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Wild Camping option and sufficient gear

Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I am planning the del norte in September. I will take as much time as needed to enjoy all.
My issue: I have purchased all the equipment and I don't see how I can travel (prepared) with less than 9+ kilos of gear - with no cooking equipment. I weight approx 59 kilos. I am thinking the only solution is to train my upper body so that I can handle this backpack weight? Ideally I will stay in accommodations 1/3 of my time. Opinions, insights are most welcomed!
 
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nidarosa

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Inglés 2009+2017, Francés 2012+2018, Astorga-Santiago repeatedly
Hi, sorry to bring this up but as far as I know wild camping and off-site camping is illegal in Spain. Type in 'wild camping' in the search box top right of the page and I am sure you will find lots of info about it. Yes I know people do it but please do check first if it is a realistic option. I am sure you will find lots of info on here about lightening the pack as well!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Hi, sorry to bring this up but as far as I know wild camping and off-site camping is illegal in Spain. Type in 'wild camping' in the search box top right of the page and I am sure you will find lots of info about it. Yes I know people do it but please do check first if it is a realistic option. I am sure you will find lots of info on here about lightening the pack as well!
First, thanks for your note. Yes I have heard this; the way around it sounds like politeness! (Always asking permission etc.) There are some paid campsites as well. The lightening of my pack is the bigger problem so if anyone knows of links, articles, please advise.
 

nidarosa

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Inglés 2009+2017, Francés 2012+2018, Astorga-Santiago repeatedly
Polite asking might work, or pitching up in albergue grounds etc. The biggest problem is the worry about forest fires and mess left behind.
Usually the way to cut the weight is to first make sure the big 3 - shelter, sleep system, pack - are as light as possible. How much of the 9+ kilos are big 3 items?
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
The lightening of my pack is the bigger problem so if anyone knows of links, articles, please advise.
Before my first Camino, I bought a backpack that would be accepted as carry-on on my planes.

For two reasons:

1. The pack was always with me: No waiting in airports or getting lost: Fast away from the airports, and no check-in.

2. The size (lack of) made it much easier to avoid excess/heavy items.

Rule of thumb: Do not carry more than 10% of your bodyweight.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Polite asking might work, or pitching up in albergue grounds etc. The biggest problem is the worry about forest fires and mess left behind.
Usually the way to cut the weight is to first make sure the big 3 - shelter, sleep system, pack - are as light as possible. How much of the 9+ kilos are big 3 items?
 

nidarosa

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Inglés 2009+2017, Francés 2012+2018, Astorga-Santiago repeatedly
I am sure if you post your packing list, people will be only too happy to have a look, comment and probably suggest alternatives or things to leave behind. My packing list for Norway in summer was the same-ish weight but without a tent, and I know there were things there that I would not take again. Let's have a look!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Before my first Camino, I bought a backpack that would be accepted as carry-on on my planes.

For two reasons:

1. The pack was always with me: No waiting in airports or getting lost: Fast away from the airports, and no check-in.

2. The size (lack of) made it much easier to avoid excess/heavy items.

Rule of thumb: Do not carry more than 10% of your bodyweight.
Thanks very much. yes, I am flying into Gatwick and have only my Osprey 55 litre. I realize it is a large backpack but it is my only luggage for one way ticket and potentially six months of travel in UK, Europe. I am waiting to donate my 3 piece luggage set as soon as Toronto charity shops are open again :) I am thinking that when one has to include camping gear the 10% may be unrealistic. Only solution may be to do some weight lifting in months leading up to my September walk.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I am sure if you post your packing list, people will be only too happy to have a look, comment and probably suggest alternatives or things to leave behind. My packing list for Norway in summer was the same-ish weight but without a tent, and I know there were things there that I would not take again. Let's have a look!
Thanks again. Great idea. I will add individual weights and 'put it out there'.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Fairview 55 womens 1.75 kgs so yes a bit heavy but bought in 2019 to use it for all travel for next five years. Has day pack zipped onto it. Am I crazy?
 

nidarosa

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Inglés 2009+2017, Francés 2012+2018, Astorga-Santiago repeatedly
Crazy? No. If it fits you and is comfortable, at least it is lighter than the Ariel. If you have used it as a main backpack over time before, you'll know if it works. If not, time to start walking around with it stuffed full of 9kgs of books etc ...
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I've actually got everything in it already, excluding toiletries and few other items.
I walked Thursday for 1 1/2 hours; without pack I can go 4 hours and 20k no problem. Was tired but decided I need to train (add weights) if it's going to be this heavy.
For past year, I've been doing yoga, 3 times/week and strength training (x 2) but NOT specific upper body weights. I think this needs to be next stage of preparation for September. As long as my knees, feet and ankles can handle it :) Thanks again for all your input!
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1989
I've actually got everything in it already, excluding toiletries and few other items.
I walked Thursday for 1 1/2 hours; without pack I can go 4 hours and 20k no problem. Was tired but decided I need to train (add weights) if it's going to be this heavy.
For past year, I've been doing yoga, 3 times/week and strength training (x 2) but NOT specific upper body weights. I think this needs to be next stage of preparation for September. As long as my knees, feet and ankles can handle it :) Thanks again for all your input!
A few pieces of advice, take them for what they are worth and adjust as suits.
  1. Remember that the solution to keeping your backpack within 10% of body weight is to decrease pack weight, not increase body weight. :) This is somewhat tongue in cheek, as I see you are already heading down the path of reducing pack weight.
  2. Planning is great, but if this is your first Camino, leave yourself as much flexibility as possible. I see you are already heading down this path, too, taking as much time as needed to enjoy it all. But I notice that you are positing an ideal 2/3 camping, 1/3 staying in accommodations. Leave yourself open to the possibility that, when you are there, you may prefer a reversed ratio or give up on camping altogether. Many find that the camaraderie of fellow pilgrims, experienced in pilgrim accommodations after the day's walk, is one of the best parts of the experience.
  3. While there are certainly some pilgrims who tent, they are decidedly a small minority. If you look at most of the packing lists here, they won't have tents, likely not sleeping pads, and perhaps not sleeping bags (I tended to take just a sleeping bag liner). But if you look at places frequented by North American through hikers (the people who walk the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Coast Trail, the Continental Divide Trail, etc.), those people are used to walking long distances carrying everything they need to camp. They may have good advice for keeping the pack weight down while camping.
  4. There's another thread on the value of training before hand. Personally, I believe it can be a big help. Walking with your full backpack is, in my opinion, an important part of that. Not only does it help condition you, but it will help see how things are working, help you figure out how to stow things so they are balanced right and the weight distribution is good, and all that sort of thing. For me, I started out with walks of 5-10km a few times a week, upped it to 15-20km for at least one of them, until eventually I could do 20km with full backpack for three days in a row (long weekend) without issue.
  5. The Norte is a fairly challenging Camino, by all accounts, with a fair amount of hills. Toronto is reasonably flat, except in certain specific areas (e.g. south of St. Clair, where the old Ice Age lakeshore was). Try and include some hills in your practice walks. I live on the top of the Scarborough Bluffs, and the 10km circuit I use includes walking down to the lake shore, along the lake, and up a substantial hill.
  6. Finally, you mention "as long as my knees, feet, and ankles can handle it". In my experience, walking poles will certainly help them to handle it a lot better.
I hope this helps.
 
