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Reviews about Orisson

Gareth Griffith

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
SJPdP to Santiago de Compestela in May(2016)
I was reading the reviews about Orisson on TripAdvisor and although they are written in English, French and Spanish I could follow them all without the use of the Google translate ( I am smartarse aren't i?). They are great because some of them highlight how self absorbed some people are but also because the owner doesn't take criticism lying down and gives his own response to any poor reviews. There is some poor person from NY that feels the place is inadequate because there isn't a menu to cater for his own particular food intolerance. The owner highlights the fact that it isn't a five star hotel but a refuge in the middle of the mountains that he is running. I am booking a night there on the 13th April and look forward to meeting him.
Can anyone really criticise a place that can only open for part of the year and offer the deal he is offering for 33 euros a night?
 
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Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances; Aragones; VdlP; Madrid-Invierno; Levante
Orisson does provide for basic vegetarian meals. Myself and another pilgrim ate there last fall. If you have other dietary needs, the Gite Kayola about 800 metres down the road provides a kitchen where you can bring your own food and cater for yourself. This is also booked through Orisson.
 

ShellsG

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (Sept/Oct. 2015)
My only criticism of Orrison was the god awful sewage smell that wafted into the rooms. It was really hot so between the heat, the lack of air movement and the smell I cannot say I enjoyed Orrison. It was also where my Keens were stolen from the shoe rack so that didn't help, 3 days into my holiday and no place to be able to replace them for several more.
 

Gareth Griffith

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
SJPdP to Santiago de Compestela in May(2016)
Orisson does provide for basic vegetarian meals. Myself and another pilgrim ate there last fall. If you have other dietary needs, the Gite Kayola about 800 metres down the road provides a kitchen where you can bring your own food and cater for yourself. This is also booked through Orisson.
It really tickled me, the owner says they cater for veggies and for people with a gluten intolerance in his response to this review so it did make me wonder about what sort of food intolerance this sad New Yorker was complaining that Orisson didn't cater for. The reviews that Orisson gets with just a one star speak volumes about the writers and their lack of understanding of a) where the refuge is, b) what a refuges is c) no comprehension of what being a pilgrim entails and finally d) the bloke is trying to run a business not a charity!
 
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Mark Lee

Guest
My only criticism of Orrison was the god awful sewage smell that wafted into the rooms. It was really hot so between the heat, the lack of air movement and the smell I cannot say I enjoyed Orrison. It was also where my Keens were stolen from the shoe rack so that didn't help, 3 days into my holiday and no place to be able to replace them for several more.
ha ha...yeah, that's where someone filched my Oakley sunglasses off of my pack last year. I stopped for a break there, put down the pack with the sunglasses clipped on the side, went to get some coffee and bam...no mas sunglasses when I got back. Less than 3 hours on the Camino and I got taken advantage of. Took me a few days to find another decent set at a reasonable price. They are almost a necessity when walking the Camino on bright and sunny days.I cannot imagine what a pain in the....having your shoes stolen must have been.
 
Past OR future Camino
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
Can anyone really criticise a place that can only open for part of the year and offer the deal he is offering for 33 euros a night?
I saw a couple being thrown out of an albergue (not Orisson.) Upon inquiring I found out that the owner was not happy about the couple's squabbling when arriving but he just wouldn't take it when the husband complained about the private room they would get for 5 euros each.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
The Camino attracts all kinds of people. It usually sorts them out and changes everyone for the better. However, Refuge Orisson is on the first day. As the above posts indicate, the learning curve is as steep as that first day's walk. There are still too many people who have not acclimated to the Camino, its "rules," customs and mores that early on.

The theft complaints do not surprise me, as most people are starting out and may be on their first Camino. You should also know that Orisson is a popular lunch location for locals, because of the fabulous deck with drop-dead beautiful vistas of the Pyrenees. It looks like Switzerland, on the cheap. So, there may well be some locals in the mix, who are not attuned to the Camino spirit. Who knows? I do not.

At that point, most new pilgrims have not yet learned to respect others and their property too. That said, hanging anything valuable exposed outside your rucksack (like Oakley sunglasses) a camera, smart phone, GPS, etc. anywhere, and anytime, is like flashing a neon sign that reads "take me!"

I believe it is an unfortunate down side to human nature. So, do not be surprised if you fail to cover these items up, keep them on your person at all times, and something goes walkabout on you. I suppose it was an expensive lesson learned...

