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Suggestions for a 14 day Camino Frances

Camino(s) past & future
Camino March 2019
#1
I am thinking of doing el camino Frances in March 2019, I only have about 17 days total and would like to do SJPDP and part of Spain to Santiago. Is there such thing as walking a portion from SJPDP to somewhere in France, then taking transportation to get me closer to Santiago and finish in Santiago? I would like to enjoy the beginning and I'm calculating that I will only be able to do about 500kms so I should skip something
 

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davebugg

DustOff: "When I have your wounded."
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#2
Hi, lugares...

I'm a bit confused, so maybe you can help clarify a bit.

You want to walk Camino Frances from St Jean Pied de Port? And instead of going west toward Santiago de Compostela, you want to travel eastward into France heading in the opposite direction which is AWAY from Santiago de Compostela? Then at some point, you want to take transportation from somewhere in France, heading back west into Spain and back onto Camino Frances near enough to Santiago de Compostela so that you can walk into that city?

Is that what you are wanting to do, or am I missing something?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino March 2019
#3
Hi, lugares...

I'm a bit confused, so maybe you can help clarify a bit.

You want to walk Camino Frances from St Jean Pied de Port? And instead of going west toward Santiago de Compostela, you want to travel eastward into France heading in the opposite direction which is AWAY from Santiago de Compostela? Then at some point, you want to take transportation from somewhere in France, heading back west into Spain and back onto Camino Frances near enough to Santiago de Compostela so that you can walk into that city?

Is that what you are wanting to do, or am I missing something?
No, I want to move West. sJPDP to Santiago but don’t have 35 days (I only have 14), so I may have to cut some areas from walking and instead take them in a faster method, like train perhaps. Is that common at all?
 
Camino(s) past & future
'Portuguese' ' Frances' ' Norte' 'Salvador_prim' ‘le puy’ ‘Inglés’ ‘CDM’ ‘Invierno’ ‘Fin_Mux’
#4
I am thinking of doing el camino Frances in March 2019, I only have about 17 days total and would like to do SJPDP and part of Spain to Santiago. Is there such thing as walking a portion from SJPDP to somewhere in France, then taking transportation to get me closer to Santiago and finish in Santiago? I would like to enjoy the beginning and I'm calculating that I will only be able to do about 500kms so I should skip something
Hi @lugares1989
Welcome and I’m excited for you ., planning your first camino in spain
I think you’ll find trying to cover 500kms on camino in 17 days may be a little ambitious unless you are used to walking long days

Try looking up this site: www.gronze.com


And checking roughly the distances recommended for each stage or choosing the stops that look right to you. You could walk Sjpdp to start with to say (Pamplona??) then work back from distance /days available after that to walk into Santiago .. most people average 30-38 days to cover SJPDP to Santiago.

Enjoy your planning and Buen Camino
Annie

Edit: yes, people often break it up to fit into days they have available.
You could decide how many days you want to walk at beginning. Then when you know how many days that leaves you for walking /if you want to walk into SDC. calculate where you need to be by taking public transport. Some places are easier to reach by transport. Other stops are not on bus route etc.

If you want to qualify for a Compostela in SDC., you need to cover 100 Kim min
you can do it.
 
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davebugg

DustOff: "When I have your wounded."
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#6
No, I want to move West. sJPDP to Santiago but don’t have 35 days (I only have 14), so I may have to cut some areas from walking and instead take them in a faster method, like train perhaps. Is that common at all?
Ok. You had asked " Is there such thing as walking a portion from SJPDP to somewhere in France, ...." which sorta threw me off. :)

You can take taxis and buses from anywhere on Frances to either shorten or skip stages in order to skip ahead. If you want to earn your Compostela upon reaching Santiago de Compostela, you are required to walk the last 100 continuous kilometers into Santiago, which means from about Sarria on the Frances. So, out of your allotted 14 days, you will want to set aside the number of days in order to do that.

If you do not want a Compostela, then you do not have to be concerned with that at all.

If you think you will return again, you can break up the Camino into segments and continue from where you leave off when you depart.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (SJPdP-Burgos, 2015)
Camino Frances (Burgos-Sarria, 2018)
Sarria-Santiago (fall 2018)
#7
Welcome to the forum, @lugares1989 . As you plan your pilgrimage, keep in mind that the popular Napoleon route out of St. Jean Pied de Port will be closed until April 1. And possibly longer, depending on the weather. In March you will need to walk the Valcarlos route if you want to start in St. Jean.

