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What not to bring

F

Former member 99816

Guest
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
Francés ('15, '19)
Via Coloniensis ('16)
Trier-Nancy + Le Puy-Fisterra ('17)
Aragonés ('18)
It really depends on personal needs , route, and weather/time of year.
From your list I've used every single time, so far:

Sleeping bag
blister kit
Sewing kit
Ear plugs

Would never walk without those, regardless of route or season!

For some routes I bring and use

Doggy poop bags (when there are not enough towns/toilets/bins around, use them to carry out trash until next town/bin).

Earphones (when walking long, easy but lonely sections where I might need music to motivate myself to walk those last 10k of the day instead of lying down in the ditch next to the road to die).


Always interesting to see how different packing lists can be!
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Yes, every trip I have things I absolutely used the time before, but the next time items languished in my bag.

For example, this trip I brought a small plastic drinking cup. I brought one before and never used it. This time I have only used it to drink out of only once, but have used it to protect and house the individual butter pats and coffee creamers I buy so they don't mess up the rest of my pack.

Also used my inflatable pillow many times before, but have only needed it once. Likewise, the scarf I used as a pillow cover hasn't been used because we got pillow cases with real pillows.
 
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Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
A "Tourigrino" trip once Covid has passed, so 2023
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)
TSA Agent: and what's in this container?
Traveller: That? Oh that's my nitroglycerine . . .

Sincerely glad that you never needed to take the pills on your Caminos!
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
I think perhaps a better title for this thread would be "Things that I packed but didn't use."
I would agree 100%
There are a bunch of stuff I never even thought of bringing on any camino.
I use earplugs every day to talk to my wife by whatsapp so I can filter out the noise and hear things more clearly if the connection is poor.
Sleeping bag I travel in November and December.
I have my own version of a blister kit which is a cigarette lighter, needle and thread, gauze, tape and and neosporin. Even though I haven't had a blister in the last 4 caminos.
I use earplugs every night
Even if it is hot almost always have a long sleeve shirt on.
Everything else on the list i have never needed or thought of.
But it is my list and I am sure I have things many would never take.
It is personal for all of course.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances/Portuguese/Ingles/Sanabre/Frances/Fineste
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)
Every adventure is different as is the weather. I've walked five Caminos and never used my nitroglycerine but I wouldn't go without it, nor Pepto (taken daily) nor my light weight sleeping bag, tiny sewing kit, or earplugs. Being prepared while staying light, there aren't toilet facilities when you need them so I take Pepto, bring a doggy bag and wipes.
 

Tom DeWolf

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, Fall 2019
Portuguese plan: Fall 2022
I must admit, when I read "poker chips" I laughed out loud... this tickled my funny bone... when I walked the French way a few years ago, I don't believe I witnessed any poker games being played, but perhaps I wasn't paying attention... I also respect that fact that each of us has our own "must have" list of items. Ear plugs was a huge one for me... I encountered some serious snorers that would've kept me awake all night. Now planning my next Camino for this fall and reconsidering my packing list for sure... Buen Camino, fellow pilgrims... may you carry only what you need, and use all that you carry...
 
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F

Former member 99816

Guest
Enough chips for 8 player Texas hold 'em (2 lbs). Just could not stir up any interest. I finally left them in an albergue after Logroño. I hope they got used!
 

Mananath

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
July 2022
I think perhaps a better title for this thread would be "Things that I packed but didn't use."

I can imagine a number of situations where Pepto Bismol, gauze, blister kit, hydrocortisone, Tums, etc. could have been good to have on hand.
Yes and many times when you need these items you need them right away and/or can't make it to the next town. Or it is Sunday, the day in Spain when no one gets sick lol
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)
Of the 21 items on this list, I didn't even consider 11 of them, although some items like medications are clearly individual in nature, which accounts for four. So that leaves seven that I didn't carry. Of the remaining items, I used each of them, some more frequently than others. These were:
  • earphones - most days
  • sleeping bag (and liner) - liner regularly, bag several times
  • COVID Test Kit - I used a couple of tests
  • blister kit - part of my first aid kit, which was used to treat two blisters and several other minor wounds
  • shorts - not used for walking, but used each night as sleepwear
  • day pack - used daily
  • earplugs - infrequently
  • language lessons - daily
  • doggy poo bags - I carried a small number of ziploc bags that were used for a variety of purposes, but not for human waste disposal
  • wipes - used pretty much daily
There were several items that I pack regularly that didn't get used this year, but I would carry nonetheless:
  • beanie
  • warm gloves
  • laundry detergent - I did use some, but I had brought it to use in laundromats, and didn't use any for that purpose. All the laundromat machines I found dispensed detergent themselves, and didn't need to have detergent added. I might change my mind about including this in future and revert to using laundry or bath soap.
 