Last edited:
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alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
A few pieces of advice, take them for what they are worth and adjust as suits.
  1. Remember that the solution to keeping your backpack within 10% of body weight is to decrease pack weight, not increase body weight. :) This is somewhat tongue in cheek, as I see you are already heading down the path of reducing pack weight.
  2. Planning is great, but if this is your first Camino, leave yourself as much flexibility as possible. I see you are already heading down this path, too, taking as much time as needed to enjoy it all. But I notice that you are positing an ideal 2/3 camping, 1/3 staying in accommodations. Leave yourself open to the possibility that, when you are there, you may prefer a reversed ratio or give up on camping altogether. Many find that the camaraderie of fellow pilgrims, experienced in pilgrim accommodations after the day's walk, one of the best parts of the experience.
  3. While there are certainly some pilgrims who tent, they are decidedly a small minority. If you look at most of the packing lists here, they won't have tents, likely not sleeping pads, and perhaps not sleeping bags (I tended to take just a sleeping bag liner). But if you look at places frequented by North American through hikers (the people who walk the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Coast Trail, the Continental Divide Trail, etc.), those people are used to walking long distances carrying everything they need to camp. They may have good advice for keeping the pack weight down while camping.
  4. There's another thread on the value of training before hand. Personally, I believe it can be a big help. Walking with your full backpack is, in my opinion, an important part of that. Not only does it help condition you, bet it will help see how things are working, help you figure out how to stow things so they are balanced right and the weight distribution is good, and all that sort of thing. For me, I started out with walks of 5-10km a few times a week, upped it to 15-20km for at least one of them, until eventually I could do 20km with full backpack for three days in a row (long weekend) without issue.
  5. The Norte is a fairly challenging Camino, by all accounts, with a fair amount of hills. Toronto is reasonably flat, except in certain specific areas (e.g. south of St. Clair, where the old Ice Age lakeshore was). Try and include some hills in your practice walks. I live on the top of the Scarborough Bluffs, and the 10km circuit I use includes walking down to the lake shore, along the lake, and up a substantial hill.
  6. Finally, you mention "as long as my knees, feet, and ankles can handle it". In my experience, walking poles will certainly help them to handle it a lot better.
I hope this helps.
These are all good advices.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
A few pieces of advice, take them for what they are worth and adjust as suits.
  1. Remember that the solution to keeping your backpack within 10% of body weight is to decrease pack weight, not increase body weight. :) This is somewhat tongue in cheek, as I see you are already heading down the path of reducing pack weight.
  2. Planning is great, but if this is your first Camino, leave yourself as much flexibility as possible. I see you are already heading down this path, too, taking as much time as needed to enjoy it all. But I notice that you are positing an ideal 2/3 camping, 1/3 staying in accommodations. Leave yourself open to the possibility that, when you are there, you may prefer a reversed ratio or give up on camping altogether. Many find that the camaraderie of fellow pilgrims, experienced in pilgrim accommodations after the day's walk, is one of the best parts of the experience.
  3. While there are certainly some pilgrims who tent, they are decidedly a small minority. If you look at most of the packing lists here, they won't have tents, likely not sleeping pads, and perhaps not sleeping bags (I tended to take just a sleeping bag liner). But if you look at places frequented by North American through hikers (the people who walk the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Coast Trail, the Continental Divide Trail, etc.), those people are used to walking long distances carrying everything they need to camp. They may have good advice for keeping the pack weight down while camping.
  4. There's another thread on the value of training before hand. Personally, I believe it can be a big help. Walking with your full backpack is, in my opinion, an important part of that. Not only does it help condition you, but it will help see how things are working, help you figure out how to stow things so they are balanced right and the weight distribution is good, and all that sort of thing. For me, I started out with walks of 5-10km a few times a week, upped it to 15-20km for at least one of them, until eventually I could do 20km with full backpack for three days in a row (long weekend) without issue.
  5. The Norte is a fairly challenging Camino, by all accounts, with a fair amount of hills. Toronto is reasonably flat, except in certain specific areas (e.g. south of St. Clair, where the old Ice Age lakeshore was). Try and include some hills in your practice walks. I live on the top of the Scarborough Bluffs, and the 10km circuit I use includes walking down to the lake shore, along the lake, and up a substantial hill.
  6. Finally, you mention "as long as my knees, feet, and ankles can handle it". In my experience, walking poles will certainly help them to handle it a lot better.
I hope this helps.
Hi David,
All such great reminders and advice!
Yes flexibility is definitely the name of the game; I really don't know who I will meet or what will happen; "dancing (walking) in the moment" . Because unsure how long I will be out of Canada, planning for lots of options.
I have JUST started to walk with full weight and it IS a VERY different story! I have been able to walk 20km regularly BUT WITHOUT MY PACK!
** Your 20kms with full backpack is my goal and I'm glad to hear I was thinking along those lines and why I decided to create post. This is very affirming.
# five is probably most valuable advice. Yes, Toronto is very flat. I will take trips to the Bluffs and also be doing walking in UK - where I will be by mid June. I plan to walk (train) extensively over there until departing Spain. Finally, #6 - yes, I have poles and I'm so happy I invested in them.
THANKS AGAIN for taking the time to write. I will cut and paste and add to my "Notes" on laptop. Regards and with great appreciation!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
1340
Hello, @gayeh and welcome to the Forum.

If your pack becomes only borderline manageable you might want someone else to carry it for you. If you look into bag couriers on the Norte, or the Spanish postal system, Correos, you may be able to have them carry the heavier bits and leave you free to walk relatively unencumbered.
It may not fit in with your budget or your plans, but it may reduce some anxiety if you can lighten your load this way.

All the best, and buen Camino,
Paul
 
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David Tallan

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1989
Hi David,
All such great reminders and advice!
Yes flexibility is definitely the name of the game; I really don't know who I will meet or what will happen; "dancing (walking) in the moment" . Because unsure how long I will be out of Canada, planning for lots of options.
I have JUST started to walk with full weight and it IS a VERY different story! I have been able to walk 20km regularly BUT WITHOUT MY PACK!
** Your 20kms with full backpack is my goal and I'm glad to hear I was thinking along those lines and why I decided to create post. This is very affirming.
# five is probably most valuable advice. Yes, Toronto is very flat. I will take trips to the Bluffs and also be doing walking in UK - where I will be by mid June. I plan to walk (train) extensively over there until departing Spain. Finally, #6 - yes, I have poles and I'm so happy I invested in them.
THANKS AGAIN for taking the time to write. I will cut and paste and add to my "Notes" on laptop. Regards and with great appreciation!
If you are going to train by the Bluffs, here's the route I use:
  • Bus or drive to the Guild Inn. From the parking lot, there is a nice walk through a wooded ravine to the lake shore.
  • Walk west along the lake shore to the Doris McCarthy Trail (DMT). You have the lake on your left and the bluffs on your right. Just before the DMT, there is a shipwreck you can see by the shore (the boiler of the ships seems to be all that is left). You will know when you reach the DMT (a) by the large metal sculpture and (b) by the path going up the hill.
  • Walk up the DMT to the top. This is about twice as far as you walked down. It is also through a nice wooded ravine with a nice burbling brook beside the trail. When you get to the top, turn right and walk east along the road (Bellehaven Cr.).
  • When you get to where Bellehaven meets Hill Cr. you have two choices. You can take the path to your right which leads through another wooded ravine to Sylvan Park. (Gotta love Toronto's ravines!) That's what I usually do when it isn't too wet. Taking the path, you walk down to Sylvan Park where you can turn left and walk to Sylvan road, or turn right, walk for a bit, turn right again, walk to the top of the bluffs, turn right again, walk along the top of the bluffs to a nice scenic view before walking through the park to Sylvan Road. One choice is more straightforward, one is longer and more scenic. I do the latter. Or instead of walking down to Sylvan Park you can continue along Hill Crescent to where it meets Heathfield Drive on the left. On the right you will see a paved path through the woods that will take you down to a short stretch of Heathfield Drive which ends in Sylvan Crescent. Either way you end up in Sylvan Crescent.
  • Walk East along Sylvan Crescent unril you get to the end at Livingston Road. You will pass a school and a part on your right. Just about where the school is, is Rogate Place. If you look south on Rogate Place you will see another park (South Marine Park). Next to that you might see a yellow arrow attached to a tree giving the number of km to Santiago. But you don't have to go that way. Just keep going along Sylvan to Livingston.
  • When you get to Livingston, keep going straight, not on a road, but on a path. That path will take you into the Guild Inn Park and you can walk through the park back to the parking lot.
  • If it doesn't make much sense as described above, it will make a lot more sense if you read it while looking at Google Maps. :)

The whole route is between 9 and 10 km (depending on how much you wander in the parks). Later in my training, I'll do it twice, with a stop for brunch or lunch in between. There are generally washrooms in the Guild Inn Park but those are the only facilities on the trail (be warned). At the moment, those washrooms are closed and replaces with a porta-potty.

There is a Toronto Camino Community that, when not in Covid-times, meets up for walks twice a week. This was one of the walks that they would sometimes do. They'd meet at the coffee shop in the little plaza at Livingston and Guildwood Parkway and then walk down Livingston to the park entrance by Sylvan. After the circuit, they'd walk back up from Livingston and Sylvan to the little plaza and have lunch at Ace's Place. There is a bus stop for the 116 right by the plaza. (The 116 is also the bus you'd take to get to the Guild Inn.)

You can connect with the Toronto Camino Community under that name on Facebook. Darlene, who organizes the walks, knows a ton of excellent Toronto walking routes and can probably suggest others that are good for training.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
Might you look into a hip-trolley? If you check out Efrén Gonzales’ Via Francigena series of vlogs on Youtube, you will see that he took a trolley all the way from Canterbury to Rome because his pack-weight was quite significant. For the Alps he found it cumbersom, but for something like 80 of the 90 days it was indispensable (also, his camping gear list is quite thoughtful).
The Norte is certainly hilly, but there are usually two options: one a footpath right on the cliffs (not so great for the trolley) and one on a more established and paved route where the trolley would work well.
I think you could also train in Sherwood Park, in Sunnybrooke Park, and in the Rosedale Ravine system to get some hills into your days — Hogg’s Hollow also… all places you Could reach by public transit pretty easily.

If you can drive out of town, the Dundas trail is good for modest hills. If I think of any others, I’ll let you know, but for sure a walk from Bloor to Davisville on any of the N/S roads would help… as would that dip down from Forest Hill to DuPont at the Annex. Oakwood Ravine could be a good option?