It's a beautiful path, and the village of Valcarlos is one of my personal favorites on the Camino. But many people have their hearts set on going over the mountain top. If that's your reason for starting in St. Jean, you might want to consider going later in the spring. Otherwise, just something to bear in mind.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Aug-Sept(2016) SJPDP-Finisterre, July-Aug(2017) SJPDP-Muxia-Finisterre, July-Aug(2018) El Norte
#8
Since I prefer one continuous walk, rather than skipping ahead, I would decide if it's more important to walk from SJPDP or arrive in Santiago. Then either start in St Jean and walk as far as I can. Or estimate how far I'll be able to walk each day and determine a starting point for arriving in Santiago in my time frame. Be conservative, don't overestimate your walking speed. If you have extra time you can walk or bus to Finisterre.
In March I would definitely choose to finish in Santiago because of the issue of snow in the Pyrenees.
 

NomadBoomer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (September 2017), Vdlp (April 2018)
#9
It is common and not that difficult to skip parts of the CF tho I prefer not to.
I think you don't have to overplan. Start walking in St Jean and then decide along the way how you want to get to the plane home. You might meet people you want to keep walking with or so love the Camino you don't want to skip any and leave the final stage until another trip.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Finished: See post signature.
Upcoming: ?+VdlP (Sept 2018)
#10
I agree with @[U]trecile[/U] decide what is most important for you, start in Saint Jean Pied de Port or walk into Santiago de Compostela and if a compostela is important or not. Travelling in the middle takes time from walking. And does it have to be the Camino Francés?

If you are a "normal walker" count 20-25 km/day as an average stage. Or are you more like me a fast walker/like long walking days (remember that March has late sunrise and early sunset) you can add it to 30-40 km/day. If we calculate the first option you can walk to Logroño in 7 days and then take the bus to for instance Ponferrada and from there a cab (or anyone knows another way) Tricastela to Sarria and walk 6 days.
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#11
March can be a precarious time leaving from St. Jean...especially early March. The Napoleon route is closed till the end of March. The weather early March can still produce much snow and ice and this could slow you down time wise. We got delayed a day because of snow. We also hit 75 km head winds one day which slowed us down. In addition it rained substantialy almost everyday. Next March may be different?

I suggest you start with your plan from SJPdP taking the Valcarlos route. Then see how far you can get in 7 days. Take transportation to OCebriero (pedrafita) or Villafranca del Bierzo ( depending on how you are feelin) and continue your journey to Santiago.
 
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rector

ONE HALF
Camino(s) past & future
MAY (2011)
MAY (2014)
Camino Porto-Santiago Aug 2015
#12
This year we walked from St Jean to Logrono have walked from St Jean to Santiago twice, Sarria to Santiago and Ponferrada to Santiago. The ting with all the other walks and this years was simply that we did not finish and although many people deride the walk from sari because of the volume of pilgrims on that section, it does have a certain attraction. You should not suffer from an over population problem in March. so I would go St Jean - Pamplona- train - Sarria -walk-Santiago and enjoy it
 

Walking Lover

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CdS from Leon to Santiago, June 16, 2016 to June 30, 2016.
#13
I am thinking of doing el camino Frances in March 2019, I only have about 17 days total and would like to do SJPDP and part of Spain to Santiago. Is there such thing as walking a portion from SJPDP to somewhere in France, then taking transportation to get me closer to Santiago and finish in Santiago? I would like to enjoy the beginning and I'm calculating that I will only be able to do about 500kms so I should skip something
Walk one week from SJPP, then skip to Sarria.
 
Camino(s) past & future
(2019) only 2 weeks available! St. Jean PDP - Pamplona, then Sarria - SDC with the family,
#14
We anticipate starting in SJPdP next April and walking to Pamplona. We're going to take the train to Sarria (modified rest day) and then walk to SDC. My family and I wanted the "traditional start" and the walk over the Pyrenees plus the "last 100k" for the Compestela. Total of 10 days walking. You have 14 days? Add a few days after Pamplona, or take the train from Pamplona to Ponferrada?

Lots of options, but I'm in the "Split Camino" club.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino March 2019
#15
Hi @lugares1989
Welcome and I’m excited for you ., planning your first camino in spain
I think you’ll find trying to cover 500kms on camino in 17 days may be a little ambitious unless you are used to walking long days

Try looking up this site: www.gronze.com


And checking roughly the distances recommended for each stage or choosing the stops that look right to you. You could walk Sjpdp to start with to say (Pamplona??) then work back from distance /days available after that to walk into Santiago .. most people average 30-38 days to cover SJPDP to Santiago.

Enjoy your planning and Buen Camino
Annie

Edit: yes, people often break it up to fit into days they have available.
You could decide how many days you want to walk at beginning. Then when you know how many days that leaves you for walking /if you want to walk into SDC. calculate where you need to be by taking public transport. Some places are easier to reach by transport. Other stops are not on bus route etc.

