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Veer Off to the Primitivo or?

FourSeasons

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Sept/Oct 2013
CF April/May 2016
del Norte (July/August 2019)
:) Hi,

I'm curious to know how many pilgrims veer off to the Primitivo from the del Norte. I would think it's a large number.
Does anyone out there know? How many?

Pros and Cons of going Primitivo:

Pros and Cons of staying on del Norte:

Thanks for your experience and suggestions.

:cool:👣
 
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Jan_D

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
According to last month's statistics, almost the same number of pilgrims arrived in Santiago from the Norte (1,992) as from the Primitivo (1,911). However the Norte gets noticeably quieter after the Gijon/Oviedo split.

Western Asturias is less built up than previous coastal regions on the Norte, and has a couple of nice fishing towns and villages (although these are quite spread out; in fact there's much less infrastructure in general). I haven't done the Primitivo, but I quite like the Norte after Gijon: it feels quieter and more spacious after lots of pilgrims veer off to Oviedo. And there's usually less of a bed race... But I also see the appeal of a more mountainous terrain (especially if you've been building up your trail legs along the Norte), and the idea of 'two caminos in one'.

Anyway, I think a lot of Norte pilgrims decide along the way. And sometimes it depends on who you're walking with, and whether you want to continue walking with them... ;)
 
Last edited:

Phil71

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Portuguese (2014,2016),Primitivo (2015), San Salvador (2017), Norte (2018), Ingles (2018)
Hmmm. Primitivo: steeper, possibly muddier, gorgeous countryside, steeper, bit of a bed race, steeper, wonderful free to roam horses on Hospitales, did I say steeper? Norte: quieter and peaceful, still great countryside, you get to stay in sobrado.
If I had to choose to START either of them from Oviedo I would choose Primitivo. If I was already on the Norte I would stay on it and complete it. Come back and do the Primitivo on it's own another time. You'll enjoy either I'm sure.
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020
I agree with the ‘decide along way’ thinking, regarding the split. In 2014, I originally had expected to ‘turn off to primitivo ‘ but chose to continue along the Norte and finish it. Beautiful all the way.
I returned the following year to Léon and walked the combo (Salvador to Oviedo) joining up there to Primitivo (you are then nicely prepared for the primitivo after walking the Salvador ). You are also very fit if you’ve walked the Norte too. I found the first week of that one very up and down.
You can’t make a bad choice with any of the routes though. Just being on camino anywhere in spain is a joy

Buen Camino
Annie
 

jennysa

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2011,2012 2013,2014, 2015 Aragones 2012, 2017 2018 Via Francigena 2016,2017 Primitivo 2018,2019
I walked the CP in May and met quite a few pilgrims who were not enjoying the Norte and had come down to join us on the CP.

I also met a few pilgrims who were finding the CF too busy and switched to the Primitivo.
 
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john newman

Kiwi Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2015)
Le Puy (2016)
Vézelay (2019)
Norte (2019)
Last night there were only 6 foot pilgrims in the Pola de Siero Refuge and 2 cyclists. That’s probably the total that left the del Norte given the lack of other options. After I left the del Norte I didn’t see another pilgrim until the Refuge. OTOH, there seem to be lots of pilgrims in Oviedo today.
Does that answer the question?
(I admit to a sampling error).
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
I would agree with Jan_D wrote. I started the Norte late September in Irun and never had the feeling of a bed race. (I have heard in summer it is different). The Norte definitely got alot quieter after the Primitivo split. It seemed that most of the people that I met split and did the Primitivo but almost all decided during their Camino. It was not something they had planned on before they left.
After the split the Norte became really empty. There were many days I saw at most just a few pilgrims and almost ever night I was either alone or with just a couple of other Pilgrims. After Sobrado it seemed there were lots more pilgrims. I really enjoyed the solitude when I walked but I missed meeting other pilgrims in the evening. It is a really nice walk and no where near as challenging as the Primitivo.
 

backpack45scb

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2001 CF, 04-6 LP, 07 Port, 08-10 Arles, 11 Mozá,12-13 Gen-LP. 00-10 PCT, 15 Norte, 16 Primi
We have done both, 1st the Norte and then the primitive from villaviciosa. When we did the Norte, most of the pilgrims we met did not decide until they got to the split. At that point those who loved the ocean continued on the Norte and those who wanted mountains went inland.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
The Norte definitely got alot quieter after the Primitivo split.
Yes, in the summer the Norte became quieter after the split.
I'm currently on the Norte again, and it's definitely quieter than it was in July, though I think that the albergue at Tapia de Casariego was nearly full last night.