Buen camino, and keep us posted!

oh! And I found K-tape really helpful for my knees — in addition to the indispensable poles. You can pick up K-tape at Shoppers’. Some people find it less useful, but it’s a drug-free way to prevent pain so other than the expense of trying it out, it’s risk free.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Also, should you decide along the way to go without the tent and mat, you can have them sent to Santiago, to Casa Ivar's luggage hold service! There will be links on this site.
That's great to know and will keep in back of my mind.
Staying flexible makes anything possible and all potential resources only add to my confidence while planning. I love this forum! I have learned SO much already; in spite of fact that I am only an 'intentional pilgrim' to-date :)
 

Helen1

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
London to Santiago (2014)
Narbonne to Oloron (2015)
Camino Portugues (2016)
Sentier Cathar (2017)
9kg with camping gear doesn’t sound that much to me. Watch how much weight the water adds, esp if wild camping. I would go walking with the pack loaded and get used to it (or simply put something heavy into a normal day to day rucksack and just get used to the weight doing things you would normally do). Not so sure other exercises will help that much. Maybe some arm exercises to lift your back onto your back :)

I don’t know how well that 10% weight rule really works for women. Obviously lighter the better but there are plenty of women across the world regularly carrying small children on their backs all day who will weigh far more than 10% of their mother’s body weight.

I get the desire for flexibility but a wild camping experience is not your average camino experience. typically you would be walking during the day, having an evening meal, walking a bit in the evening to find somewhere to camp out of town as it gets dark, get up at dawn, find somewhere to have coffee and breakfast. I think most people who wild camp are camping in a very fleeting kind of way, they aren’t setting up camp in the afternoon and building a fire to cook, it’s more about waiting for people to go to bed, quietly pitching a tent somewhere unobtrusive and disappearing before people wake up.

Sometimes you can camp at albergues/campsites (maybe more on the Norte) or ask for permission to camp and have a more typical camino experience where you finish walking by 2.30pm, set up camp, go for a meal and then come back to your tent to sleep. Don’t want to put you off but sometimes I think discussions about wild camping on the camino can get a bit divorced from reality. It can be a deeply spiritual experience and you can feel at one with nature, it's free, but it’s also pretty primitive and miserable if it’s wet!

Good luck with your planning!
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2021
9kg with camping gear doesn’t sound that much to me. Watch how much weight the water adds, esp if wild camping. I would go walking with the pack loaded and get used to it (or simply put something heavy into a normal day to day rucksack and just get used to the weight doing things you would normally do). Not so sure other exercises will help that much. Maybe some arm exercises to lift your back onto your back :)

I don’t know how well that 10% weight rule really works for women. Obviously lighter the better but there are plenty of women across the world regularly carrying small children on their backs all day who will weigh far more than 10% of their mother’s body weight.

I get the desire for flexibility but a wild camping experience is not your average camino experience. typically you would be walking during the day, having an evening meal, walking a bit in the evening to find somewhere to camp out of town as it gets dark, get up at dawn, find somewhere to have coffee and breakfast. I think most people who wild camp are camping in a very fleeting kind of way, they aren’t setting up camp in the afternoon and building a fire to cook, it’s more about waiting for people to go to bed, quietly pitching a tent somewhere unobtrusive and disappearing before people wake up.

Sometimes you can camp at albergues/campsites (maybe more on the Norte) or ask for permission to camp and have a more typical camino experience where you finish walking by 2.30pm, set up camp, go for a meal and then come back to your tent to sleep. Don’t want to put you off but sometimes I think discussions about wild camping on the camino can get a bit divorced from reality. It can be a deeply spiritual experience and you can feel at one with nature, it's free, but it’s also pretty primitive and miserable if it’s wet!

Good luck with your planning!
This is really valuable and depicts the way I think of the camino. Thank you very much for taking the time. I will keep these notes for incorporate your thoughtful insights.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
If you are going to train by the Bluffs, here's the route I use:
  • Bus or drive to the Guild Inn. From the parking lot, there is a nice walk through a wooded ravine to the lake shore.
  • Walk west along the lake shore to the Doris McCarthy Trail (DMT). You have the lake on your left and the bluffs on your right. Just before the DMT, there is a shipwreck you can see by the shore (the boiler of the ships seems to be all that is left). You will know when you reach the DMT (a) by the large metal sculpture and (b) by the path going up the hill.
  • Walk up the DMT to the top. This is about twice as far as you walked down. It is also through a nice wooded ravine with a nice burbling brook beside the trail. When you get to the top, turn right and walk east along the road (Bellehaven Cr.).
  • When you get to where Bellehaven meets Hill Cr. you have two choices. You can take the path to your right which leads through another wooded ravine to Sylvan Park. (Gotta love Toronto's ravines!) That's what I usually do when it isn't too wet. Taking the path, you walk down to Sylvan Park where you can turn left and walk to Sylvan road, or turn right, walk for a bit, turn right again, walk to the top of the bluffs, turn right again, walk along the top of the bluffs to a nice scenic view before walking through the park to Sylvan Road. One choice is more straightforward, one is longer and more scenic. I do the latter. Or instead of walking down to Sylvan Park you can continue along Hill Crescent to where it meets Heathfield Drive on the left. On the right you will see a paved path through the woods that will take you down to a short stretch of Heathfield Drive which ends in Sylvan Crescent. Either way you end up in Sylvan Crescent.
  • Walk East along Sylvan Crescent unril you get to the end at Livingston Road. You will pass a school and a part on your right. Just about where the school is, is Rogate Place. If you look south on Rogate Place you will see another park (South Marine Park). Next to that you might see a yellow arrow attached to a tree giving the number of km to Santiago. But you don't have to go that way. Just keep going along Sylvan to Livingston.
  • When you get to Livingston, keep going straight, not on a road, but on a path. That path will take you into the Guild Inn Park and you can walk through the park back to the parking lot.
  • If it doesn't make much sense as described above, it will make a lot more sense if you read it while looking at Google Maps. :)

The whole route is between 9 and 10 km (depending on how much you wander in the parks). Later in my training, I'll do it twice, with a stop for brunch or lunch in between. There are generally washrooms in the Guild Inn Park but those are the only facilities on the trail (be warned). At the moment, those washrooms are closed and replaces with a porta-potty.

There is a Toronto Camino Community that, when not in Covid-times, meets up for walks twice a week. This was one of the walks that they would sometimes do. They'd meet at the coffee shop in the little plaza at Livingston and Guildwood Parkway and then walk down Livingston to the park entrance by Sylvan. After the circuit, they'd walk back up from Livingston and Sylvan to the little plaza and have lunch at Ace's Place. There is a bus stop for the 116 right by the plaza. (The 116 is also the bus you'd take to get to the Guild Inn.)

You can connect with the Toronto Camino Community under that name on Facebook. Darlene, who organizes the walks, knows a ton of excellent Toronto walking routes and can probably suggest others that are good for training.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
David! I grew up at Kingston Road and Birchmount with a view of the Bluffs. this is fantastic.
Tom Friesen introduced me to Darlene. I was hoping to join her walks but I am in the central west end of the city and she is more central. They also start early in the morning for me. I have yet to join them but may make more effort now that my time is getting short here. I have been lucky to join Tom's Friday am Camino Coffees when possible. I am grateful for the directions and shall explore soon - with my pack!
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
If I may just add a little of my two cents to this discussion. I have never camped so I can't really comment on Camino camping. I have walked the Norte and can comment on that. David alluded to the fact that it is one of the tougher caminos with alot of steep up and downs. There are not that many campsites on the Norte. I know as others have mentioned that wild camping is frowned upon and you could be hassled by police. There are many open fields that I am sure you could camp on but I wonder how easy it is to find the owner of the field you choose to pitch your tent. Fires are illegal. I may have missed it but besides the weight of a tent and sleeping bag etc., you will also have the additional weight of food, utensils and water.
Finally and I know how someone responds and their fitness level is a completely singular experience, I trained like crazy before my first Camino. I lived at the time in Siskiyou Mountains of Southern Oregon. I walked up mountains every day with my full pack. But somehow by the time I got to Orisson I was ready to collapse. The first week was physical torture but of course wonderful. The first week from St. Jean is far easier than the first week from Irun. I can't say about England or Canada but the up and downhills on the Caminos are generally much steeper than in the States. I am 100% convinced and I am sure many would agree with me that you just can not recreate the Camino in your training. You just can't recreate the 6-8 hours a day of constant up and down on the Norte, of the changeable path beneath your feet, along with the wind, rain, sun, heat or cold. Believe me you catch some really windy days when the wind blows at 25 or 30K and higher ALL day boy does a tough walk get a whole lot harder.
I know you will do what you think you should but I advise against it.
Finally you can plan, train and have all your expectations analyzed, plotted and prepared. But you can throw all of it out the window the moment you take your first step out of your campsite, albergue or pension that first wonderful morning out of Irun. You might agree just a little more after you take that ferry ride and you stop for a coffee and a snack in Pasajes de San Juan and then you make that right turn and see what will look like 11 trillion steps you need to walk up to start your last 7k to San Sebastian. Don't forget to go to Gelateria Boulevard in front of the Old Town for the best Ice Cream ever. You will deserve it!!!
Buen Camino
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
What is the reason why you want to camp rather than sleep in albergues? As has been mentioned very few people camp along any of the Camino paths. @Kanga took a tent on her Camino del Norte, but eventually sent it to Ivar in Santiago. Here's her thread which might interest you.
Thank you for responding and for the link. My reasons for camping are multiple: I want to be outdoors, I want the quiet and solitude, to avoid bed bugs, save a little cash and finally prove that I am not too old to be a camper. I celebrated 65 last week!
 
