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Pilgrimage under one hat - on the way with Sandra

Bavarian Swabian Way of St. James  

Modern pilgrimage preparations for the Camino Frances


Thoughts on the beginning

Originally, pilgrimage was a religiously motivated undertaking, with the monk in particular getting along with very Spartan aids, food and accommodation on his journey. A company characterized by renunciation and practically free. 


Only blisters on the feet are free in the 21st century. But joking aside, for me, a pilgrimage means to direct the focus on my mind, to widen it, to go through the world with open eyes, to meet others and to explore my limits. For me, it also means decent accommodation for the night, a good dinner and making profitable use of modern achievements. Even if this attitude means that I have to invest a few more euros, especially for my equipment.

Where do I begin? And with what?

I had dealt with it for a long time  and  gave me a lot of thought about which equipment I wanted to take with me on the popular and often described  Camino Frances that I would go in early summer this year. Most of my equipment was still in my spiritual mist valley. Was a hat with a wide brim better for me or a multifunctional scarf that also had hair  hold back and could be used as a scarf, sweatband or towel?

Which was the right backpack in the end? Especially this question drove me, because in mine  In my early past as a backpacker, I had often experienced how badly a badly fitting backpack could trigger all kinds of pain from head to tailbone, from shoulder to hip. In order to  it had a decisive influence on the mood and stamina of its wearer.

So, in short, it should sit comfortably, have a decent carrying system and be light. I would love to have another model designed for the female anatomy  and the device for a compatible hydration system should also be made by the manufacturer  to offer. Was there such a thing as "all-in-one" at all? Sure, I had already spotted a few candidates, but then the lightweight was always a problem.

And then the sleeping bag! I'm such a frostbite. There's nothing worse than chattering your teeth somewhere at night instead of sleeping! But for the most part in the summer in Spain it was certainly hot and humid at night and I would only be annoyed by the grinding of teeth of my sleeping fellow pilgrims. From an objective point of view, wouldn't a handkerchief-sized wrapped silk handkerchief with a press stud suffice for me? That would save a good kilogram or two in weight.

So I finally let my imaginary decision dice roll and ordered the things on the Internet that I had identified as suitable for me.

Came by DHL  then gradually the Deuter Aircontact Lite 35 + 10 liters,  a compromise sleeping bag, a fishing hat with a ventilation window and  wide brim but miserable pack size (my designated pilgrim hat), a couple of top-rated hiking sticks, expensive functional underwear, the ultimate popular camino shell socks and ... and ... and, at home.

You can find more information about my equipment HERE.

I planned which daily sections I wanted to cope with, looked at the elevation profiles of the stages and  thought about where it would make sense for me to stay the night. On the Internet  I spent hours doing it  to get a lot of advice and to look forward to the start of the trip with growing enthusiasm. I was prepared. In all respects. I thought. Well, maybe not conditionally. But the will would make up for that.

An imponderable called Covid-19 thwarts plans

But then Corona found us and, like many others, thwarted my pilgrimage calculations. As time went on and Covid-19 incidence levels rose, it became increasingly clear that 2020 would not be the year of my Camino Frances.

At first, this realization made me pretty pissed off and frustrated, because I had been with this venture for years  flirted. I had already targeted it several times and moved it again. And now where  everything in my living environment finally switched to 'go'  and my decision to start running has been made irrevocably, a pandemic is coming  in the way?


What now? An alternative must be  here

After a while of thinking and weighing, I realized that I still wanted to go on a pilgrimage in 2020 in order to learn new things and then let the cone of my flashlight shine brighter on the part of the way I had covered.

Well, it would turn out differently than planned, but still be a valuable experience.


"The experience is like a lantern in the back, it only illuminates the part of the way that we have already behind us."


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