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Water on the Camino Frances

Nancy P.

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
September - October 2014
I know that there is water along the route, but I don't know how frequently.
I will be starting in St. Jean on August 25th.
How frequently will I find water? How much water should I be carrying in my pack when I begin each day.
Thank you
 
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Nancy P.

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
September - October 2014
Sorry to be a pest, but is 16 oz enough to carry from Orisson to Roncesvalles.
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
There is one really long stretch of 17 Kms without any village, but sometimes there is a man who has set up a temporary to rest and have a drink about half way along. He's not always there though., on this stretch you really should double up on your normal water consumption!
There are several 12km stretches without villages. If it's very hot, take double supply of water. Fill up your bottle/s in each village you pass through. Anne
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
Seems that 16 oz is about 500 ml. I don't do ounces so just checked this. If I remember the small size bottle of water is 600 ml. I guess it depends upon how hot it is, but I think I would double up, as it's a tough day. Anne
 
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Mark Lee

Guest
A standard water bottle is 500 ml (1/2 a liter). You should carry 2-3 of these depending on what part of the Camino you are on. I carried three, but usually only had two filled at any given time.
I made it a habit to drink at least one 1/2 liter bottle at every water fountain when I refilled.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2012
The trick, and like all magic not always easy to perform, is to never arrive at a water source with a full water bottle. Water is heavy, you should only ever carry as much as you are really going to need. Some have suggested a ratio of a litre to 10 kilometres. On the very few stretches of the Frances where you may need to walk further than 10k without a source of replenishment another 500mls might be advisable. But, big but, the heavier your load the greater exertion required to move it, the greater exertion the greater need for water.

Unless I am in desert or Karst limestone country I never carry (start out with) more than a litre / kilo but I do drink deeply whenever a supply is available.
 
A

AJ

Guest
On the Camino Frances I carry 1 litre, filling wherever possible. On other routes I carry 2 litres.
 

koilife

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF w/ son #1 (2013); Logrono-Leon/Salvador/Primitivo w/ son #2 (2016); Portugues w/ son #3 (2020)
A litre should suffice unless dealing with long stages and no intermediate sources. I tend to carry more than I will need on longer stages and was twice able to help pilgrims who had underestimated their need and were mildly dehydrated.
 

koilife

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF w/ son #1 (2013); Logrono-Leon/Salvador/Primitivo w/ son #2 (2016); Portugues w/ son #3 (2020)
Sorry to be a pest, but is 16 oz enough to carry from Orisson to Roncesvalles.
There is a fountain between the two towns where you can refill your water, and sometimes a vendor in a truck/van part way along. You probably want to be at 32 oz (1 litre) from Orisson to the fountain, and refill for the remainder to Roncesvalles.
 
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Say Simba

Live, Love, Laugh.
Year of past OR future Camino
2013
I know that there is water along the route, but I don't know how frequently.
I will be starting in St. Jean on August 25th.
How frequently will I find water? How much water should I be carrying in my pack when I begin each day.
Thank you

I drank water from the tap the entire way without any problems. I did not buy any, but used a two liter camel bladder that I kept in my pack that had a hose and nozzle that extended along my strap from which I could drink from without having to stop and mess with bottles. The bladder I emptied and re-filled using the water from the tap in the albergue I would stay in each night. Usually I wouldn't even fill the bladder the whole way, just to keep down weight. Some stretches of trail after Burgos can be 10 kilometers between villages, but a liter of water proved enough for me. There are also places to stop along the way for a coffee, tea or other beverage. Since you are going in summer, I would definitely think about using a water bladder, since it can get hot in Spain in the summer, and you will most likely need to hydrate regularly, even when you don't think you are thirsty.
 

Felipe

Veteran Member
I carry a 500 ml bottle, and that is sufficient to me for a four hours walk. Usually, there is a town with a bar or a public water tap for refilling before going further. I only carried a backup for particular stages, as before Roncesvalles or after Carrion de los Condes. But I go to the Camino usually in late winter or early spring, and this makes a lot of difference.
 

tploomis

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances Sept. to Nov., 2013
I would dissolve a magnesium tablet (electrolyte for muscle cramps) each morning in my liter bottle and then chug as much of it as I could, refill the bottle again, and head out. I usually would not get far, however, because I would stop at the first bar I hit, where I would get coffee and toast, a Spanish breakfast I came to love. How much water I kept in my liter bottle was dependent on how far the next town was. I would have a sense of how much I was drinking per kilometer, and I would adjust accordingly. One liter water capacity was always enough, except I would take two liters to get from Orrison to Roncevalles, especially if it is sunny and hot. You don't need your own Nalgene water bottle. You can use the plastic container water comes in at the grocery store.
 