If you want to qualify for a Compostela in SDC., you need to cover 100 Kim min
you can do it.
Perfect! I think it will ultimately be around 300kms some from SJPDP and some closer to Santiago
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino March 2019
#17
Welcome to the forum, @lugares1989 . As you plan your pilgrimage, keep in mind that the popular Napoleon route out of St. Jean Pied de Port will be closed until April 1. And possibly longer, depending on the weather. In March you will need to walk the Valcarlos route if you want to start in St. Jean.

It's a beautiful path, and the village of Valcarlos is one of my personal favorites on the Camino. But many people have their hearts set on going over the mountain top. If that's your reason for starting in St. Jean, you might want to consider going later in the spring. Otherwise, just something to bear in mind.
Thank you for this info, do you have any experience with that route that I should take into consideration, I've been only researching the napoleon one
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino March 2019
#18
We anticipate starting in SJPdP next April and walking to Pamplona. We're going to take the train to Sarria (modified rest day) and then walk to SDC. My family and I wanted the "traditional start" and the walk over the Pyrenees plus the "last 100k" for the Compestela. Total of 10 days walking. You have 14 days? Add a few days after Pamplona, or take the train from Pamplona to Ponferrada?

Lots of options, but I'm in the "Split Camino" club.
This sounds like a great plan, trying to make the most of the vacation days to acomplish this
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino March 2019
#19
I agree with @[U]trecile[/U] decide what is most important for you, start in Saint Jean Pied de Port or walk into Santiago de Compostela and if a compostela is important or not. Travelling in the middle takes time from walking. And does it have to be the Camino Francés?

If you are a "normal walker" count 20-25 km/day as an average stage. Or are you more like me a fast walker/like long walking days (remember that March has late sunrise and early sunset) you can add it to 30-40 km/day. If we calculate the first option you can walk to Logroño in 7 days and then take the bus to for instance Ponferrada and from there a cab (or anyone knows another way) Tricastela to Sarria and walk 6 days.
This is a great plan, so that's my next question, is 30-40km doable? I live in California and I hike quite often, typically can do high elevation hikes of up to 6m in about 2 hours. I know it's not the same, and I think I will want to go slower because it will be several days, but what is realistic for someone that is used to hiking often?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: September 24 - October 31 (2015); February/March (2019)
#20
This is a great plan, so that's my next question, is 30-40km doable? I live in California and I hike quite often, typically can do high elevation hikes of up to 6m in about 2 hours. I know it's not the same, and I think I will want to go slower because it will be several days, but what is realistic for someone that is used to hiking often?
I’d say that 20-25 km is more the norm. On any given day you might swing for 30-40 km, depending on how you’re feeling, but day in day out, that distance is not the norm. Certainly it is doable, but I’d be careful making firm plans based on such distances unless you’re really sure you can do it and want to do it.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (October 3-18, 2015)
Frances w/2 Daughters (Sept 22 - Oct 20)
#21
This is a great plan, so that's my next question, is 30-40km doable? I live in California and I hike quite often, typically can do high elevation hikes of up to 6m in about 2 hours. I know it's not the same, and I think I will want to go slower because it will be several days, but what is realistic for someone that is used to hiking often?
30-40km a day is definitely possible! Last fall with my 2 girls we were regularly seeing any of a dozen people who were hiking those distances, as we were. Buen Camino, enjoy your journey!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Finished: See post signature.
Upcoming: ?+VdlP (Sept 2018)
#22
This is a great plan, so that's my next question, is 30-40km doable? I live in California and I hike quite often, typically can do high elevation hikes of up to 6m in about 2 hours. I know it's not the same, and I think I will want to go slower because it will be several days, but what is realistic for someone that is used to hiking often?
I should calculate 25-30 then. A lot of the walking is really easy. I walked CF in 2013 as my first camino but I have hiked in the Swedish mountains with backpack before that and my average speed is almost always about the same as yours when I add some stop for photo, lunch etc. This were my stages covering the first 7 days and the 6 last days (I calculated for shorter distances but just walked as it felt good):
St Jean Pied de Port-Roncevalles, 25,1 km
Roncevalles-Pamplona, 46,2 (yes a quite long stage but i was in a walking flow :)
Pamplona-Puenta de la Reina, 26,9 km
Puenta la Reina-Villamayor de Monjardín, 31,5 km
Villamayor de Monjardín-Logorño, 40,1 km
Logroño-Azofra, 35,9 km
Azofra-Belorado, 38,1 km

Average: 34,8 km/day

[10 Days instead of taking transportation]

Compostilla-La Faba, 45,9 km (Pradela route and up to La Faba what was I thinking ;-)
La Faba-Samos, 36,2 km
Samos-Vilachá, 34,5 km (Now when Casa Banderas is closed one have to go further to Portomarín)
Vilachá-Melide, 42.3km
Melide-Vilamaior, 44 km
Vilamaior-Santiago de Compostela, 9 km (A morning stroll into Santiago).