@FourSeasons - are you on the Camino now?
 
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lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
Yes, in the summer the Norte became quieter after the split.
I'm currently on the Norte again, and it's definitely quieter than it was in July, though I think that the albergue at Tapia de Casariego was nearly full last night.

@FourSeasons - are you on the Camino now?
Hope you are having the Camino you want. Full of surprises and fun and new aches and pains haha. Hope you come to Puerto Vallarta soon.
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Hope you are having the Camino you want. Full of surprises and fun and new aches and pains haha. Hope you come to Puerto Vallarta soon.
I made it past the stage where I injured myself last year, so fingers crossed 🤞 that nothing happens between here and Santiago!
And I also hope that I get to Puerto Vallarta soon!
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
:) Hi,

I'm curious to know how many pilgrims veer off to the Primitivo from the del Norte. I would think it's a large number.
Does anyone out there know? How many?

Pros and Cons of going Primitivo:

Pros and Cons of staying on del Norte:

Thanks for your experience and suggestions.

:cool:👣
I chose to veer off, deciding the scenery change and variety might be nice...and it was wonderful! I do hope to finish up the Norte at some point by combining it with the Salvador and possibly the Madrid.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
I made it past the stage where I injured myself last year, so fingers crossed 🤞 that nothing happens between here and Santiago!
And I also hope that I get to Puerto Vallarta soon!
Keep on Truckin' mama, truckin' my blues away!!!!
 

FourSeasons

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Sept/Oct 2013
CF April/May 2016
del Norte (July/August 2019)
Last night there were only 6 foot pilgrims in the Pola de Siero Refuge and 2 cyclists. That’s probably the total that left the del Norte given the lack of other options. After I left the del Norte I didn’t see another pilgrim until the Refuge. OTOH, there seem to be lots of pilgrims in Oviedo today.
Does that answer the question?
(I admit to a sampling error).
Yes, Yes it does answer my question, thank you. You're saying approximately 8 pilgrims veered off to the Primitivo. My guess is Oviedo is a starting point for most pilgrims that want to do just the Primitivo, yes?

How's the weather?

:cool:👣
 

FourSeasons

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Sept/Oct 2013
CF April/May 2016
del Norte (July/August 2019)
Yes, in the summer the Norte became quieter after the split.
I'm currently on the Norte again, and it's definitely quieter than it was in July, though I think that the albergue at Tapia de Casariego was nearly full last night.

@FourSeasons - are you on the Camino now?
Hey 👋 Weren't you just on the CF asking about the old Roman Rd split. 😆

I only have 23 more sleeps before boots on the ground. Busiest time on the Camino but they don't call me FourSeasons for nothing although I think a winter Camino is pretty much out of the question.

How's the weather?

:cool: 👣
 
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john newman

Kiwi Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2015)
Le Puy (2016)
Vézelay (2019)
Norte (2019)
In a word, cold.
I had a merino shirt, merino baselayer and Patagonia jacket on all day. And a beanie in the morning. And long trousers.
Heavy showers yesterday.
In short, perfect walking weather, but it’s going to get warmer.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Hey 👋 Weren't you just on the CF asking about the old Roman Rd split. 😆
Yes, I was. After León I walked up to Oviedo on the Camino del Salvador.

Last year I started on the Norte from Irun, and it was quite a bit warmer than it is now, but I still has plenty of rain!
 

FourSeasons

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Sept/Oct 2013
CF April/May 2016
del Norte (July/August 2019)
In a word, cold.
I had a merino shirt, merino baselayer and Patagonia jacket on all day. And a beanie in the morning. And long trousers.
Heavy showers yesterday.
In short, perfect walking weather, but it’s going to get warmer.
I hope it warms up. Would you bring a fleece in July and August or just layer with a long sleeve and short sleeve and a poncho for rain and of course a hat, rain or shine? I need to go extremely lightweight.

