First tour coming up. Need experienced advice.
I'll be cycling from Santander to Santiago De Compostela in Spain in May.
It's less than 600km
I'm looking for advice from anyone who's done part or all of this camino
route or any suggestion at all from anyone that could help. I'll be travelling
with a friend and this will be our first trip. I commute 40 to 60k to work
3-4 times a week so I think I'll manage 70-75k a day no problem over a few hours.
We will be staying in Alburgues so won't need camping gear and don't intend
cooking on the road. It's only 9 days. Will be bringing sleeping bags and the
bare minimum of stuff as we're flying into Spain. Thinking of using a backpack
strapped to pannier rack. Won't be checking luggage onto plane so will be limited
to 10kg. Plus whatever I can attach to bike in the bike box. What do people
recommend bringing as essential for this type of trip? Is it possible to bring
a pressurized canister inserted into the seat post for inflating tires on arrival.
I have a small travel pump which would take forever to pump to a decent pressure.
I have an alien II multitool, was planning on just using that for repairs,
fixing bike for flight etc. Anything else I need to consider? Is anyone familiar with
flying into Santander airport. Is there a bike shop nearby?
All suggestions greatly received. Thanks. Ronan.
P.s. I spent 2 days reading tips thread and will use several. Couple of my own...
1 If you get a bad puncture and your tire needs replacing, if you can't get
to new one easily, cover the hole on the inside of the tire with a piece of plastic cut
from a coke bottle. It'll get you down the road.
2 Save yourself the weight of a whistle, learn to use your fingers!
I don't know about Santander specifically, but I have found cities in Spain all have excellent bike shops.
To inflate, bring a small pump then go to a service station to top up.
Refugios tend to fill up, so be prepared for that. You should make sure you have your Credencial (spelling? anyway, the 'passport' for the Camino) otherwise some places may not let you stay. That being said, there are LOTS of hostals and hotels along the route. I was initially going to cycle the actual Camino but with my regular touring bike and in the rain it was impossible for me. I have since hiked it and think that with an ATB maybe it could be done, though not everywhere. Probably best to run parallel in those cases.
Thanks for that link. Looks like i've a lot of reading ahead! I should have mentioned that my partner is on a hybrid so the majority if not all our journey will be on the road. We chose the Northern route as we thought it being coastal it would be less mountainous.And the opportunity to swim in the sea at the end of a day was a major bonus. Apparently It's a lot hillier along the coast though! Ah well.
Credencials are on the list of things to get.
Santander airport is really hard to ride to/from, it is in an industrial zone with horrible roads. There is an airport bus into the city centre with plenty of space for bikes inside.
The city is fine for riding around.
I exited the city due south to Torrelavega on S20 and , where possible the adjacent old roads but its not a nice route. The route along the coast through Liencres is much better.
The coastal route is really good but very hilly in places. I turned South for the Picos de Europas which was spectacular.
N Spain is cycling country so you are sure to find decent bike shops in the cities and mainstream spares (tubes/tyres/cables) in smaller towns.
You cant take CO2 canisters on a plane so stick to a decent pump.
Make sure you try caldo Gallega. It is an excellent Galician soup.
Thanks for your replies guys, we're heading along the coast to santillana de mar. Liencres is out of our way though i think, looking at the map. Will keep an eye out for the soup.