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CAJohn

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances Sept/Oct 2019
The doggy bags are really general use bags that can be easily stored. I used them for garbage some times. I never had to use them for human waste, but knew where they were just in case.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
See signature. Too many to list here.
Yes, every trip I have things I absolutely used the time before, but the next time items languished in my bag.

For example, this trip I brought a small plastic drinking cup. I brought one before and never used it. This time I have only used it to drink out of only once, but have used it to protect and house the individual butter pats and coffee creamers I buy so they don't mess up the rest of my pack.

Also used my inflatable pillow many times before, but have only needed it once. Likewise, the scarf I used as a pillow cover hasn't been used because we got pillow cases with real pillows.
Wait wait wait. Coffee creamers? Where the heck do you find those? I mean I know I can find like 1/4 cup cartons of whipping cream, but little creamers?
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Norte
Wait wait wait. Coffee creamers? Where the heck do you find those? I mean I know I can find like 1/4 cup cartons of whipping cream, but little creamers?
Is there anyone, anyone at all, on here that just brings a few changes of clothes (shorts/t shirts, etc.), wallet, ID, debit card, a pair of flip flops, and a water bottle?!! Admittedly only done Frances. Norte and Portuguesa and not the tougher ones!
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Wait wait wait. Coffee creamers? Where the heck do you find those? I mean I know I can find like 1/4 cup cartons of whipping cream, but little creamers?
Yes, they are in Eroski. President Mon Cafe Creme is the brand. 10 pack and last without refrigeration in my pack several days or until I use them all up.

I also buy the little Arias butter pats in a 10 pack for bocadillos with cheese and Jamon or Salami. We buy bread, slit it down the middle. Dress it with butter, meat, cheese, and cut it into 4 smaller pieces. Put in a gallon ziplock bag and that can be lunch, supper or whatever.

Two of us walking usually so we use stuff up quicker than a solo walker.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
Is there anyone, anyone at all, on here that just brings a few changes of clothes (shorts/t shirts, etc.), wallet, ID, debit card, a pair of flip flops, and a water bottle?!! Admittedly only done Frances. Norte and Portuguesa and not the tougher ones!
Yes my cousin joined us for a week and walked from Leon to Villafranca with us. In flipflops. We had to buy him a shirt and sweatshirt in Foncebaden as he didnt bring a change of clothes and it was cold. He would have been about 55 at the time.
He walked down that mountain in flipflops. ( I had difficulty in shoes.)
When he was in London he purchased shoes, walked for a few hours, and got bad blisters, hence the flip flops.
I have to admit, if I had to walk a stage or two in flip flops I could without problem, I'm one of those people who can wear them easily, with relaxed feet, I live in them 7-8 months a year.
As opposed to my sister who finds she has to grip them as she walks, she doesn't find them easy.
 

Fr Scott

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Starting El Camino Norte in Irun June 3, 2015
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)
Several of these items you may need, but you could always purchase on the way, no need to pack.
 

JanusDT

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Vezelay
For me so far:
- Teva Sandals: i use them but don't think they are worth the space and weight
- pocket knife: expensive and useless so far
- fleece jacket: takes a lot of space in my bag, and its ridiculously hot atm
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Le Puy-SJPDP 2014, VDLP 2014,
Arles-SDC 2015, Lisbon-SDC 2017, Part Ruta de la Lana 2019, VDLP 2019
I started from Arles with very little. Ryanair had 'lost' my back pack earlier in the trip. I bought stuff as I needed it, the last purchase being a sleeping bag somewhere west of Leon; but it was November by then. It set me back about 700 euros, including the Deuter backpack of my dreams to start off with. Spain has shops, amazingly.
 
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Bob from L.A. !

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
electrolyte packs

(For me) - - An absolute must have, especially right now with the heat blanketing Europe. Besides, good luck finding any for sale along a camino route. They weigh next to nothing, but are worth their weight in gold when needed by you or by someone in need.
 

revdraligray

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
next from Leon?
(For me) - - An absolute must have, especially right now with the heat blanketing Europe. Besides, good luck finding any for sale along a camino route. They weigh next to nothing, but are worth their weight in gold when needed by you or by someone in need.
Or make your own. 1 litre water, 20g sugar= 6x 5ml teaspoonfulls, one 5ml salt
+ if very dehydrated or ongoing issue sodium bicarbonate half of a 5ml teaspoon.
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
Or make your own. 1 litre water, 20g sugar= 6x 5ml teaspoonfulls, one 5ml salt
+ if very dehydrated or ongoing issue sodium bicarbonate half of a 5ml teaspoon.

Or eat cucumber, full of electrolytes and easily got.
Or a soft drink or Aquarius with some ubiquitous French fries. 🙂
 
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See signature. Too many to list here.
(For me) - - An absolute must have, especially right now with the heat blanketing Europe. Besides, good luck finding any for sale along a camino route. They weigh next to nothing, but are worth their weight in gold when needed by you or by someone in need.
You can get potassium/magnesium tabs that dissolve in water at the pharmacy.
 