The boot theft issue is more problematic. It does occur along the Camino but is rare and sporadic. Other forum threads contain methods to decrease the likelihood of theft. But briefly stated, some easy ways to minimize hiking boot theft include:
  • Place your boots at a low level, in a corner of the rack. Boots at eye-height are easier to "scope out." If they are easy for you to spot and keep and eye on, so too for someone with adverse intent.
  • Tie and double-knot the boots together, and include the shoe rack if possible so taking them is not an easy, casual, or unplanned event. You KNOW the boots are attached to the rack and to each other, the potential thief does not; OR,
  • Attach a small, cable-style, combination luggage lock to eyelets in both boots. This makes the act of theft pointless unless you also have a tool box handy to cut the cable. I saw this last year and thought it very clever.
  • Change out your standard boot laces for neon-colored orange, yellow or safety lemon lime, or even a bright electric blue or sky blue. This makes your boots unique and easy to spot....and less likely to be chosen by the thief. It has the added effect of making you more visible while walking on roads.
A combination of the above will very nearly ensure that your boots will not be accidentally or intentionally misappropriated. The least that will happen is that a person will think twice or look elsewhere. The worse that will happen is that they will grab at your boots a pull the entire rack to the floor, thus drawing attention to the theft.

The list used to include a first suggestion to simply remove the laces each night. But that was removed because: (a) it takes added time in the morning to lace up, and (b) a person replacing their boots with your boots can simply take the lace-less boots and use their laces once they are down the road and around the bend. So, that idea was removed. But the other ideas have all been seen while on repeated Caminos and I have used some of the others. I like the luggage lock idea.

This flows into my related recommendation about auxiliary shoes. Typically, a pilgrim will carry shower sandals or flip-flops to wear while showering (prevents catching a foot fungus). However, and it is something to consider, would this sole pair of extra footwear suffice if you found yourself having to walk in them because something unplanned happened to your boots or hiking shoes?

My suggestion is that you consider spending a bit more in carried weight in favor of wearing something like Crocs, Telic, or Xeroshoes, waterproof sandals. They are all lightweight (around 500 grams or a pound for the pair, except the Telic flip flops, which are like orthopedic flip-flops and weigh far less) and are supportive enough to wear as primary footwear for a day or two, until you can get to a shoe store to replace purloined boots or shoes. I have all three. The Crocs are heaviest but are the most comfortable for walking. The Xeroshoes Z-Trek sandal is something totally new and is intended for barefoot trail running. But it does suffice for the Camino. My personal predilection is for the Telic über flip-flops, molded shower slides, or Crocs.

I hope this helps.
 
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ELHS220

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Francés - 2015, 2017
Norte (Oviedo Costa) - 2018
Finisterre/Muxía - 2018
Norte - (2019)
My only criticism of Orrison was the god awful sewage smell that wafted into the rooms. It was really hot so between the heat, the lack of air movement and the smell I cannot say I enjoyed Orrison. It was also where my Keens were stolen from the shoe rack so that didn't help, 3 days into my holiday and no place to be able to replace them for several more.
I was always afraid to lose my shoes. I did not have a second pair. As a result, I almost always kept them with me. At Roncesvalles I was made to put them on a rack before going upstairs, but I quickly retrieved them when prying eyes were off me. I pretty much followed that routine everywhere I went.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
I was always afraid to lose my shoes. I did not have a second pair. As a result, I almost always kept them with me. At Roncesvalles I was made to put them on a rack before going upstairs, but I quickly retrieved them when prying eyes were off me. I pretty much followed that routine everywhere I went.
You do realize that you are introducing foot fungi, odors and whatever manure you may have walked through during the day into the sleeping area.
 
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biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
Tom,
As you normally do, you have made some brilliant suggests about everyday security of boots, sandals and extraneous stuff hanging one's backpack.
As sad as it is there are some sticky fingered opportunist walking the Camino but please don't lump the locals into that group. I have occasionally taken friends visiting from overseas to Orisson for a lunch and the view and the parking area is so small it does not cater to more than 2 or 3 cars, not very inviting to hordes of locals.
Jean-Jacques does not allow overnight parking and dinner is limited to pilgrims spending the night.
It's unfortunate someone experience a sewage odor, I never have. Given they are limited to a septic tank for disposal and if a large number of people showered with soaps and shampoos that inhibit the aerobic action of the system, voila!
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
Don has a very valid point, and I second his notion.

For the benefit of all, if anyone is inclined to "sneak" their hiking shoes or boots into the sleeping area PLEASE be considerate of your fellow pilgrims and place them in a plastic bag (like from a shop) first.

Personally, I carry an inexpensive "vegetable" scrubbing brush in a waist-belt tool pouch, and try to find a puddle, hose, or other standing pool of water at the end of each day to stomp in and swish around, to clean the bottom and sides of my boots off. As I prefer private lodgings, where the boots can come into my room, I also have access to a shower for additional cleaning if necessary.

Walking the Camino during the day, I have also been known to seek out puddles, drainage ditches, streams and rivers to immerse my waterproof boots to the ankles to rinse them, especially after coming though a small farm hamlet with more cows than people... Clean boots are happy boots...

At the end of my Camino, in Santiago, the boots are thoroughly rinsed, the soles scrubbed with the brush, using soapy water, air dried, then packed into my return luggage in a plastic bag, or worn on board the flight home. I anticipate being asked to step aside by the CBP (US) inspectors responsible for agricultural protection inspections. I always tell them where I have been, what I have been doing, and how I prepared my boots to bring them home. If they want to disinfect them, fine by me. But usually, they just wave me through.

