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LIVE from the Camino Via de la Plata January 2023

Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Sevilla-Guillena today, over 23 km. Via de la Plata is known for its desolation, and I was warned that, especially in winter, I would be happy to meet a few other pilgrims...However, I have already contacted Shazia from India and Marie from Singapore via fb . Shazia had the same starting day and so we started together. Beautiful day, a challenging crossing on what should not be called a bridge, and a rain shower and mud track in the last hour. It was clay and 1 step immediately yielded a kilo of clay that stuck to your shoes. Especially in the deep profiles of my high-quality mileage eaters, as Shazia hops along next to me in her flip flops (yes, really) like it's nothing. Nice girl, nice click, right away we seem to have a lot of common ground, but we can also walk side by side in silence, in connection with the path. Once in Guillena, we meet Marie, who cut this first stage in half and therefore started yesterday. And Claus, a pilgrim from Denmark who has been in bed with the flu for a few days but is now on the mend. So we decide to make a communal dinner, Shazia and I go shopping and cooking, we both like that. After shopping we meet two more pilgrims, Lars from Switzerland and Alexandra from Poland. We have enough so they join us too. Top evening, top group, day 1. Tomorrow we have breakfast and we leave together 🤩
 

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John Brierley 2023 Camino Guide
Get your today and start planning.
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 2, 19.5 km. After a nice breakfast the six of us left Guillena. The morning started very cold, but it warmed up quickly, until we finally walked in T-shirt and shorts 🤩. Again a wonderful trip, the terrain was a bit muddy and challenging at times but no major obstacles. We all seem to have about the same pace and pleasantly babbling conversations alternate with pleasant silences. Our hostel here is lovely, we even got towels! Funny how happy you can be with a little luxury 😊🙏. No kitchen here that we can use, but we spotted a restaurant where they serve a pilgrim menu. And just to the Spar to stock up for tomorrow, then we have 28 km ahead 🤪
 

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Camino Jewellery
A selection of Camino Jewellery

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
Day 2, 19.5 km. After a nice breakfast the six of us left Guillena. The morning started very cold, but it warmed up quickly, until we finally walked in T-shirt and shorts 🤩. Again a wonderful trip, the terrain was a bit muddy and challenging at times but no major obstacles. We all seem to have about the same pace and pleasantly babbling conversations alternate with pleasant silences. Our hostel here is lovely, we even got towels! Funny how happy you can be with a little luxury 😊🙏. No kitchen here that we can use, but we spotted a restaurant where they serve a pilgrim menu. And just to the Spar to stock up for tomorrow, then we have 28 km ahead 🤪
Luz del Camino is a wonderful albergue to start a camino in. I don't remember the hospitalero's name but he is quite a character indeed.
 

Grousedoctor

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
Love the pics! Brings back so many good memories. As much as I enjoyed cycling the VDLP, I really missed out on the camraderie that you six have already experienced in just a short two days.

You’re almost to Almaden de la Plata. A lovely Camino town. Let me recomend the Albergue La Casa del Reloj (still just €10 I think and after a long day on the bike for me from Sevilla, I was more than happy to be greeted at the door with a nice, cold beer). Buen Camino!

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lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
Love the pics! Brings back so many good memories. As much as I enjoyed cycling the VDLP, I really missed out on the camraderie that you six have already experienced in just a short two days.

You’re almost to Almaden de la Plata. A lovely Camino town. Let me recomend the Albergue La Casa del Reloj (still just €10 I think and after a long day on the bike for me from Sevilla, I was more than happy to be greeted at the door with a nice, cold beer). Buen Camino!

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I stayed there too. Very nice evening.
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
Most years since 2012
Yes, walking that plank was a bit scary.
In 2016, the water level was low enough that I didn't need to use any plank or bridge. In fact, I'm not sure if it was even there. I would be very nervous about crossing on that one, as my balance is not what it used to be, and my backpack makes me top heavy, etc. Maybe I'd just remove shoes, socks, even trousers, and walk through the water holding onto the bridge.

It's nice that you have a group walking on similar stages! Please keep the updates coming, as the VDLP is my favourite in many ways.
 

Flog

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022
Looks like a great start to the VDLP, brings back happy memories! in 2018 four of us got a lift across that river in the bucket of a tractor, we had a great first night in Luz del Camino too! Enjoy!
 
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, '12; Frances, '14; Port, '15; Frances, Norte, Fisterre, '16; Ingles, Fisterre/Muxia '17
Sevilla-Guillena today, over 23 km. Via de la Plata is known for its desolation, and I was warned that, especially in winter, I would be happy to meet a few other pilgrims...However, I have already contacted Shazia from India and Marie from Singapore via fb . Shazia had the same starting day and so we started together. Beautiful day, a challenging crossing on what should not be called a bridge, and a rain shower and mud track in the last hour. It was clay and 1 step immediately yielded a kilo of clay that stuck to your shoes. Especially in the deep profiles of my high-quality mileage eaters, as Shazia hops along next to me in her flip flops (yes, really) like it's nothing. Nice girl, nice click, right away we seem to have a lot of common ground, but we can also walk side by side in silence, in connection with the path. Once in Guillena, we meet Marie, who cut this first stage in half and therefore started yesterday. And Claus, a pilgrim from Denmark who has been in bed with the flu for a few days but is now on the mend. So we decide to make a communal dinner, Shazia and I go shopping and cooking, we both like that. After shopping we meet two more pilgrims, Lars from Switzerland and Alexandra from Poland. We have enough so they join us too. Top evening, top group, day 1. Tomorrow we have breakfast and we leave together 🤩
Oh that "plank" in April 2022! I scooched across on my butt b/c my friend tried to wade across the creek & sank up to her knees in mud! :) :)
 

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JennyH94

Pilgrim in progress
Time of past OR future Camino
CF whole & part 12-19, VF 17, VDLP+ptSbres22
Oh that "plank" in April 2022! I scooched across on my butt b/c my friend tried to wade across the creek & sank up to her knees in mud! :) :)
“That plank” @khiker9 indeed - it was a shocker! Someone needs to give that “bridge” a suitable name!

I crossed it on 20 April last year with my trailer Spot and didn’t use my noggin well enough … I unloaded Spot and gingerly walked across with my duffel bag - thank goodness for the overhanging branches - and then again with other bits and pieces and then pushed Spot across on his base - it was very secure and so there was no need after all to unload everything. A lesson learned!

Here it is, just in time to bring back that jelly-legs feeling!

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I took the photo from the successful-crossing side, Spot repacked and me feeling very relieved that I didn’t fall in to the stream!

The cyclists just behind me had a terrible time - there was lots of what could have been cursing, judging by the looks on their faces!

It’s a VDLP memory that makes me smile now though!

Cheers from Oz -
Jenny
 

camino07

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances x5, Portuguese VdlP12, Sanabres, Aragones, Norte,Salvador,Primitivo, VdlP 17,Madrid18Norte
In 2016, the water level was low enough that I didn't need to use any plank or bridge. In fact, I'm not sure if it was even there. I would be very nervous about crossing on that one, as my balance is not what it used to be, and my backpack makes me top heavy, etc. Maybe I'd just remove shoes, socks, even trousers, and walk through the water holding onto the bridge.

It's nice that you have a group walking on similar stages! Please keep the updates coming, as the VDLP is my favourite in many ways.
I just shuffled my feet across as I couldn't bring myself to lift a foot up in case I overbalanced.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
When I crossed that creek in 2012 the "bridge" was a log. Even more scary with a bike!
Like @Peregrinopaul, I had to cross that water on a log that was hidden in some brush off to one side of the camino. I shimmeyed across and would never have made it if I had to stand up. There was so much talk for so long about building a bridge there, and I guess this was considered to be the most efficient solution. I would personally prefer shimmeying across a log than across this steel contraption!

