Not wanting to spoil this adventure I did very little in the way of preparation for the Camino, kinda like the way I approached high school. I didn’t read any of the guide books. Maybe that’s why we walked right by a “must see” monastery today.
Peggi read a few books and I followed her lead. Of course we did a lot of physical prep work, walking to Charlotte and building up to our walk around Irondequoit Bay. But I didn’t realize until we got here that about ninety five percent of the Camino is on dirt, stone and gravel paths over mountains, through woods and pastures and gorgeous little towns. At least this first week has been that way.
We did 23.4 miles today, most of it in the rain. We were pretty well prepared for that with the gear Olga picked out for us at REI. The base layer, fleece and outer shell pieces all performed perfectly. The pants, some sort of miracle fabric that wicks water and drys quickly, work but it was raining hard enough to roll down the backs of my legs and into my shoes. I guess that is where gators come in but we don’t have any.
Osprey makes great backpacks but their design depatrtmnt has overreached. You see a lot of them on the Camino and each year’s model has a bigger logo. We turned our rain covers inside out so as not to look so much like a billboard and we were surprised to see others who have done the same.
But considering how old this pilgrim route is, so many centuries old, it is striking how uncommercial and unspoiled the Camino is.