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Which is longer , Camino Primitivo Hospitales or Pola route

pauloutdoors

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
April
Hi folks , I am wondering if someone can tell me exactly which is the longer route , on the Camino Primitivo the Hospitales route or the Pola route.

Thanks Folks 🙏👍​

 
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trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
Here's what Gronze says about the Hospitales route (translated by Google)

The path along the Ruta de los Hospitales is 4.5 km shorter than the alternative via Pola, but harder and without services. It is one of the stages with the most scenic beauty of all the Caminos de Santiago. It runs through elevated, uninhabited areas and with great exposure to meteorological variables; It is advisable to go accompanied, with water and provisions, and with the appropriate equipment for the wind and cold even in summer. We must opt for the Pola de Allande route in case of bad weather forecasts and, of course, in winter.
 

mazzarina

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF (partial) '05
Primitivo 19
Portugues 22
Longer in km may be shorter in time, when you factor in hills.
Buen camino!
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
Longer in km may be shorter in time, when you factor in hills.
Buen camino!
I haven't done the Primitivo yet, but it seems the advantage of not doing the hospitales route is that there is that there are several towns to stop in between Borres and Berducedo, either for a meal or to sleep.
 
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Pelerina

Camino Walker
Time of past OR future Camino
since 2011, ongoing.
I've walked the Primitivo twice and both times taken the Hospitales route - it was a highlight among many highlights of the Primitivo and, unless there is very bad weather / poor visibility, I would recommend it.

While I haven't walked via Pola, my understanding is that it is also a challenging path - see the map and elevation of both on Gronze. Personally, I find steep descents more challenging than climbs - and the descent is the same for both paths as they intersect at Puerto del Palo.

I can't speak from personal experience of the Pola route - but I recall @peregrina2000 giving a good comparison of the paths on another thread - maybe she will chime in.

PS If you stay at Albergue Samblisimo (a little way past Borres), it will slightly shorten either day. On Gronze Samblisimo is shown as on the Pola route but it's just after where the paths diverge - so an overnight there would suit either choice.
 
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trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
PS If you stay at Albergue Samblisimo (a little way past Borres), it will slightly shorten either day. On Gronze Samblisimo is shown as on the Pola route but it's just after where the paths diverge - so an overnight there would suit either choice.
Good to know as I plan for the Primitivo in June.
 

Peligro

I walk between cafe breaks
Time of past OR future Camino
Francés ’15-’19
Primitivo ’21
VF da Lucca May’23
50161D5B-15C6-49EA-857E-8E88EEFDC058.jpeg
This was the view I got from Samblismo. Dinner was a delicious vegetarian paella, communal style. I recommend it as the easiest starting point for Hospitales - it’s not quite the unforgettable Bodenaya experience, but it’s a good choice. Be aware that it’s just off the Hospitales route so you have to find the cutover, not too difficult.
 

green_spork

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Portugues
Aug/Sept (2017)
I walked via the Hospitales route in September. I stayed a the Samblisimo albergue. If you stay there, you can join the Hopitales route from right outside the Albergue.
The albergue had no wi-fi, so I walked back to a bar in Borres, past were the main Hospitales route begins.
I highly recommend staying at the Samblisimo Albergue!
 

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peregrina2000

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The path along the Ruta de los Hospitales is 4.5 km shorter than the alternative via Pola, but harder and without services
I don’t usually disagree with Gronze, but IMO, I think they perpetuate a myth that the route over Hospitales is more challenging than the route through Pola. Both ascend to the exact same high point. If you ascend from Pola, you will be starting at a point several hundred meters lower than the point you will start at if you ascend from Borres (that’s because from Borres to Pola is downhill). The ascent from Borres over Hospitales is much less pronounced, in addition to having less total elevation gain. There is a quite strenuous stretch up to the pass on the Pola ascent.

It is true that from Borres to Berducedo via Hospitales there are no services, but from Pola to Berducedo there are no services for 17 km either.

Borres to Berducedo is 4 km shorter through Hospitales than through Pola. But people who go via Pola don’t walk in one day from Borres to Pola to Berducedo. I have never met anyone who did that. If you go through Pola, it’s because you want to sleep in Pola and walk to Berducedo the next day. Many people who sleep in Tineo find that the next day’s stage to Pola works better than a short stage to Borres/Campiello/Samblismo. So it’s really kind of comparing apples and oranges.

I think this may be the thread @Pelerina is talking about. It’s old, but I don’t thnk anything has changed,except maybe the opening of the great albergue in Samblismo.
 

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