Welcome to the Camino de Santiago forum. This community is here to help you with questions on walking any of the Camino routes. Hopefully you too will stay and help others after you have been on your Camino.

If you register and login you are shown no Google adverts. Please note we also use cookies on this forum – not for anything evil but to allow you to login and use the forum software. We do not collect personal data and never pass your details on to anyone. Come and joins us on your pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela.

News: November-01- 2016 To April -01 - 2017

Discussion in 'The Weather' started by Josh unçu, Dec 19, 2016.

  1. Josh unçu

    Josh unçu Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2016
    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    36
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Bilbo
    The Government of Navarra restricts, between November and March, the Pyrenean pass by the Lepoeder Col in favor of the route through the Valley of Valcarlos.
    The first stage of the French way of the Camino de Santiago, entering by Navarre, has two variants: The one west is O.K. , but the one East that also begins in Saint Jean Pied de Port and passes through Huntto, Orisson and the port of Lepoeder to Roncesvalles.
    Therefore, the director-general of Interior, has issued resolution 487/2016, on 21 October, which lays down:
    "for reasons of security for persons, restrictions of passage through the Eastern variant of the Camino de Santiago in its first stage by Navarre, having as compulsory transit on dates ranging from November 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017, for the Western variant of the Camino de Santiago (Valcarlos)".
    Due to that resolution, is closed the East variant on those dates at the entrance in Navarra, at geographical coordinates 43 ° 3'2 point,. 02 "N 1 ° 16'6, 04 ' W, close to the Hill of Bentartea.
     
    UnkleHammy and Magwood like this.
  2. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés May 2016

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2016
    Messages:
    836
    Likes Received:
    1,125
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Upstate New York
    Regarding the safety of pilgrims going over the Pyrenees, this seems like a very prudent step taken by the government of Navarre. As anyone knows who has climbed the Col de Lepoeder, it's a long paggage in good weather, so I can only imagine how dangerous it might be in the winter. Better safe than sorry! The Valcarlos Route makes a lot of sense for anyone doing a winter pilgrimage leaving from SJPP.
     
    Josh unçu likes this.
  3. arbella

    arbella New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2017
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Hello, we're preparing for our first Camino starting the end of February. Given the closure of the eastern pass from St. Jean and general winter weather are we better off starting in Pamplona? It sounds like the west route is still open but perhaps it's prudent given the season start a bit further into the Camino? Thanks in advance for your feedback.
     
  4. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2014
    Messages:
    740
    Likes Received:
    609
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Cumbria UK
    Home Page:
    Hi Arbella and welcome to the forum.

    Difficult to answer your question to answer without knowing whether you have any previous trekking experience – If you are an experienced hill walker and have trekked in the winter then setting off from Saint Jean Pied de Port shouldn’t cause any issues and, until 2015, you would still have been able to choose your own route depending on what the weather was doing at the time.



    I know that mountain weather can be unpredictable, but personally think that putting the blanket ban http://www.ultreia64.fr/en/saint-jean-roncesvalles-route-napoleon-or-valcarlos/ On following The Route Nepean between November 1st and March 31st is somewhat Nanny State as it doesn’t take into account that many thousands of people trek a lot higher in the Pyrenees through the winter months, that the weather can still be Beautiful in mid winter and that although many Pilgrims only have limited hill walking experiences, many like myself have done treks to Everest Base Camp in mid winter, so crossing the Col de Lepoeder isn’t usually an issue.



    So – All I can say, is IF it were me, then I would still start at Saint Jean Pied de Port, but because of this “Resolution”, now go the Valcarlos Route

    Good Luck and Buen Camino

    Rob
     
  5. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés May 2016

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2016
    Messages:
    836
    Likes Received:
    1,125
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Upstate New York
    Hi Arbella - Living in the mountains here in eastern New York, I see novice and ill-prepared winter hikers getting in trouble in a regular basis. That the Napoleon Route is closed in the winter is done for a good reason; the safetly of pilgrims who want to take that route, but who shouldn't! Winter hiking in the snow requires a different set of skills that not everyone has.

    Not knowing anything about your hiking abilities or fitness level makes me err on the conservative side and recommend that your idea of starting in Pamplona may, in fact, be the best thing for you to do. In February, you're in the dead of winter in the Pyrenees and the weather can be unpredictable. Any other time of year, I'd tell you to start in SJPP and enjoy the magnificant views as experienced by way of the Napoleon Route. Valcarlos is your winter option, but think seriously, partly based upon what you think you can handle, of starting in Pamplona. Although you'll be cutting off 70 km, you still have so much of the Camino ahead of you. Buen Camino!
     
  6. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2014
    Messages:
    740
    Likes Received:
    609
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Cumbria UK
    Home Page:
    We seem to be disagreeing Again on this one Wily – Pilgrims have crossed the Pyrenees from Saint Jean Pied de Port (Either via the Route Napoleon or the Valcarlos Route) for hundreds of years – For sure, some of these have been ill equipped and some have even got into trouble – But to close the route for the Masses to protect the few, either ill equipped or inexperienced walkers that Might consider making a crossing definitely seems like Nanny State to me. Especially as, as far as I know, there is no such closure of The Col de Somport (1,632 m) on The Camino Aragones ??