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JamesVT

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2019
A few pieces of advice, take them for what they are worth and adjust as suits.
  1. Remember that the solution to keeping your backpack within 10% of body weight is to decrease pack weight, not increase body weight. :) This is somewhat tongue in cheek, as I see you are already heading down the path of reducing pack weight.
  2. Planning is great, but if this is your first Camino, leave yourself as much flexibility as possible. I see you are already heading down this path, too, taking as much time as needed to enjoy it all. But I notice that you are positing an ideal 2/3 camping, 1/3 staying in accommodations. Leave yourself open to the possibility that, when you are there, you may prefer a reversed ratio or give up on camping altogether. Many find that the camaraderie of fellow pilgrims, experienced in pilgrim accommodations after the day's walk, is one of the best parts of the experience.
  3. While there are certainly some pilgrims who tent, they are decidedly a small minority. If you look at most of the packing lists here, they won't have tents, likely not sleeping pads, and perhaps not sleeping bags (I tended to take just a sleeping bag liner). But if you look at places frequented by North American through hikers (the people who walk the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Coast Trail, the Continental Divide Trail, etc.), those people are used to walking long distances carrying everything they need to camp. They may have good advice for keeping the pack weight down while camping.
  4. There's another thread on the value of training before hand. Personally, I believe it can be a big help. Walking with your full backpack is, in my opinion, an important part of that. Not only does it help condition you, but it will help see how things are working, help you figure out how to stow things so they are balanced right and the weight distribution is good, and all that sort of thing. For me, I started out with walks of 5-10km a few times a week, upped it to 15-20km for at least one of them, until eventually I could do 20km with full backpack for three days in a row (long weekend) without issue.
  5. The Norte is a fairly challenging Camino, by all accounts, with a fair amount of hills. Toronto is reasonably flat, except in certain specific areas (e.g. south of St. Clair, where the old Ice Age lakeshore was). Try and include some hills in your practice walks. I live on the top of the Scarborough Bluffs, and the 10km circuit I use includes walking down to the lake shore, along the lake, and up a substantial hill.
  6. Finally, you mention "as long as my knees, feet, and ankles can handle it". In my experience, walking poles will certainly help them to handle it a lot better.
I hope this helps.
This post is full of good advice. I’d also add that the old rule about carrying no more than 10% of your body weight actually seems to encourage peregrinos to carry too much stuff and too much weight, especially when they start using the “just in case” justification for adding more things to their packs. A couple other thoughts— during my Camino, I met only four or five walkers who were trying to camp their way across Spain. It just wasn’t being done and there seemed to be limited places to do it. Not impossible, but probably more complicated than one might guess. Other thoughts: definitely use hiking poles and do not hurry yourself. Carrying too much and striving for ultra long days will turn the Camino into a grind and blister your feet. Be a happy wanderer, take the time to fill yourself with gratitude just for being in Spain and being able to tread the sacred ground of the Camino. Move forward each day and leave no trace behind.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Thank you both for taking time to respond James, David and others.

All of this is excellent advice and I agree with all. My intention to do some stealth camping may indeed be too ambitious. I waited until last week to order my tent; it ended up not being a huge $ investment. I went for best value and weight for my budget: for just under $200CAD I bought a Naturehike Cloud Up Series 20D/210T - 2 person tent. (No $500 MSR or more for this gal.)
So I shall see. I am (admittedly) quite social and after spending more time alone since covid than ever, I may simply embrace more engagement than expected and more often!
The luxury I do have is time and will not hurry and hope to volunteer if places along the way need or want any assistance.
My thought is that 20 - 25k maximum/day is a fine goal but not imperative; especially with 9 - 10k of weight.
One day (and eventually one step) at a time.
With great appreciation.

PS: I have hiking poles and are very happy with them.
 
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alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
I’d also add that the old rule about carrying no more than 10% of your body weight actually seems to encourage peregrinos to carry too much stuff and too much weight, especially when they start using the “just in case” justification for adding more things to their packs
For you, @gayeh : A very good rule is: If you know you'll need it, bring it on in your backpack. If you think you'll need it, leave it at home. And be strong on this one. The leftover boxes in the albergues are filled with "neccessary" items left by over-packing pilgrims on the first 6-7 etapas of the Camino.

Also remember, Spain is a very civilized country (they discovered the Americas; well, after us Vikings, that is :cool: ), and everything you find out that you need, can be bought there, for a better price than at home. The farmacies, f.ex., are extremely good.

As for Covid-times solitude and the need for coming back to life: When you hit the Camino, you will most likely meet one or more people you will befriend, quite quickly. This is happening frequently. It is called bonding a "Camino family". You may walk together for a couple of days, or the whole way. Some may become life-long friends. These things happen on the Camino. I have some friends going back +10 years.

If you go camping (and you will be alone on the spots), you will lose contact with, or not even find, a "camino family". You will miss out on making dinners together in the afternoons in the albergue kitchens, sharing a glass of wine in the bar/kitchen before nighttime, having coffee together in the mornings, chatting with likeminded newfound friends over a cold beer at lunchtime, & much more.

In short, you will miss out on some vital elements that make walking the Camino such a special, and for some, a life-changing experience. But by all means, I am not saying it won't be if you choose to go camping: I am only sharing my experience after many years on the Way. Just remember the Spanish rules about (wild)camping. I have heard in the past of pilgrims in tents in fields being run over by farmers who didn't see them in the field. So choose your places wisely...

Staying in albergues, a budget of 20-30 Euros/day is reachable, depending a little on if you are a non-smoker/careful with alchohol and prepare your own meals/with friends some of your days (which is great fun, BTW). :cool:

Just my 0.02 Euros.

Buen Camino! (Yours has already started..)
 
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Anamiri

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
. There are many open fields that I am sure you could camp on but I wonder how easy it is to find the owner of the field you choose to pitch your tent. Fires are illegal. I may have missed it but besides the weight of a tent and sleeping bag etc., you will also have the additional weight of food, utensils and water.
That is a very good point. Cant comment on the Norte, but on the Frances people dont seem to live on the farm, you dont see houses in the fields. I think they must live in the village and go to the farm to work each day. I am used to a scenario here where the farmers live on the farm and are easy to find.
Just endless unbroken fields on the Camino.

On the Frances on 3 Caminos I have seen only two lots of people camping, both times they had dogs and chose camping to allow them to stay with their dogs. As @alexwalker says, you may miss out on meeting other people, which is often one of the things about the Camino that makes it different and special (the social aspect adds to the enjoyment whether you plan to or not) from other long walks around the world. In my opinion a pilgrimage is different from a long walk.
On my first Camino I didn't expect to meet other people and form friendships, it just happens, and some of my most memorable moments were with other people.

However you can ship your stuff to Santiago and walk with a lighter load if you change your mind. Walking every day with a heavy pack can take a toll on your body and knees.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2021
That is a very good point. Cant comment on the Norte, but on the Frances people dont seem to live on the farm, you dont see houses in the fields. I think they must live in the village and go to the farm to work each day. I am used to a scenario here where the farmers live on the farm and are easy to find.
Just endless unbroken fields on the Camino.

On the Frances on 3 Caminos I have seen only two lots of people camping, both times they had dogs and chose camping to allow them to stay with their dogs. As @alexwalker says, you may miss out on meeting other people, which is often one of the things about the Camino that makes it different and special (the social aspect adds to the enjoyment whether you plan to or not) from other long walks around the world. In my opinion a pilgrimage is different from a long walk.
On my first Camino I didn't expect to meet other people and form friendships, it just happens, and some of my most memorable moments were with other people.

However you can ship your stuff to Santiago and walk with a lighter load if you change your mind. Walking every day with a heavy pack can take a toll on your body and knees.
Thanks for this Anamiri! All to be digested and considered seriously.
 
