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Anyone Ever Hiked the Camino del Santiago?

Anyone Ever Hiked the Camino del Santiago?

Old Mar 23rd, 2012, 08:29 PM
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Anyone Ever Hiked the Camino del Santiago?

I know there are countless websites and information on this online, and we're all over them, but SO and I REALLY want to do this in the next few years. We're both 60 and in good shape and lean and active and I personally have wanted to do this all my life (the trail goes right by my house in France for one thing; oh, and I've hiked stretches of the Appalachian Trail that were more than 300 miles). But has anyone on Fodors actually DONE it? And can report back? I've read loads about it, probably all the literature that exists, but wondering if any Fodorites have actually done it. I would SO like to be able to look back and say I did this.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2012, 08:42 PM
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Here is the first half of the account of Mrs Adu and her sister who was 73 at time walked the 500 mile Camino.

http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...the-camino.cfm
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Old Mar 23rd, 2012, 08:45 PM
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There are a number of people on Fodor's who have walked the Camino. These were my wife's accounts even though they are under my name.

http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...es-part-ii.cfm
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Old Mar 24th, 2012, 05:29 AM
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Yes, off the top of my head I can tell you that Ireynold1, Lincasanova and Marigross, all of them frequent posters, have walked the Camino. This thread has some comments from them:

http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...e-santiago.cfm

I'm getting ready to do part of it in June.
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Old Mar 24th, 2012, 08:25 AM
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Thank you all. I'll read all of these this weekend!
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Old Mar 24th, 2012, 06:58 PM
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How did you enjoy the film, "The Way?" I decided that if an out-of-shape eye doctor from LA could do it without any training, then it would be a wonderful hike for all of us. My husband commented that, well, the son died on his first day, it's likely not as jolly as it appeared. Maybe I'll just look forward to reading your report!
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Old Mar 24th, 2012, 07:38 PM
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We loved that movie. And we've been absolutely loving Aduchamps' relatives (and others') reports, which are not only factually relevant but beautifully written an evocative.

We're on it - maybe for next year or the year after. We feel that, though we are already pretty fit, we need to train. We'll do that. We're psyched.
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Old Mar 24th, 2012, 07:59 PM
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One Fodorite has tried to get Mrs. Adu's narrative published because it is accompanied by equally wonderful watercolors, but unfortunately did not happen.
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Old Mar 24th, 2012, 08:34 PM
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Hmmm, let me think about that. As a publisher myself, I might have some ideas. It's a very evocative account. I assume you didn't print all of it on Fodors and that there is more?

Email me at [email protected] and we'll talk. I can't publish it myself but might have some ideas.
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Old Mar 25th, 2012, 06:45 AM
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I've found this website particularly helpful. You may have already run across it.

http://www.caminolinks.co.uk/4595.html
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 03:58 AM
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Hi StCirq! We did a portion of the camino, but we did it the lazy way: using a company to provide baggage transfers and accomodations along the route. I was highly skeptical as we had NEVER taken an organized trip but I was pleasantly surpised with Spanish Steps. The food they provided was top notch.

http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...rip-report.cfm
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 08:00 AM
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Thanks et and Marigross. I get more and more psyched the more I read about it. It's been a great motivator to get out and powerwalk every day, too - longer and longer distances and no matter what the weather is like. We probably won't do this for a year or two, but if we keep training we should be ready!

Ideally, we'd like to to the entirety of the trail, starting in Paris, but I'm not sure that's realistic. We'll see...it sure is fun to dream about and plan for, though!
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 08:27 AM
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StCirq: <i>it sure is fun to dream about and plan for, though!</i>

It certainly is!

I'm planning on doing it for my 80th birthday - if I live that long!

