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Warning for the Vadiniense - Hazardous highway

norelle

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011 April, 2014 March) San Salvador, Primitivo, Finisterre, Muxia (June 2015) Del Norte (Sept/Oct 2016)
Hello!
I have just completed the Lebaniego and Vadiniense caminos as far as Cistierna.
Now I will walk a couple of days on the Olvidado until I meet up with the San Salvador. If this all sounds familiar to you, it is because I am following @Suzanas great notes from her walk in June! (Thanks @Suzanas)!!
My warning is for the stage(s) on the Vadiniense from Portilla de la Reina to Las Salas.
It is mentioned in guides that this is road walking. I would like to share a bit more information. It is a national highway that winds its way through mountain curves. There is very little or no shoulder. It is used by large trucks, holiday makers enjoying the view and cyclists.
I left Portilla de la Reina very early in the morning and the first 8kms, while unsettling, were manageable. When I got further towards Riano, I was scared and felt very unsafe. It was the last Friday in July so maybe busier than others have experienced. The trucks were not able to move over. The cyclists did not want to and the cars were zooming through the mountain curves.
When I felt I just couldn’t risk it anymore, I called the 112 emergency number. I was loathe to use this service but I could see another way. I was extremely upset by this stage. The operator was caring, reassuring and concerned.
I’ll shorten the story by saying the traffic police were contacted and helped to arrange a taxi to pick me up.
The taxi driver told me that most pilgrims take a taxi from Portilla de Le Reina to Las Salas. She stressed that it is a National Highway.
There is also an early morning bus.
Please, if you are walking this beautiful way, do not try to walk on this road.
 
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OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2020
Hi Norelle
Knowing you to be a strong & fit & courageous pilgrim with many caminos behind you -I appreciate this warning. It is ‘fair dinkum’ (Aussie slang). You have been to your limit and asked for help.
You mentioned to me that there is no warning about it in some guides (Ie Wise Pilgrim & Gronze ) .
I hope anyone intending to walk this route, take your advice & look into this section.

I’m glad you’re okay to continue on.
Buen camino amiga.
X Annie
 

sarahchicago

Trail snail
Time of past OR future Camino
May 2022
Hi Norelle
Knowing you to be a strong & fit & courageous pilgrim with many caminos behind you -I appreciate this warning. It is ‘fair dinkum’ (Aussie slang). You have been to your limit and asked for help.
You mentioned to me that there is no warning about it in some guides (Ie Wise Pilgrim & Gronze ) .
I hope anyone intending to walk this route, take your advice & look into this section.

I’m glad you’re okay to continue on.
Buen camino amiga.
X Annie
Hello!
I have just completed the Lebaniego and Vadiniense caminos as far as Cistierna.
Now I will walk a couple of days on the Olvidado until I meet up with the San Salvador. If this all sounds familiar to you, it is because I am following @Suzanas great notes from her walk in June! (Thanks @Suzanas)!!
My warning is for the stage(s) on the Vadiniense from Portilla de la Reina to Las Salas.
It is mentioned in guides that this is road walking. I would like to share a bit more information. It is a national highway that winds its way through mountain curves. There is very little or no shoulder. It is used by large trucks, holiday makers enjoying the view and cyclists.
I left Portilla de la Reina very early in the morning and the first 8kms, while unsettling, were manageable. When I got further towards Riano, I was scared and felt very unsafe. It was the last Friday in July so maybe busier than others have experienced. The trucks were not able to move over. The cyclists did not want to and the cars were zooming through the mountain curves.
When I felt I just couldn’t risk it anymore, I called the 112 emergency number. I was loathe to use this service but I could see another way. I was extremely upset by this stage. The operator was caring, reassuring and concerned.
I’ll shorten the story by saying the traffic police were contacted and helped to arrange a taxi to pick me up.
The taxi driver told me that most pilgrims take a taxi from Portilla de Le Reina to Las Salas. She stressed that it is a National Highway.
There is also an early morning bus.
Please, if you are walking this beautiful way, do not try to walk on this road.
Thanks for alerting folks. I felt nearly the same on the road alternative path from Samos to Sarria, which is 4km shorter than the rural path but a hair raising and exhausting slog due to the speeding giant trucks just a few feet away and mostly no shoulder along the highway. @wisepilgrim would you consider editing your app to clarify the risks on these sections?
 

