Camino de Santiago

The Camino Francés originates on one side or the other of the French-Spanish border in the Pyrenees Mountains and passes on a northerly route through Pamplona, Burgos, and León to Santiago de Compostela. It was a Roman trade route before it became the Way of St. James. During the medieval times it was one of the most important pilgrimages, together with Rome and Jerusalem. It stirred my interest in the mid-1990s, tempting me to try it for the first time in 2004 when I also became a member of the Association of American Pilgrims on the Camino. The Association’s web site,,  has extensive information on the Camino, including sections about the organization, the Camino, resources, and organization events. Information about the Southern California Chapter of the American Pilgrims can also be found on this site. The Confraternity of Saint James has a site:, that can also serve as a resource.

I became so enamored with my first walk that I walked it three more times. Here are some favorite pictures from my 2011 Camino Walk:

Starting out on the 14th of May 2011, Kurt is posing at the marker: Only 475 miles to go. It was a great walk

Shown above is a typical albuerge with its bunkbed layout. This one is located in Los Arcos. In 2011, it was lower bunks throughout–what luck is that?

Three of Kurt’s walking buddies at dinner. Only Jean Drouot, far right, has kept in touch. Who knows, we might do another Camino some day.

How sweet it was for Kurt to have his special friends of nearly 40 years joining him for the last 100 km. We had a blast.

It’s always a feeling of mixed emotions seeing and visiting the Santiago Cathedral: elated to have completed such an inspiring walk, but sad to see it end.

All five of us met again, quite coincidentally, to celebrate the moment (from left to right: Ruta, John, Kurt, Jean, and Preben.

A bus ride to Finisterre and a picnic at the point topped off our Camino adventure. Although tradition has it for pilgrims to burn their clothes here, we had nothing for the pyre.