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StuartM

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2012)
Is there anyone, anyone at all, on here that just brings a few changes of clothes (shorts/t shirts, etc.), wallet, ID, debit card, a pair of flip flops, and a water bottle?!! Admittedly only done Frances. Norte and Portuguesa and not the tougher ones!
I did my first Camino on very short notice and only took a 30litre pack, a spare set of clothes, waterproof jacket, water bottle, shower stuff, sunblock and my phone. Not even a sleeping bag, I just used a shemagh as a sheet in the places where there was no bedding. No map, guidebook, nothing. Just followed the yellow signs. The only thing that I really needed to buy en route (apart from food and drink) was a roll of surgical tape.
 

hawkeyepierce

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances July 22
I start on the CF next Wednesday. Last night I fully packed my backpack and it came to exactly 5 kilos without water. I plan on carrying 2L of water every day due to the heat so this puts me exactly where I hoped to be at 7kg total.

I was even able to get a few extras into my weight budget like a small massage ball.
 

RJM

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino's Frances, Fisterre, Portuges. Over 180 day
Is there anyone, anyone at all, on here that just brings a few changes of clothes (shorts/t shirts, etc.), wallet, ID, debit card, a pair of flip flops, and a water bottle?!! Admittedly only done Frances. Norte and Portuguesa and not the tougher ones!
I try to do that, and the first time I walked the Frances I did, but definitely could have used bedding of some sort. I got by without any, but there were several times I wished I had brought a sleeping bag liner. My water bottles on that one, as in all the ones I walked were bottles from soda I bought and refilled with water the entire journey and disposed of at the end.
 

Ronald Boivin

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2021
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)
This helps me review my pack. I had already decided to leave my snowblower behind!
 
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Bob from L.A. !

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
Or make your own. 1 litre water, 20g sugar= 6x 5ml teaspoonfulls, one 5ml salt
+ if very dehydrated or ongoing issue sodium bicarbonate half of a 5ml teaspoon.

Great information. I did not know this. Thank you......
 

Robo

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)

Didn't bring any of those on my first Camino.
Oh a sewing kit. one needle and a couple of metres of thread.

Though I had too many clothes (extra shirts)

Everything else gets used.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Le Puy-SJPDP 2014, VDLP 2014,
Arles-SDC 2015, Lisbon-SDC 2017, Part Ruta de la Lana 2019, VDLP 2019
Clarification please. Do these weights being quoted above include the back pack? My Deuter 34L weighs 1.71kg.

I recall being the only woman at an albergue on the VDLP. I entered the bunkroom shortly prior to departure to find several peregrinos queued up, each taking a turn to lift up my backpack, presumably because they thought it heavy.
 
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frances
I could leave the poker chips behind, but not my jalapeño salt. Absolutely necessary considering how bland Spanish food is.
So true. When you sit down at at a table to eat there are no condiments at all. not even the basics like salt and pepper.. The spanish "tortilla" is basically an omlet of potatoes and eggs. Bring some ketchup! The famed Bocadillo is a slice of ham and cheese on dry bread. Being some mayo or mustard! Community dinners of Chickpea stew cry out for picante sauce!
With such flavorless food, no wonder spaniards are so skinny.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
So true. When you sit down at at a table to eat there are no condiments at all. not even the basics like salt and pepper.. The spanish "tortilla" is basically an omlet of potatoes and eggs. Bring some ketchup! The famed Bocadillo is a slice of ham and cheese on dry bread. Being some mayo or mustard! Community dinners of Chickpea stew cry out for picante sauce!
With such flavorless food, no wonder spaniards are so skinny.
Yes, I often missed having condiments on the Camino. Mayonaise is my personal sandwich favorite, with Dijon mustard next. If my French fries have salt or gravy on them I do not need ketchup.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Norte
So true. When you sit down at at a table to eat there are no condiments at all. not even the basics like salt and pepper.. The spanish "tortilla" is basically an omlet of potatoes and eggs. Bring some ketchup! The famed Bocadillo is a slice of ham and cheese on dry bread. Being some mayo or mustard! Community dinners of Chickpea stew cry out for picante sauce!
With such flavorless food, no wonder spaniards are so skinny.
Spanish food flavourless…blimey!!!
 
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hawkeyepierce

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances July 22
Clarification please. Do these weights being quoted above include the back pack? My Deuter 34L weighs 1.71kg.