WildPlace

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2013, 2015
Via de la Plata (2021)
Between Orisson and Roncesvalles I carried 2 x 500ml bottles. For the rest of the way to Santiago I carried 500mls (which I topped up when I spotted a water fountain) and at each cafe I stopped at (normally at least a couple a day) I ordered "cafe solo y agua con gas" plus where available "zumo naranja" I sometimes got strange looks ordering three drinks for myself but I kept well hydrated :)
 

cathal Ferris

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
29th April to May 31 2014
April to May (2015) starting in Burgos on the (27th April 2015) completing in Santiago on the 10th May flights booked from Dublin into Madrid and alsa bus up to Burgos
12th August 2015 Starting at Croagh Patrick Clew Bay to Downpatrick known as Camino Way of St Patrick
I drank water from the tap the entire way without any problems. I did not buy any, but used a two liter camel bladder that I kept in my pack that had a hose and nozzle that extended along my strap from which I could drink from without having to stop and mess with bottles. The bladder I emptied and re-filled using the water from the tap in the albergue I would stay in each night. Usually I wouldn't even fill the bladder the whole way, just to keep down weight. Some stretches of trail after Burgos can be 10 kilometers between villages, but a liter of water proved enough for me. There are also places to stop along the way for a coffee, tea or other beverage. Since you are going in summer, I would definitely think about using a water bladder, since it can get hot in Spain in the summer, and you will most likely need to hydrate regularly, even when you don't think you are thirsty.
Yip would agree with you water bladder is the way to go as once you come put of Burgos there is quite a long walk to Hotanus and not much water at 20 degrees heard of one guy had a fall requiring eight stitches he was kept in hospital on a drip due to dehydration thought he could walk on without the medical attention but found this to be futile.
 
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biarritzdon

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CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
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I carry an empty 1.5 litre bottle in my backpack and only fill it on the long stretches and very hot days. There is always 0.5 litre bottle in my pants pocket and it gets topped off whenever I find a fountain or a café. The local water is safe to drink unless there is a sign telling you otherwise.
 

homa_bird

Member
Keep in mind: It's all about the weather. I went from SJPDP to Ronc on a foggy rainy day, and hardly touched my water...we were drinking in wet clouds as we breathed heavily up the Pyrenees. On a hot dry day, I imagine one could (should?) drink a gallon on that walk. (There is a fountain between, as many have noted.)

On the rest of the trail, (except for one long Meseta stretch past Carrion) you can easily move from watering hole to watering hole with a medium sized water bottle, or as I got in the habit of doing, moving from Lemon Aquarius hole to Orange Aquarius hole.

I would personally recommend bottled water only through the Meseta, there have been tap water problems in that area: I don't want to start a contro thread about that, plenty out there, but I did get a water borne illness that kept me down for a couple days in Carrion.

Good times! Good luck! Have a wonderful Camino!
 

Nova Green

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances May and June 2014
I'm in Roncesvalles now having just taken the valcarlos route. The section from valcarlos is very, very steep and there are no fountains. Take at least a litre of water, if not more. By the way, the valcarlos route is stunning.........
 

grayland

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
Yes
Only carry the amount of water that YOU require. All of these recommendations are the personal needs of the poster.
Remember that 1 liter weighs 1 kilo (2.2lbs) so each 500 ml bottle (normal size) weighs about 1 lb.

Extra weight is bad anytime....but a horror on that first day walking up out of St. Jean.
 
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Sraaen

Steven Raaen
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Podiensis (Le Puy - Pamplona) [2013]
Via Turonensis (Tours - SJPdP) [2013]
Camino Frances (SJPdP - SdC) [2013]
Via Tolosana (Montpellier - Pau) [2015]
Camino del Norte (Irun - SdC) [2015]
Sorry to be a pest, but is 16 oz enough to carry from Orisson to Roncesvalles.
Full disclosure: I'm a disorganized, lazy excuse of a pilgrim with a distinct "wing it" disposition. I'd buy two 500ml plastic bottles of water every 3 or 4 days and refill them whenever I could. It worked fine for me but I've only walked in the spring & fall.
 

manfromdelmonte

New Member
I wouldn't go near a bladder. To fill it you've to take it out of the bag. you can use a bottle to pour water over your head, feet etc
Two small bottles - one on either side of the pack is a good option for balance.
 

hampshire!tim

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2013), Ingles (2014), Finisterre (2015)
You can get attachment to refill bladder down its drink pipe
 
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