I hope this helps.
 
Last edited:

Pruden

Pilgrim of life
Past OR future Camino
October 2012 Camino Francés Sarria /Santiago.
November 2013 Camino Francés
León to Sarria
June 2014 Camino Francés San Juan Pie de Port to Logroño.
November 2016 Camino Frances ,Logroño to León.
The Camino attracts all kinds of people. It usually sorts them out and changes everyone for the better. However, Refuge Orisson is on the first day. As the above posts indicate, the learning curve is as steep as that first day's walk. There are still too many people who have not acclimated to the Camino, its "rules," customs and mores that early on.

The theft complaints do not surprise me, as most people are starting out and may be on their first Camino. You should also know that Orisson is a popular lunch location for locals, because of the fabulous deck with drop-dead beautiful vistas of the Pyrenees. It looks like Switzerland, on the cheap. So, there may well be some locals in the mix, who are not attuned to the Camino spirit. Who knows? I do not.

At that point, most new pilgrims have not yet learned to respect others and their property too. That said, hanging anything valuable exposed outside your rucksack (like Oakley sunglasses) a camera, smart phone, GPS, etc. anywhere, and anytime, is like flashing a neon sign that reads "take me!"

I believe it is an unfortunate down side to human nature. So, do not be surprised if you fail to cover these items up, keep them on your person at all times, and something goes walkabout on you. I suppose it was an expensive lesson learned...

The boot theft issue is more problematic. It does occur along the Camino but is rare and sporadic. Other forum threads contain methods to decrease the likelihood of theft. But briefly stated, some easy ways to minimize hiking boot theft include:
  • Place your boots at a low level, in a corner of the rack. Boots at eye-height are easier to "scope out." If they are easy for you to spot and keep and eye on, so too for someone with adverse intent.
  • Tie and double-knot the boots together, and include the shoe rack if possible so taking them is not an easy, casual, or unplanned event. You KNOW the boots are attached to the rack and to each other, the potential thief does not; OR,
  • Attach a small, cable-style, combination luggage lock to eyelets in both boots. This makes the act of theft pointless unless you also have a tool box handy to cut the cable. I saw this last year and thought it very clever.
  • Change out your standard boot laces for neon-colored orange, yellow or safety lemon lime, or even a bright electric blue or sky blue. This makes your boots unique and easy to spot....and less likely to be chosen by the thief. It has the added effect of making you more visible while walking on roads.
A combination of the above will very nearly ensure that your boots will not be accidentally or intentionally misappropriated. The least that will happen is that a person will think twice or look elsewhere. The worse that will happen is that they will grab at your boots a pull the entire rack to the floor, thus drawing attention to the theft.

The list used to include a first suggestion to simply remove the laces each night. But that was removed because: (a) it takes added time in the morning to lace up, and (b) a person replacing their boots with your boots can simply take the lace-less boots and use their laces once they are down the road and around the bend. So, that idea was removed. But the other ideas have all been seen while on repeated Caminos and I have used some of the others. I like the luggage lock idea.

This flows into my related recommendation about auxiliary shoes. Typically, a pilgrim will carry shower sandals or flip-flops to wear while showering (prevents catching a foot fungus). However, and it is something to consider, would this sole pair of extra footwear suffice if you found yourself having to walk in them because something unplanned happened to your boots or hiking shoes?

My suggestion is that you consider spending a bit more in carried weight in favor of wearing something like Crocs, Telic, or Xeroshoes, waterproof sandals. They are all lightweight (around 500 grams or a pound for the pair, except the Telic flip flops, which are like orthopedic flip-flops and weigh far less) and are supportive enough to wear as primary footwear for a day or two, until you can get to a shoe store to replace purloined boots or shoes. I have all three. The Crocs are heaviest but are the most comfortable for walking. The Xeroshoes Z-Trek sandal is something totally new and is intended for barefoot trail running. But it does suffice for the Camino. My personal predilection is for the Telic über flip-flops, molded shower slides, or Crocs.

I hope this helps.
Very good and practical recommendations!!
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
Can't say I chalked up the loss of my sunglasses to some confused pilgrim who hadn't yet learned the rules of the Camino or how to respect other people's stuff. o_O
I just wrote it off as reality. The Camino has thieving idiots on it, just as everywhere else. Don't trust everyone to do the right thing.
Anyway, I often took the insoles out of my hiking shoes as a deterrent. Not saying it would work 100% of the time, but I figured no thief would want shoes with no insoles.
 
Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
My only criticism of Orrison was the god awful sewage smell that wafted into the rooms. It was really hot so between the heat, the lack of air movement and the smell I cannot say I enjoyed Orrison. It was also where my Keens were stolen from the shoe rack so that didn't help, 3 days into my holiday and no place to be able to replace them for several more.

Oh my! I'm so sorry that happened to you.:eek:
Unfortunately, it is happening more and more. :(
 
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Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
You do realize that you are introducing foot fungi, odors and whatever manure you may have walked through during the day into the sleeping area.