    However I do agree that unless Arbella has some winter walking experience that starting the Camino Frances in Pamplona is a good idea – Or an even better one would be to pick a Camino that doesn’t go so high, or go later in the year.

    Best Regards

    Rob
     
  7. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés May 2016

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2016
    Messages:
    836
    Likes Received:
    1,125
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Upstate New York
    100% agreement here Rob. Starting in Pamplona, a different Camino, or a later start in the year would be good recommendations for Arbella to consider if her winter walking experience is limited.
     
    RJS likes this.
  8. Josh unçu

    Josh unçu Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2016
    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    36
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Bilbo
    Provably this will make me unpopular but personally I disagree with starting at SPDP : as is winter - snowy weather - official notice of risk - may some not expert mountaineers, etc, so I think that it is a useless risk to start at the French side only because it is a fad that all begin there.
    What is the difference of 70 kms. before or after from a total of 776 kms.
    Because the Codex Calixtinus?
    Because it is called French and it has to have some travel on French soil.
    Because is fashion The Way and not " yours or my way"?
    Why the Northern route begins at Irún and not in Bayonne or Saint-Jean-de-Luz?
    Why does not starts in Roncesvalles instead of St. Jean Pied-de-Port, as the Aragonese Way in the Port of Somport (Huesca).
    Arbella:
    Go for the safe side.
    Do not take unnecessary risks.
    It tells you a non-expert with the sincerity a humble pilgrim.
    Listen the sensible experts Wily and RJS.
    J.ç-
     
    Wily likes this.
  9. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés May 2016

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2016
    Messages:
    836
    Likes Received:
    1,125
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Upstate New York
    Hey Josh - No worries about being unpopular at all! The strength of any good Forum is that it is a place to express different points of view. How dull it would be if we all came from the same perspective. You bring up a number of excellent
    points expressed in a very appropriate manner. Some will agree with you; others won't! Hopefully, it all leads to us having a better understanding and perspective on a lot of important ideas and issues. I'm pleased to hear that so many new people to the Forum find the information discussed here very helpful. It doesn't get better than that. Buen Camino!
     
    Josh unçu likes this.
  10. Josh unçu

    Josh unçu Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2016
    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    36
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Bilbo
    Thanks Wily.
    For those interested and as the weather prediction center AEMET.
    For January-February - March 2017 there is a greater likehood that precipitation will be higher than normal in the eastern half of the Iberian peninsula.
    Link to beable to check daily and by provinces and municipalities, if it is any help.
    J.ç.
     
  11. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Donating Member Donating Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2015
    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    261
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Fresno, California
    Thanks for the link!
     
    Josh unçu likes this.
  12. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2014
    Messages:
    740
    Likes Received:
    609
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Cumbria UK
    Home Page:
    No Problem for me either Josh – The only point that I disagree with what you have posted is that no one has actually advised the OP to start at Saint John Pied de Port Unless she has previous experience of winter walking – So nothing really for you to disagree with ;-)



    As for where traditionally you should start a Camino – That’s Easy – Out of your own front door, alas, that isn’t possible for many !!


    Best Regards

    Rob
     
  13. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Donating Member Donating Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2015
    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    261
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Fresno, California
    As far as I am concerned, I started my walk when I decided to walk and (in many ways) am still on it. There are many things that I have reconsidered and changed my mind about since that day over a year ago when I made my decision. I blame the Camino for all of this.
     
    Josh unçu likes this.
  14. Josh unçu

    Josh unçu Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2016
    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    36
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Bilbo
    Nothing to disagree with, about Wily and RJS sensible recomendations.
    But, for those who can not start out of our own front door as that isn´t possible for at least 45%.
    My only question was: Why most, not all, run to SJPP?
    UnkleHammy I belive you and the others as I´m redesigning mine again .&again
    Take care all of you.
    J.ç.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2017
  15. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés May 2016

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2016
    Messages:
    836
    Likes Received:
    1,125
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Upstate New York
    Hey Josh - My best explanation for this phenomena is simply notoriety. As the Camino Francés is the best known route, it gets the most attention. And, as SJPP is the typical starting point, thus the explanation for the exodus there. In the States, the movie "The Way" put this particular Camino on the map to a much wider audience. Good, bad, or otherwise, popularity can be in part explained by familiarity. If it's the one people have heard of, it becomes the one they want to walk. I have to be honest and admit that this is how I came to the Camino. It's a realization that I'm very glad to gave had, but now, I have a taste for so much more. I'm very pleased to have walked the CF as my first Camino. It has lead me to want to walk other paths. Buen Camino!
     
    UnkleHammy and Josh unçu like this.
  16. arbella

    arbella New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2017
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Excellent feedback, thank you all! I'm a native born Californian and my experience with snow is on a post card. :) My husband is an experienced trekker through the Sierra mountains, but I'm a day hiker. This will be our first walk on the Camino and for a variety of reasons, we have to start by early March and must be home before Easter. Based on your feedback, the unpredictability of the weather and that it's our first time, i'd rather err on the conservative side. Thank you again so, so much for your input! I'm going to dig into the link as well.
     
    Wily likes this.
Loading...

Share This Page