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koknesis

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances June/July 2014
Camino Aragones August 2015
Camino Sanabres (Ourense-SdC) August 2015
VdlP 2017
Thank you for responding and for the link. My reasons for camping are multiple: I want to be outdoors, I want the quiet and solitude, to avoid bed bugs, save a little cash and finally prove that I am not too old to be a camper. I celebrated 65 last week!
Congratulations! Perhaps you may consider GR11 then? It is a great trail, just a different kind. An attempt to camp on Camino most likely will end up with a disappointment because it is not a nature trail. You can check this on Google satellite maps. I have spent a couple of nights in woods and dunes but these were rather exotic events 😎
 

JennyH94

Pilgrim in progress
Year of past OR future Camino
CF - sections and whole (2012-2019) and part VF (2017)
Hi @gayeh - a wonderful book about walking and camping on the Norte was written by Jean-Christophe Rufin and is called The Santiago Pilgrimage. He was a founding member of Medicins Sans Frontieres and a former French ambassador to Senegal. He mostly camped but did have the occasional night in albergues and small hotels.
It’s a very frank, open and honest read and the reader feels they are right there beside him. The book makes one want to be right there beside him! If only there was an emoticon for sighs of longing - for the Norte - not J-CR - though he would definitely be fascinating company! 😉 I’d recommend it to anyone who is thinking of walking the Norte.
Buen Norte Camino!
Cheers from Oz -
Jenny
 

Dromengro

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPdP - Leon 1984
Frances (2021)
I think the only way to train is to wear your pack everywhere on every opportunity around the house, shopping, or work to get used to it, not only the weight but adjusting to fit and how it's packed makes a big difference. 9kg on a budget is fairly good obviously if you can lighten it anyway the better. The 10% is only a guide and is based on a daypack and would be totally unrealistic for camping until recently with modern lightweight gear. 20% is the recommended max weight with camping gear, however again is only a guide.
Maybe adapting the tent to make it lighter might be a possibility, they usually have more pegs and guylines than you need. You might even get away without the inner mesh, and use a poncho for a groundsheet, but it depends on how much you like sharing with bugs and other critters and how much you like roughing it. Probably not recommended if it's your first time.
Eat and drink your main meals close to where you buy your food then you won't have to carry it far.
The great thing about camping is that you have your home with you so you can choose the distance you want to walk. Don't push yourself too hard trying to keep up with others. You'll have extra walking time as you don't want to pitch camp until late in the day and be up early so rest up more during the day and push on a few extra miles when others are in the albergues.
Good luck!
 

Anhalter

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2019 CF
Unless i missed something, you still did not post a packing list. So i am guessing a bit. Anyways:
9kg is a lot. Even when on a budget. Even after subtracting 3,5kg for your (heavy) tent and (heavy) backpack.
So please, make a list of the items and either look it over or put it here (or lighterpack.com) and hopefully we can find some things to save you weight.

As for camping in itself: Each and every pilgrim i met on my camino that was carrying a tent for "just in case" sent it home. The two pilgrims i met that enjoyed camping for the fun of it were fine. But then, as was already said, it's likely i havnt met that many "camping pilgrims" beacause its less likely to have contact. However, this was the Frances, things might be different on the norte.

So heres my advice you did not ask for (sorry): If you don't want to camp for the fun of it and have trouble with the weight of the pack: dont camp. Leave the stuff at home, or sell it and use the money for your travel budget. Albergues are cheap and eliminate a number of problems (water, washing, cooking, electricity) that you might otherwise be spending money on. After that, the financial difference between camping and sleeping in albergues isnt that big.
 

peregrino_tom

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
.
Hi gayeh
I think it’s fair to plan a long overland walk like this and want to take some kind of shelter as back-up. Apart from when walking in winter, I always have.
I think some people see the term ‘camping’ here and feel obliged to read the rule book. But from what you are saying it’s more of the stealth camping variety - pitch at dusk, leave at dawn, leave no trace - which I feel is always a good one to have in your locker, even if you rarely resort to it.
Until COVID struck the Norte was getting progressively more over-crowded and September is the busiest month. So having a little Plan B makes sense and is good for peace-of-mind if nothing else - but not 3.5kg of peace-of-mind!

FWIW I don’t think the Norte is a great camino for camping - much of it runs too close to all the tourist spots on the coast. The campsites tend to be like suburban neighbourhoods, laying on every mod con for families and can actually be more expensive than pilgrim albergues. At Deva, just before Gijon, the albergue is on the campsite and I chose the albergue. But I did enjoy sleeping in the garden of the albergue at Miraz.
In terms of getting in shape - you can do all the upper body work you like, but all that weight will still have to go through your much smaller feet and ankles. That’s where you are more likely to get sore and injuries. So some conditioning work in the hills with a pack will be useful, and help you to understand - and even extend - your capabilities. Try out poles if you haven’t already.

So I’d say..
- definitely, if this is part of a bigger trip, separate out all the non-camino stuff you have and post it to Ivar for you to pick up when you reach Santiago.
- aim to stay in pilgrim accommodation as often as it is available
- ditch the tent and consider a lighter more emergency type shelter and bring your yoga mat (or get one in Spain). 1kg total weight or 1.5kg if you must have an inner net. NB easier to go under these weights if you use walking poles as tent poles.
Cheers, tom
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Hi @gayeh - a wonderful book about walking and camping on the Norte was written by Jean-Christophe Rufin and is called The Santiago Pilgrimage. He was a founding member of Medicins Sans Frontieres and a former French ambassador to Senegal. He mostly camped but did have the occasional night in albergues and small hotels.
It’s a very frank, open and honest read and the reader feels they are right there beside him. The book makes one want to be right there beside him! If only there was an emoticon for sighs of longing - for the Norte - not J-CR - though he would definitely be fascinating company! 😉 I’d recommend it to anyone who is thinking of walking the Norte.
Buen Norte Camino!
Cheers from Oz -
Jenny
That sounds like a perfect recommendation. There are SO many books and I have not read any yet. I will order today. Thanks very much Jenny!
 

good_old_shoes

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés ('15, '19)
Via Coloniensis ('16)
Trier-Nancy + Le Puy-Fisterra ('17)
Aragonés ('18)
Hi gayeh!

9 kilos including camping gear is not that bad. Unless you have medical problems that do not allow carrying that much, it should be doable.

Sure, if you stay in albergues or hotels only, you could walk with much less weight. But if you carry camping gear (unless you‘re going ultralight and/or ultra expensive!), it‘s not unusual to have a pack in that range of weight. There are probably a few things you can leave at home or find a cheap, lighter version, though.

The 10% rule is for people sleeping indoors only or ultralight enthusiasts, in my opinion...

As a reference, when I intend to sleep outdoors (on Camino and elsewhere), I use a 70 ltrs backpack, tent 1,5-2kg, down sleeping bag 1-1,5kg, sleeping mat about 400 gr. All about maybe 8-12 (?) kgs of backpack depending on route and time of year. I had the same pack on the Le Puy way. Back then, I weighed about 55kgs myself. Got no blisters or other health issues and walking was not miserable. Sleeping in the tent wasn‘t either, I was toasty warm in the sleeping bag, even at almost freezing temperatures, heavy rain and wind. That was also done on a tight budget.

Most people on this forum do not camp and have no desire to do so, so the advice will usually be to leave the camping stuff at home.

On the Francés at least, it can definitely be a bit complicated finding legal camping spots, and you might not want to deal with the daily struggle. It is easier to find a bed than legal campground. No idea about the Norte. On the Le Puy it is easy to camp. In general, France is more tent friendly, Spain is not.


But only you know what you really need and which amount of weight on your shoulders you can or want to carry.


Happy planning and buen Camino!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Hi gayeh!

9 kilos including camping gear is not that bad. Unless you have medical problems that do not allow carrying that much, it should be doable.

Sure, if you stay in albergues or hotels only, you could walk with much less weight. But if you carry camping gear (unless you‘re going ultralight and/or ultra expensive!), it‘s not unusual to have a pack in that range of weight. There are probably a few things you can leave at home or find a cheap, lighter version, though.

The 10% rule is for people sleeping indoors only or ultralight enthusiasts, in my opinion...

As a reference, when I intend to sleep outdoors (on Camino and elsewhere), I use a 70 ltrs backpack, tent 1,5-2kg, down sleeping bag 1-1,5kg, sleeping mat about 400 gr. All about maybe 8-12 (?) kgs of backpack depending on route and time of year. I had the same pack on the Le Puy way. Back then, I weighed about 55kgs myself. Got no blisters or other health issues and walking was not miserable. Sleeping in the tent wasn‘t either, I was toasty warm in the sleeping bag, even at almost freezing temperatures, heavy rain and wind. That was also done on a tight budget.

Most people on this forum do not camp and have no desire to do so, so the advice will usually be to leave the camping stuff at home.

On the Francés at least, it can definitely be a bit complicated finding legal camping spots, and you might not want to deal with the daily struggle. It is easier to find a bed than legal campground. No idea about the Norte. On the Le Puy it is easy to camp. In general, France is more tent friendly, Spain is not.


But only you know what you really need and which amount of weight on your shoulders you can or want to carry.


Happy planning and buen Camino!
Fantastic advice. Yes, my stuff is weighing in in the same ballpark. I still have time to decide whether to send the tent back - it just arrived yesterday! This is excellent though. Helps me a lot. From what I've heard the Norte is more difficult re camping and generally the route is very challenging compared with others.
 

