the Primitivo I don't want to risk walking 20+ km stages.
It takes us 2 full days to get to the starting point from Alaska and then we need a full day to sleep and recover :)

1. Ponferrada-Villavieja
2. Villavieja-Las Medulas
3. Las Medulas-Puente de Domingo Florez (very short stage but necessary to make it work)
4. PdDF--O Barco
5. O Barco-A Rua
6. A Rua-Soldon
7. Soldon-Quiroga
8. Quiroga-Labrada (casa rural) Or might go to Pobra do Brollon
9. Labrada-Monforte
10. Monforte-Villariño (casa rural is ¼ mile off the trail)
11. Vilariño- Chantada
12. Chantada-Penasillas (casa rural in San Pedro de Viana will transfer from Penasillas)
13. Penasillas-Rodeiro
14. Rodeiro-Lalin
15. Lalin-Silleda
16. Silleda-Ponte Ulla
17. Ponte Ulla-Santiago

I think that I want to throw in a rest day somewhere-maybe. Then 2 full days in Santiago to meet up with friends who live there and enjoy the town. Then 2 full days to get home. Total of 24 days so I think I'll just take a full month of vacation at this rate :)
Thoughts?
 

Advertisment

#2
There is lodging available on all these stages. The distances might seem too short to some of you , but it fits the length of time that we want to take and with the Plantar Fasciitis problem that I developed last year on the Primitivo I don't want to risk walking 20+ km stages.
It takes us 2 full days to get to the starting point from Alaska and then we need a full day to sleep and recover :)

1. Ponferrada-Villavieja
2. Villavieja-Las Medulas
3. Las Medulas-Puente de Domingo Florez (very short stage but necessary to make it work)
4. PdDF--O Barco
5. O Barco-A Rua
6. A Rua-Soldon
7. Soldon-Quiroga
8. Quiroga-Labrada (casa rural) Or might go to Pobra do Brollon
9. Labrada-Monforte
10. Monforte-Villariño (casa rural is ¼ mile off the trail)
11. Vilariño- Chantada
12. Chantada-Penasillas (casa rural in San Pedro de Viana will transfer from Penasillas)
13. Penasillas-Rodeiro
14. Rodeiro-Lalin
15. Lalin-Silleda
16. Silleda-Ponte Ulla
17. Ponte Ulla-Santiago

I think that I want to throw in a rest day somewhere-maybe. Then 2 full days in Santiago to meet up with friends who live there and enjoy the town. Then 2 full days to get home. Total of 24 days so I think I'll just take a full month of vacation at this rate :)
Thoughts?
Hi, Alaskadiver,
You probably aren’t surprised that I would jump right into this! I think this is a very do-able itinerary and I will have to update the forum guide to reflect these stages. Just a couple of comments.

You might want to think about going further on the first day — to Borrenes. Villavieja to As Médulas has two not insignificant ascents/descents. Ponferrada to Villavieja is very gentle. If you sleep the first night in Borrenes, that would put the first ascent to the castle of Cornatel on day 1 and the second ascent to As Médulas on day 2. And you would have a very do-able walk into As Médulas the next day and could really take advantage of the time to visit the site. I don’t know if you are interested in non-pilgrim stuff, but As Médulas is a UNESCO site and is well worth a long visit (which involves of course a lot of walking around the pretty eerie Mars-like terrain). It is unique, the views are great, and you can walk through some of those channels the Romans built to burst out the gold.

Soldón has those apartments, but know that you would have to bring all your food, etc because there is nothing else there. And it may be a kind of dreary place (I`ve never stayed there, but I have been in contact with the owner of the apartments and she says they will do grocery shopping for you if you contact them ahead of time). The other option to keep the stage short, as I’m sure you know, is the train out and back to Montefuratdo. That has worked for some forum members.

Chantada to Peñasillás is a stage where you might want to see if you can get the casa rural to pick you up at a later point, like on Monte Faro, because that is a pretty easy walk from Chantada to Peñasillás, and the walk up to Monte Faro and down to Rodeiro is longer and harder. Just saying you might be able to split the Chantada to Rodeiro stage up at a place where the two days would be more equal.

