One long walk that played into my Appalachian Trail preparation was hiking the Camino de Santiago or the “Camino.” While I wore a backpack and hiked about 500 miles over 30 days, the experience is easier than thirty days on the AT. That said, I wanted to see if I would enjoy waking up each day and ding the same thing – placing a pack on my back and walking or hiking all day. I knew that if I didn’t enjoy those thirty days, my ability to persevere for four or five months of the AT was negligible.
The Camino actually is a series of walking paths that eventually bring the hiker to the Cathedral de Compostela in the city of Santiago – located in the northwest corner of Spain. These trails retrace medieval walking routes used by Christians on pilgrimage to the resting place of the apostle James – hence, the Camino de Santiago means the “Way of St. James.” In April 2014 I walked the most popular route, which is technically the Camino Frances or the “French Way” because it leads to Santiago from France.
My experience on the Camino was fantastic. It resulted in a book as well as a blog and a brief guidebook (e-book).
Bruce’s Camino Book:
The Road to Find Out: A Modern Pilgrim and the Camino de Santiago.
- The Way of St. James
- Climbing Over the Pyrenees
- Finding a Routine & Finding New Friends
- Walking, Wine & Golf
- A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim
- The Meseta
- Finishing the Meseta
- Completing the Camino
RTK’s Brief Guide to the Camino de Santiago