I don't think that's a huge issue if you're carrying the shoes.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
Can't say I chalked up the loss of my sunglasses to some confused pilgrim who hadn't yet learned the rules of the Camino or how to respect other people's stuff. o_O
I just wrote it off as reality. The Camino has thieving idiots on it, just as everywhere else. Don't trust everyone to do the right thing.
Anyway, I often took the insoles out of my hiking shoes as a deterrent. Not saying it would work 100% of the time, but I figured no thief would want shoes with no insoles.
Hey, Mark I've been meaning to return those glasses to you for 2 years.:D. Just kidding!
 

Ahhhs

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
SJPdP to Santiago, May 2015
Porto to Santiago, April 2016
Muxia-Finisterre-Santiago, April 2016
Camino Del Norte, April 2017
I really liked Orisson. The communal dinner was great and a lot of fun.
It was a lovely place to stop, rest, and reflect on the first day out.
 

Americanperegrino

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Oct 2012
May 2016
I use lace locks on my boot laces. When I put the boots in the rack, I use the lacelocks to attach the boots and trekking poles together. Really makes it a mess to steal the whole convoluted mass, and kinda obvious to try. Little known Camino fact: Bob, the very first peregrino, had his sandals and walking stick stolen. So.....

Back to the original post. Booked it in 2012 and got there about 9am. Had a coffee and decided to keep going. So, I cancelled my stay and moved on. Looked like a decent place though and booked it again this May.
 
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Felipe

Veteran Member
I phoned to Orisson from Saint Just Ibarre, a day before I arrived to SJPP. No answer, so I recorded a message. They never called back.
Apparently, this is not the way they manage reservations, although its phone number appears in the contact form.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
Do NOT be put off regarding staying at Refuge Orisson! The problematic issues several of us have related above are very sporadic and rare. With a little advance planning and sensible precautions, your stay will be memorable, in a positive manner. This facility is a WONDERFUL way to start your Camino from St. Jean Pied de Port.

I would plan to stay there for any future Camino I do starting from St. Jean.

After walking that first, very steep 8 or so kilometers, many pilgrims enjoy staying their first night here. The deck across the road is wonderful, the views are memorable and worth seeing again and again. The camaraderie at dinner is singularly unique and helps you form your "Camino Family" for the remainder of the month or so you will be on the Camino. The facilities are equal to most albergues along the way. There are better, and there certainly are worse. But, on balance Refuge Orisson represents an excellent value for money.

Bear in mind that this is the most severe, steep climb of the entire Camino Frances. While there are other high elevations, all of the vertical ascents are far more gradual and gentle (a relative term indeed).

One way for folks who have mobility issues or who are unable to walk that steep ascent, to manage the first two days is to use Express Bourricot to obtain a ride, from St. Jean Pied de Port to Refuge Orisson, or part-way there. Alternatively, some folks take a ride to the Cross at the top of the road, beyond Orisson, where the path goes off-road heading across the Spanish frontier and down to Roncesvalles.

That stretch is undulating up and down, but not steeply so. The downhill portion into Roncesvalles can be treacherous, but the older road route, down the curving country road, is manageable with hiking sticks. The 'main route' straight down, through the woods is scenic, but can be very treacherous with mud and gravel.

I, and I believe most of my experienced forum colleagues will agree with this admonition, that Refuge Orisson is a unique experience that should be experienced at least once, if you can. BTW - I have no connection whatsoever with this location, or the owners.

I hope this helps.
 
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Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
My only criticism of Orrison was the god awful sewage smell that wafted into the rooms. It was really hot so between the heat, the lack of air movement and the smell I cannot say I enjoyed Orrison. It was also where my Keens were stolen from the shoe rack so that didn't help, 3 days into my holiday and no place to be able to replace them for several more.

That sewage smell is the result of pilgrims who don't understand what it's like to NOT be on a city sewer.
I think I'll blog on this!
20 minute wasteful water showers, using products that biarritzdon mentions, and soon you have sewer gas.
 

kmrice

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Santiago - Fisterra 2008
St. Jean Pied de Port - Santiago 2013
20 minute wasteful water showers, using products that biarritzdon mentions, and soon you have sewer gas.
I doubt many pilgrims take 20 minute showers at Orisson. 5 minutes is all you should really need, and at Orrison that's what you get: 1 token per person for 5 minutes of hot water. After that, all you get is cold water, which certainly cuts down on the wasteful showers.
 
Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
I doubt many pilgrims take 20 minute showers at Orisson. 5 minutes is all you should really need, and at Orrison that's what you get: 1 token per person for 5 minutes of hot water. After that, all you get is cold water, which certainly cuts down on the wasteful showers.

Hi Kmrice!
I'm not talking only about Orisson.

I have been in plenty of albergues where pilgrims DO take 15-20 minute showers.
They also sit on the pot and read their email.
Orisson is smart to give out tokens - the face remains that so many people taking showers and using certain products stresses the septic system.
 
