The countdown has started! One month from today I will step out on my seventh camino. Or I should say, on the first of a trio of caminos.
Camino 1 – Ruta de la Lana (the wool route) (27 stages, approximately 680 km)) which starts in Alicante (there is an alternative start point in Valencia). This camino heads north (and slightly west) to Burgos, passing mid-way through Cuenca, which is a city I have long wanted to visit and was probably the reason why I chose this camino. Alicante is also the starting point for the Camino Sureste. Of course the end point, at Burgos, is on the Camino Frances (the most popular and most walked camino route) which I try to avoid due to my preference for solitary walks. So at this juncture I will hop on a bus to…
Camino 2 – Olvidado (forgotten way, 196 km). This camino starts in Bilbao and winds through various mountain ranges to Ponferrada (also on the Camino Frances). I will be joining the Olvidado just after the half way point at Cistierna where there will be ten stages to reach the end. Conveniently, this camino ends where another starts…
Camino 3 – Invierno (winter route, 265 km). Starting from Ponferrada it is the route that in ancient days was recommended in the months when there might be snow on high ground. The route dips below the Camino Frances and near its end joins with the Camino Sanabrés for the last couple of days into Santiago. Another ten or 11 stages.
If I complete these caminos according to my plan (and we all know what can happen to ‘best laid plans’!) I may have time to walk a fourth camino (Fisterra) and so have the satisfaction once again of walking from coast to coast.
The map I have used for this little animation is available as a poster from the Wise Pilgrim website.
Very sadly, my dearest camino pal Marilyn cannot join us this year, but I am delighted that Nina, who I first met on camino last year, and with whom I have visited in Denmark in the interim, will be making up 50% of Team Lana (or Lala, as we have christened it!).
I have been making the most of the fabulous Andalucian weather over the last couple of months and have taken many long walks in the mountains hereabouts, under blue skies and warm sunshine. Sometimes alone (without human company that is, I always have my chum Roly by my side) and sometimes with dear friends, but always with an appreciation that I am able to do it and a determination to make the most of my good health whilst I am lucky enough to have it.
Having made plans on paper, and going some way to getting walking-fit, I still need to round up my gear and check that I have all I need and that it is in good order. There won’t be many changes from last year. Perhaps a new fleece and shoes for the evenings. I’ve treated my rain jacket with a waterproofer, had my boots repaired, replaced the broken tip on my pacerpoles and sprayed my bedding with permethrin.
So, let the countdown begin – 31…
and I’ve just been told by the kind folks at Google that 7 April is World Health Day – an auspicious date to begin 50-ish consecutive days of exercise!