WayWalker

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2013, 2016
I felt this way many times on the Portugese Camino. Even on rural roadways. No shoulder to speak of and no place to bail out as in an ancient wall or something to your left instead of any measure of shoulder. And cars do not slow down in the least. Very unnerving. Pilgrims have died on roadways in the past so thank you for this warning.
 

norelle

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011 April, 2014 March) San Salvador, Primitivo, Finisterre, Muxia (June 2015) Del Norte (Sept/Oct 2016)
I felt this way many times on the Portugese Camino. Even on rural roadways. No shoulder to speak of and no place to bail out as in an ancient wall or something to your left instead of any measure of shoulder. And cars do not slow down in the least. Very unnerving. Pilgrims have died on roadways in the past so thank you for this warning.
Oh dear @WayWalker, I’m heading to the Portugués next!
I have walked a few caminos and have never been this scared.
 
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Nina Busy

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2017
I felt this way many times on the Portugese Camino. Even on rural roadways. No shoulder to speak of and no place to bail out as in an ancient wall or something to your left instead of any measure of shoulder. And cars do not slow down in the least. Very unnerving. Pilgrims have died on roadways in the past so thank you for this warning.
I know what you are talking about! There are some very dangerous parts of Portugues Way, especially the link between coastal route and central one. We literally had to spread ourselves on the wall when the trucks and cars were speeding by.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Hello!
I have just completed the Lebaniego and Vadiniense caminos as far as Cistierna.
Now I will walk a couple of days on the Olvidado until I meet up with the San Salvador. If this all sounds familiar to you, it is because I am following @Suzanas great notes from her walk in June! (Thanks @Suzanas)!!
My warning is for the stage(s) on the Vadiniense from Portilla de la Reina to Las Salas.
It is mentioned in guides that this is road walking. I would like to share a bit more information. It is a national highway that winds its way through mountain curves. There is very little or no shoulder. It is used by large trucks, holiday makers enjoying the view and cyclists.
I left Portilla de la Reina very early in the morning and the first 8kms, while unsettling, were manageable. When I got further towards Riano, I was scared and felt very unsafe. It was the last Friday in July so maybe busier than others have experienced. The trucks were not able to move over. The cyclists did not want to and the cars were zooming through the mountain curves.
When I felt I just couldn’t risk it anymore, I called the 112 emergency number. I was loathe to use this service but I could see another way. I was extremely upset by this stage. The operator was caring, reassuring and concerned.
I’ll shorten the story by saying the traffic police were contacted and helped to arrange a taxi to pick me up.
The taxi driver told me that most pilgrims take a taxi from Portilla de Le Reina to Las Salas. She stressed that it is a National Highway.
There is also an early morning bus.
Please, if you are walking this beautiful way, do not try to walk on this road.
Hi, Norelle,
Wow, this sounds awful. I wonder if the route has changed. I walked the Vadiniense in 2011 and never had that experience. So either the traffic has gotten MUCH worse, or they have re-routed. One other possibility is that I walked it on a weekend, when the traffic load is much much less.

Thank you for posting this alert. I have to admit that the Vadiniense after Portilla was not my favorite camino, but it would be even less so if I had had the horrible traffic you describe!

Buen camino, Laurie
 

sarahchicago

Trail snail
Time of past OR future Camino
May 2022
I know what you are talking about! There are some very dangerous parts of Portugues Way, especially the link between coastal route and central one. We literally had to spread ourselves on the wall when the trucks and cars were speeding by.
This is good to know- the danger of the link between coastal and central. I will stick just to the central. Do you know of any app that warns about these dangerous sections? I’d really like to know before I walk the portugues.
 

Nina Busy

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2017
This is good to know- the danger of the link between coastal and central. I will stick just to the central. Do you know of any app that warns about these dangerous sections? I’d really like to know before I walk the portugues.
Unfortunately I cannot help you with that as we walked our 2 Caminos without any guide, even without phones, just followed yellow arrows and shells. But to be fair, it must be said that not all the link is so dangerous, only some parts of it. Also need to say it was difficult to find the yellow arrows so we got lost a few times. But it was adventure, except of danger on the road of couse.
 

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norelle

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011 April, 2014 March) San Salvador, Primitivo, Finisterre, Muxia (June 2015) Del Norte (Sept/Oct 2016)
Hi, Norelle,
Wow, this sounds awful. I wonder if the route has changed. I walked the Vadiniense in 2011 and never had that experience. So either the traffic has gotten MUCH worse, or they have re-routed. One other possibility is that I walked it on a weekend, when the traffic load is much much less.

