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I am Linda, and I am from Melbourne, Australia. My friend and I are leaving for the Camino in October, . and are both looking forward to it. We started preparing for this journey about a year ago, especially the long walks.

I enjoyed thoroughly reading the Camino information I could access, and collating this information to answer questions that surface in the course of our preparation. Even the preparation stage is a challenge in itself, as it develops a form of discipline that is sometimes forgotten in the course of doing our routinary daily activities.

I am interested to know from those who have walked the Camino in October what we may expect along the way - especially about weather and accommodation.

Best regards,
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Hi Linda,
I too am from Melbourne and making the journey in October, hope you get lots of responses to your post.
When are you leaving?
Hi Rod,

Thanks for your e-mail. We are leaving on 02 October. There is much information about the Camino and so many helpful tips about what (and what not to do), and it is now the actual experience that we are looking forward to.

I wish you the best for your forthcoming trip.


I leave Melb on 1 Oct and start walking on the 5th. Do you have all your kit yet? If not check out Backpackers Light just off Little Bourke St, they have been most helpful and reasonable. Best of luck and maybe our paths will cross. Enjoy the journey

October is a beautiful time to go. You wilol shortly find yourself walking through immense fields of ripe grapes, hundreds of pounds of them hanging from the vines as October seems to be the harvest month for them. Try and take those dangling from the bottom as those are the ones usually discarded. It seems the uppermost grapes are the more desirable ones for their higher potential alcohol content. I breakfasted on them daily for the week or so it took me to walk through them in Navarra and Rioja. What a feast you will enjoy.

I remember quite a few days of rain but with adequate and ventable rain gear you should fare well. I walked each day all the way to Finisterre in shorts but wore long pants in the evenings since I was not walking then to keep warm. The only real cold was in light snow going over O'cebreiro but I managed adequately. In the beginning, and I left about 06 October, I walked in quite warm sunshine. I really don't recall it getting cold until Galicia, but even then it was not a biting cold except for a few evenings. I had a marvelous walk and I am choosing the same period again to walk the Via de la Plata.

You will be walking in the harvest months and I remember eating along the Way, besides pounds and pounds of grapes, the almonds, figs, chestnuts... Just enjoy yourself!!

Albergues were never full and mostly you will find yourself crowded if they only half way fill up. In a few albergues I was only with a very few other pilgrims and in Atapuerca I actually had a room alone!
John Brierley 2023 Camino Guide
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Hi Rod,

We should be crossing each other's path, then, as we will be starting from St. Jean on 05 Oct. Thanks for the info about the shop. There are still bits and pieces to put together, and we will definitely visit it.

Buen Camino!

Hello John,

What a beautiful description of Camino in October! I will look forward to this nutritious bounty. And at the end of the day's walk, the promise of a restful sleep. Thank you for the very helpful information. My friend and I are trying to reduce our load as much as we can, without necessarily becoming uncomfortable, wet or cold. The weather description gives us an indication of what to expect.

I wish you all the best in your Via la Plata walk, and look forward to reading all about it.


Hi all,
I was just wondering what the Spanish farmers think of the Pilgrims eating their produce...

Yes, I wonder, too, Stephen. That remains to be seen. At any rate, nobody should take anybody else's produce without permission. And perhaps, the farmers would be too happy to share.

stephenDevlin said:
Hi all,
I was just wondering what the Spanish farmers think of the Pilgrims eating their produce...

They really do not mind at all. Only the uppermost grapes are harvested and the lower ones are plucked from the vine and dropped to the ground and left behind. It was explained to me that the grapes with the highest alcohol potential (sugar?) were those from the top of the plant and those are the ones harvested. So, eat all you wish, but try and snack from those bottom ones! And, always try to leave a little room in your tummy because when you happen come across the field's owner or even some pickers in the fields, even more grapes will be thrust upon you to eat.
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Plus, remember Irache, where the curing wine was available from a free tap?

The vineyards one walks through in Navarra and Rioja are immense, horizon to horizon fields of grapes with each vine carrying huge quantities of cabernet chavignon and extremely the delicious tempranillo varieties and the fewer October pilgrims could never make much of a dent in those bountiful harvests. One of the owners I chatted with in Rioja was lamenting the fact that it had rained so much that he was having difficulty getting his fields picked so I offered to help the next day if it did not rain. But, regrettably, it rained at dawn when I awoke so I kept walking in it.

Do remember that the grapes have been sprayed with chemicals. A man had taken some, shared a few with me and an itchy rash broke out. I was told about the chemicals later :roll: Lillian

It's reassuring to now that the farmers don't mind. Next time I'm walking through a vineyard I'll munch with a clear conscience.


I can echo the ambience of walking in October, in fact last October the highs were as hot as July. There are abundance of grapes unpicked due to some EU regulations governing the percentage of fruit harvested so by all means help yourself. Some Spaniards explained this to me but they themselves were unable to understand the reason for this.

There are nice to eat but your hands get incredibly sticky!

It was quite sad to see so much fruit gone to waste as I walked through the Rioja during and after the harvest.

I will never forget leaving Najera; I wrote the following in my diary.

Soon after leaving Najera I walked through some lovely sandstone escarpments fringed by pine forests. This climbed to a beautiful pathway through vineyards surrounded by distant mountains. The clarity of light was something to behold. The sunlight was pouring down from the sky and the beauty and silence, overwhelming. It felt wonderful to be here, to be alive. I drank in the atmosphere and the land was full of colour, reflecting the beauty of its creator. I watched the harvesting of grapes, an occupation that has been going on since Roman times, that is how old these vines are.
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So wonderfully described. Thanks, James. You and John have given a very positive insight of what can be experienced on the Camino walk, not only about nature's beauty and abundance, but also the friendliness of the local people which will help reduce any feelings of uncertainty or anxiety that first-time pilgrims like us may feel.