Average: 35,3 km/day

So as @nycwalking say why not just go with the flow the first 7 days and get a feeling for how much/how fast you are willing to walk per day and then plan the rest from that. You can always plan for Logroño but if you are there way ahead of 7 days just continue to walk some more days or take the train to a stop prior to Sarria.

You can always manage the last 100 km from Sarria in 3-6 Days depending on lenght of stages.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (SJPdP-Burgos, 2015)
Camino Frances (Burgos-Sarria, 2018)
Sarria-Santiago (fall 2018)
#23
Thank you for this info, do you have any experience with that route that I should take into consideration, I've been only researching the napoleon one
Regarding the Valcarlos route, to start, it is the true "historic" route taken by Charlemagne himself when departing Spain. The Napoleon route came later and there is no record of Napoleon ever being on it.:)

The village of Valcarlos is about halfway between St. Jean and Roncesvalles. That makes it a good overnight stop, for those who want to break the walk, or a good lunch stop for those going straight through.

The first part is through rolling, country farmlands, with some walking on quiet back roads. Picture postcard pretty. The ascent after Valcarlos to Roncesvalles is a steep incline, climbing over a shorter distance than going the Napoleon route. This often surprises people, who've seen it called "The lower route."

The most important thing to know is that there are no services whatsoever between Valcarlos and Roncesvalles. Be sure to have plenty of water before you leave the village. And any snacks you might want along the way.

After Valcarlos, there is some dicey road walking for a short distance before you come to the alternate, off-road woodland trails. These are well-marked, and periodically intersect with the road. If the weather is bad, though, walking the road is advisable, as the path can be narrow, slippery and rather tricky on bad weather.

Check at the pilgrim office in St. Jean for a map, which will show both the road and off-road routes. They will also advise on the weather conditions, stamp your credential, hand you a list of albergues along the camino, and give you a warm welcome.

On a clear, sunny day, or even an overcast, misty one, this is a really lovely hike. The scenery is beautiful. And the food at both bars in Valcarlos is very good. :)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2018)
#26
I am thinking of doing el camino Frances in March 2019, I only have about 17 days total and would like to do SJPDP and part of Spain to Santiago. Is there such thing as walking a portion from SJPDP to somewhere in France, then taking transportation to get me closer to Santiago and finish in Santiago? I would like to enjoy the beginning and I'm calculating that I will only be able to do about 500kms so I should skip something
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2018)
#27
Realistically, you would have to skip 1/2 of it. I personally don't think that would feel fulfilling. If you have only 14 days maybe do the Porto route (Only 250km) and have the sense of completion and save the Camino Frances for another time. The happiest people I met on the Camino were the people with the time to do what they set out to do.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Aug-Sept(2016) SJPDP-Finisterre, July-Aug(2017) SJPDP-Muxia-Finisterre, July-Aug(2018) El Norte
#28
Realistically, you would have to skip 1/2 of it. I personally don't think that would feel fulfilling. If you have only 14 days maybe do the Porto route (Only 250km) and have the sense of completion and save the Camino Frances for another time. The happiest people I met on the Camino were the people with the time to do what they set out to do.
Or do the Primitivo
 

H Richards

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
June 2017 Francés
October 2017 Le Puy / Francés
June/July 2018 Norte
#29
I'll weigh in on this one, if the topic is still open.

You'll be travelling in March so you'd be better served weather-wise in staying in the Eastern half of the Camino. There'll be significantly less rain there. I personally don't enjoy the stages from Sarria onwards as they were a lot more crowded when I went (June) and noticably more expensive and touristic too, so consider avoiding these stages as another plus point, unless reaching Santiago is a must for you.

Skipping any large section will mean you'll lose any pilgrim friends you've made en route, so unless you're determined to be alone, I'd say this is inadvisable.

Personally I'd say walk from Pamplona and do 14 days and see where you end up. It should be somewhere around Carrion, from where you can get an easy bus to Leon and then you're back on the main transport network for returning home.

You might also want to start from St Jean for the full experience, but you risk bad weather and routes being cut off in the Pyrennees cross at that time of year, so it might be best to skip this.

Enjoy your camino whatever you choose!
 

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