- Camino(s) past & future
- Plan 2018
How long is the Meseta? Is it Burgos to Leon? How many stages and days?Is it all flat and dull? Is it near the half way point is the CF?
Gracias Peregrinos! Humbertico
Gracias Peregrinos! Humbertico
Any thoughts or tips on biking Burgos to Leon and walk the rest CF?Yes, approximately the section between Burgos and Leon. It is basically rolling hills and flat plains, filled with agricultural fields. It is lovely, not in the least ugly or boring and sometimes gets a bad and exaggerated rap by pilgrims. It does encompass the halfway point of the Frances.
Gracias Peregrina!I also loved the Meseta. And I was hardly alone. It was a regular topic of discussion among pilgrims -- "How can people say this is boring?" It is beautiful.
And don't let anybody kid you. It is not flat! No, it's not the Pyrenees. But it's definitely not flat. (You want flat? Come see Delaware!).
I loved the rolling hillsides, and the villages tucked in the valleys that seemed to materialize out of nowhere. In April there were a thousand birds singing every morning, and the fields were a dozen shades of green, and the sky, brilliant, cloudless blue.
And mystical. Any regular reader of this forum will know three names that come up repeatedly as very special places on the Camino-- San Anton, San Bol, San Nicholás. All on the meseta. Connection? Think about it.
Shortly before Sahagun there is a slight alternate route to the hermitage of the Virgin of the Bridge. Just beyond that are statues and markers declaring you are crossing the halfway point between Roncesvalles and Santiago. You can impress your friends with a certificate to that effect from church museum up the hill as you leave town.
There were many bicyclers. I don't know the rental companies, but there seemed to be plenty. And, contrary to many reports I have read, my experience was that they rode at a moderate speed, alerted walkers they were approaching, and, almost without exception, wished us Buen Camino or Hola as they passed. They looked like they were having lots of fun.
Enjoy the Meseta. It's very special. Buen Camino.
Hola Rick sounds about right, except that the signage said nothing about Monday siesta!! But come to think of it it was a Monday as we had been in Ledigos on a Sunday. Cheers!The old convent is a museum now and so it is closed on at least one day a week, probably Monday. They also observe siesta.
Did you mean that if the Camino ended in Leon would be more successful?We too have read of pilgrims skipping the Meseta or describing it as dull. For us it is the most wonderful part of the Camino. We'll take it any day over a wet Galician stroll through lanes smelling of cowpats.
Hi, the problem with that idea is that you then get out of sync with your “camino family”. After 2 or 3 weeks on the road you find you are walking parallel with some pretty good companions. Two of my “family” one year had booked bicycles to cycle across the “boring” meseta. We (about 12 of us) had a big farewell party in Burgos, as these two on bikes would now get ahead of us. We never saw them again. I often wonder how it would have panned out if they hadn’t rented the bikes . . . .
And I guess it has been reduced even further by Judgements pulled out of one's wazoo.Finished the Meseta a few weeks ago,rain rain n more rain,oh and lot's of touristos booking most of the beds,not a pleaseant experience but the walking was ok,unfortunately the CF is now reduced to a circus of retired folk who smell of aftershave and hairspray
I like walking the Frances. I am not retired, have not worn aftershave in 30 years and not sure what use hairspray would be to my shaved head.Finished the Meseta a few weeks ago,rain rain n more rain,oh and lot's of touristos booking most of the beds,not a pleaseant experience but the walking was ok,unfortunately the CF is now reduced to a circus of retired folk who smell of aftershave and hairspray
I am on my 5th camino this year. you should try some of the other ones (Maybe you have but it looks like your little bio only shows CF, forgive me if I am wron). I do not walk the CF anymore because of the crowds although I may do it in a year or two in the winter. I think it would be a very different Camino.The Le Puy Camino is really great. But there are a lot of old retired French and Germans, so maybe that will not work. I will be an old but not retired fart who will be walking the Norte in September. I will let you know how that goes.A wazoo that's walked it 7 times.
Yeah I'm planning the Portuguese route next year,one more Santiago-Finn-Muxia this Sept n that's me finished with CF.I know everybody is entitled to walk the CF,I'm just being a grumpI am on my 5th camino this year. you should try some of the other ones (Maybe you have but it looks like your little bio only shows CF, forgive me if I am wron). I do not walk the CF anymore because of the crowds although I may do it in a year or two in the winter. I think it would be a very different Camino.The Le Puy Camino is really great. But there are a lot of old retired French and Germans, so maybe that will not work. I will be an old but not retired fart who will be walking the Norte in September. I will let you know how that goes.
Leon is more or less the end of the Meseta on the Camino Francés If the end of the Camino was Leon instead of Santiago, Galicia would stay completely outside of the pilgrimage. In that case the number of pilgrims would be significantly lower (especially Spaniards). So green Galicia is very important on the Camino success.Just saying... the Meseta was our favourite part, Galicia wasn't. Not sure where the idea of terminating in Leon arose.
When cycling there’s a road route you can take to Fromista to circumnavigate the hill - which is what we chose to do. It does mean you miss the great views from the descent though.I loved the Meseta, and will walk it again.
If your goal is to reduce the number of days, then biking is an option, there is really only one big hill out of Castrojerez.
If you have plenty of time, walk it.
You have much more time on the ascent than on the descent to admire views; but less inclination.When cycling there’s a road route you can take to Fromista to circumnavigate the hill - which is what we chose to do. It does mean you miss the great views from the descent though.
The Meseta is approximately 188km (from Burgos to Astorga) which in some guides is planned over 8 stages i.e. 8 days walking. But often by that part of the Camino many people might be nursing injuries and taking longer by walking shorter days where possible. The stages are up to you, so you could do what you want. You really start to appreciate the vastness of the Maseta after the hill at Alto de Mostelares (100m height incease), shortly after leaving Castrojeriz. It's from there that your mind will start to quieten down a lot (if you let it!) and some deep emotions can bubble up to the surface when you least expect it. So its certainly not dull in that respect. I personally found it to be a great test, but also a fabulously enriching experience.
Starts in Burgos, Brierley's stage 13 takes you out of town. Some say the meseta ends at Leon, Brierley's stage 21 takes you out. I say the end is in Astorga and Brierley's stage 23 sets you on your way to climbing out of the meseta.