And for rest days, I would say either Monforte de Lemos if you like rest days in a city (though it is a very small city) or the casa rural in Torre Vilariño (which has a pool, has an excellent restaurant, and is also very well positioned for a short walk to one of the most iconic viewing spots of the Miño River).

You’ve made a great choice, IMO! Buen camino, Laurie
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#3
I was hoping you’d respond Laurie :)
I definitely want to spend time seeing As Medulas. My original plan was to stay in Borrenes. But you make a good point about that stretch.
Also good advise about Monte Faro. The casa website specifically says pick up at Peñasillas, but it won’t hurt to ask. I’ll make note of your recommendation for the rest day. I want to stay at the casa you named so it works out.

Oh and Soldon-bringing food isn’t a big deal. I can live with dreary for one night :) peace and quiet is always welcomed. I don’t want to bother with the train. But who knows? I might change my mind.

Thanks!
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#4
You might want to think about going further on the first day — to Borrenes. Villavieja to As Médulas has two not insignificant ascents/descents. Ponferrada to Villavieja is very gentle. If you sleep the first night in Borrenes, that would put the first ascent to the castle of Cornatel on day 1 and the second ascent to As Médulas on day 2.
I think that @alaskadiver has a good plan about staying overnight in Villavieja in the new albergue because the steep uphill is before the village. The uphill from Villavieja to Cornatel is really very gentle and that leaves just one (long but not steep) uphill for the second day.
 
#5
I think that @alaskadiver has a good plan about staying overnight in Villavieja in the new albergue because the steep uphill is before the village. The uphill from Villavieja to Cornatel is really very gentle and that leaves just one (long but not steep) uphill for the second day.
Good point Kinky, I wasn’t focusing on the fact that nearly all the Cornatel ascent is before Villavieja. Villavieja was apparently the village where all the serfs lived, so of course it is close! Gronze’s perfil shows it quite clearly if you click on ver perfil. https://www.gronze.com/etapa/ponferrada/medulas

And Villavieja is a beautiful little hamlet, a great place to breathe deeply and enjoy the greenery.

I suppose the only reason to go on to Borrenes on day 1 would be if you felt like visiting the castle, since it wouldn’t be open in early morning after leaving Villavieja. If you do, check opening times carefully, the guide has the current ones. But anyone who definitely wants to visit the castle, let me know and I will confirm the current times with the woman in charge. She is very responsive.

And one more bit of news — two peregrinos have reported seeing the Villvieja mastiff tied up — still barking non-stop but unable to chase you. It apparently has a smaller white sidekick that is not tied up but appears harmless. I agree with those who think that it is sad that this dog has to be tied up, but it had a long history of terrorizing not only peregrinos but also children in the families that rent the two lovely casas rurales in the village.

Alaskadiver, you have probably told us, but remind me when you are going. I know it will be early so you won’t suffer with heat. If it’s early spring, the chiringuito in Soldón definitely won’t be open, but that doesn’t mean you can’t kick back and sit by the river with your own cerveza.
 

Advertisment

#6
If you choose to stay longer at Torre Villariño then besides the pool it is a short taxi ride to Escairón . Maybe another guest can take you there thus saving one fare. However, Escairón is not the most "interesting" village/ town to spend a day in.
Monforte is larger, but Chantada is quainter. There is an open air public swimming pool a river walk and loads of bars, cafes, bakeries etc. Mogay offer a discount for pilgrims.
When is you pilgrimage? I hope not in August, because local fiestas and a National Car rally/hillclimb will see most accommodation reserved by now.
 
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 to 2017
#7
I recommend following Peregrina2000's comments. She is our resident 'expert on the Invierno. I did it in April and her input was invaluable to my planning and execution.

You are doing what I ought to have done...taking enough days to make it manageable. There are a LOT of ups and downs on this route. I made it in 10 days, and should have taken AT LEAST 12 says to make the journey easier on me.

As regards a rest stop, Monforte de Lemos is a small city with every amenity you could need. It is also the final starting place to qualify for the Compostela (vis-a-vis Sarria or Tui).