I cannot recall any negative happening on the Spanish side of the Camino Frances when I walked it in October and part of November, 2005. In fact, I would go so far as to say that I found the Spaniards I encountered along the Camino to be some of the friendliest, open, and most generous people I have ever had the pleasure to meet. In fact, I consider a large part of my Camino experience to have been such a success is because of these traits of the Spaniards I met along the Camino.

I once stopped in a panaderia in a tiny village to purchase a fresh loaf of bread for breakfast to accompany some cheese I had purchased the day before and was somewhat disappointed to discover they were out of those delicious little pastries with the chocolate inside. I made my purchase and walked through the village to where I found a bench alongside a home and sat there with a couple of other pilgrims to enjoy the bread and chat. Presently, the doorway to the modest home where we were sitting opened and an elderly Spanish lady emerged and insisted we take the large package of quite delicious cookies she offered.

That was only one example of many of the generosity of the Spaniards I encountered. No doubt, each will discovr their own.
I definitely agree with you, John. Although each one of us has our own reasons for doing the Camino, I think sharing the road with the other pilgrims to reach the same destination gives us the time to examine ourselves and our relationship with others. I started preparing for this walk almost a year ago, not only to accustom myself to long walks and getting all items needed for the trip, but also the emotional and mental preparation of what the walk could be. It is also necessary to prepare one's family (who will be left behind), and the need for the family members' support and understanding. I realized that the Camino does not start in St. Jean, or in Roncesvalles, or anywhere along the way, but it starts from the moment one decides to go.
paola said:
I realized that the Camino does not start in St. Jean, or in Roncesvalles, or anywhere along the way, but it starts from the moment one decides to go.

I hadn't quite thought of it like that before, but I totally agree with you. In fact, the planning, pondering and preparation for it can often turn into a very exciting prelude, often lasting many months,to the actual trip itself.
I hadn't quite thought of it like that before, but I totally agree with you. In fact, the planning, pondering and preparation for it can often turn into a very exciting prelude, often lasting many months,to the actual trip itself.

That's exactly where I'm at. I arrive in Paris Oct. 2nd and I think I'll start walking from St. Jean on the 4th. It's so close.
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DJ BJ said:
I hadn't quite thought of it like that before, but I totally agree with you. In fact, the planning, pondering and preparation for it can often turn into a very exciting prelude, often lasting many months,to the actual trip itself.

That's exactly where I'm at. I arrive in Paris Oct. 2nd and I think I'll start walking from St. Jean on the 4th. It's so close.

Pablo in Sydney here and I start woalking on 28 or 29/9/2007 (I haven't decided yet) Way too close.
Can't seem to get enough time to prepare. Walking with a pack takes a looooonnngg time. Most I've done is 20kms and a few 10s etc. But it sure take a big slice of time when you have other things to do ... Laugh

Good luck to all of you

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Hi Everyone,

Just read that the Pilgrim office is now requesting two stamps per day for the last 100 kms. Does any one know if this applies to all the routes or just the camino frances?


The two stamps per day memo was sent out some time ago by the pilgrim office and then seemed to be forgotten. I think they tend to get most keen about it in Holy Years when there are even greater numbers of pilgrims than in other years.

If it is being imposed again as is rumoured then it probably applies to every route. Getting two stamps is not difficult as well as the refugios the churches, town hall, tourist office, local police etc can all usually help
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Hi Linda

Steve from North Queensland here. I will start my Camino in Roncesvalles about 24 Sep. Good luck on your walk.. I may see you on the way.. I'll be the older guy with the Aussie flag on his backpack :lol:
Steve Fisher
Hi Steve,

During the next weekend, Sept 29/30, I'll be walking between Estella and Logroño. I'll walk trying to find your Aussie flag on your backpack.

Buen Camino,

Javier Martin
Madrid, Spain.
Hello All,

In a few days, we will be leaving for our first Camino. This forum has been very helpful with all the information that a first-time pilgrim needs to know. Thank you all for your sharing of your experiences, your insights and your wonderful advice.
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Dear all who begin their travels this first week of October 2007,

I have been reading your emails and I am thinking about how excited you must all be feeling; and perhaps also how I might feel, if I was starting tomorrow, about whether I was truly prepared and whether I was fit enough.

I hope to have got as far as you have already, by the time I am where you are now....just think! you really started your Camino the day you decided to do it and you've already got this far, and that is already a long
way along the Camino to Santiago!

The Camino is difficult I imagine, just as life is difficult. I have been through many difficult times, and all the pain and sadness from those times were worth it, for all the wonderful things I have learned from them, and so I am grateful for those times.

I wish you a wonderful Camino experience and if, and when you falter, just remember that we are all here for you, encouraging you to go on, in mind and spirit; that these are the most precious moments, that when you get through them, you will have learned something new.

Love to you all on the Camino this month,
Thanks, Clarissa. At this moment, just came back doing the last minute purchases, etc., etc., etc., writing reminders to husband and son, and looking forward to tomorrow's departure, and what lies ahead. This pilgrimage trip would have seemed difficult if I did not find Ivar's website with all the advice, suggestions, and encouragement from all of you, lovely people.

This trip reminds me of Robert Frost's poem, which I am posting below for all pilgrims, then, now, and tomorrow:

by: Robert Frost (1874-1963)
TwO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference

And Camino is making all the difference!
I'd just like to thank Cbarua and paola for their recent postings which are most encouraging.
I'm sitting at home now getting ready for an early start to get to Dublin airport for my flight to SJPP. I confess I'm feeling a bit jittery. Knowing that I'll be walking with the good wishes of members of this forum is somehow reassuring.

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