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biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
That sewage smell is the result of pilgrims who don't understand what it's like to NOT be on a city sewer.
I think I'll blog on this!
20 minute wasteful water showers, using products that biarritzdon mentions, and soon you have sewer gas.
Annie, please do and maybe start a new thread! I can only begin to imagine how many albergues are on septic systems, a system which as you have mentioned also does not deal well with the disposal of parer products. Thus the reason for a waste can next to the toilet full of "yucky" waste paper.
BTW I think this is the reason Jean-Jacques put the time limit control on his showers which is another complaint I have read about Refuge Orisson.
 
Past OR future Camino
2012
Oh lovely. It's what I really love about this forum. A post about Tripadvisor critiques of Orisson evolves into a really valuable thread highlighting the challenges of disposing of the never-ending flow of pilgrim-poo when you're not plugged-in to the main-drain.

Annie, Don, I do not mock. But where do we start? There are pilgs confused by the absence of ketchup, low-cal de-caffeinated mocha - chai, hair-dryers, washing-machines and 24 gb wee fee. Let alone the absence of an infinite supply of hot water. How are we going to explain that the world smells of poo because 'you' keep pooing in it. We can't just keep on sticking up posters " Flushable, Bio-degradeable wet-wipes Aren't and Don't" might be accurate but it's not much of a campaign slogan is it.

Or, maybe it is... Maybe if we all keep banging on maybe we change something.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
Oh lovely. It's what I really love about this forum. A post about Tripadvisor critiques of Orisson evolves into a really valuable thread highlighting the challenges of disposing of the never-ending flow of pilgrim-poo when you're not plugged-in to the main-drain.

Annie, Don, I do not mock. But where do we start? There are pilgs confused by the absence of ketchup, low-cal de-caffeinated mocha - chai, hair-dryers, washing-machines and 24 gb wee fee. Let alone the absence of an infinite supply of hot water. How are we going to explain that the world smells of poo because 'you' keep pooing in it. We can't just keep on sticking up posters " Flushable, Bio-degradeable wet-wipes Aren't and Don't" might be accurate but it's not much of a campaign slogan is it.

Or, maybe it is... Maybe if we all keep banging on maybe we change something.
Tincatinker, a prerequisite to do a couple days/weeks as a hospitalero along the way might help.
 
Past OR future Camino
2012
There are those who mop wet floors, clean kitchens, pick litter, chop wood (or onions :)), straighten out the kinks in the road or just listen quietly and carefully. There are those who can and will fix blistered feet and buggered knees. There are those who not only know how to unblock a toilet but will do it with a smile or a shrug. There are those who will boil sheets and beat the dust out of mattressses and air blankets and plump pillows. There are those who will do all those things every day - for a week or a fortnight or a lifetime.

Them, now them I really admire ;)
 
Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
Oh lovely. It's what I really love about this forum. A post about Tripadvisor critiques of Orisson evolves into a really valuable thread highlighting the challenges of disposing of the never-ending flow of pilgrim-poo when you're not plugged-in to the main-drain.

Annie, Don, I do not mock. But where do we start? There are pilgs confused by the absence of ketchup, low-cal de-caffeinated mocha - chai, hair-dryers, washing-machines and 24 gb wee fee. Let alone the absence of an infinite supply of hot water. How are we going to explain that the world smells of poo because 'you' keep pooing in it. We can't just keep on sticking up posters " Flushable, Bio-degradeable wet-wipes Aren't and Don't" might be accurate but it's not much of a campaign slogan is it.

Or, maybe it is... Maybe if we all keep banging on maybe we change something.

This made me laugh.
Thanks! lol!:p:p:p
 
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Joodle

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
CF May 10th- June 21st 2016
VDLP March-April 2017
CF coming up April-May
I phoned to Orisson from Saint Just Ibarre, a day before I arrived to SJPP. No answer, so I recorded a message. They never called back.
Apparently, this is not the way they manage reservations, although its phone number appears in the contact form.
I just got a confirmation of my reservation at Orisson today. I have emailed multiple times. The email that finally worked was "refuge.orisson @wanadoo.fr
 
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Felipe

Veteran Member
Thanks.
But (just in case somebody else pick up your suggestion) this French internet provider should be "wanadoo.fr"
 

Joodle

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
CF May 10th- June 21st 2016
VDLP March-April 2017
CF coming up April-May
I just got a confirmation of my reservation at Orisson today. I have emailed multiple times. The email that finally worked was "refuge.orisson @wandadoo.fr
I'll be there the 12th of May. Anyone else there that day?
Thanks.
But (just in case somebody else pick up your suggestion) this French internet provider should be "wanadoo.fr"
Oh
Thanks.
But (just in case somebody else pick up your suggestion) this French internet provider should be "wanadoo.fr"
Thanks for catching that. I edited it so it won't mess anyone up.
 

Lachance

Me llamo Deb
Past OR future Camino
Part Francese 2016
...
Anyway, I often took the insoles out of my hiking shoes as a deterrent. Not saying it would work 100% of the time, but I figured no thief would want shoes with no insoles.
Great idea especially if you need orthotics which cost a bomb and took ages to get just right. The thought of losing them on the first day!
 