Slow and easy wins the race too...

Hope this helps.
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#9
Good point Kinky, I wasn’t focusing on the fact that nearly all the Cornatel ascent is before Villavieja. Villavieja was apparently the village where all the serfs lived, so of course it is close! Gronze’s perfil shows it quite clearly if you click on ver perfil. https://www.gronze.com/etapa/ponferrada/medulas

And Villavieja is a beautiful little hamlet, a great place to breathe deeply and enjoy the greenery.

I suppose the only reason to go on to Borrenes on day 1 would be if you felt like visiting the castle, since it wouldn’t be open in early morning after leaving Villavieja. If you do, check opening times carefully, the guide has the current ones. But anyone who definitely wants to visit the castle, let me know and I will confirm the current times with the woman in charge. She is very responsive.

And one more bit of news — two peregrinos have reported seeing the Villvieja mastiff tied up — still barking non-stop but unable to chase you. It apparently has a smaller white sidekick that is not tied up but appears harmless. I agree with those who think that it is sad that this dog has to be tied up, but it had a long history of terrorizing not only peregrinos but also children in the families that rent the two lovely casas rurales in the village.

Alaskadiver, you have probably told us, but remind me when you are going. I know it will be early so you won’t suffer with heat. If it’s early spring, the chiringuito in Soldón definitely won’t be open, but that doesn’t mean you can’t kick back and sit by the river with your own cerveza.
Tentatively looking at trying to get there by May 1st. Starting to walk by 2nd or 3rd. I know it's already pretty hot (to me) in May but we can't make any earlier month work this time around.
I'm not bothered by those hills. I hike on far steeper mountains, we don't have hills in Alaska :) But that being said, I'll always choose the easier of 2 options when temps are as high as the 60s. Don't laugh! that's hot for us who live in the North.

I will make sure to call the castle just before we go and check on the times. I would like to see it if possible.
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#10
Oh, and I would have preferred April but I keep getting told on the Invierno FB forum that it rains a lot during that month. I don't know what "a lot" means to the locals but I guess we'll take their advice.
 
Camino(s) past & future
C Frances 2005, 2007
Le Puy en Velay -SdC 2009
Via de la Plata 2011
gr 653 from Oloron to Puente la Reina 2012
Gr65 from le Puy to Figeac 2013
Irun to Santander 2013
Porto to SdC 2014
Astorga to SdC 2015
#11
I was hoping you’d respond Laurie :)
I definitely want to spend time seeing As Medulas. My original plan was to stay in Borrenes. But you make a good point about that stretch.
Also good advise about Monte Faro. The casa website specifically says pick up at Peñasillas, but it won’t hurt to ask. I’ll make note of your recommendation for the rest day. I want to stay at the casa you named so it works out.

Oh and Soldon-bringing food isn’t a big deal. I can live with dreary for one night :) peace and quiet is always welcomed. I don’t want to bother with the train. But who knows? I might change my mind.

Thanks!
Be aware that if you stay in Borrenes, like I did, and leave early in the morning, As Medulas has not waken up yet when you arrive in the morning, nowhere or nobody to ask where to find the routes to see the sites. So I lost it.
Staying in Villavieja,might be ok, when you see the pictures of the albergue, but it is a rather dead pueblo and the castle on top might be closed when you arrive up there in the morning.
About Soldon: i do not know if you walk alone, but when I went through I was glad I cancelled my booking there and stayed two nights in A Rua, walking to Montefurado with a train back one of the days.
Monforte de Lemos is excellent for a rest day.
About the heat: Started from Ponferrada mid May this year did not exactly melt in hot weather.
Used all my wool and raingears most days.




you walk alone or not but the place Soldon was a bit sad to me, I was glad I cancelled my booking

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1121152407917800/permalink/1856563034376730/
 
#12
I will make sure to call the castle just before we go and check on the times. I would like to see it if possible.
The best place for up to date times, I think, is the website of the Ayuntamiento of Priaranza del Bierzo.
http://www.priaranzadelbierzo.org/2018/05/06/horarios-del-castillo-de-cornatel-2018/
You’ll see an email address there, and I have had many exchanges, always a very prompt response.