The stream is called the Arroyo Molinos and it is not infrequently subject to flooding. Here’s one notice from 2017. There is a road crossing, but it would involve backtracking to Santiponce and not taking the turnoff after Itálica, I believe, so that would add several kilomometers.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 3, Via de la Plata, 29km. An early start this morning, six of us left, again dry but fresh weather. The first 16 km of the day we walked on an asphalt road, not the most pleasant surface but still doable. There was little traffic and the surroundings are beautiful. However, everyone decided to walk at their own pace, and to be honest I really enjoyed walking in seclusion for a few hours. I with the path and one with the path. Knowing that camino friends are walking in front and behind you is nice 😊❤️🙏. After 16 km very nice to continue the road through a national park, beautiful. However, the venom was in the tail, a long and tough climb with an already tired body was quite a task! Beautiful view, that is, although the descent was at least as challenging as the climb. Fortunately, we could already see the village, and we were kindly welcomed by the hospitalero. And cookies, there were cookies 🤪. Actually I thought I was too tired to cook, but when everyone was inside it turned out that our paths will separate tomorrow. I'm going to do the long route of 34 km with Shazia, the others cut the stage in two and take two days. Choices... And so decided to cook together Shazia again, which the others really appreciated. The entire power supply also flipped out for a while, using the booster button on the hob is apparently not a good plan here 🤣. After dinner we also treated Alexandra's two blisters, so it has become unintentionally late. Time to rest now, tomorrow 34 km ahead 👌
 

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How to Successfully Prepare for Your Camino
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 4 Via de la Plata, 36.65km. Almaden to Monasterio
Long and beautiful day today. Walked from sunrise to sunset, nice weather, beautiful nature, and filled with mainly stray pigs, sheep and cows. Nothing was open in the village halfway, but we have now made it a habit to prepare sandwiches for lunch in the morning and we carry enough water with us. Just walking with Shazia now. In the morning a few times we had to search for the right route and sometimes also confronted with challenging terrain. I was under the impression that the VdlP was flat, but that is NOT true! Had to climb 800 meters today 🥴. The last stretch seemed tough, until surprisingly we were cut off by a herd of cows that preceded us at least 3 kilometers over the VdlP. Beautiful 😍 Now in front of the fire in a nice alberge, only the bedrooms are freezing cold so I'm considering crashing here on the couch... Tomorrow an easier day, 20 km, so we can sleep in 😉
 

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OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Oct/Nov 2022_Mozarabe from Almeria
How beautiful the Vdlp is looking in early January! ☀️ 🌞 ⛅️ . You don’t look too rugged up and the sky is blue. Cold at night is expected. Great to see our animal friends en camino … (pigs, sheep and cattle ).
Are you seeing any early flowers yet?
So happy for you that you have lucked on good companionship (plenty of other pilgrims ) so early in the season.
Buen camino
 
Time of past OR future Camino
VDLP March 2022
Camino Frances Sep 2023
Hi Karin,
Very nice discovering your blog today and reading about your vdlp so far. I walked last March and loved it. Appreciate all the pictures... brings back good memories. Those cows were in the same spot a year ago too! My heart was beating wildly passing the first few. I practiced my broken Spanish on them. Hola vacas!

Enjoy the walk from Monasterio to Fuente.... one of my top days! Buen Camino
 
Time of past OR future Camino
VdlP(2012) Madrid(2014)Frances(2015) VdlP(2016)
VdlP(2017)Madrid/Sanabres/Frances reverse(2018)
Day 4 Via de la Plata, 36.65km. Almaden to Monasterio
I'm very much enjoying your posts and beautiful photos.
That was a long day! I'm assuming that the village you mentioned was El Real de la Jara, one of my favourite locations. I've read that the town is suffering greatly after the closure of the big nickel/copper mine a couple of km to the NW.
Buen camino!
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
I'm very much enjoying your posts and beautiful photos.
That was a long day! I'm assuming that the village you mentioned was El Real de la Jara, one of my favourite locations. I've read that the town is suffering greatly after the closure of the big nickel/copper mine a couple of km to the NW.
Buen camino!
Yes, thats the village. We didnt see a living soul and everything was closed.
 
Camino Jewellery
A selection of Camino Jewellery

Madrood

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Serrana/VdlP or Geneva+
Have you seen many other pilgrims other than the ones you met at the beginning?
 

Dermo

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Primitivo
Hi Karin, I’ve only just discovered your posts now. I’m a couple of days ahead of you and have reached Merida. It’s really interesting to read about your experiences and compare them to mine…

You seem to have had great luck with meeting other pilgrims. I met only three and they’re pulling out now. I’m continuing all the way to Santiago. I figure I have covered 250 km and then quarter way there now.

It would be great if our paths cross??

My blogs appeared initially on the Vía de la Plata pilgtims group but I can’t post links onto that. I’ll see if it’s possible to post mine onto this forum. It would be really good to connect with other pilgrims who are walking at this time.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Hi Karin, I’ve only just discovered your posts now. I’m a couple of days ahead of you and have reached Merida. It’s really interesting to read about your experiences and compare them to mine…

You seem to have had great luck with meeting other pilgrims. I met only three and they’re pulling out now. I’m continuing all the way to Santiago. I figure I have covered 250 km and then quarter way there now.

It would be great if our paths cross??

My blogs appeared initially on the Vía de la Plata pilgtims group but I can’t post links onto that. I’ll see if it’s possible to post mine onto this forum. It would be really good to connect with other pilgrims who are walking at this time.
Hi Dermo, yes, I saw your posts on the Facebook group. Good that you have found this forum 😊🙏. Yes I am very lucky with the company, although we are just with the two of us now. We will also go all the way to Santiago en after that even Fisterre and Muxia. You are quite a few days ahead of us, so not sure if our paths will cross. But anyway nice to keep in touch through this forum, or you can always send me a message via messenger...Buen Camino!
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 5 Via de la Plata, 21km. From Monasterio to Fuente de Cantos.
Really slept in this morning and only left at 9.45 am for this relatively short stage. It was soooo beautiful ❤️👌. No big differences in height, easy terrain except for a small stream that we could cross stone by stone. And again; beautiful weather! Cold in the morning but it warms up quickly, although we can feel the north wind telling us it will get colder in the coming days. That will be a challenge because I'm really traveling with minimal cloths and no spares, maybe I have to find a decathlon before it gets really cold! In the meantime I am amazed with the strength of my body...I thought I was poorly trained when I started this camino. I was mentally prepared for a tough first week, but it seems like my body carries the memory of what it's like to walk all day, and I feel fitter every day 😊👌.
Today we opted for a relatively expensive overnight stay, 25pp, an entire apartment for ourselves! What a luxury 🤩. What was decisive was that the description said "heating" and "washing machine". I've been wearing the same clothes for 5 days and can't get my clothes dry in an unheated alberge... But merino wool doesn't stink, so I could have continued for a while 🤪. Anyway, luxury it is ☺️ Nicely cooked myself again and now sleeping in a wonderfully heated room, so that I don't have to lie in my sleeping bag with all my clothes and hat on for a change..🤣. Tomorrow we can also take it easy again, about 24 km 👌
 

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Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Have you seen many other pilgrims other than the ones you met at the beginning?
There is a Spanish pilgrim we meet almost every day, I know he is walking until Caceres. However, he doesn't speak English and we dont speak Spanish. So we interact though smiles and signlanguage but conversation is very limited. And I met another pilgrim in Sevilla but he stayed there an extra day, so he is at least one day behind us. Other than that, no other pilgrims...
 
John Brierley 2023 Camino Guide
Get your today and start planning.
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 6 Via de la Plata, Fuente de Cantos to Zafra, 25km.

Cold morning but another sunshiny day, and this time walking the path in freshly washed clothes 👌🤪. I quickly left Shazia behind, assuming she was on the phone and would join me later. That didnt happen tough...Later this morning she called me to say that walking for her was not possible, her knee was bothering her a lot and she decided to stop her camino and take the bus to Seville 😥. This really came out of the blue for me... Anyway, now I walk alone...that takes some getting used to but is also OK, although I will certainly miss her company! I've been spoiled with so much company this past week, especially on the VdlP which is known to be a camino of solitude. But there was also a reason why I chose this path, to have time for me to be with myself and go within. Still, it feels awkward now, and I notice that sometimes anxious thoughts arise about my heart condition... what if things go wrong? But luckily those are just moments, and at home on the couch things can also go wrong and here I am doing something that is healthy and makes me happy. ❤️🙏🙏❤️ Practising Trust that the camino provides... Now in Zafra, quite a town, but I don't like the hustle and bustle of such a big place. Will be happy if I walk in the still nature again tomorrow, it's so beautiful here 🤩. I did have a very warm welcome here at the alberge and a very special stamp! Time for some sleep now, tomorrow a short stage of about 20 km ahead 👌
 

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Time of past OR future Camino
2019
Sevilla-Guillena today, over 23 km. Via de la Plata is known for its desolation, and I was warned that, especially in winter, I would be happy to meet a few other pilgrims...However, I have already contacted Shazia from India and Marie from Singapore via fb . Shazia had the same starting day and so we started together. Beautiful day, a challenging crossing on what should not be called a bridge, and a rain shower and mud track in the last hour. It was clay and 1 step immediately yielded a kilo of clay that stuck to your shoes. Especially in the deep profiles of my high-quality mileage eaters, as Shazia hops along next to me in her flip flops (yes, really) like it's nothing. Nice girl, nice click, right away we seem to have a lot of common ground, but we can also walk side by side in silence, in connection with the path. Once in Guillena, we meet Marie, who cut this first stage in half and therefore started yesterday. And Claus, a pilgrim from Denmark who has been in bed with the flu for a few days but is now on the mend. So we decide to make a communal dinner, Shazia and I go shopping and cooking, we both like that. After shopping we meet two more pilgrims, Lars from Switzerland and Alexandra from Poland. We have enough so they join us too. Top evening, top group, day 1. Tomorrow we have breakfast and we leave together 🤩
Looking forward to reading about your journey. I attempted the Via de la Plata in November. Far lonelier walk than yours. I'm amazed how many people you met. It also got kind of cold and rainy by the time I got north of Merida and eventually I headed to Malaga for pizza and swimming. Maybe in the spring I'll return and start from Salamanca. You can help me out by chronicling your journey. I'll read every word with interest.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 7 Via de la Plata, from Zafra to Villafranca de los Barros, 19.4km.