Thank you for posting this alert. I have to admit that the Vadiniense after Portilla was not my favorite camino, but it would be even less so if I had had the horrible traffic you describe!

Buen camino, Laurie
Thanks Laurie,
Yes it was the last Friday of July and very busy everywhere as people were starting their August holidays a few days early according to Maria, my taxi driver.
She did, however, keep referring to the road as a ‘national highway’ so maybe the general traffic has increased as well?
The way after Las Salas was beautiful!
 
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dick bird

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Plata, Ingles, Madrid, Norte, Primitivo, Invierno, Aragones, Olvidado, Chemin D'Arles
We drove this section a few weeks ago and can endorse this warning from the driver’s perspective. It is twisty and you don’t get a good view ahead. Our main thought was that it would be a very unpleasant stage to walk and the terrain doesn’t really allow for an alternative walking route. And no, we didn’t see any pilgrims.
 

norelle

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011 April, 2014 March) San Salvador, Primitivo, Finisterre, Muxia (June 2015) Del Norte (Sept/Oct 2016)
We drove this section a few weeks ago and can endorse this warning from the driver’s perspective. It is twisty and you don’t get a good view ahead. Our main thought was that it would be a very unpleasant stage to walk and the terrain doesn’t really allow for an alternative walking route. And no, we didn’t see any pilgrims.
Thanks @dick bird! I did feel bad for the drivers when they saw me and had to quickly manoeuvre into the other lane!
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Have walked Camino Frances.
Planning to walk Lisbon - Santiago July 20th, 2014....
Hello!
I have just completed the Lebaniego and Vadiniense caminos as far as Cistierna.
Now I will walk a couple of days on the Olvidado until I meet up with the San Salvador. If this all sounds familiar to you, it is because I am following @Suzanas great notes from her walk in June! (Thanks @Suzanas)!!
My warning is for the stage(s) on the Vadiniense from Portilla de la Reina to Las Salas.
It is mentioned in guides that this is road walking. I would like to share a bit more information. It is a national highway that winds its way through mountain curves. There is very little or no shoulder. It is used by large trucks, holiday makers enjoying the view and cyclists.
I left Portilla de la Reina very early in the morning and the first 8kms, while unsettling, were manageable. When I got further towards Riano, I was scared and felt very unsafe. It was the last Friday in July so maybe busier than others have experienced. The trucks were not able to move over. The cyclists did not want to and the cars were zooming through the mountain curves.
When I felt I just couldn’t risk it anymore, I called the 112 emergency number. I was loathe to use this service but I could see another way. I was extremely upset by this stage. The operator was caring, reassuring and concerned.
I’ll shorten the story by saying the traffic police were contacted and helped to arrange a taxi to pick me up.
The taxi driver told me that most pilgrims take a taxi from Portilla de Le Reina to Las Salas. She stressed that it is a National Highway.
There is also an early morning bus.
Please, if you are walking this beautiful way, do not try to walk on this road.
I finished walking Olvidado at the end of July and now in St. Vincent, about to start on way to lebaniego... If I can help with the contacts for albergue send me your number and I'll send you contacts by WhatsApp. New albergue numbers for Fasgar, nosada, Congosto and cabanes rares, for the last 3 or 4 days. You will again love olvidado and you may meet wonderful Jacques who is now walking back from Fatima, and left la Pola de Gordon last night I think.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
I th;ink I did the Vadiniense the same year as @peregrina2000 and my memory of this stretch was that it was not bad at all and that traffic was sparse. If traffic had been heavy, I suspect I would have responded much as @norelle -- my photographs do not suggest that there would have been much room if there had been. It's a very solitary camino and one doesn't get a lot of pilgrim solidarity when there's no other pilgrims.
 
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norelle

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011 April, 2014 March) San Salvador, Primitivo, Finisterre, Muxia (June 2015) Del Norte (Sept/Oct 2016)
I finished walking Olvidado at the end of July and now in St. Vincent, about to start on way to lebaniego... If I can help with the contacts for albergue send me your number and I'll send you contacts by WhatsApp. New albergue numbers for Fasgar, nosada, Congosto and cabanes rares, for the last 3 or 4 days. You will again love olvidado and you may meet wonderful Jacques who is now walking back from Fatima, and left la Pola de Gordon last night I think.
Thank you @AshireGirl but I turned onto the San Salvador at Buiza and am now in Oviedo! I replied to your message about albergues on the Lebaniego. Enjoy!
Do the river option if you can for the last 5kms of day 1! There are things to help you but it could be slippery if rainy.
 

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