Full disclosure, also — the castle doesn’t have much inside, but I go into every castle I can for some reason. I love climbing around, and in this one I remember we could walk up along the ramparts with gorgeous views.
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#13
Question for those of you who have walked recently-With the numbers still so low on this route, will I be able to make reservation just a couple days in advance along the way? Or will I need to commit to certain pensiones months out? On the Primitivo I only made one reservation weeks ahead and the rest we did a day or two ahead.
I'd like to keep some flexibility in the schedule. But then with so few choices (or only 1 in certain places) I'm concerned that we'd arrive and then find that they were full. I want to avoid having to jump around in taxis.
 
Camino(s) past & future
'Portuguese' ' Frances' ' Norte' 'Salvador_prim' ‘le puy’ ‘Inglés’ ‘CDM’ ‘Invierno’ ‘Fin_Mux’
#14
Question for those of you who have walked recently-With the numbers still so low on this route, will I be able to make reservation just a couple days in advance along the way? Or will I need to commit to certain pensiones months out? On the Primitivo I only made one reservation weeks ahead and the rest we did a day or two ahead.
I'd like to keep some flexibility in the schedule. But then with so few choices (or only 1 in certain places) I'm concerned that we'd arrive and then find that they were full. I want to avoid having to jump around in taxis.
I walked the Invierno in April and made my decision daily; of where I wanted to be the following night. So booked (usually by phone) for the following day. I didn’t have problems at all.
Although I had an idea of the stages I thought I’d walk; (lots of good ideas on the forums Invierno guide for recommended stages & accommodation including phone numbers). Sometimes I’d check my ‘maps.me app’ or the wise pilgrims Invierno guide app for accommodation recommendations. I’m glad I hadn’t booked well in advance : it would have taken away my flexibility.
Buen Camino
Annie
 
Last edited:

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#15
I walked the Invierno in April and made my decision daily; of where I wanted to be the following night. So booked (usually by phone) for the following day. I didn’t have problems at all.
Although I had an idea of the stages I thought I’d walk; I’m glad I hadn’t booked well in advance : it would have taken away my flexibility.
Buen Camino
Annie
Exactly what I'm thinking. I have the stages that we want to walk but I don't want to get locked in.
 
Camino(s) past & future
C Frances 2005, 2007
Le Puy en Velay -SdC 2009
Via de la Plata 2011
gr 653 from Oloron to Puente la Reina 2012
Gr65 from le Puy to Figeac 2013
Irun to Santander 2013
Porto to SdC 2014
Astorga to SdC 2015
#16
I had booked in advance. My booking at O Guerra in Rodeiro was cancelled, guess they did not see it was a Sunday when they accepted. My host at Santa Estevo, which was complete with another group the night I stayed there, offered to call to book at the other hostel in Rodeiro two days ahead, and that was OK.Only saw some other pilgrims a couple of times, so I guess there were places to sleep.
I did not really feel locked in by bookng ahead, but that's perhaps me getting older and having walked too many caminos, so now it is more like a holiday.
 

amancio

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Norte, Primit, Salvador, Portug, Aragon, Ingles, VdlP, Leban-Vadin, Fisterra, Invierno
#18
I was hoping you’d respond Laurie :)
I definitely want to spend time seeing As Medulas. My original plan was to stay in Borrenes. But you make a good point about that stretch.
Also good advise about Monte Faro. The casa website specifically says pick up at Peñasillas, but it won’t hurt to ask. I’ll make note of your recommendation for the rest day. I want to stay at the casa you named so it works out.

Oh and Soldon-bringing food isn’t a big deal. I can live with dreary for one night :) peace and quiet is always welcomed. I don’t want to bother with the train. But who knows? I might change my mind.

Thanks!
I would definitely stay in Borrenes, they can tell you which way to go to As Medulas over Orellan and its stunning viewpoint over Las Médulas. Saturno and Soledad will be able to tell you how to follow this route, it has yellow arrows most of the way, and the scenery is really beautiful!
Buen camino!
 