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IDBluebird77

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Planning: Camino Frances (Fall 2017)
There are some very high maintenance pilgrims out there! Sometimes the Camino cures them, but Orisson is a little early in most pilgrimages for a cure to have taken hold. ;)
It is disappointing when I see and hear people give the very real issue of food intolerances a bad name. It is never an expectation of mine that people cater to only me and my needs. I am already making a plan as to how I will try to navigate my Camino, being severely gluten intolerant, even if that means I eat canned tuna, fruit, and vegetables only. I don't think I will have to be that restricted, but I will be prepared to if needed. Otherwise, I'll spend a lot of time along the side of the road, or stuck in a bathroom. :/
 

kelleymac

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
I just got a confirmation of my reservation at Orisson today. I have emailed multiple times. The email that finally worked was "refuge.orisson @wanadoo.fr
I wrote Orrison from their website twice in the last 10 days, but haven't heard back. :( Is this usual?
 

Americanperegrino

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Oct 2012
May 2016
I agree. You may consider shipping Gluten Free food ahead and staging it every couple of days. Supplement with Fruits and veggies, etc. It may be a little more complicated, but, insures you're safe. I mentioned this in a prior post and was hammered for 'suggesting' Spain wasn't a modern society and scolded that Spain has GF food. They just don't get it.
Buen Camino
 

IDBluebird77

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Planning: Camino Frances (Fall 2017)
I agree. You may consider shipping Gluten Free food ahead and staging it every couple of days. Supplement with Fruits and veggies, etc. It may be a little more complicated, but, insures you're safe. I mentioned this in a prior post and was hammered for 'suggesting' Spain wasn't a modern society and scolded that Spain has GF food. They just don't get it.
Buen Camino

If you could point towards more information about sending food forward I would really appreciate it! I am new here and still figuring this place out. :)

Yes, I have actually done a bit of research on Gluten Free resources in Europe. I was amazed to learn there is a gf bakery that will deliver fresh gf bread to you each week in Germany. I lived in Germany for 5 years prior to my diagnosis, but ALL of my problems started after I moved back to the states.

And I am sort of used to foraging, even here at home it is very rare that I eat out, which has forced me to become a better cook, so its not so bad. :)
 
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Past OR future Camino
2012
@IDBluebird77 you may be pleasantly surprised by the general availability of gf foods in Spanish supermercado and even some panaderia. Sadly restaurants will be more of a challenge as many will prepare at most a menu of three choices or fewer. Depending on your level of intolerance you will hopefully be safe with most of the meat / fish & potatoes options but cross-contamination will of course be a risk.

In several threads on dietary challenges it has been suggested that pilgrims carry laminated cards setting out their issues in Spanish. The good souls along the Caminos who work to service Pilgrims are minded that a sick pilgrim is not a happy pilgrim. They will do their best to help.
 

rometimed

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
(SJPdP: 2015, June2020!) (Eng Way: 2015)
To reference the foot/shoe issues I only walked in running shoes and I bought foot powder along that I would put in my shoes and on my feet after long walks and I found it quite helpful in keeping my feet both medicated and dry.
 
Past OR future Camino
Frances/SJPP '15,'16,'18,'19,('20)
Way of St. Francis, Italy 2017
Portuguese/Finisterre 2018, 2019
I use lace locks on my boot laces. When I put the boots in the rack, I use the lacelocks to attach the boots and trekking poles together. Really makes it a mess to steal the whole convoluted mass, and kinda obvious to try. Little known Camino fact: Bob, the very first peregrino, had his sandals and walking stick stolen. So.....

Back to the original post. Booked it in 2012 and got there about 9am. Had a coffee and decided to keep going. So, I cancelled my stay and moved on. Looked like a decent place though and booked it again this May.
I love these for my athletic shoes, but never thought about them for my boots. Are you boots, ankle boots? Any issues getting your foot in/out?
 
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daston47

New Member
I was reading the reviews about Orisson on TripAdvisor and although they are written in English, French and Spanish I could follow them all without the use of the Google translate ( I am smartarse aren't i?). They are great because some of them highlight how self absorbed some people are but also because the owner doesn't take criticism lying down and gives his own response to any poor reviews. There is some poor person from NY that feels the place is inadequate because there isn't a menu to cater for his own particular food intolerance. The owner highlights the fact that it isn't a five star hotel but a refuge in the middle of the mountains that he is running. I am booking a night there on the 13th April and look forward to meeting him.
Can anyone really criticise a place that can only open for part of the year and offer the deal he is offering for 33 euros a night?
 

dee bright

Member
Past OR future Camino
Spring 2016
I use lace locks on my boot laces. When I put the boots in the rack, I use the lacelocks to attach the boots and trekking poles together. Really makes it a mess to steal the whole convoluted mass, and kinda obvious to try. Little known Camino fact: Bob, the very first peregrino, had his sandals and walking stick stolen. So.....