SinBosun

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF September 2016, Norte September 2018
Hi there. I walked the Norte a couple of years ago in September. I carried a tarp, groudsheet, bivvy bag, inflatable sleeping mat, sleeping bag, rocket stove and pan/mug as well as the usual. In the event we camped out twice, once wild and once on a site. We averaged over 30km per day but by the time we got to Ribadeo we'd had enough of the stuff and sent all the camping gear home - what a relief! Clearly I'd overdone it with a bivvy bag and tarps so that was a waste, as was the cooking gear. Our experience of rough camping was that, where it was feasible, others had done it before and there was digusting litter. Camping with the tarp on a paid site was ok. On balance though, it wasn't worth it.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2019
I am planning the del norte in September. I will take as much time as needed to enjoy all.
My issue: I have purchased all the equipment and I don't see how I can travel (prepared) with less than 9+ kilos of gear - with no cooking equipment. I weight approx 59 kilos. I am thinking the only solution is to train my upper body so that I can handle this backpack weight? Ideally I will stay in accommodations 1/3 of my time. Opinions, insights are most welcomed!
Hi Gayeh
I have done 4 Caminos and each time I took as long as I needed but I did not camp only sleeping in alberques . On my first one I carried 13k but when I got home I threw out anything I did not use. Since then I have only carried 8k and I think that is pretty stripped back. I could not imagine carrying camping gear on top of this. I know it will increase costs but maybe consider staying in the alberques as the better option.
Buen Camino
Vince
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
time to start walking around with it stuffed full of 9kgs of books etc ...
May I suggest filling two liter soda bottles with water instead. Reasons: You can easily estimate the weight you are adding and, if you get sore along your training hike, you can dump the water to lighten your load (or drink it or pour it over you).
 

Deputy Dan

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Logrono to Burgos in week of October (2017); SJPP - ?, three weeks in 2020!
quick note regarding "training": I trained with a full pack a few days per week for several weeks before my trip, but discovered that the ultimate chafing, and wear/tear on my body didn't show up until about the third consecutive day on my Camino journey. If you're not training on a daily basis you're not preparing for a daily Camino walk. As they say, "Train the way you play."
 

Trish K

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Nov/Dec (2017)
Camino Norte (2019)
Camino Primitivo (2019)
Camino Portuguese (2020)
I’ve literally just completed the Pennine Way in the UK and due to lack of accom options, had to wildcamp a lot of it. I’m around 54 kg and the lightest I could get my pack weight to was 13.5 - 14 kg. This included food and water (no cafes, shops, bars etc to rely on). I found it tough but got through it and it is an awful lot hillier than the CN. My biggest aid was to use my poles the whole time to take some of that weight pressure and use my tried and tested Osprey 35ltr pack that fits me like a glove. Had to add a couple of dry bags to top and bottom for the extra volume required. I did several practice walks with the weight before finally setting off. Have fun!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Norte, Jul 2021
I am planning the del norte in September. I will take as much time as needed to enjoy all.
My issue: I have purchased all the equipment and I don't see how I can travel (prepared) with less than 9+ kilos of gear - with no cooking equipment. I weight approx 59 kilos. I am thinking the only solution is to train my upper body so that I can handle this backpack weight? Ideally I will stay in accommodations 1/3 of my time. Opinions, insights are most welcomed!
I use very little upper body..pack should rest almost fully in hips, so work more in legs. Make sure your pack is fitted so straps are not on shoulders..they should be about an inch or less higher. I am about your size and train weekly with my pack which is about 13lb-15lb. Always seeking ounces to shred. I bought bar shampoo...less waste, less weight. Got rid of solar charger for lighter plug in type. I am using a tarp, buvvy sac from REI, Nemo air mattress, super light blanket I cut down to size and poncho. Trek pole will hold up tarp. I even cut the handle off toothbrush. Draconian yes, but even couple ounces adds up. I got rid of CamelBak and nalgene type bottle...a regular bottled water bottle weighs 6x less.
 
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martin1ws

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018; Munich to Lindau (Germany) Sep 2020
I walked on a German Camino in the summer of 2020. I took light-weight camping gear with me as a backup option in case I could not find a place to sleep because of corona.
In the end I did not need it. The camping gear added some weight... what felt as much weight compared to the first camino without camping gear in 2018. So in the last night I wanted to test it in spite of the fact that I could have slept elsewhere.
I stealth camped in the wood and everything was okay... but because of the weight-optimized gear it was very uncomfortable compared to an albergue. It was an interesting experience and I do not want to miss this experience... but I do not want to take camping gear with me again "just in case".
If I would need camping gear... I would think about biking what I would never think of without camping gear... because you are much less weight-sensitive with a bike and so you can take more comfortable camping gear with a bike.

So if someone thinks of camping on the camino and has not done this before my advice would be: Try this (walking with full-weight backpack and stealth camping with your gear) at home for two days and two nights.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I use very little upper body..pack should rest almost fully in hips, so work more in legs. Make sure your pack is fitted so straps are not on shoulders..they should be about an inch or less higher. I am about your size and train weekly with my pack which is about 13lb-15lb. Always seeking ounces to shred. I bought bar shampoo...less waste, less weight. Got rid of solar charger for lighter plug in type. I am using a tarp, buvvy sac from REI, Nemo air mattress, super light blanket I cut down to size and poncho. Trek pole will hold up tarp. I even cut the handle off toothbrush. Draconian yes, but even couple ounces adds up. I got rid of CamelBak and nalgene type bottle...a regular bottled water bottle weighs 6x less.
Great advice lisaflora! Thanks so much! I sent my tent back :( and have decided it's likely too ambitious for a first timer and I'm pretty extroverted so walking solo will be awesome but at the end of the day, I think communing will be welcomed. The advice re pack is awesome.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Hi there. I walked the Norte a couple of years ago in September. I carried a tarp, groudsheet, bivvy bag, inflatable sleeping mat, sleeping bag, rocket stove and pan/mug as well as the usual. In the event we camped out twice, once wild and once on a site. We averaged over 30km per day but by the time we got to Ribadeo we'd had enough of the stuff and sent all the camping gear home - what a relief! Clearly I'd overdone it with a bivvy bag and tarps so that was a waste, as was the cooking gear. Our experience of rough camping was that, where it was feasible, others had done it before and there was digusting litter. Camping with the tarp on a paid site was ok. On balance though, it wasn't worth it.
Yes SinBosun I have given up on the camping idea as a 'first timer'. I live in Ontario, Canada where camping is a fantastic option anytime. (From what I gather the del Norte is not really 'camping friendly'.) Also, although I look forward to solo walking, my innate extroversion will likely surface at the end of the day. Therefore, albergues, donativos etc. will suffice and communal cooking is very attractive to me. Thanks again for helping me to look at this more realistically this time around.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I’ve literally just completed the Pennine Way in the UK and due to lack of accom options, had to wildcamp a lot of it. I’m around 54 kg and the lightest I could get my pack weight to was 13.5 - 14 kg. This included food and water (no cafes, shops, bars etc to rely on). I found it tough but got through it and it is an awful lot hillier than the CN. My biggest aid was to use my poles the whole time to take some of that weight pressure and use my tried and tested Osprey 35ltr pack that fits me like a glove. Had to add a couple of dry bags to top and bottom for the extra volume required. I did several practice walks with the weight before finally setting off. Have fun!
I'm heading to the UK mid June and hoping to do some training/walks in England. I'm hoping hostels, guest houses will reopen soon. What else might you recommend? I have poles and an Osprey 55L pack.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
That is a very good point. Cant comment on the Norte, but on the Frances people dont seem to live on the farm, you dont see houses in the fields. I think they must live in the village and go to the farm to work each day. I am used to a scenario here where the farmers live on the farm and are easy to find.
Just endless unbroken fields on the Camino.

On the Frances on 3 Caminos I have seen only two lots of people camping, both times they had dogs and chose camping to allow them to stay with their dogs. As @alexwalker says, you may miss out on meeting other people, which is often one of the things about the Camino that makes it different and special (the social aspect adds to the enjoyment whether you plan to or not) from other long walks around the world. In my opinion a pilgrimage is different from a long walk.
On my first Camino I didn't expect to meet other people and form friendships, it just happens, and some of my most memorable moments were with other people.

However you can ship your stuff to Santiago and walk with a lighter load if you change your mind. Walking every day with a heavy pack can take a toll on your body and knees.
Thank you again. I sent the tent back for now. I think the combo of del Norte not being camper-friendly, the social aspect of making food, sharing trekking and life stories etc. will be a perfect end to solo walking. Your input really helped me to let go of the camping idea - for now. I can always order it again! Gracias!
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Yes SinBosun I have given up on the camping idea as a 'first timer'. I live in Ontario, Canada where camping is a fantastic option anytime. (From what I gather the del Norte is not really 'camping friendly'.) Also, although I look forward to solo walking, my innate extroversion will likely surface at the end of the day. Therefore, albergues, donativos etc. will suffice and communal cooking is very attractive to me. Thanks again for helping me to look at this more realistically this time around.
I think that you have made a good decision. If you were a person that preferred to be alone all the time, then camping may have been a good option, but I think that staying in albergues will give you a good mix of alone and communal time.
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Year of past OR future Camino
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
The three big no-nos are :

-- camping on someone's land without their permission, works the same as far as camping on the outskirts of a village without their permission goes (Spanish pueblos may have a camping ground, sometimes they're even free)

-- lighting a fire (heating stuff up with a small camping stove can be OK)

-- littering

So as long as you set up where you're not bothering anyone, and don't stay more than one night, then it's more or less tolerated, particularly on a Camino.