A gray morning, foggy and cold. And frankly not the most beautiful route today. It was still a pleasant walk, although I had a "freezing moment" when no less than 4 German Shepherds came running towards me. At least it seemed that way, but they ran past me like I didn't exist 🤣🤣🤣
Now in hotel Diana, since the only pilgrim hostel was closed. A bit expensive but nice and warm, and there is a restaurant where I just had a delicious meal 👌
I can't cook myself here and found out it's Sunday 🤪, so all shops are closed. So I spoiled myself with a delicious menu that I ate way too much of 😇
Tomorrow is a challenge... I wanted to go to Torremejia 26 km away, but the only alberge there is closed and the hotel has no beds, or so they say. There is a possible detour of 8 km to another town, but I don't want that, because that is off the camino. So I will have to continue to Merida, 42 km from here 😬. My plan now is that I will start early tomorrow and then see how it goes. I can always take the bus in Torremejia (after 26km) to Merida... Anyway, the day after is practically a rest day, I want to go shopping at Decathlon in the morning and then only have to walk 15km to the next alberge.. To be continued 😊
 

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Grousedoctor

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
I continue to enjoy your commentary and the pics. Such fond memories! Wow, a 42 km day tomorrow will be huge! I found the Albergue de Peregrinos in Meridato be quite nice. Hopefully, it’ll be open for you. Wonderful Roman architecture in Merida. If you don’t absolutely have to move on, you may find that spending the whole day in Merida worth the break. I know that I wished that I had had more time there. Buen Camino!

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JWB

Jan Willem
Time of past OR future Camino
April/May 2023 Camino Madrid, Camino del Salvador
When I was walking the VdlP last spring I spent the night in a hostel just outside Torremejia, Hostel Milenium, a walking day of 26.7km. Hostel is ok. Next day to Merida, just 15,3km.
Love to tead your posts!
 
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Jay_Walker

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Portuguese July 2022
Thank you for your posts - really enjoying your adventure. How cold does it get during the day? I have thought about doing the VdLP but not sure what time of year would be best. I was in Merida some 30 years ago - beautiful place. Good luck tomorrow.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
When I was walking the VdlP last spring I spent the night in a hostel just outside Torremejia, Hostel Milenium, a walking day of 26.7km. Hostel is ok. Next day to Merida, just 15,3km.
Love to tead your posts!
Tnx. I know about them and called them. They don't have a bed for me tomorrow..
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Thank you for your posts - really enjoying your adventure. How cold does it get during the day? I have thought about doing the VdLP but not sure what time of year would be best. I was in Merida some 30 years ago - beautiful place. Good luck tomorrow.
Early morning down to 2-5 degrees. And be aware most alberges don't have heating. Earlier this week during afternoon max temp around 20 degrees, now it's getting colder. Today barely 9. And still have a long way up north to go...
 

Corned Beef

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
VDLP Part 2/2023
Hmm.. a night in Torremejia or one in Merida. Wonder how this will end up. Looking forward to hearing your decision.

Meanwhile some pics to help you decide.
 

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Dermo

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Primitivo
Well it’s definitely too late to be making decisions now. Let’s see when the Karen enlightens us with her decision…
 
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Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Well...the decision is already made that I am not gonna spend a night in Torremejia, for there is no bed for me... So I either walk all the way to Merida, or I take the bus for some of it..
 
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lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
It is worth taking a full day in Merida especially if you walk all the way. (Of course if you have the luxury of time).
One morning when you walk through that section of the camino where you have to walk through (and make sure you close) all the farms and the gates I was about to go through a gate but there were 40 or 50 sheep in front. After they thinned out and I got through the gate, there were lots of pigs and piglets (It must have been in Extremaudura now that I think about it.) An absolutely huge dog came running out of the barn and my first thought was I am done for. He stopped about 3 feet from me and hunched down wagging his tail and his whole butt. I realized he was just a humongous puppy. He then jumped up on me with his paws on my shoulders (I am 6'2" 189cm) and he was taller than me. He then licked the entire side of my face and jumped down found a stick and brought it to me. The farmer came out and saw this and I think he was angry with the dog because although he was huge was the world's friendliest guard dog. The farmer hustled him back in the barn and I was on my way.
 

TomSawyer

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances x2 + in Cambodia+Thailand. Now VdlP
I have a really good tip for pilgrims.
Today, I walked from Monesterio.
I was going to stay in Fuente de Cantos, but the Albergue was closed and I didn't fancy the Casa after visiting the rooms.
So, instead, I walked on to Calzadilla de los Barros.
It's about six kilometres from Fuente de Cantos.
There is a new-ish Albergue here, next to the Ermita- they opened it last summer.
You get the key from the town hall and you pay 8 Euro for the night.
They then give you the key to the Albergue.
Inside is a kitchen, washing machine, hot showers, comfy beds with lots of power plugs, and a coffee machine.
It's an incredible deal and today feels like I truly began my Camino.
If you do stay here, there isn't a mercado.
There are two options for food.
One is by the busy road and another is in the village.
I visited both and can definitely recommend the one in the village.
You can see it on Google maps and it is the only bar open in the village.
Buen Camino!
 

Corned Beef

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
VDLP Part 2/2023
I remember that Ayuntamiento from this time last year. Very helpful and pilgrim friendly. Office up the stairs has a sello.

Pity they didn't mention the accommodation but a great tip.
 

TomSawyer

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances x2 + in Cambodia+Thailand. Now VdlP
I remember that Ayuntamiento from this time last year. Very helpful and pilgrim friendly. Office up the stairs has a sello.

Pity they didn't mention the accommodation but a great tip.
They only opened the Albergue in summer 2022.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Resumé of today; Day 8 Via de la Plata, from Villafranca de los Barros to Merida, 43.9km.
Left early this morning in the dark, cold wind all day, fortunately dry. Because it was so cold I had to pick up the pace, taking a break was almost impossible and so I was in Torremejia (27km) already at 13.30h.
There I took a nice long break in a cafe where I was watched with suspicion by a dozen elderly men, who clearly did not understand what I was doing as a woman alone on the VdlP ... When I made it clear to the bartender with sign language that I was going all the way to Meride today, I spontaneously received an extra large amount of free tapas 🤩🙏. The route was uninspiring today, so I walked with music for a few hours and sang along nicely ( and falsely 🤪)and to stretch the muscles now and then a crazy dance, there was no one who could here or see me anyway 🤣
The last part from Torremejia was completely boring, a long way by road, and when I thought I could get off it I came across a flood 500 meters further on that I couldn't cross... So had to walk back 🥴🥴🥴 to the road again. Then I was done with it, and out of frustration I tried to get a lift for the last 8 km. Not a busy road, I tried 3 cars, then the camino left the road again and I just accepted that I had to continue by foot. But it went well! Tired? Yes definitely. But no blisters, and still energy to walk to the supermarket and make food. By the way, I didn't want to miss the entry into Merida over the old Roman bridge... Very special 😍. Now in the municipal pilgrim's hostel, well, basic, cold, but the bed feels good and that's the most important thing. Although I will be sleeping in my clothes again... which I don't have to take off anyway because I really don't want to take a shower here.. 😯. José (Spanish pilgrim) is also here and also has the 44 km covered today.He was surprised to see me 🤣. Tomorrow morning I will be exploring Merida and shopping at Decathlon, in the afternoon I will walk to my next alberge, only 14 km away 👌
 

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Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.