Right now, my preferred route is the one through Portugal.
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 09:58 AM
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Wow easytraveler!! You're an inspiration. I'm in my late 50's and fret that I won't be up to the task this summer.
St Cirq, its indeed a great motivation to have to engage in developing your walking endurance. I've had the dream of doing this for close to 10 yrs! My objective is not as ambitious, I'm starting in O'Cebreiro, Galicia to Santiago, approx 160 kms, that's plenty for me!
Good luck with your plans!
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 10:10 AM
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Come back and tell us how it goes, cruiseluv. I'm sure you'll do just fine. Good luck to you as well!
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 10:20 AM
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I'm including Santiago in my itinerary in September. I am active and good on trails. My plan is to arrive first into Lisbon to join tour group staying near Porto. I got a good deal on hotel with some day trips included. I will then continue to Santiago for overnight visiting historic Cathedral taking train or bus, continuing onward into France making 1 or 2 stops overnight.

I hope to walk on the Camino trail at least once if this is possible to enjoy experience, but am not sure which stop is better? I have a map and considered Leon or Burgos which would be a good distance to travel but am not sure if those areas would be close enough for me pick up Camino for a few hours each day? I then need to continue into France for flight out of Toulouse. Any help with my route much appreciated. I would also change this route if someone has better choices for me but I will be using public transportation.

Does anyone know if RENFE or ALSA offer senior discounts on their transportation? Thanks to all for guidance.
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 05:53 PM
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cruiseluv: For a young-un like yourself - no problems!

The trick is not to think of how many miles are left. You wake up each morning and think: "Wow! Nice day for a walk, a jaunt!" Don't think, "Omigod! I've still got 499 miles to go!"

Enjoy the route! Enjoy the companionships! Enjoy the pilgrimage!

Like StCirq has said, tell us all about it when you get back!

I did a wonderful trip for my 70th, so am now planning for my 80th. One is as young as one wants to be!
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Old Mar 27th, 2012, 06:38 PM
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<<The trick is not to think of how many miles are left. You wake up each morning and think: "Wow! Nice day for a walk, a jaunt!" Don't think, "Omigod! I've still got 499 miles to go!">>

Right. And if you wake up and it's freezing cold and sleeting, you can choose to rest that day, or just do 5 km. With certain caveats, like you need to get out of the Pyrénées by wintertime, you can set your own schedule.

I love the "Omigod, I've got 499 miles to go!" analogy. When I'm editing a huge book, it's hard not to think "Jeez!, I've got another 300 pages to go!" I've taught myself to think "Wow, only a day and I'm an eighth of the way through this monster."

It's a classic glass half-full or half-empty example. For me, glass always half-full.
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Old May 3rd, 2012, 08:41 AM
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According to recent statistics from the Pilgrim´s Office in Santiago, it looks like English speaking pilgrims are going to show a huge jump in numbers.

From January - April, 2012, the numbers of English speaking pilgrims show almost a doubling from the numbers for those same months in 2009.

Though it´s probably too early to make predictions, it looks like we are seeing The Way´s effect. For most info, check out the blog of a Scottish expat now living in Santiago and very involved with the pilgrim´s office: http://www.johnniewalker-santiago.blogspot.pt/ (I´m in Portugal now, which may explain the .pt extension. Maybe you don´t need that from other countries, I just don´t know).
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Old May 3rd, 2012, 09:16 AM
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Add me to the growing list of potential pilgrims. While watching "The Way", I became very consumed with the idea of doing the Camino. So, since January, I've been walking, 2.8 miles a day, walking up 5 long flights of stairs @ work every day, many times a day, and basically becoming quite obsessed with the whole idea. I've been reading everyting I can get my hands on about it. So, I'm glad to see this post. My goal is to do this 10/13. I'm in good shape for my age, 65 and I love to walk. So, once I have firmly comitted to it, I will begin training in earnest. I would like to hear from anyone who knows what the training should entail. I would not do the entire walk, maybe start at Sarria, or even before that possibly. I'm thinking maybe a week of walking. Not sure I would stay at the refuges though due to my complete phobia of bed bugs, lice, or other creepy crawlies.
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