I don’t know how well that 10% weight rule really works for women. Obviously lighter the better but there are plenty of women across the world regularly carrying small children on their backs all day who will weigh far more than 10% of their mother’s body weight.
It really is just a rule of thumb, not a "rule" as such, for people of "average" height or smaller.

So it's a good enough guideline for, say, a family with children, to work out roughly what each can carry.

But if you're 6'2" to 6'4", then 10% of your body weight is likely to be far too heavy for a Camino ; conversely, if you're a woman shorter than average but actually rather strong, 10% may be too conservative as an absolute limit.

And anyway, what feels comfortable in practice will always outstrip any sums worked out on the back of an envelope.

I usually end up carrying more weight than I'd like (but when I was younger I travelled very light) -- my own personal rule is, if I can't hold my pack up with a single outstretched arm, then it's too heavy and I have to ditch something prior to departure.

Oh, and don't bother too much with concerns about the extra weight of food and water, though if you're planning on carrying a water flask then do count that (full, not empty) -- generally, it's extra weight, not basic weight ; and a Camino is not wilderness hiking, but a civilised pilgrimage through indeed some wilderness, but even more countryside, villages, towns, some cities. You'll be buying food on an almost daily basis, even assuming that you never partook of an el cheapo menú del peregrino (which sounds unlikely), so that food weight can be quite minimal indeed.

---

Great post by alexwalker, though the need for the social aspect varies from one person to the next ; for some it will be a primary aspect of the Camino, some secondary, and for some others (like myself) just tertiary. I've never come across a Pilgrim for whom it was completely absent though ; after all, even we loners are social animals. But yes, in light of what alex and others have suggested, it may be a good idea to see how many albergues the gardens/back lawns of which you might be able to pitch your tent on. My understanding is that those that will let you also often grant a discount on the price, as you're basically paying only for use of the kitchen, shower, and bathroom ; whereas you're also freeing up a bed for somebody else.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Coming late to this, and it sounds like you've already made a decision about the tent, Gaye, and a wise one I think.

As others have said, it's not really possible to duplicate camino conditions while training - so do what you can, and then trust. We humans are natural distance-walkers; we moved around this way for thousands of years. So you may be surprised how natural it comes to feel. Maybe not at first because we're out of touch with the activity, but after a little while it becomes easy.

One thing you do not mention is rain protection. It rains on the Norte! Rain gear need not be heavy. On a whim before my 2nd camino I ditched gore-tex jacket and leggings for an Altus poncho that goes over the pack - which I bought in St Jean. I could not be happier with that decision: it saves a lot of weight, and is easier to boot. Altus is Spanish company but you could likely get one in the UK. Here's a blogpost someone wrote about ponchos in general - one thing I would say about the Altus is that the long sleeves are a real plus. I see the decathlon brand has a similar design.

If you search here on the Forum you'll find lots of (opinionated 🙃) posts, giving both pros and cons.
 
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Richard Smith

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2016
Kumano Kodo 2014
Late comment, but when I planned our camino and tried/failed to get to 10% of a fairly large body weight, I was working with a multi-day pack walk in Australian alpine or NZ mindset, and included all sorts fo heavy stuff that was not needed and was discarded.
If I could now give myself advice for my first camino :-
1) Don't think of it as a 30 or 40 day walk
2) Think of it as an 2 day/overnight walk where you sleep in a friend's unused holiday house (i.e. take toothbrush/sleeping bag/torch/change of sox and undies/some rain gear/maybe pillow case) and where you eat at the local cafe for breakfast/lunch/dinner
3) Add one extra change of clothes to the above and maybe a fleece or wind stop layer.
4) Add some extra tape for blisters on the feet
Thats it! Anything else needed can be purchased at the many places on the way, this is not a wilderness walk.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Coming late to this, and it sounds like you've already made a decision about the tent, Gaye, and a wise one I think.

As others have said, it's not really possible to duplicate camino conditions while training - so do what you can, and then trust. We humans are natural distance-walkers; we moved around this way for thousands of years. So you may be surprised how natural it comes to feel. Maybe not at first because we're out of touch with the activity, but after a little while it becomes easy.

One thing you do not mention is rain protection. It rains on the Norte! Rain gear need not be heavy. On a whim before my 2nd camino I ditched gore-tex jacket and leggings for an Altus poncho that goes over the pack - which I bought in St Jean. I could not be happier with that decision: it saves a lot of weight, and is easier to boot. Altus is Spanish company but you could likely get one in the UK. Here's a blogpost someone wrote about ponchos in general - one thing I would say about the Altus is that the long sleeves are a real plus. I see the decathlon brand has a similar design.

If you search here on the Forum you'll find lots of (opinionated 🙃) posts, giving both pros and cons.
Yes, I am aware of the rain to be expected on the Norte. Currently I have a light waterproof hooded jacket and single layer rain pants. I bought rain cover for my Osprey backpack. Considered the poncho but the went this route ... for now. I wasn't keen on all the fabric (bulk) around me.
I will walk in my Merrell (closed toe) sandals as my feet get very hot and also Merrell Goretex hiking shoes - should be good for the rain.
Being from Canada and surviving lifetime of vicious winters, rain can come and go as long as it's above zero! I actually spent last winter on Fair Isle, in the Shetlands - no colder than about 8 degrees but lots of rain and winds up to 80k/hour! I loved it! I will definitely keep poncho in mind if need be. I also learned to walk 10k/day there and it changed my life. I can do 20k quite easily now but would like to work up to 25 or so. I will be taking lots of time with NO hurry - I have a one way ticket to UK in 32 days now. Thanks for your insights.
 

koknesis

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances June/July 2014
Camino Aragones August 2015
Camino Sanabres (Ourense-SdC) August 2015
VdlP 2017
One more thing to consider - what is the advantage of waterproof hiking shoes in summer? In real rain the feet will get wet anyway, and it is much harder to dry them than quick drying upper mesh shoes. My recipe for muddy path on a rainy day is just walk and do not pay attention how much mud and water the shoes soak in. Good socks are essential for escaping blisters. At the campsite give a good rinse to shoes/socks in a creek/river/lake and let them dry overnight. In winter its is different story, but then one would wear high boots, gaiters etc
Another controversial approach to rain protection is a trekking umbrella ☔️. The major advantages are quick deployment, great ventilation, sun protection as well. Some are saying it is indispensable when one needs some privacy, but there is nowhere to hide ... Anyway, I found it pretty handy on CF and some tracks in Pyrenees, but it adds some weight of course.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
One more thing to consider - what is the advantage of waterproof hiking shoes in summer? In real rain the feet will get wet anyway, and it is much harder to dry them than quick drying upper mesh shoes. My recipe for muddy path on a rainy day is just walk and do not pay attention how much mud and water the shoes soak in. Good socks are essential for escaping blisters. At the campsite give a good rinse to shoes/socks in a creek/river/lake and let them dry overnight. In winter its is different story, but then one would wear high boots, gaiters etc
Another controversial approach to rain protection is a trekking umbrella ☔️. The major advantages are quick deployment, great ventilation, sun protection as well. Some are saying it is indispensable when one needs some privacy, but there is nowhere to hide ... Anyway, I found it pretty handy on CF and some tracks in Pyrenees, but it adds some weight of course.
Planning to walk September, October, November (?) and additionally have mesh-style Merrell closed-toe sandals. I don't mind if my feet become wet either :) And yes, I will take good socks x 3. Will skip camping initially and be able to rinse and/or wash at albergues/donativos hopefully. PS: I wore my Goretex Merrells in Shetland last winter and my feel were never wet (?) Maybe I wasn't walking more than two hours (?) I do like idea of trekking umbrella but weight is unfortunately an issue :( .. Do you know weight?Also, how can one use trekking poles with trekking umbrella?
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018
I'm heading to the UK mid June and hoping to do some training/walks in England. I'm hoping hostels, guest houses will reopen soon. What else might you recommend? I have poles and an Osprey 55L pack.
How fixed is your June date? Members of the UK Government's own SAGE Committee (Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies) as well as the Independent SAGE Group have, over the weekend, been urging a more cautious approach to easing of restrictions due to an expected new wave caused by the so-called India variant and are urging the government to push for more people to get vaccinated before the "Big Bang" lifting of restrictions predicted for 21st June or it might need to be put back (again).
 