Thanks!
:cool:👣
 

FourSeasons

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Sept/Oct 2013
CF April/May 2016
del Norte (July/August 2019)
Yes, I was. After León I walked up to Oviedo on the Camino del Salvador.

Last year I started on the Norte from Irun, and it was quite a bit warmer than it is now, but I still has plenty of rain!
Wow, that was quick. 🏃‍♀️

Same question to you,
Would you bring a fleece in July and August or just layer with a long sleeve and short sleeve and a poncho for rain and of course a hat, rain or shine? I need to go extremely lightweight.

Thanks,
:cool:👣
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Wow, that was quick. 🏃‍♀️

Same question to you,
Would you bring a fleece in July and August or just layer with a long sleeve and short sleeve and a poncho for rain and of course a hat, rain or shine? I need to go extremely lightweight.

Thanks,
:cool:👣

Not that quick, I've been walking since May 11th.

Last year I had a lightweight merino sweater, and a very lightweight (non fleece) hoodie. I had both so that I could layer them if needed, but it was never that cold, and I eventually mailed the sweater, and my shoes to Ivar in Santiago, and kept the hoodie. I switched to only wearing my hiking sandals, do didn't want to carry the shoes. In retrospect, I should have left the shoes on a donativo table.
 
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FourSeasons

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Sept/Oct 2013
CF April/May 2016
del Norte (July/August 2019)
Not that quick, I've been walking since May 11th.

Last year I had a lightweight merino sweater, and a very lightweight (non fleece) hoodie. I had both so that I could layer them if needed, but it was never that cold, and I eventually mailed the sweater, and my shoes to Ivar in Santiago, and kept the hoodie. I switched to only wearing my hiking sandals, do didn't want to carry the shoes. In retrospect, I should have left the shoes on a donativo table.
Okay so I will stick with my plan. I'll leave the rain jacket at home and go with layering/poncho combo. I can always purchase a fleece on the way. :)

I can't wait to use the silk liner I purchased from you. My first Camino without my sleeping bag.

Enjoy your journey and thanks for taking the time to respond.
Buen Camino

:cool:👣
 

jonnyboy9

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018 October?
Hmmm. Primitivo: steeper, possibly muddier, gorgeous countryside, steeper, bit of a bed race, steeper, wonderful free to roam horses on Hospitales, did I say steeper? Norte: quieter and peaceful, still great countryside, you get to stay in sobrado.
If I had to choose to START either of them from Oviedo I would choose Primitivo. If I was already on the Norte I would stay on it and complete it. Come back and do the Primitivo on it's own another time. You'll enjoy either I'm sure.
Bed race?? Never found that, tbh..
 

Kevin Considine

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
:) Hi,

I'm curious to know how many pilgrims veer off to the Primitivo from the del Norte. I would think it's a large number.
Does anyone out there know? How many?

Pros and Cons of going Primitivo:

Pros and Cons of staying on del Norte:

Thanks for your experience and suggestions.

:cool:👣
I have done both. They are both great. You can get more detail on my post of Nov. 24, 2018; HOW THE CAMINO DEL NORTE IS DIFFERENT FROM CAMINO FRANCES. Primitivo is more mountainous and a nice contrast to the first part of Norte which has alot of coastal walking.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2017
Primitivo 2018
Finisterre/Muxía 2018
Norte 2019
Yes, Yes it does answer my question, thank you. You're saying approximately 8 pilgrims veered off to the Primitivo. My guess is Oviedo is a starting point for most pilgrims that want to do just the Primitivo, yes?

How's the weather?

:cool:👣
I walked the Primitivo from Oviedo last year which was wonderful and then walked Camino del Norte from Irun this year and was really pleased to stay on the Norte. Most pilgrims were staying on the Norte mainly due to the weather ( early April ) and thinking Primitivo would be too cold. If you have the time I’d recommend staying on the Norte and walking the Primitivo as part of your next Camino. Either way it is your journey and both ways are memorable.
 

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