Online Equipment sales – there are tons of site. Here are some that I’m familiar with:
There are many more! Go forth and Google!
Also, if you are ordering from the States and you need an American address to ship to, try Pembina Parcel. They charge a small amount per parcel and you can make a day trip to pick up your orders.
Other Online Resources
And finally, here is a lovely place to stay in St. Jean Pied de Port: L’Esprit du Chemin
Oh, and if you spend the night in Foncebedon, you ned to eat here – La Taberna de Gaia
I give occasional talks for the local chapter of the Canadian Company of Pilgrims. Usually I discuss equipment and take general questions about the camino.
There has been some interest in my notes, so here they are:
- Pack – get it sized! See a professional. Try it one for awhile and test it on more than just one day
- Sacks – one for clothes, one for toiletries (which pack into two ziploc bags), net for laundry (if you like)
- Sleeping bag – make sure it meets the needs of the season, I found a dual thickness works well (one side is has more insulation than the other)
- Silk bag liner – I found it to be a good thing to have, using it inside the sleeping bag on cold nights, and using it alone on hot nights
- Sleeping pad – never seen one used
- Poles, stick – really consider one or the other, you will thank me later. If you are using expandable walking sticks, get two
- Satchel – very handy in the evenings
- Guidebook/Map – share with other pilgrims as none are perfect
- Water bottle – at least 1 litre
- Clothes pins
- Grocery bag for litter
- First aid/Blister kit – needle, tread, safety pins, moleskin, comfree, ibuprofen
- Toiletries/Laundry etc. – razor, toothbrush, soap, toothpaste, sunscreen (in a small sack)
- Utility Knife – nail care, etc.
- Head Lamp/Flashlight – useful in late/early packing and early walking when looking for Camino arrows
- Passport, ID – a neck wallet (I was robbed! in an Albergue!)
- Paper and Pen
- Camera – battery charger or lithium (get them before you leave) – wide angle lenses are great!
- Phone/music player/recorder/gps – check on roaming, do you really need a phone, ipod , etc? evaluate. don’t forget batteries if you need them
- Digital recoder – I used one for a audio diary and to record some sound bites.
- Watch – band or clip
- Hat – recommend a wide brim, stuff-able, a Tilley helps identify you as a Canadian!
- Glasses – bring prescription or a second pair!
- Hearing aid – bring a prescription, check on batteries
- Kerchief – multitude of uses
- Jacket – not too heavy as you layer (unless it is also your rain gear)
- Base layer – quick dry, wicking
- Bra – Missus says “get a pro” fitter – The Bra Bar or Diva
- Shirt – two pair (mix of button up and long-sleeve t), quick dry, UV resistant
- Fleece – light weight, some are fairly quick drying
- Rain gear
- Gloves – consider if you are are using sticks
- Base layer – quick dry, two, or three, wicking
- Pants – two pair, quick dry, UV resistant, convertible (same colour), no jeans!
- Shorts – if pants are not convertible
- Bathing suit – your call
- Socks – Dual-layer, multiple pairs, lotions and gel, wicking, Comfree
- Shoes – Get help from a professional. Find a shoe early – get a second pair or after a week or so of training put them aside until a week or so before you leave for the Camino. Don’t forget inserts if you use them
- Sandal – Avoid flips-flops, you still need the support. Teva, Keen, Merrel, etc