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Review of Wise Pilgrim Guide

Discussion in 'Pilgrim Books' started by William Marques, Apr 21, 2017.

  1. William Marques

    William Marques Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

    Jan 10, 2005
    Likes Received:
    London UK
    I was given a copy of the Wise Pilgrim Guide to the Camino Frances.

    I am reviewing this from a desk not the on Camino so cannot tell if there are any mapping mistakes etc.

    It is the right size :) small and compact and will easily fit in a pocket or pack outer compartment.

    It is light :) not too many pages.

    It is just a guide :) with route maps and elevations at the front and local maps and accommodation following.

    There is none of the general advice that takes up so much space on normal guide books and which you come to this forum for anyway.

    The accommodation information seems detailed and accurate, as far as I can tell, and up to date.

    I am not sure why the elevations and maps do not start and finish at the same point on those pages but it is a design quibble rather than a fault.

    Were I going to tackle the CF this year I would take this and also make sure I had access to a different sort of guide which covered the history and architecture/art along the way in more detail, others may care more about the wildlife or botany etc.
  2. Stacey Wittig

    Stacey Wittig Stand at the crossroads and look

    Jan 4, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Flagstaff, Arizona
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Leon-Santiago (2005)
    Arles-Toulouse (2006)
    St. Jean Pied de Port-Burgos (2008)
    Lourdes-Santiago (2015)
    Le Puy-Santiago (2016)
    Camino Primitivo (2017)
    I bought the Camino Primitivo WisePilgrim app for my phone. I may use it while walking the CP next week...if it transfers to my phone after I change SIM card. It has a few more places to stay than does the Confraternity of St James CP guide which I will be updating and editing as I walk.
    natefaith likes this.
  3. Rick M

    Rick M Active Member

    Dec 12, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Vancouver, Canada
    Camino(s) past & future:
    April ('16,'18)
    Looking at the website, a note caught my eye about the maps in this guide:

    Oh, and North is always at the top.

    This is one of those things that you either care about or you don't. For me that was my only serious quibble with the other guide, and reason enough for me to check this one out. If you are a "map rotator" by nature, you won't like it. If north is always present in your mind, this is how you want the maps printed.
  4. trecile

    trecile Veteran Member Donating Member

    Feb 19, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Southern Oregon
    Camino(s) past & future:
    August - September(2016)SJPDP - Finisterre
    July - August (2017) - SJPDP - Muxia - Finisterre
    Once you buy an app it's yours, whether you change phones or sim cards, though you may have to download it again.
  5. KiwiBrownz

    KiwiBrownz New Member

    Jun 2, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Camino(s) past & future:
    This sounds great, can you buy this guide in France? or SJPP? Living at the bottom of the world (New Zealand) any guides apart from Brieley are hard to come by.
  6. natefaith

    natefaith Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

    Aug 25, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Santiago de Compostela, Spain
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Sarria-Santiago (2009)
    León-Ponferrada (2014)
    Camino Inglés (2017)
  7. grayland

    grayland Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

    Dec 29, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Camino(s) past & future:
  8. ivar

    ivar Administrator Staff Member Donating Member

    Oct 12, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Santiago de Compostela, Spain
  9. wayfarer

    wayfarer Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Co. Clare. Ireland
    Camino(s) past & future:
    SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
    Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
    SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
    Like William I read through this guide at home, not on Camino and I would agree with him in his assessment. Good size to fit in a cargo pocket or in the pack and good practical information. The only con I would have is the North Up maps, as I am a track up person I would prefer the maps Track Up but that's just me. A very good guide IMO.
    grayland likes this.
  10. Fletchonides

    Fletchonides Member

    Feb 3, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Camino(s) past & future:
    SJPdP - Pamplona (2014)
    Pamplona - Burgos (2016)
    Burgos - Leon (June 2017)
    I have just returned from walking Burgos to Leon, using the Wise Pilgrim guide. We had photocopied the pages from the Brierly guide which we used in previous years, but rarely looked at them.

    We used the Wise Pilgrim guide all the time and found it brilliant. Some key points:
    1. They deliberately don't show 'stages' to discourage the Brierly factor.
    2. The maps at the front show the overall route, with distances between each town, so you have to add up the distances of what you are going to do. The price of not showing 'stages'.
    3. The number 1 thing that we used all the time is that they show a small map of each town /village you pass through, so you can see the route, where the albergues are etc. Immensely useful.
    4. The options for routes are shown clearly, and the turnoffs and consequences described well. Even on the overall map at the start it shows "17.5km with no water or services".
    5. The albergues and Casa Rurals are clearly shown and contact details
    6. Its a little sparse on extra details, and as the review above suggested, there is a limited amount of architectural information. We found that a benefit, as it cut down the weight.

    Next time we will definitely bring this, and probably not the relevant Brierly pages.
    Jean françois, SYates and ivar like this.

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