Pilger Franz

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Podiensis-Norte-Ingles-SdC; Francigena; Touron.; Bretagne; Lemovic.; Lana; Lusitana (Este)
It is a great pleasure following your steps - and the pics!!
 

WanderingNotLost

Director of Mirth & Merriment for the Cosmos
Time of past OR future Camino
CF-SJPP('12) CP-Lisbon('13) CF-Pamplona('14)
CP-coastal('15) VDLP-Salamanca('16)
CP-Lisbon('17)
Karin, not only am I enjoying your daily posts, I'm also in awe of your physical and spiritual strength. Keep on trucking pilgrim. You can do it with grace and style.

Thanks for your daily updates. I'm planning on stepping out of Seville on April 16th, so you sharing some of what you encounter provides a useful education.

Peace & Love
 

peregringo1

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
140+ days total on various caminos
I would say it's a blessing that the hostal in torremejia did not have a bed for you. That place (and town in general) is one of the worst places in all my days on the camino. Congrats for walking a marathon all the way to Merida! The next albergue in El Carrascalejo is great with a kind hospitalera.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Resumé of today; Day 9 Via de la Plata, from Merida to Aljucen, 17.4km.

Shortest but toughest day so far. This morning I realized that I really just wanted to go and walk, but so many had advised me to take time in Merida that I was still afraid of missing "something" if I didn't. Moreover, I still had to go to Decathlon, which only opened later in the morning. So I strolled through Merida in the early morning, got soaked by rain, later the sun came through and then I decided to go to the amphitheatre. Impressive, that's for sure, and yet I felt out of place there... I just wanted to walk! And, no matter how impressive such an amphitheater is, a lot of old stones don't necessarily make my heart beat faster...while I do become very happy if I can blend in with nature...Anyway, I suck as a tourist 🤪 and later in the day I also found out that IF I want to look at things at all, this has to be done in a different order. The strolling around in the morning costed me more energy than pedaling away for 20 km, so when I finally "started" walking in the afternoon after my Decathlon visit, I was already 1-0 behind. The way out of Merida was uninspiring, later it got nicer, but the biggest challenge today was the wind. It was tough to keep standing with my now heavier backpack and the gusts of wind made every step a struggle. My intended destination was an alberge 2.8 km back from where I am now, in El Carrascalejo, and I had also made reservations there. When I got there, (obviously) no one was around, but when I called she said she was coming. (Un momento...) I waited outside for half an hour, cold and tired, and when it started to rain I was really done with it 😵. Fortunately for me, I knew that an alberge was also open 2.8 km from there in Aljucen, because that's where José would go. So I picked up my stuff and walked on. I felt pretty sorry for myself, but when the rain had washed away my tears the sun literally broke through again 😊🙏. Now nice and warm, wearing all my clothes in the sleeping bag, no heating of course...Had a pep talk from my boyfriend 🥰 so I can take on the world again ❤️🙏🙏❤️. Tomorrow a relatively short stage, 20km. The way is forward...
 

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Grousedoctor

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
Impressive, that's for sure, and yet I felt out of place there... I just wanted to walk! And, no matter how impressive such an amphitheater is, a lot of old stones don't necessarily make my heart beat faster...while I do become very happy if I can blend in with nature...Anyway, I suck as a tourist 🤪 and later in the day I also found out that IF I want to look at things at all, this has to be done in a different order.
I know exactly what you mean by just wanting to walk. I, too, found it hard to be a tourist while on the Camino. As much as I enjoyed walking around a town at the end of a day on the Camino, sightseeing per se was pretty low on my priority list. I can certainly enjoy visiting a beautiful church or cathedral or seeing ruins from the very distant past, but I found that my “pilgrim’s mindset” wasn’t as interested in the sights or attractions, but was instead more aligned with connecting with other pilgrims at the end of the day or reflecting and writing about the miles that I had just covered usually with a nice glass of wine sitting at an outside café. And this is perhaps the difference between travel and a pilgrimage.
 

TomSawyer

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances x2 + in Cambodia+Thailand. Now VdlP
I just want to second what Karin wrote about staying at the Hotel Diana in Villafranca de los Barros. It's a really good deal and it is pilgrim-friendly. I arrived at 11:30am and asked if I could check in early and it wasn't an issue. It's a lovely town too and so far very friendly. A real diamond in the rough I would say.
 

Sydney Peregrinos

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances (2009); Portugues (2013); Frances (2015); Finisterre (2015); Invierno (2018); Ingles (2018);
Resumé of today; Day 9 Via de la Plata, from Merida to Aljucen, 17.4km.

Shortest but toughest day so far. This morning I realized that I really just wanted to go and walk, but so many had advised me to take time in Merida that I was still afraid of missing "something" if I didn't. Moreover, I still had to go to Decathlon, which only opened later in the morning. So I strolled through Merida in the early morning, got soaked by rain, later the sun came through and then I decided to go to the amphitheatre. Impressive, that's for sure, and yet I felt out of place there... I just wanted to walk! And, no matter how impressive such an amphitheater is, a lot of old stones don't necessarily make my heart beat faster...while I do become very happy if I can blend in with nature...Anyway, I suck as a tourist 🤪 and later in the day I also found out that IF I want to look at things at all, this has to be done in a different order. The strolling around in the morning costed me more energy than pedaling away for 20 km, so when I finally "started" walking in the afternoon after my Decathlon visit, I was already 1-0 behind. The way out of Merida was uninspiring, later it got nicer, but the biggest challenge today was the wind. It was tough to keep standing with my now heavier backpack and the gusts of wind made every step a struggle. My intended destination was an alberge 2.8 km back from where I am now, in El Carrascalejo, and I had also made reservations there. When I got there, (obviously) no one was around, but when I called she said she was coming. (Un momento...) I waited outside for half an hour, cold and tired, and when it started to rain I was really done with it 😵. Fortunately for me, I knew that an alberge was also open 2.8 km from there in Aljucen, because that's where José would go. So I picked up my stuff and walked on. I felt pretty sorry for myself, but when the rain had washed away my tears the sun literally broke through again 😊🙏. Now nice and warm, wearing all my clothes in the sleeping bag, no heating of course...Had a pep talk from my boyfriend 🥰 so I can take on the world again ❤️🙏🙏❤️. Tomorrow a relatively short stage, 20km. The way is forward...
I am loving reading about your Camino! We are staring from Sevilla on March 28th and plan to follow the same stages as you have done so far. Pleas keep on posting your experiences.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 10 Via de la Plata, from Aljucen to Alcuescar, 19.6km.

Cold and windy day, but a lovely sun and a beautiful route. It was pleasant again as usual and with that the struggle of yesterday is quickly forgotten. Legs and feet are fine, the only thing I struggle with after about 10 km is back pain. When the pain in my back gets too bad I have to pause and take off my backpack. After that I can continue, but it's still annoying, and no matter how I pack it or adjust it, it doesn't make much difference. It's my weak spot I guess, and I can deal with it. Meanwhile I thank my feet and legs for the ease in which they carry me 😊🙏.
Today I arrived quite early in Alcuescar, the pilgrim hostel is located in a kind of monastery. Very basic, based on donation, and of course no heating, but to my surprise a wonderfully hot shower. I immediately took one for over half an hour, meanwhile contemplating about how such a pilgrimage brings you back to a basic lifestyle without any luxury, so that getting a hot shower is suddenly a godsend gift, instead of a "habit" you take for granted.
The realization of the wealth we have here in the west, and how we usually take it all for granted, or even feel we are entitled to have it..
I personally love to experience that I can do without, life becomes wonderfully simple with everything you really need in your backpack on your back.
That being said... that hot shower was really divine ❤️🙏🙏❤️.
Now waiting for the local supermarket to open (siesta..), my body wants to eat!! Unfortunately no cooking facilities here, so no hot food for the third day in a row. That too gets used to 😉.
Tomorrow a stage of about 26 km to Valdesalor.

By the way, I had the sobering realization today that exactly in a month, I will still be walking 😬😬😬

To be continued...
 

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lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
Day 10 Via de la Plata, from Aljucen to Alcuescar, 19.6km.