I recall being the only woman at an albergue on the VDLP. I entered the bunkroom shortly prior to departure to find several peregrinos queued up, each taking a turn to lift up my backpack, presumably because they thought it heavy.
I don’t know what’s “standard” but my pack weight above includes the backpack.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 CF
Blister/first aid kit I used on other pilgrims, I also gave away all my electrolyte packs to a few who got sick from dehydration.
I have used electrolyte packs on the Via de la Plata (bought in Sevilla as it was already 36 deg on 2 June and the forecast was up, up up…) but never thought of bringing any on the CF…. You can buy them on route of course, if needed.
 
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domigee

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 CF
So true. When you sit down at at a table to eat there are no condiments at all. not even the basics like salt and pepper.. The spanish "tortilla" is basically an omlet of potatoes and eggs. Bring some ketchup! The famed Bocadillo is a slice of ham and cheese on dry bread. Being some mayo or mustard! Community dinners of Chickpea stew cry out for picante sauce!
With such flavorless food, no wonder spaniards are so skinny.
You can buy mayo in sachets in any Spanish supermarket 🙄 You can also buy Aioli individually packed (garlic mayonnaise). I bet it’s the same with ketchup… ?
Why bring them from half across the world? 286279C1-5656-4179-82FA-3F4CF18E502A.jpeg PS: and they’re very nice btw (I’m French and I’m fussy 😄😉)
 
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dougfitz

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
I don’t know what’s “standard” but my pack weight above includes the backpack.
There is occasional discussion about the definitions of base pack weight (BPW), total pack weight (TPW), from the skin out weight (FSOW/SOW) and target weights. One of the clearest explanations I have found for these is at: http://www.hikingdude.com/hiking-styles.php. Suffice to say that the weight of the pack is included in all of them. What is not clear is whether everyone on this forum uses the same conventions :)
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
When you sit down at at a table to eat there are no condiments at all. not even the basics like salt and pepper.
So true, but that appears to be a cultural approach to food service rather than them not being unavailable. I have never been to any bar/cafe/restaurant in Spain and now Portugal where basic condiments weren't available if you asked for them. I never asked for items like mayonnaise, mustard, tomato or other sauces, but when I looked these were always available somewhere near the counter.

Clearly more exotic condiments need to be brought with you. I always bring a small container of that wonderful elixir, Vegemite, knowing that I am unlikely to find a supply in Spain or Portugal. The worst of that is that this year, I left it at the table where I was staying in Santarem, where it now remains as a curiosity to all but antipodeans and some other enlightened folk.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
So true, but that appears to be a cultural approach to food service rather than them not being unavailable. I have never been to any bar/cafe/restaurant in Spain and now Portugal where basic condiments weren't available if you asked for them. I never asked for items like mayonnaise, mustard, tomato or other sauces, but when I looked these were always available somewhere near the counter.

Clearly more exotic condiments need to be brought with you. I always bring a small container of that wonderful elixir, Vegemite, knowing that I am unlikely to find a supply in Spain or Portugal. The worst of that is that this year, I left it at the table where I was staying in Santarem, where it now remains as a curiosity to all but antipodeans and some other enlightened folk.
In the US, salt and pepper are on every restaurant table, so when I am in the EU, it never occurs to me to ask, and I do not speak the languages. I always accept whatever is given to me, nothing more. I guess I need to be more assertive in the future, but neither vegemite nor marmite is on my list of condiment priorities.
 
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JennyH94

Pilgrim in progress
Time of past OR future Camino
CF - sections and whole (2012-2019) and part VF (2017)
Clarification please. Do these weights being quoted above include the back pack? My Deuter 34L weighs 1.71kg.

I recall being the only woman at an albergue on the VDLP. I entered the bunkroom shortly prior to departure to find several peregrinos queued up, each taking a turn to lift up my backpack, presumably because they thought it heavy.
Crikey @Bernice M - what did you do?
 

Rita Flower

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 Via del la Plata
For me so far:
- Teva Sandals: i use them but don't think they are worth the space and weight
- pocket knife: expensive and useless so far
- fleece jacket: takes a lot of space in my bag, and its ridiculously hot atm
I have a 'sentimental' pocket knife that has travelled many pilgrimages with me both in Spain and the Himalayas. When I see people say they don't need or take a pocket knife I get a little pang in my heart. Note, I have never travelled with only my pack as hand luggage so can store my little red travelling companion in the hold on my way to my starting point. Will see if I go 'solo' this time.
 

CaminoFrances

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2020 Spring Camino
Here is a list of things I brought but never used.
Earphones
Poker chips
pocket chess set
Sleeping bag
Covid test kit
Doggie poo bags
Wipes
Blister kit
can opener
clotting gauze
Pepto B
extra walking shorts
day pack
hydrocortisone
tums
Styptic pencil
Nitroglycerine
Spanish lessons
Sewing kit
Earplugs (once)
Sun sleeves (once)
What’s left?
 

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Hi all, I recently got a HOKA Anacapa for the Camino Frances which I'll be doing in October. After walking around in them for a few days, my toes are hurting, not sure if it's because the shoes...

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