The Camino de Santiago – Day 4&5: The Road Not Taken

Gear needed for the Camino

We did our Camino in the third week of April, 2019. The weather in northern Spain is significantly colder than in Madrid, which is in the center of Spain. The road along the Camino from Burgos to León can be very windy as there are not many trees to shield you from it. Rain can make dirt roads very muddy as well.

We wore a Gore-Tex coat to protect ourselves from the rain and wind. A hat and sunglasses are also a must. What we didn’t take into account was the condition of the road. It was very muddy and our running shoes weren’t waterproof, so they got stuck in the mud at times. 

If you are doing the Camino and expect to walk on rainy days, be sure to bring enough waterproof gear and a walking stick or hiking poles.

Day 4 – The Road Not Taken

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both”
This Robert Frost quote was what came to my mind on the morning of Day 4.

We took a taxi to Frómista after having breakfast that morning. We would have reached Frómista by walking if we were able to get accommodation for the night before. But since we didn’t, we decided to start the day from our original destination for Day 3.

Four kilometers from Frómista, the route spilt into two, and we had to choose between them. We only had enough time to see one of them. Whichever road we chose, the other would remain forever unknown to us.

We chose the one with less people. Most pilgrims we saw took the path on the left, so we took the one on the right. It was tranquil and quiet, though a bit windy without any trees to shield us from the wind.

Dinner that night was also one of the best we had on our Camino. We had a large plate of Parrillada de Verduras (grilled vegetables) and a warm salad along with scrambled eggs and alcohol-free beer. Vegetable-based dishes are not easy to find on the Camino. Our diet had been based mostly on tortilla de patata and bread the past few days.

Day 5 – Catching a Cold

We had Tostadas con Tomate (toast with fresh tomato sauce and olive oil with a sprinkle of salt) and a croissant for breakfast that day. Most Spanish bars also have Cola Cao (hot chocolate) for people who don’t drink coffee. It is usually served in a glass of hot milk. The bar will put the pack of cocoa powder beside the glass so you can decide how much cocoa powder you want with your milk.


We took a taxi to El Burgo Ranero that morning. The full distance between Burgos and León is roughly 180 kilometers, and as we only had 6 days to walk we had to skip some kilometers or else we’d never make it. Most hotels and hostels are happy to call a taxi for you if you ask them.

The temperature for the past few days was around 4°-19°. The nights were cold and the days were either windy or rainy. We weren’t used to the wind and the amount of exercise every day, and we started to feel a bit of a headache and a sore throat after lunch that day. After slowly walking for another few hours, we finally made it to Mansilla de las Mulas, the last stop before we reached León.