Cold and windy day, but a lovely sun and a beautiful route. It was pleasant again as usual and with that the struggle of yesterday is quickly forgotten. Legs and feet are fine, the only thing I struggle with after about 10 km is back pain. When the pain in my back gets too bad I have to pause and take off my backpack. After that I can continue, but it's still annoying, and no matter how I pack it or adjust it, it doesn't make much difference. It's my weak spot I guess, and I can deal with it. Meanwhile I thank my feet and legs for the ease in which they carry me 😊🙏.
Today I arrived quite early in Alcuescar, the pilgrim hostel is located in a kind of monastery. Very basic, based on donation, and of course no heating, but to my surprise a wonderfully hot shower. I immediately took one for over half an hour, meanwhile contemplating about how such a pilgrimage brings you back to a basic lifestyle without any luxury, so that getting a hot shower is suddenly a godsend gift, instead of a "habit" you take for granted.
The realization of the wealth we have here in the west, and how we usually take it all for granted, or even feel we are entitled to have it..
I personally love to experience that I can do without, life becomes wonderfully simple with everything you really need in your backpack on your back.
That being said... that hot shower was really divine ❤️🙏🙏❤️.
Now waiting for the local supermarket to open (siesta..), my body wants to eat!! Unfortunately no cooking facilities here, so no hot food for the third day in a row. That too gets used to 😉.
Tomorrow a stage of about 26 km to Valdesalor.

By the way, I had the sobering realization today that exactly in a month, I will still be walking 😬😬😬

To be continued...
It is a long way and I always remind myself on all caminos, especially when I walked, all I have is today and today all I have is the step I am taking. After 2 days of arriving in Santiago I had my backpack on and was walking out of Santiago to Muxia and FInisterre!
 
John Brierley 2023 Camino Guide
Get your today and start planning.
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
It is a long way and I always remind myself on all caminos, especially when I walked, all I have is today and today all I have is the step I am taking. After 2 days of arriving in Santiago I had my backpack on and was walking out of Santiago to Muxia and FInisterre!
Yep, Muxia and Finisterre will mark the end of this Camino, not Santiago..
 

Paul-CH

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023 Vía Augusta, Vía de la Plata, Camino Sanabrés
Day 10 Via de la Plata, from Aljucen to Alcuescar, 19.6km.

Cold and windy day, but a lovely sun and a beautiful route. It was pleasant again as usual and with that the struggle of yesterday is quickly forgotten. Legs and feet are fine, the only thing I struggle with after about 10 km is back pain. When the pain in my back gets too bad I have to pause and take off my backpack. After that I can continue, but it's still annoying, and no matter how I pack it or adjust it, it doesn't make much difference. It's my weak spot I guess, and I can deal with it. Meanwhile I thank my feet and legs for the ease in which they carry me 😊🙏.
Today I arrived quite early in Alcuescar, the pilgrim hostel is located in a kind of monastery. Very basic, based on donation, and of course no heating, but to my surprise a wonderfully hot shower. I immediately took one for over half an hour, meanwhile contemplating about how such a pilgrimage brings you back to a basic lifestyle without any luxury, so that getting a hot shower is suddenly a godsend gift, instead of a "habit" you take for granted.
The realization of the wealth we have here in the west, and how we usually take it all for granted, or even feel we are entitled to have it..
I personally love to experience that I can do without, life becomes wonderfully simple with everything you really need in your backpack on your back.
That being said... that hot shower was really divine ❤️🙏🙏❤️.
Now waiting for the local supermarket to open (siesta..), my body wants to eat!! Unfortunately no cooking facilities here, so no hot food for the third day in a row. That too gets used to 😉.
Tomorrow a stage of about 26 km to Valdesalor.

By the way, I had the sobering realization today that exactly in a month, I will still be walking 😬😬😬

To be continued...
Hi Karin309, thanks for your great daily reports. You convinced me to bring a down sleeping bag instead of a silk one. I will start March 20th but from Cádiz and hope the temperature will be a bit more on the upper side of ZERO. To prevent the sleeping problem, I already started to reserve beds for the easter weekend. My back never hurts with my 6.5kg backpack, including 1L water.
Buon Camino regards Paul
 

JWB

Jan Willem
Time of past OR future Camino
April/May 2023 Camino Madrid, Camino del Salvador
I will start March 20th but from Cádiz
Hi Paul, last year I walked the VdlP, including Sanabres. Started in Seville early april. I did not needed the sleeping bag at all along the trail. Temps in March between Cadiz and Seville are usally between 15C/22C (day) and 5C/12C (night). You may check the historical weather data at site Wunderground.com
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Resumé of today; Day 11 Via de la Plata, from Alcuescar to Valdesalor, 26.9km.

First of all last night; I received a very sweet message from Luisa Carou Ferreiro from CaminoComfort, with tips on how I can pack and carry my backpack in a beter way... What a committed service, more than 1.5 years after the purchase ❤️🙏🙏❤️
I already walked with a little less pain today, it's amazing how small adjustments can make such a big difference! They really know what they are doing there 👌
Also had the advice to go to a masseur, and luckily I was able to find one immediately in Caceres 😊
So tomorrow I will walk a very short stage of only 12 km and have a massage in the evening 👌
So, resumé of today; Early start in the freezing cold, fortunately little wind, lovely sunshine, nice pace. Beautiful route today, challenging terrain, lots of stones and/or mud, hard work for the ankles. Having to cross many puddles, usually in places where there is always flooding. The Spaniards have been kind enough to place stepping stones there. Although that may not even be for the pilgrims, but for the sheep (see photos)🤣
Sometimes it got a bit tricky, I even got 1 wet foot 😝 . All in all it was doable.
Unfortunately, during the morning I received the message that an elderly friend of mine was hospitalized yesterday and will soon start her last journey 😥. She is at peace with that and I should be too, but I had hoped to see her in March...
This day I walked with her in my heart, reviewed so many beautiful memories and felt blessed... that I got to know her for so long in this life..🙏🙏🙏
It feels like the end of an era (again), though I know the true connection will always remain.
For my first camino she gave me my first stone, to put it down at the Cruz de Ferro. For myself, and also a little bit for her. I put the stone in a crack in the crotch. My stone, her stone.

Thea, today was for you ❤️🙏🙏❤️
 

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Paul-CH

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023 Vía Augusta, Vía de la Plata, Camino Sanabrés
Hi Paul, last year I walked the VdlP, including Sanabres. Started in Seville early april. I did not needed the sleeping bag at all along the trail. Temps in March between Cadiz and Seville are usally between 15C/22C (day) and 5C/12C (night). You may check the historical weather data at site Wunderground.com

Hi JWB, thanks this is great news for me. So I will carry only my Silk bag 150g instead of the 580g sleeping bag. I like to take as less as possible with me. As a trail runner I know each Gramm counts. From Cádiz to Santiago there is long way in front of me. Have a nice time.
 
John Brierley 2023 Camino Guide
Get your today and start planning.

Pilger Franz

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Podiensis-Norte-Ingles-SdC; Francigena; Touron.; Bretagne; Lemovic.; Lana; Lusitana (Este)
This day I walked with her in my heart, reviewed so many beautiful memories and felt blessed... that I got to know her for so long in this life..🙏🙏🙏
It feels like the end of an era (again), though I know the true connection will always remain.
For my first camino she gave me my first stone, to put it down at the Cruz de Ferro. For myself, and also a little for her. I put the stone in a crack in the crotch. My stone, her stone.

Thea, today was for you ❤️🙏🙏❤️
Thank you for this! It touches my heart.
 

Grousedoctor

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
For my first camino she gave me my first stone, to put it down at the Cruz de Ferro. For myself, and also a little bit for her. I put the stone in a crack in the crotch. My stone, her stone.

Although you still have a great ways to go, your Camino is already so full! How much richer you are to have the memories you hold dear of friends and events from that first Camino.

If you have the opportunity tomorrow in Caceres, do try the queso Torta del Casar. It was truly one of my favorite culinary delights on the VDLP.

D590D4E6-CB76-4FAC-8356-F0957E374946.jpeg l
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Resumé of today; Day 12 Via de la Plata, from Valdesalor to Caceres, 13km.

First of all last night... I was sooo happy when I found a washing machine, electrical cookingplate, clean shower AND heating in the alberge.. 🤩👌. For the first time completely on my own, José, whom I always saw in the evening, has reached the end of his camino. I picked up the key at the local café, and I was completely delighted with all the amenities ... and that for only 6 euros!
While rinsing my bottle, I had already noticed that the water was hot, so that promised a heavenly shower ...
So I took off all my clothes, put everything in the machine, sprayed some washing-up liquid over it (I didn't have any soap), and there we go... NOT.
No matter what I tried, the bitch didn't work.... By now freezing my ass off, I did some damage control first, took the clothes out of the machine and brushed off the detergent as best as possible. (I smell like lemon today 🤪).
Okay, sprint to the shower. Warming up....NOT!! None, as in completely NO water pressure at all, a pathetic dripping shower head, not a chance.
Ok, so I put my lemon-smelling clothes back on, at least I smelled fresh 🤣👌
I really wanted to cook for myself again, but before I went shopping I tried out the cookingplate just to be sure... You guessed it; Kaput 🤣🤣🤣
By now I had almost lost myself in laughter, and when the miniature heating didn't go further than lukewarm, I fled to the local cafe.
Super nice bartender, WiFi, freezing cold because they left the door wide open there, but hot chocolate, coke, cake and a full bowl of peanuts for less than 4 euros 🤩🙏 After that I ate some fruit and noodles in the alberge... because the microwave did work 👌

The morning started foggy but much less cold than previous days. Mid-morning the sun came out and with it came the news that my friend passed away peacefully last night.