Back to the original post. Booked it in 2012 and got there about 9am. Had a coffee and decided to keep going. So, I cancelled my stay and moved on. Looked like a decent place though and booked it again this May.


Okay, so what exactly are lace locks?
 

Lachance

Me llamo Deb
Past OR future Camino
Part Francese 2016
A picture on google is better than any verbal description I can think of.
Yes, heaps of info on lacing techniques on the web, including lots of Youtube vids. If you've never heard of this, you probably don't need to worry. It's only problems that motivate you to look for solutions.
 
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nathanael

Guest
I was reading the reviews about Orisson on TripAdvisor and although they are written in English, French and Spanish I could follow them all without the use of the Google translate ( I am smartarse aren't i?). They are great because some of them highlight how self absorbed some people are but also because the owner doesn't take criticism lying down and gives his own response to any poor reviews. There is some poor person from NY that feels the place is inadequate because there isn't a menu to cater for his own particular food intolerance. The owner highlights the fact that it isn't a five star hotel but a refuge in the middle of the mountains that he is running. I am booking a night there on the 13th April and look forward to meeting him.
Can anyone really criticise a place that can only open for part of the year and offer the deal he is offering for 33 euros a night?
It's a fine place to stay at and the view fabulous and accommodation are adequate, food excellent but service can be sketchy and my feeling is do not poke the bear with the stick. It is correct a place in the middle of the mountains. I have stayed there four times cannot complain about food or accommodation. Enjoy it you will be glad you stayed there.
 

J F Gregory

Camino Norte fall 2022
Past OR future Camino
2016, 2021 hoping to return in fall 2022.
It really tickled me, the owner says they cater for veggies and for people with a gluten intolerance in his response to this review so it did make me wonder about what sort of food intolerance this sad New Yorker was complaining that Orisson didn't cater for. The reviews that Orisson gets with just a one star speak volumes about the writers and their lack of understanding of a) where the refuge is, b) what a refuges is c) no comprehension of what being a pilgrim entails and finally d) the bloke is trying to run a business not a charity!
I am grateful to be able to eat. I am an American saying American's can be unfavorably critical, I have experienced this even with traveling companions. A couple of travel companions complained about the snails, boiled greens and rice we were served, my response was "go hungry". When you are in the forests of West Africa you eat with the locals. I have traveled world wide and visited poor nations, needless to say food on the walk will be a breeze, whatever it is.
 

AlanB

Active Member
I had no idea that shoe theft was an issue.. What a terrible thought.! Each camino I have walked I have been so grateful to my foot wear. Couldn't imagine somebody taking a shine to mine but you never know.
I booked in at Orrison last year the day before from my Gite in St Jean...and this was July 1st. Must confess, I decided not to stop. Got there about 9am and wasn't done yet. Apologised profusely to the owner who seemed to understand
 
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Americanperegrino

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Oct 2012
May 2016
I am grateful to be able to eat. I am an American saying American's can be unfavorably critical, I have experienced this even with traveling companions. A couple of travel companions complained about the snails, boiled greens and rice we were served, my response was "go hungry". When you are in the forests of West Africa you eat with the locals. I have traveled world wide and visited poor nations, needless to say food on the walk will be a breeze, whatever it is.

I had heard that America had a new spokesperson...
 
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2014
Camino Portugues 2015
I highly recommend Orisson to any pilgrim considering their start in St. Jean. Roncevalles is doable with an early start. Orisson provides a great opportunity to "set the stage" for a great pilgrimage. We had reservations and verified them a couple of weeks before our arrival. We had a miserable, wet day of walking with 50 meter visibility. A cold, 5 minute timed shower via token is not what we expected. The bunk beds were cramped. The food was rustic. The wine tolerable. It would be easy to say our impression would be perceived as less than average.

Yet, we met pilgrims at supper that we shared the rest of our Camino. Jean Jacques, our host, gave our daughter his personal walking stick when he noticed she was limping complete with his autograph! The pause up the mountain gave us the opportunity to make the trek through sleet more than tolerable the next day (May 2). In retrospect, the cup (bowl) of coffee with bread for breakfast was most enjoyable. Orisson reset our expectations for the simplicity of the Camino - kindness from others, blessings from above and sharing life's journey with fellow pilgrims.

I will always make every effort to experience Orisson.
 

grayland

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
If you could point towards more information about sending food forward I would really appreciate it! I am new here and still figuring this place out. :)

Yes, I have actually done a bit of research on Gluten Free resources in Europe. I was amazed to learn there is a gf bakery that will deliver fresh gf bread to you each week in Germany. I lived in Germany for 5 years prior to my diagnosis, but ALL of my problems started after I moved back to the states.

And I am sort of used to foraging, even here at home it is very rare that I eat out, which has forced me to become a better cook, so its not so bad. :)

I just returned from a winter Camino Frances. I think you will be pleased at the large Gluten Free availability along the CF. Even very small bars in small villages had choices on menus.
A big change from my earlier CF trips.
 