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koknesis

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances June/July 2014
Camino Aragones August 2015
Camino Sanabres (Ourense-SdC) August 2015
VdlP 2017
Planning to walk September, October, November (?) and additionally have mesh-style Merrell closed-toe sandals. I don't mind if my feet become wet either :) And yes, I will take good socks x 3. Will skip camping initially and be able to rinse and/or wash at albergues/donativos hopefully. PS: I wore my Goretex Merrells in Shetland last winter and my feel were never wet (?) Maybe I wasn't walking more than two hours (?) I do like idea of trekking umbrella but weight is unfortunately an issue :( .. Do you know weight?Also, how can one use trekking poles with trekking umbrella?
You may check these. https://euroschirm.com/trekking.php?session=xUYWQS3k2HupP&sprache_land=englisch
I have that handsfree/silver one. I would say it works handsfree/2 poles on more or less flat path, but I feel somehow cumbersome this way. In mountains umbrella in one, a pole in another hand works better for me.
More on the matter: https://francistapon.com/Travels/Advice/10-Reasons-to-Go-Hiking-and-Backpacking-with-an-Umbrella
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Planning to walk September, October, November (?) and additionally have mesh-style Merrell closed-toe sandals. I don't mind if my feet become wet either :) And yes, I will take good socks x 3. Will skip camping initially and be able to rinse and/or wash at albergues/donativos hopefully. PS: I wore my Goretex Merrells in Shetland last winter and my feel were never wet (?) Maybe I wasn't walking more than two hours (?) I do like idea of trekking umbrella but weight is unfortunately an issue :( .. Do you know weight?Also, how can one use trekking poles with trekking umbrella?

You may check these. https://euroschirm.com/trekking.php?session=xUYWQS3k2HupP&sprache_land=englisch
I have that handsfree/silver one. I would say it works handsfree/2 poles on more or less flat path, but I feel somehow cumbersome this way. In mountains umbrella in one, a pole in another hand works better for me.
More on the matter: https://francistapon.com/Travels/Advice/10-Reasons-to-Go-Hiking-and-Backpacking-with-an-Umbrella
I would just take the sandals and waterproof socks if you are worried about wet feet. I wouldn't want to take two fairly heavy/bulky pairs of footwear. How about sandals and trail runners?

I used and loved my Euroschirm handsfree umbrella on the Camino Francés - especially for long relatively flat stretches like the Meseta, but didn't find an umbrella as useful for the Norte. When I did the Norte I brought a lighter weight Euroschirm trekking umbrella (not handsfree) for which I rigged up a way to attach to my backpack. It never felt particularly stable, and wasn't as useful for the Norte. I think that the key to the handsfree model is the extra long handle that attaches to the waist belt of the backpack. However I'm still trying to find the perfect way to attach a lightweight umbrella to my backpack. 😄 Especially since I dislike wearing a hat.
 

Frank Wortley

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
French Caminos - April/May 2013, March/April 2017 and (Sept/Oct 2018)
I've actually got everything in it already, excluding toiletries and few other items.
I walked Thursday for 1 1/2 hours; without pack I can go 4 hours and 20k no problem. Was tired but decided I need to train (add weights) if it's going to be this heavy.
For past year, I've been doing yoga, 3 times/week and strength training (x 2) but NOT specific upper body weights. I think this needs to be next stage of preparation for September. As long as my knees, feet and ankles can handle it :) Thanks again for all your input!
Hi gayeh
You might consider the basic priciple that we are good for what we train for. If you want to walk the Camino with a 9kg pack then just train or it and all being equal, all should be well.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
@gayeh we walked the Norte with a tent in 2015, and here is the thread, which details our experiences, if you are interested. I was carrying more than 9kg that time, instead of my usual 7kg or less. At the end of the walk we both said that if we were to walk it again, we would not bother taking the tent.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
How fixed is your June date? Members of the UK Government's own SAGE Committee (Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies) as well as the Independent SAGE Group have, over the weekend, been urging a more cautious approach to easing of restrictions due to an expected new wave caused by the so-called India variant and are urging the government to push for more people to get vaccinated before the "Big Bang" lifting of restrictions predicted for 21st June or it might need to be put back (again).
Yes tomorrow will be an important update. I shall go to the UK, quarantine in London and hopefully head off to see friends & relatives in south England from Brighton to Bournemouth. Will consider some long walks as preparation for fall camino(s?).
What will happen? Only time will tell.
I may have to head to Portugal first and then into Spain. Will monitor the situation as it unfolds.
I am arriving vaccinated with my EU Irish Passport. I said to some friends this evening "I will believe I'm going when the plane is taking off".
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Yes. this sounds like a great approach. I have a while to get ready - 2.5 months in UK and perhaps Europe. I walked 6 hours yesterday and today combined and I've got a pretty sore calf tonight ... with only a fanny pack! I was only able to walk 1.5 hours last week with 9 kilos...slow but sure I'm hoping. Thanks!
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I was only able to walk 1.5 hours last week with 9 kilos...slow but sure I'm hoping
Hopefully you will be able to get your pack weight down quite a bit now that you aren't taking the camping gear.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
@gayeh we walked the Norte with a tent in 2015, and here is the thread, which details our experiences, if you are interested. I was carrying more than 9kg that time, instead of my usual 7kg or less. At the end of the walk we both said that if we were to walk it again, we would not bother taking the tent.
Hopefully you will be able to get your pack weight down quite a bit now that you aren't taking the camping gear.
Amazing thread! Thanks so much...
Hope springs eternal re pack .... if I am able to practice in England on long walks/hikes, I might lighten up and leave things behind. Currently, everything I have seems important.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
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trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Someone here suggested that I post my packing list and ask for feedback re 'slimming down'.
I have to look up the weights etc. and do so.
Will get to it. Thx.
I use a kitchen scale to weigh my gear.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Will consider some long walks as preparation for fall camino(s?).
Here's the amazing motherlode of info that came up when I was thinking (before covid) that I would be walking in the UK:

Happy planning and happy walking, @gayeh!
You'll be fine - plenty of folks don't train at all and make it in the end, but you'll be much more comfortable having done what you're doing.
 
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Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018
Yes tomorrow will be an important update. I shall go to the UK, quarantine in London and hopefully head off to see friends & relatives in south England from Brighton to Bournemouth. Will consider some long walks as preparation for fall camino(s?).
What will happen? Only time will tell.
I may have to head to Portugal first and then into Spain. Will monitor the situation as it unfolds.
I am arriving vaccinated with my EU Irish Passport. I said to some friends this evening "I will believe I'm going when the plane is taking off".
🤞
 

Friend from Barquinha

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
None yet; perhaps the Portugese (2021?)
Our experience of rough camping was that, where it was feasible, others had done it before and there was digusting litter. Camping with the tarp on a paid site was ok. On balance though, it wasn't worth it.
This sounds like very realistic advice. (Speaking as another Canadian) the paid sites are way more "civilized" than we're used to, and not places to duck in and out of with 8 hours' sleep and nothing else. More like little settlements with cafes, etc. The rough-camping sites could be pretty rough. Remember, no outhouses!
 

alipilgrim

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Listed in my signature
I would just take the sandals and waterproof socks if you are worried about wet feet. I wouldn't want to take two fairly heavy/bulky pairs of footwear. How about sandals and trail runners?

I used and loved my Euroschirm handsfree umbrella on the Camino Francés - especially for long relatively flat stretches like the Meseta, but didn't find an umbrella as useful for the Norte. When I did the Norte I brought a lighter weight Euroschirm trekking umbrella (not handsfree) for which I rigged up a way to attach to my backpack. It never felt particularly stable, and wasn't as useful for the Norte. I think that the key to the handsfree model is the extra long handle that attaches to the waist belt of the backpack. However I'm still trying to find the perfect way to attach a lightweight umbrella to my backpack. 😄 Especially since I dislike wearing a hat.
Gossamer Gear sells an umbrella attachment kit that seems to work very well.
 

RENSHAW

Official Camino Vino taster
Year of past OR future Camino
2003 CF Roncesvalles to Santiago
2/4 weeks on the CF frequently.
Hospitalero San Anton June 2016.
One of our members once said a few years back.
'Pack all your kit on your bed before you leave. Then cut the weight in half and allow for twice the amount of money you intended to'

You can always camp in Albergue grounds which is a lot safer. I take a 'Cheap as Chips' tent and discard it in a obvious place once I have camped out for a few days. As a forum member I am not able to encourage anything illegal although I have bent a rule or two myself - Whatever you do , do not light a campfire in the wild , Spain had experienced some awful fires in the past years . One in particular caused a lot of damage not far from Viana on the CF.
 

poogeyejr

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Norte, May 2011
Norte, Sept 2013
Frances, 1wk, Jan 2017
travel (prepared)
What do you have in the Prepared category???
How big is your soap or shampoo? Are you taking something different to wash clothes with? Do you have makeup? Larger Hairbrush? Everything can be re-evaluated.

You are walking from town to city to town- anything can be purchased at anytime.

My pack was 15kg at the beginning as I walked the Norte the first time. So it can be done. But I shipped stuff home and ahead to Santiago.

But I will never go that heavy again.
 
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poogeyejr

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Norte, May 2011
Norte, Sept 2013
Frances, 1wk, Jan 2017
I know, I know insane but fear led the packing and I learnt my lesson the hard way!!!!
 

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