It has been a month since I returned home from my Camino and I have reluctantly returned to the swing of things. I was very grateful to have the chance to go and I met so many good people. I felt on a high when I returned. I felt free and even though it was a week, it felt like it was much more. The only decisions I needed to make were when I needed to wake up and where I needed to stop. It felt good to be back in Spain again after so long even with the restrictions. As I mentioned in my previous post, I couldn’t help put plans together for 2022 while I was on the bus to Madrid. The truth is I am constantly thinking of future Caminos – even when walking one. So I suppose the purpose of this post is to tell you of my future Camino plans.
Scottish poet Robert Burns once talked about best-laid plans going astray. Ah some of my early Caminos used to be like that. Today, there are some pilgrims who like to buy their flight. and forget about the trip until the following year. That is totally fine. For me, part of the fun of being a pilgrim is the planning – the packing and repacking, the purchase of a new item of kit and the review on this blog. For example, I need new hiking shoes and I need to check my backpack if it can last another Camino. I have been unable to locate my preferred shoe – Salomon X Ultra GTX 3. However, I have settled on the Meindl Rapide GTX shoe which provides my toes with protection and is wide enough. I have been wearing shoes for 8 years now. The last time I wore mids was in 2012 – Merrell Moab. I had a bad experience with them, let’s just say. My future Camino plans include my brother who will join me next year when we walk from Porto along the Portoguese Coastal Route. It is an enjoyable route, not challenging and one we have both walked from A Guarda in 2018. So until next May, there will be lots of walking, lots of talking about the Camino and lots of discussion about kit. Anything to distract myself from what I do on a daily basis.
So what about beyond? I keep asking myself that. Before my recent Camino, I promised myself I would return to St Jean and walk over the Pyrenees again. My opinion of the Camino Francés has changed. Next year is also a holy year and with restrictions subsiding, pilgrims from the US, Australia, Canada and South Africa will return to walk this great way. And I welcome them back. However, it is time that I look at other paths. Looking at the Camino del Norte, I have doubts about my ability to walk even part of that route. So I am ruling that out for the moment. The Camino Sanabrés popped into my head this weekend. I bought the below guide today to read and get an understanding of its stages – from Ourense to Santiago. This route is 108 km long and if it is too short, one can walk from Zamora, which is on the Via de la Plata.
Gronze.com goes into the terrain of this route and you can straight off see that the first stage and the final stage are tough going . Regardless, from the photos I have seen (below), it looks like the Camino Francés from Sarria but with more climbs and descents. I am looking forward to the next few years.
Let me know of any future Camino plans for the next few years! I would love to know below.