IDBluebird77

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Planning: Camino Frances (Fall 2017)
I just returned from a winter Camino Frances. I think you will be pleased at the large Gluten Free availability along the CF. Even very small bars in small villages had choices on menus.
A big change from my earlier CF trips.

Thank you, Grayland, this is very helpful to know.
 

IDBluebird77

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Planning: Camino Frances (Fall 2017)
@IDBluebird77 you may be pleasantly surprised by the general availability of gf foods in Spanish supermercado and even some panaderia. Sadly restaurants will be more of a challenge as many will prepare at most a menu of three choices or fewer. Depending on your level of intolerance you will hopefully be safe with most of the meat / fish & potatoes options but cross-contamination will of course be a risk.

In several threads on dietary challenges it has been suggested that pilgrims carry laminated cards setting out their issues in Spanish. The good souls along the Caminos who work to service Pilgrims are minded that a sick pilgrim is not a happy pilgrim. They will do their best to help.

Tincatinker,
It is nice to hear the type of foods I can look for on the CF. Similar to my diet here at home. I am up for the challenge and feeling much more confident now!
 
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Felipe

Veteran Member
I am a regular contributor to the popular "Consumer Eroski" forum about albergues. I have two criteria: when there is a parochial or municipal albergues, I accept the services and accommodations that they have -sometimes very spartan ones. At most, I comment about the more or less warm reception and the "Camino spirit" ambiance. As the saying goes, the pilgrim should be grateful for what he receives.
But privates albergues are businesses, and they have to be considered under the same standards than any other commercial venture (even if they are run by former pilgrims, which is rather unusual). In Spain they have to comply with official regulations, and I am sure this is the case in France (a country where there is not a scarcity of laws, and they are enforced strictly). Sure, albergues are not hostels (some private refuges in the Alps have beds side by side, for instance), but they should follow strict norms about hygiene, food and personal attention. So, I believe that even if you are a pilgrim, you have all the moral right to complain about a sub standard private albergue accommodations, or bad service, if you find one.
Having said that, after my last experience with the tough SJPP-Roncesvalles journey, I think next time I will probably make a reservation in Orisson. I used to think that it was rather expensive, but really it is no more than other places in SJPP.
I will see...and comment in the Eroski forum.
 
Last edited:

kelleymac

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
I am grateful to be able to eat. I am an American saying American's can be unfavorably critical, I have experienced this even with traveling companions. A couple of travel companions complained about the snails, boiled greens and rice we were served, my response was "go hungry". When you are in the forests of West Africa you eat with the locals. I have traveled world wide and visited poor nations, needless to say food on the walk will be a breeze, whatever it is.

Boiled greens, rice and snails sound delicious! :)
 

kelleymac

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
If we stay at Orisson and the pass is closed do we have to retrace our steps (7km) back down the hill to pick up the camino through Valcarlos?
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
I am grateful to be able to eat. I am an American saying American's can be unfavorably critical, I have experienced this even with traveling companions. A couple of travel companions complained about the snails, boiled greens and rice we were served, my response was "go hungry". When you are in the forests of West Africa you eat with the locals. I have traveled world wide and visited poor nations, needless to say food on the walk will be a breeze, whatever it is.
Yeah, so glad you decided to be the holder of the experience manual by which all Americans are to be judged on their culinary preferences. Appreciate it, dude...
o_O
 

Sally Forester

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances: (May-June 2016)
Norte/Primitivo: (May-June 2017)
Hi All, Quick question about Orisson... I will be staying there for a night. Will there be a lunch that I can buy @ Orisson for my walk from Orisson to Roncesvalles? Or should I plan on purchasing some food before I leave St. Jean?
 
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Past OR future Camino
Frances/SJPP '15,'16,'18,'19,('20)
Way of St. Francis, Italy 2017
Portuguese/Finisterre 2018, 2019
Hi All, Quick question about Orisson... I will be staying there for a night. Will there be a lunch that I can buy @ Orisson for my walk from Orisson to Roncesvalles? Or should I plan on purchasing some food before I leave St. Jean?
Yes, you can buy a sandwich at Orisson. They take orders when you check in. I would also suggest you buy some of the dried fruit and nuts in SJPdP at the spice shop across from the church; some of the best I've ever had.
 

Sally Forester

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances: (May-June 2016)
Norte/Primitivo: (May-June 2017)
Yes, you can buy a sandwich at Orisson. They take orders when you check in. I would also suggest you buy some of the dried fruit and nuts in SJPdP at the spice shop across from the church; some of the best I've ever had.
Thank you Susan!
 

tpmchugh

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2018
There are some very high maintenance pilgrims out there! Sometimes the Camino cures them, but Orisson is a little early in most pilgrimages for a cure to have taken hold. ;)
I have come across questions on various facebook pages from people who think they are going on a 4 star holiday but they are usually put right by others. Trip advisor is to my mind the worst place to get a balanced view of anywhere even though I must admit to having put reviews on it myself. Never again though :)
 

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