#19
I would definitely stay in Borrenes, they can tell you which way to go to As Medulas over Orellan and its stunning viewpoint over Las Médulas. Saturno and Soledad will be able to tell you how to follow this route, it has yellow arrows most of the way, and the scenery is really beautiful!
Buen camino!
Amancio,
Do you have tracks or some written directions that I could add to the 2019 guide? To explain for those who haven’t walked this camino yet, Amancio found a way from Borrenes to As Médulas that takes you straight up to the top without going first through the little town. You could then either continue on to Puente Domingo Flórez or go down into town to spend the night. Amancio, did you spend the night in As Médulas? I wonder if this route you took converges at some point with the route from Peñalba de Santiago. From these wikiloc tracks,
https://www.wikiloc.com/hiking-trails/las-medulas-penalba-de-santiago-816476 it looks like the route from Peñalba doesn’t go through Orellán but goes close.
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#20
Amancio,
Do you have tracks or some written directions that I could add to the 2019 guide? To explain for those who haven’t walked this camino yet, Amancio found a way from Borrenes to As Médulas that takes you straight up to the top without going first through the little town. You could then either continue on to Puente Domingo Flórez or go down into town to spend the night. Amancio, did you spend the night in As Médulas? I wonder if this route you took converges at some point with the route from Peñalba de Santiago. From these wikiloc tracks,
https://www.wikiloc.com/hiking-trails/las-medulas-penalba-de-santiago-816476 it looks like the route from Peñalba doesn’t go through Orellán but goes close.
There's a map with trails on their website: https://patrimonionatural.org/casas-del-parque/casas-del-parque/casa-del-parque-de-las-medulas

Also, on the topo map that my husband is making of the route, it shows the trail over Orellan and I can see where it would lead into As Medulas. It looks like we will be going from Ponferrada to As Medulas on Day 1 instead of stopping in Villavieja (due to a possible adjustment of schedule). My plan is to stay in As Medulas so we could spend time there the following day and then do a short day to Puente Domingo Florez. But I'm not sure how that is going to work out since they are closed on Sundays. Is the trail open when the center is closed?
 
Last edited:
#21
There's a map with trails on their website: https://patrimonionatural.org/casas-del-parque/casas-del-parque/casa-del-parque-de-las-medulas

Also, on the topo map that my husband is making of the route, it shows the trail over Orellan and I can see where it would lead into As Medulas. It looks like we will be going from Ponferrada to As Medulas on Day 1 instead of stopping in Villavieja (due to a possible adjustment of schedule). My plan is to stay in As Medulas so we could spend time there the following day and then do a short day to Puente Domingo Florez. But I'm not sure how that is going to work out since they are closed on Sundays. Is the trail open when the center is closed?
Hi, alaskadiver, I am pretty sure the center is open on Sundays, but just in the morning. The website indicates that it is, and it would be odd for a tourist attraction in Spain to be closed on Sunday morning. Did you see that written somewhere? This looks like a pretty official website.
http://www.espaciolasmedulas.es/inicio/servicios/. (And for what it’s worth, I though the “aula arqueológica” was a bit more interesting than the other center, but they are both worth seeing, IMO.

In addition to the centers, I think the chance to walk through one of the actual channels was very interesting. It was a euro or two, they gave you helmets and off you went. The entrance was located just beyond the Orellan mirador if you were coming to it from down below in the village.
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#22
Hi, alaskadiver, I am pretty sure the center is open on Sundays, but just in the morning. The website indicates that it is, and it would be odd for a tourist attraction in Spain to be closed on Sunday morning. Did you see that written somewhere? This looks like a pretty official website.
http://www.espaciolasmedulas.es/inicio/servicios/. (And for what it’s worth, I though the “aula arqueológica” was a bit more interesting than the other center, but they are both worth seeing, IMO.