R.I.P Dear Thea ❤️🙏🙏❤️

That took my pace out and with her in my heart I strolled further to Caceres. The paths were alternately rocky and/or muddy.
Although I had booked a hotel, I decided to check out the alberge anyway. Turned out there was just another pilgrim there!
Hotel cancelled, and now I share the dormitory with Tibo from France, who started his camino from France in September 2022, then walked the Camino Frances plus Finisterre, then turned around and went in the opposite direction first to the Sanabres and now to the VdlP from north to south!!
Because he comes from the North and is a source of information for me 😊👌
Super nice to meet him and have some company, especially today.
Now I am heading towards my well-deserved massage, and tomorrow another short stage to Casar de Cacares (12km). Then I will be back on schedule to arrive in Salamanca on the 29th, where my partner will come to see me ❤️🥰
 

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TomSawyer

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances x2 + in Cambodia+Thailand. Now VdlP
I would say it's a blessing that the hostal in torremejia did not have a bed for you. That place (and town in general) is one of the worst places in all my days on the camino. Congrats for walking a marathon all the way to Merida! The next albergue in El Carrascalejo is great with a kind hospitalera.
I stayed there last night, in the Hostal Milenium. It was actually OK. I paid 25 Euro. The owner was nice, the shower was hot, the bed was comfy, and there was heating. It was quite basic, but no regrets. Btw, the Cerveceria Casa Madrile is very pilgrim-friendly. The guy behind the bar was a star. I saw a local order the fries and it seemed like a good portion for 4 Euros. I also ordered it and got about double the portion. when I left, the guy behind the bar wished me a Buen Camino! I recommend!
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
Resumé of today; Day 12 Via de la Plata, from Valdesalor to Caceres, 13km.

First of all last night... I was sooo happy when I found a washing machine, electrical cookingplate, clean shower AND heating in the alberge.. 🤩👌. For the first time completely on my own, José, whom I always saw in the evening, has reached the end of his camino. I picked up the key at the local café, and I was completely delighted with all the amenities ... and that for only 6 euros!
While rinsing my bottle, I had already noticed that the water was hot, so that promised a heavenly shower ...
So I took off all my clothes, put everything in the machine, sprayed some washing-up liquid over it (I didn't have any soap), and there we go... NOT.
No matter what I tried, the bitch didn't work.... By now freezing my ass off, I did some damage control first, took the clothes out of the machine and brushed off the detergent as best as possible. (I smell like lemon today 🤪).
Okay, sprint to the shower. Warming up....NOT!! None, as in completely NO water pressure at all, a pathetic dripping shower head, not a chance.
Ok, so I put my lemon-smelling clothes back on, at least I smelled fresh 🤣👌
I really wanted to cook for myself again, but before I went shopping I tried out the cookingplate just to be sure... You guessed it; Kaput 🤣🤣🤣
By now I had almost lost myself in laughter, and when the miniature heating didn't go further than lukewarm, I fled to the local cafe.
Super nice bartender, WiFi, freezing cold because they left the door wide open there, but hot chocolate, coke, cake and a full bowl of peanuts for less than 4 euros 🤩🙏 After that I ate some fruit and noodles in the alberge... because the microwave did work 👌

The morning started foggy but much less cold than previous days. Mid-morning the sun came out and with it came the news that my friend passed away peacefully last night.

R.I.P Dear Thea ❤️🙏🙏❤️

That took my pace out and with her in my heart I strolled further to Caceres. The paths were alternately rocky and/or muddy.
Although I had booked a hotel, I decided to check out the alberge anyway. Turned out there was just another pilgrim there!
Hotel cancelled, and now I share the dormitory with Tibo from France, who started his camino from France in September 2022, then walked the Camino Frances plus Finisterre, then turned around and went in the opposite direction first to the Sanabres and now to the VdlP from north to south!!
Because he comes from the North and is a source of information for me 😊👌
Super nice to meet him and have some company, especially today.
Now I am heading towards my well-deserved massage, and tomorrow another short stage to Casar de Cacares (12km). Then I will be back on schedule to arrive in Salamanca on the 29th, where my partner will come to see me ❤️🥰
One thing I learned from the VDLP is you never know what is in store for you next. It looks like you are learning that too!!! ;)
 
Camino Jewellery
A selection of Camino Jewellery
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
One thing I learned from the VDLP is you never know what is in store for you next. It looks like you are learning that too!!! ;)
Mmm, life itself gave me that lesson quite often already..that's the beauty of it all ❤️ We always have the choice of how to deal with all the surprises we meet on our way 😊🙏
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
Mmm, life itself gave me that lesson quite often already..that's the beauty of it all ❤️ We always have the choice of how to deal with all the surprises we meet on our way 😊🙏
One of the caminos great gifts to us is exactly what you have written. Hopefully a better way to deal with surprises and you are dealing like an all star!
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Resumé of today; Day 13 Via de la Plata, from Cacares to Casar de Cacares, 12.2km.

Another short stage today, I am giving my back and legs some rest. Although ... from Caceres the official route (at least on my app) is mainly along a motorway, through slightly undulating landscape. However, if you follow the yellow arrows to get out of Caceres, you'll be sent up a narrow rocky path, and as a bonus you'll be allowed to climb a quite sizeable hill. When I found out I was on a challenging detour, I was already a bit uphill and decided to keep going 💪💪💪
The terrain was tough, not recommended in the rain, but in the beautiful weather this morning it was doable and it turned out to be a beautiful detour with a fantastic view! So quite an effort today, and when I finally got back on the "official" route I was glad I did it. The rest of the route was through the flat field, uninspiring scenery and with a strong and cold headwind.
Early in the afternoon I arrived at the alberge municipal , I could pick up the key at the tourist office just across the street. Basic, relatively clean, and with a working washing machine and hob 🤩🙏❤️
Again for only 6 euros, and it looks like I'm on my own tonight.
Tomorrow it's done with the lazy days 🤪, then there's a stage of 33 km to Canavaral. To be honest, I like being on the road all day again... being in an alberge on my own so early I find a bit boring...
 

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Corned Beef

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
VDLP Part 2/2023
Embalse is the large lake you'll pass on the way to Canavaral. There is/was an albergue there but its been closed for some time - structural or drainage problems. Helped split that very long section.
 

Robo

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015,
2016, 2018
VdlP 2023
Embalse is the large lake you'll pass on the way to Canavaral. There is/was an albergue there but its been closed for some time - structural or drainage problems. Helped split that very long section.

Looks like it's still closed.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
VdlP(2012) Madrid(2014)Frances(2015) VdlP(2016)
VdlP(2017)Madrid/Sanabres/Frances reverse(2018)
Great view in that first photo, Karin. Is that looking back to Caceres? You were definitely on the "official" VdlP, by the way. The route on the carretera is the bike option, which is why I haven't seen that view.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
VdlP(2012) Madrid(2014)Frances(2015) VdlP(2016)
VdlP(2017)Madrid/Sanabres/Frances reverse(2018)
After you pass the new bridges, and leave the embalse behind, look out for the remains of the old Roman bridge/causeway. When I passed in 2017 the lake was so low that I couldn't miss it.
Partially dry Embalse Alcantara VdlP 9-6-17 (3).jpeg
 
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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Although ... from Caceres the official route (at least on my app) is mainly along a motorway, through slightly undulating landscape. However, if you follow the yellow arrows to get out of Caceres, you'll be sent up a narrow rocky path, and as a bonus you'll be allowed to climb a quite sizeable hill.
This is great to hear — it sounds like some official organization has decided to take the arrows off that road. Since it was a Saturday when you walked, @Karin309, you would have been lucky to avoid the M-F horror of a continuous stream of workers coming towards Cáceres at high speeds, with a few trucks thrown in for fun. It is really a very dangerous stretch, probably in the top 3-4 most dangerous stretches I’ve experienced in many years of walking caminos. People on the forum have been talking about this for years, and I think the route you took is described in this thread.

