The Camino Frances

The Camino Frances

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Training walk - for the next Camino?

Josef and I went on a training walk this morning. He trains 2-3 times a week in order to stay in shape for his next Camino. He has walked the Camino every year since 2007, when we met. This spring he walked part of the Vezelay route, and will continue where he left off next spring, and hopefully end in St Jean Pied de Port. He has a fancy watch that monitors his heart rate, distance, time and pace. We walked 9 km in 90 minutes, which is a 6 minute km, which is faster that my usual pace. On the Camino, with a backpack, of fairly level ground, I could walk a 15 minute km, averaging about 4 km per hour. That doesn't allow for breaks, and on the day I walked with the 3 Canadian women from Calgary, I took my breaks with them. They knew how to take a good break, and in the afternoon, I had a shandy with them - half lemonade, and half beer. Consequently, I didn't arrive in Palais de Rei until 5:30, and got the last bed in the municipal albergue. That day I averaged 3.5 km per hour.  So today's hike was a challenge, at almost twice the pace.

In the afternoon we drove to Bremgarten, where we met Maria's daughter Edith, who acted as our tour guide. Bremgarten is a perfectly preserved town, with a surrounding wall and pedestrian only streets. Most of the buildings had elaborate paintings on the outside. Edith pointed out the witches' tower, where uppity women were imprisoned, and given 2 choices. Plead guilty and be executed, or plead innocent and be thrown in the river. If you survived the dunking, it meant you were guilty and were executed. Thankfully, that doesn't happen too often today, or I would be in trouble. Bremgarten also has the best Christmas market in Switzerland, and an Easter market, and several others. The town is all about tourism.

After the town tour, we walked along the river, through the covered bridge, and had ice cream on a patio overlooking the river, where kayaks were training by paddling against the current at the foot of the small dam. Quite a contrast to the mediaeval town.

My time here is winding down, and so is my camera battery. Hopefully I can rescue it, as there is more to see. Here is a picture of the highlights of Bremgarten. Check out for more pictures.

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