In addition to the centers, I think the chance to walk through one of the actual channels was very interesting. It was a euro or two, they gave you helmets and off you went. The entrance was located just beyond the Orellan mirador if you were coming to it from down below in the village.
I have no idea why I thought it was closed on Sunday :) Maybe I thought that because I had originally thought to be there on Easter Sunday. But now we are looking at the following week. Regardless, the opening time is too late in the morning for us. I'll just have to see it in the evening we arrive.
 

amancio

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Norte, Primit, Salvador, Portug, Aragon, Ingles, VdlP, Leban-Vadin, Fisterra, Invierno
#23
There's a map with trails on their website: https://patrimonionatural.org/casas-del-parque/casas-del-parque/casa-del-parque-de-las-medulas

Also, on the topo map that my husband is making of the route, it shows the trail over Orellan and I can see where it would lead into As Medulas. It looks like we will be going from Ponferrada to As Medulas on Day 1 instead of stopping in Villavieja (due to a possible adjustment of schedule). My plan is to stay in As Medulas so we could spend time there the following day and then do a short day to Puente Domingo Florez. But I'm not sure how that is going to work out since they are closed on Sundays. Is the trail open when the center is closed?
Hi AlaskaDiver, if you want to do Ponferrada As Medulas in one day going over Orellán, beware: we are talking 35 km, 1100 meters of ascent, and quite a bit of descent too. A very demanding stage.
I would definitely stay in Borrenes, where Soledad and Saturno can tell you the way to As Medulas over the Orellán viewpoint. It is partly marked with yellow arrows, and you can also follow the first part of the following track

https://es.wikiloc.com/rutas-senderismo/borrenes-orellan-medulas-borrenes-24200142

It is a beautiful walk over La Chana, then into a gorge/valley, up a river by a beautiful forest all the way to Orellán, then you can follow the Senda de los Conventos from Orellán to the viewpoint.

Once on the viewpoint, you can visit the original galleries the Romans built (worth it!) and then, from the viewpoint, you keep walking to your left on a broad path untill you find the markings for Senderos de las valiñas.

Just follow that singletrack down the forest to some of the most spectacular spots in Las Médulas until you find the village of Las Médulas istself.
 

amancio

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Norte, Primit, Salvador, Portug, Aragon, Ingles, VdlP, Leban-Vadin, Fisterra, Invierno
#24
Amancio,
Do you have tracks or some written directions that I could add to the 2019 guide? To explain for those who haven’t walked this camino yet, Amancio found a way from Borrenes to As Médulas that takes you straight up to the top without going first through the little town. You could then either continue on to Puente Domingo Flórez or go down into town to spend the night. Amancio, did you spend the night in As Médulas? I wonder if this route you took converges at some point with the route from Peñalba de Santiago. From these wikiloc tracks,
https://www.wikiloc.com/hiking-trails/las-medulas-penalba-de-santiago-816476 it looks like the route from Peñalba doesn’t go through Orellán but goes close.
Hola Laurie!

no, the track from Peñalba enters Las Médulas from a different approach.

The track below shows what I followed, when I am back home in a few days I will try to generate my own track, the one I followed, from my mobile app. In the meantime, this one below pretty much follows the same route:

https://es.wikiloc.com/rutas-senderismo/borrenes-orellan-medulas-borrenes-24200142

It is a beautiful walk over La Chana, then into a gorge/valley, up a river by a beautiful forest all the way to Orellán, then you can follow the Senda de los Conventos from Orellán to the viewpoint.

Once on the viewpoint, you can visit the original galleries the Romans built (worth it!) and then, from the viewpoint, you keep walking to your left on a broad path untill you find the markings for Senderos de las valiñas.

Just follow that singletrack down the forest to some of the most spectacular spots in Las Médulas until you find the village of Las Médulas istself.

As I said, in a couple of weeks' time I should be able to generate a track out of my mobile.
 
Camino(s) past & future
cycled from Pamplona Sep 2015;Frances, walked from St Jean 2017.
#25
Wow. Now I really know I want to walk this camino. I sort of have the Porto to Santiago via Muxia pencilled in, but the Invierno would be a good lead in, with some tough walking whilst I was fresh. A couple of questions: what’s the easiest/ most efficient way to get to Ponferrada from either Madrid or Santiago?
Big thankyou’s to all above pilgrims.
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#26
Wow. Now I really know I want to walk this camino. I sort of have the Porto to Santiago via Muxia pencilled in, but the Invierno would be a good lead in, with some tough walking whilst I was fresh. A couple of questions: what’s the easiest/ most efficient way to get to Ponferrada from either Madrid or Santiago?
Big thankyou’s to all above pilgrims.
I'll be going by train from Madrid, which is my preferred mode next to driving myself.
 
