Coming to Spain… The Sequel

Our week in the Cantal was a good opportunity to test my kit, and it has resulted in some changes to my pack.  I hope I’ve made the right choices as time is fast running out and come what may, these items are coming with me.

Feet

Finding the right footwear has been a frustrating process.  I don’t have access to the shoes that I’d like to try, so I can only go the mail order route.  Once purchased, it’s all but impossible to really know how they feel on a hike… Without going on a hike…  And once you’ve taken the shoes on a hike… They can’t be returned.

It is also frustrating when these high end, specialist brands don’t seem to be able to make a standard size!  With modern technology that really is a travesty… So come on guys, get your act together and sort this out. Xero barefoot sandals had a great printable template on their website… what a GREAT idea!

Another bugbear for me is why do our cousins in the US have better shoe choices and  return options than we do in Europe?  The same brands, same retailers… Maybe it’s about time we rebelled a wee bit over here!

However, enough of my groans and moans… Here’s what is coming with me to Spain.

Teva Terra F1 4 Sandals – I have fallen in love with these and I hope to get a lot of wear during this Camino.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 – After testing Keens, Salomons, Hoka One One and Brooks I’ve decided to go with this shoe.  I’ve tested them a few times and they seem ok.  I have so little time left that I feel I’m making the choice without a real test but I’m hopeful that I chose well.  They are Trail Runners and very light… so far they are very comfortable.

Drymax Socks – A combination of Hyper Thin Running Socks, Lite Trail Running Socks and Lite Hiking Socks.  I’m also taking a pair of CoolMax liners.  The right socks are as important as the right shoe.  My foot shrinks and grows depending on the weather and so I like to have a choice of socks… and keep blisters at bay!

Clothes

I loved the look of walking in a shirt.  I loved the idea of wearing a shirt.  But for me the reality was just not comfortable.  Why?  Because I am 1.76m tall… 5 feet 9 inches in old money… And that is tall for a girl.  The biggest problem I have is that the seam/dart for the bust is too high… And the waist also sits a bit too high.  I always felt like I needed to tug things back into place and I decided that whilst I love shirts… They don’t love me and I am more comfortable in a t-shirt.

I stumbled upon my combo by accident.  The t-shirt is a bit sheer so I added the vest… The vest is long which is a little more modest with my skins.  Both are inexpensive and very light.  I bought the black/blue combo and Gerry chose the pink/black combo.  It works so it’s in the bag.

  • 2 x Energetics t shirts
  • 2 x Intersport light vest
  • 1 x Under Armour lightweight long sleeve top (men’s)
  • 2 x Skins AS200 full leg compression leggings
  • 1 x Craghoppers Kiwi Pro Stretch
  • 3 x  knickers and bras (Marks and Spencer)

Outer layers

  • Berghaus Ultralightweight Wind Jacket
  • Chiffon Scarf
  • Vaude Backpacking Poncho

The Rest

The rest of the kit remains much as it was before here (in my first list) the only additions are some energy bars and a bag of salted peanuts and my water hydration tube. Temperatures have been pushing 40c on the Via de la Plata in the last week or so… so I figure some emergency rations and easy hydration systems are important.

The Only Problem?

I’m unhappy that everything together now weighs 8.6 kg… I might need to revisit this and see if I can bring that down, even if just a little… I have 2 or 3 litres of water to add to this when I arrive in Spain.

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