I am enjoying your posts very much. The weather looks great, for now at least!

Hoping the app developers will remove the highway alternative! Buen camino, Laurie
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
This is great to hear — it sounds like some official organization has decided to take the arrows off that road. Since it was a Saturday when you walked, @Karin309, you would have been lucky to avoid the M-F horror of a continuous stream of workers coming towards Cáceres at high speeds, with a few trucks thrown in for fun. It is really a very dangerous stretch, probably in the top 3-4 most dangerous stretches I’ve experienced in many years of walking caminos. People on the forum have been talking about this for years, and I think the route you took is described in this thread.

I am enjoying your posts very much. The weather looks great, for now at least!

Hoping the app developers will remove the highway alternative! Buen camino, Laurie
You are right, that's exactly the route I took. And now it is marked with yellow arrows, although in my app the route still sends you by the motorway..
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Tomorrow it's done with the lazy days 🤪, then there's a stage of 33 km to Canavaral.
Keep an eye out for a pile of Roman milestones over on the side of the camino. Looks like humanity has a long track record of just leaving its junk for others to worry about, but in this case it’s kind of cool to see the markers that used to take people on this route thousands of years before the arrows.

However, he doesn't speak English and we dont speak Spanish. So we interact though smiles and signlanguage but conversation is very limited.
I know this is an old post, and you aren’t going to come across this guy again, but smart phones are pretty amazing in this regard. Last year, I walked the Camino de Torres and was in an albergue in San Muñoz with a mother and son from Ukraine. There was absolutely no other option in town, otherwise I would not have intruded. The town had opened up the albergue to refugees, and it was a completely equipped single family home, previously the teacher’s house, I believe. Anyway, the mother had google translate on her phone. She talked in Ukranian and out came a written version in English. Then I responded in English, etc etc. Not perfect but I would give it a five star rating for making conversation possible when it would not have been otherwise.

I walk solitary caminos too, and I know that push and pull that comes from the desire for companionship versus the exhilaration that comes from being out there alone in contemplation of the world around you. And then, too, the forum is here for your virtual human connections if there’s no one at night to talk to! Buen camino, Laurie
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Keep an eye out for a pile of Roman milestones over on the side of the camino. Looks like humanity has a long track record of just leaving its junk for others to worry about, but in this case it’s kind of cool to see the markers that used to take people on this route thousands of years before the arrows.


I know this is an old post, and you aren’t going to come across this guy again, but smart phones are pretty amazing in this regard. Last year, I walked the Camino de Torres and was in an albergue in San Muñoz with a mother and son from Ukraine. There was absolutely no other option in town, otherwise I would not have intruded. The town had opened up the albergue to refugees, and it was a completely equipped single family home, previously the teacher’s house, I believe. Anyway, the mother had google translate on her phone. She talked in Ukranian and out came a written version in English. Then I responded in English, etc etc. Not perfect but I would give it a five star rating for making conversation possible when it would not have been otherwise.

I walk solitary caminos too, and I know that push and pull that comes from the desire for companionship versus the exhilaration that comes from being out there alone in contemplation of the world around you. And then, too, the forum is here for your virtual human connections if there’s no one at night to talk to! Buen camino, Laurie
I used Google Translate of course..but José was very reserved, and so I respecteren that...However it was nice to meet him every evening 😊. I am ok walking in solitude though ❤️🙏
 
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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I used Google Translate of course..
Oh, silly me, I forgot that you are a youngster and would have known all about this years ago. :D I remember that in 2019, I was with a Spanish pilgrim in Vegacervera, and he was describing how he communicates with non-Spanish speakers. It was a program called “Say Hi” and I remember that my jaw about dropped to the floor when I saw how it worked. I guess all of this is old school by now, but it does work some magic!
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Oh, silly me, I forgot that you are a youngster and would have known all about this years ago. :D I remember that in 2019, I was with a Spanish pilgrim in Vegacervera, and he was describing how he communicates with non-Spanish speakers. It was a program called “Say Hi” and I remember that my jaw about dropped to the floor when I saw how it worked. I guess all of this is old school by now, but it does work some magic!
Youngster 🤣🤣🤣 Going on 47 😝
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 14 Via de la Plata, from Casar de Cacares to Canavaral, 32.6km.
Relatively early on the road for this long stage, cold but windless morning, clear blue sky, terrific 👌
In the morning I had a good pace, the terrain was easy and beautiful. Open field, some animals here and there, otherwise only nature and desolation. Wonderful ☺️. No village and no facilities on todays stretch, but I was prepared and therefore I found it easy to do.
I had a nice encounter with a giant dog, quite impressive when he came towards me but it turned out to be just plus/minus 70kg kindness ❤️
Although he did have a nose for my sandwiches, and he wasn't the only one...
During my first break at a beautiful little lake, my belly told me in non-misunderstandable terms that I had to withdraw myself for a while... There were many large boulders and not a living soul to be seen, so I left my things for a while to go sit behind a large boulder to create my piece of artwork 🤪. Suddenly I see a big dog popping up out of nowhere, which seemed to run in one line towards my backpack, with its nose on the way to my tuna sandwiches...😯😯😯
As I said...a stage with no facilities...this was all the food I had to make the 33km...
Soooo... with my pants still half on my knees I ended up getting to my backpack just a little earlier than the dog, who disappointedly drooped off 🤣🤣🤣
And forward again, it got a bit physically challenging in the area where I had to cross the two major rivers, quite a few kilometers on asphalt which my feet didn't like... I was happy when the path went off the road again, but be careful what you hope for... Almost immediately a steep climb over a challenging rocky path, beautiful but tiring, followed by a tough descent over again difficult terrain. The last kilometers were in the open field, the wind had picked up during the afternoon and here it had become so strong that it became a fight for every single meter. I was happy when I finally arrived at the alberge, where I am by myself again. But with heating, hot shower and a comfortable bed ☺️👌
Now I'm just figuring out how to get to Galisteo tomorrow, I understand that if I follow the arrows I will get to an impassable flood.. I'd like to avoid that but I don't see any alternative, which makes me a little nervous.
Another challenge is that the alberge in Galisteo will be closed tomorrow. That means either check in at the (expensive) guest house, or walk another 11 km to the next alberge. But that would mean a stage of 38km...
No idea what I'm going to do yet, it also depends a bit on whether, and how much, I'm going to be delayed at that flooded river...
To be continued 😊
 

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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I’ve just taken the liberty of writing a WhatsApp to César, owner of the Casa Rural, which typically has good pilgrim prices. I have been in communication with him off and on over the years, and I just wrote to ask if he was open and if so what his prices were. I also asked whether he had any information that could help with the flooded river.

I’ll post if I hear back, fingers crossed!
 
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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I had a response just a minute ago. He is open, you should contact him via WhatsApp, 34 616 93 17 45 and tell him you are the peregrina.

He told me that he didn’t know anything about floodings, and sait that the only thing it could be is from the “arroyo”, called the Arroyo del Boquerón. He said you will see it when you get to the highway after going through the intersection with a turnoff for Riolobos — that makes no sense to me, because my memory is just not that good.

His mention of Riolobos reminded me that there is also a place to stay there — if you look at the alternative route on Gronze (which was the official route for a few years till they figured out a way around some nasty landowner who was blocking access), you can see a casa rural. They used to take in a lot of pilgrims, but I don’t know what the story is now. They are also on WhatsApp - I just checked - so you could try them too. 34 670 73 30 93. Casa Rural Abuela Maxi. Their website, abuelamaxi.com says they have pilgrim prices for 20 25€, including breakfast, kitchen, towels, sheets. I’ve never stayed there, but I know people liked it. Good luck, amiga peregrina!

D344BB55-3705-403D-85DD-341A6D34F430.png
 

Pilger Franz

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Podiensis-Norte-Ingles-SdC; Francigena; Touron.; Bretagne; Lemovic.; Lana; Lusitana (Este)
Just be careful: abuelamaxi.com offers "online reservation" for 20-25€ (for pilgrims); booking.com offers the reservation for 75€.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
I had a response just a minute ago. He is open, you should contact him via WhatsApp, 34 616 93 17 45 and tell him you are the peregrina.

He told me that he didn’t know anything about floodings, and sait that the only thing it could be is from the “arroyo”, called the Arroyo del Boquerón. He said you will see it when you get to the highway after going through the intersection with a turnoff for Riolobos — that makes no sense to me, because my memory is just not that good.