Camino(s) past & future
C Frances 2005, 2007
Le Puy en Velay -SdC 2009
Via de la Plata 2011
gr 653 from Oloron to Puente la Reina 2012
Gr65 from le Puy to Figeac 2013
Irun to Santander 2013
Porto to SdC 2014
Astorga to SdC 2015
#27
Hi, alaskadiver, I am pretty sure the center is open on Sundays, but just in the morning. The website indicates that it is, and it would be odd for a tourist attraction in Spain to be closed on Sunday morning. Did you see that written somewhere? This looks like a pretty official website.
http://www.espaciolasmedulas.es/inicio/servicios/. (And for what it’s worth, I though the “aula arqueológica” was a bit more interesting than the other center, but they are both worth seeing, IMO.

In addition to the centers, I think the chance to walk through one of the actual channels was very interesting. It was a euro or two, they gave you helmets and off you went. The entrance was located just beyond the Orellan mirador if you were coming to it from down below in the village.
Nothing was open in As Medulas until 10 in the morning when I arrived there from Borrenes at 8. But a couple of km earlier there was a marked route to the left going to the As Medulas via the sights. I should have taken this route off the camino, but didn't. In town there were no one to ask where to go, so sadly I lost it.
 
Last edited:

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#29
Wow. Now I really know I want to walk this camino. I sort of have the Porto to Santiago via Muxia pencilled in, but the Invierno would be a good lead in, with some tough walking whilst I was fresh. A couple of questions: what’s the easiest/ most efficient way to get to Ponferrada from either Madrid or Santiago?
Big thankyou’s to all above pilgrims.
Bus or train, Mike. From Madrid. SdC is just a little bit closer.
Both options about the same time, 4+hrs approx. Bus might be a bit cheaper but if you lurk for train tickets long enough you can get a bargain.
Oh, and there's always a BlaBlaCar ;)
 
Camino(s) past & future
'Portuguese' ' Frances' ' Norte' 'Salvador_prim' ‘le puy’ ‘Inglés’ ‘CDM’ ‘Invierno’ ‘Fin_Mux’
#30
Wow. Now I really know I want to walk this camino. I sort of have the Porto to Santiago via Muxia pencilled in, but the Invierno would be a good lead in, with some tough walking whilst I was fresh. A couple of questions: what’s the easiest/ most efficient way to get to Ponferrada from either Madrid or Santiago?
Big thankyou’s to all above pilgrims.
Hi Mike
If you’re thinking of doing the Invierno first ., and you’ve got a flight from oz to Madrid ., I’d go for train from Madrid to Ponferrada.

Buen Camino
Annie
 

CaroleH

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP 2006, Portugues 2007;Madrid 2009, Finisterre 2009; Sur and VdlP 2011,2013; Manchego and Madrid 2014; VdlP (parts) 2016; Hospitalero plan 2017.
#31
Hi Alaskadiver,I've just done the Invierno, mostly in short stages, very similar to yours. I too recommend Villavieja for the first night. It's a jolly tough climb up to it and if you are there on a weekend, you can get organised into the fabulous new albergue, if you can find the key!!, then stroll along to visit the castle which is open weekends. I loved that day and it was probably the highlight of a magical camino for me. first camino alone.
The mastiff ... I saw it and it did seem to be tied up. There were other smaller dogs about but no big problems for me in Villavieja, though another pilgrim I spoke to was attacked by a pit bull terrier in Borrenes I think, the following day. And I was attacked by 3 dogs later on... more later. Overall, dogs can be a problem in the Bierzo/Invierno according to some locals I talked to, it's not just the pilgrims who are faced with angry, loose canines. They said locals have been bitten but its a delicate problem for locals to lodge complaints about loose dogs, but as strangers, we can. I do want to lodge a complaint about my attack and I can give exact details of the farm they came from, where the gate was open.