His mention of Riolobos reminded me that there is also a place to stay there — if you look at the alternative route on Gronze (which was the official route for a few years till they figured out a way around some nasty landowner who was blocking access), you can see a casa rural. They used to take in a lot of pilgrims, but I don’t know what the story is now. They are also on WhatsApp - I just checked - so you could try them too. 34 670 73 30 93. Casa Rural Abuela Maxi. Their website, abuelamaxi.com says they have pilgrim prices for 20 25€, including breakfast, kitchen, towels, sheets. I’ve never stayed there, but I know people liked it. Good luck, amiga peregrina!

View attachment 140070
Wow, thanks for all the help!! I figuren out the problem with the flooding, de detour to Riobolos will solve that. However I don't want to stop there, I want to get to Galisteo. That Casa Rural you mentioned is in Galisteo??
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
No it’s in Grimaldo so that is of absolutely no help. When you mentioned an expensive casa rural, I immediately thought of Cesar’s place, which is not in Galisteo but in another town after Cañaveral that starts with a G, Grimaldo.

I once stayed in the Pensión Emigrantes in Galisteo, which was fine, is that not open?

This is not my first messup today, so I think I am doing more harm than good on the forum, I apologize!
 
How to Successfully Prepare for Your Camino
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
No it’s in Grimaldo so that is of absolutely no help. When you mentioned an expensive casa rural, I immediately thought of Cesar’s place, which is not in Galisteo but in another town after Cañaveral that starts with a G, Grimaldo.

I once stayed in the Pensión Emigrantes in Galisteo, which was fine, is that not open?

This is not my first messup today, so I think I am doing more harm than good on the forum, I apologize!
Heey, dont be so hard on yourself! You have gone out of your way to help me, and you don't even know me...I am very gratefull for that..❤️🙏🙏❤️. Pension Emigrantes was mentioned just yet by a pilgrim who is a few days ahead of me...so I am gonna check if they have room 😊👌 Time for sleep for me now...And thanks again, it's really wonderful to experience that fellow pilgrims are looking out for eachother 🤩👌🙏
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Day 15 Via de la Plata, from Canavaral to Galisteo 30.4km, plus taxi to Carcaboso (11km)

The first picture of the rising sun looks beautiful, but appearances are a bit deceiving here... Last night it was storming so hard around the alberge that it kept me awake and I wondered how I would be able to walk in this weather. It was still stormy this morning, wind slanted against me, I had to walk a bit along a busy road and it was tough not to get blown onto the road... I thought it was dangerous and even considered taking a bus..
Fortunately, after half an hour of fighting for every meter, the camino went off the road, but of course first steeply uphill 🥴
to then swing through a beautiful forest ...
But wind + forest is not fun either ... 😵 Fortunately, the wind died down almost completely later this morning, the terrain became more open and the sun shone wonderfully 🥳👌
Due to the battle with the wind in the morning I covered the first 10km in almost 3.5 hours...So by the time I got to Riolobos (a detour I had to make to avoid a flood), it was siesta time and everything was closed...
So my plan to have lunch there did not work, and unfortunately I had no sandwiches this time, because yesterday was Sunday and then all shops are closed also😬
Luckily I always carry an emergency supply with me, so today my lunch consisted of peanuts and granola bars. Also ok👌. The route was very beautiful today, sometimes a bit challenging terrain here and there, and a lawn turned out to be more of a swamp so I got my feet wet there 😝
The last hour was tough again... the wind had picked up again and in the open field I had it full in my face. And of course this day ended again with a tough climb, always nice with wind force 7 against and tired in the legs 😝👌
On the advice of fellow pilgrims, I reported to the Los Emigrantes restaurant, which would also have rooms. Unfortunately they were full but the owner was very helpful. He pointed me to the pilgrim's albergue and when I said I called them yesterday and they were closed, he told me the key was in the mailbox and I could just go in. And then call the number at the reception.
And so I did, only couldn't reach them...Took a long hot shower, called again, again no contact.

By now I felt a bit illegal...after all, they had told me yesterday that they were closed! I had also looked into tomorrow's stage a bit more, and it turned out that all options to spend the night around Caparra were either closed or full, with the exception of a hotel for 75 euros for which I would also have to make a 6 km detour ... There were sleeping options for the village afterwards, but that would mean a 47 km stage...
With this wind I think that's really a bridge too far..
Anyway, since I was not at ease in my "illegal" albergue anyway, I had the nice restaurant owner call a taxi to take me to Carcaboso, 11 km further. Although it felt a bit like cheating, it was now 6.30 pm, too late to start walking and far too windy. I was happy to go to the albergue there, and now I have a stage planned tomorrow of "only" 36 km 😇👌
Hopefully with a little less wind than today...🙏🙏🙏
 

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alansykes

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Except the Francés
On my first time on the Plata, back in 2010, I made the mistake of walking from Galisteo to Aldeanueva del Camino in one day and it wiped me out, arriving well after dark and completely knackered. But it is a beautiful stage through the dehesa from Carcaboso, especially the glorious solitary splendour of the Arco de Cáparra. One of the great sights of this camino. Of any camino. Enjoy.

DSC_0781.jpg
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Oct/Nov 2022_Mozarabe from Almeria
Karin
Im just loving ‘walking alongside you’ virtually. Enjoying the detail of both the beauty and difficulties and your weather description really makes me ‘feel it’.
(
wind slanted against me

tough not to get blown onto the road...

the sun shone wonderfully
So many more than these ; that show how your day changed continually….
& you walked such a loooooong day. Hat off to you.

You have already chosen your next stopping point but for anyone else thinking about where to walk/stay … the Hostal Asturias has a number of rooms ., decent meals available and ‘bonus’ point …they will pick up from the arc de Caparra and take you to their accommodation ‘gratis’ if you phone them (as per link below ).

Well done -each day, I look forward to your daily log.
Buen camino

 
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.
Time of past OR future Camino
2021 Camino Frances
2023 Via de la Plata
Karin
Im just loving ‘walking alongside you’ virtually. Enjoying the detail of both the beauty and difficulties and your weather description really makes me ‘feel it’.
(





So many more than these ; that show how your day changed continually….
& you walked such a loooooong day. Hat off to you.

You have already chosen your next stopping point but for anyone else thinking about where to walk/stay … the Hostal Asturias has a number of rooms ., decent meals available and ‘bonus’ point …they will pick up from the arc de Caparra and take you to their accommodation ‘gratis’ if you phone them (as per link below ).

Well done -each day, I look forward to your daily log.
Buen camino

I thought about hostal Asturias, although I don't want them to pick me up - that is, if I don't find myself stuck in a storm again... However on booking.com it's 60euros just for me, which is really over budget... I tried to call them, didn't work. I have send them a text, they did not respond yet. Hopefully they will, then at least I still have the option 🙏🙏🙏
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Ponferrada to Santiago (2019)
Seville to Zafra (2020)
Porto to Santiago (2020)
This is compelling reading! Thank you so much Karin309. I hope to do more of the VDLP in May so following you every step and as others have said you have a great attitude
 
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2021; CSS/CP 2022
Karin I am following with great interest. Thank you so much for sharing the journey with us; for being so open and honest, and for having such a wonderful and wonder-filled attitude. For what it's worth I send prayers for energy and ease...Buen camino!
 

Paul-CH

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023 Vía Augusta, Vía de la Plata, Camino Sanabrés
Hi Karin, I have the Buen camino App €27.- and the PlataPremium App €23.- for the Hostal Asturias.
WeatherPro tells me for tomorrow at Carcaboso 0°C-10°C and ☀️ the next days should be dry too. Good for you. Buen Camino Paul
I will start at Cádiz on March 20th with hopefully warmer weather.
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Oct/Nov 2022_Mozarabe from Almeria
I thought about hostal Asturias, although I don't want them to pick me up - that is, if I don't find myself stuck in a storm again... However on booking.com it's 60euros just for me, which is really over budget... I tried to call them, didn't work. I have send them a text, they did not respond yet. Hopefully they will, then at least I still have the option 🙏🙏🙏
Hi Karin
The link in my msg above to Gronze …shows 27euros for single. They are private rooms.
Are you using gronze.com ? (Or checking it for accomm suggestions and approx prices ?). Note: for others thinking of staying here - best idea is to phone them and ask for the pilgrim rate.

A few people walked from the arch the day I stopped at Hostal Asturias ….. they climbed through fences etc. Going with the lift is good. You continue walking on the main road in the morning enroute to meet up with the camino.

I’m wishing myself back there on Vdlp as I type ❤️❤️❤️

Buen camino.
 
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How to Successfully Prepare for Your Camino
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.

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