In spite of all that, I loved this camino and learned so much from it, inc conquering my fear of dogs and of being alone.
Laurie I have lots of notes and some updates on the guide. When I get over the jet lag and new first grand child, may I send them to you.... or should I put them on the Forum? The Forum guide was was all I used and it was great. Buen camino ... Carole
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#32
Hi Alaskadiver,I've just done the Invierno, mostly in short stages, very similar to yours. I too recommend Villavieja for the first night. It's a jolly tough climb up to it and if you are there on a weekend, you can get organised into the fabulous new albergue, if you can find the key!!, then stroll along to visit the castle which is open weekends. I loved that day and it was probably the highlight of a magical camino for me. first camino alone.
The mastiff ... I saw it and it did seem to be tied up. There were other smaller dogs about but no big problems for me in Villavieja, though another pilgrim I spoke to was attacked by a pit bull terrier in Borrenes I think, the following day. And I was attacked by 3 dogs later on... more later. Overall, dogs can be a problem in the Bierzo/Invierno according to some locals I talked to, it's not just the pilgrims who are faced with angry, loose canines. They said locals have been bitten but its a delicate problem for locals to lodge complaints about loose dogs, but as strangers, we can. I do want to lodge a complaint about my attack and I can give exact details of the farm they came from, where the gate was open.

In spite of all that, I loved this camino and learned so much from it, inc conquering my fear of dogs and of being alone.
Laurie I have lots of notes and some updates on the guide. When I get over the jet lag and new first grand child, may I send them to you.... or should I put them on the Forum? The Forum guide was was all I used and it was great. Buen camino ... Carole
Thanks Carole. It would be great if you posted your notes on the forum so that the rest of us have them. The next update to the guide probably won't be out until next year.
The dog problem can be handled with some pepper spray, which I plan to buy in Madrid prior to catching the train. Very effective in deterring violent dogs. And before the forum loses their mind, please understand that I carry a gun, a Taser, pepper spray, every day at work. I know what I'm doing ;) I'm not encouraging or recommending that others do this.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Walked: French; Arles; La Puy; Potuguese[ del Salvator & Primitivo...next year: Invierno &
#33
Tentatively looking at trying to get there by May 1st. Starting to walk by 2nd or 3rd. I know it's already pretty hot (to me) in May but we can't make any earlier month work this time around.
I'm not bothered by those hills. I hike on far steeper mountains, we don't have hills in Alaska :) But that being said, I'll always choose the easier of 2 options when temps are as high as the 60s. Don't laugh! that's hot for us who live in the North.

I will make sure to call the castle just before we go and check on the times. I would like to see it if possible.
Thank you for your posting, alaskadiver. I've just seriously decided to walk the invienro next year and enjoy taking my time. Did you use a guide book...which one ?
 
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#34
Thank you for your posting, alaskadiver. I've just seriously decided to walk the invienro next year and enjoy taking my time. Did you use a guide book...which one ?
I haven’t walked it yet. I plan to use the guide on this forum and the maps that my husband is making. He made the maps for the Ingles route that the Confraternity sells.
 

OLDER threads on this topic



Advertisement

Most read today

Most downloaded Resources

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Camino Forum Store

Camino Forum Store

Casa Ivar Newsletter

Forum Donation

Forum Donation
For those with no forum account, it is possible to donate here as well. Thank you for your support! Ivar

Follow Casa Ivar on Instagram

When is the best time to walk?

  • January

    Votes: 7 1.2%
  • February

    Votes: 3 0.5%
  • March

    Votes: 26 4.3%
  • April

    Votes: 94 15.7%
  • May

    Votes: 156 26.0%
  • June

    Votes: 47 7.8%
  • July

    Votes: 12 2.0%
  • August

    Votes: 9 1.5%
  • September

    Votes: 169 28.2%
  • October

    Votes: 66 11.0%
  • November

    Votes: 8 1.3%
  • December

    Votes: 3 0.5%
Top