When packing for my hiking holiday, the curation and selection of my camino stationery set takes the most time.
Camino de Santiago
What’s a camino? I feel like I have written lots about this - have a look at stuartlennon.com here, and for other posts (there are lots), search “camino” on the site.
Give or take, I will walk 20 miles a day this trip, including up a mountain or two. When considering what to take, I am conscious that every ounce I pack, I will be carrying 120 miles on my back. A tendency to overpack is not welcome on trips like this.
Camino Stationery Set
My notebook serves two purposes on camino. One, it is a backup to my iphone for travel details. My flight references and hotel bookings are recorded in the book, along with some important phone numbers. Two, I use a notebook as a journal and scrapbook, to record the trip as it happens.
As this is my fourth camino trip, I have some experience to draw upon.
1. “Naked” notebook in shorts pocket is a bad plan. Walking in Spain, in summer, is a hot and sweaty pastime.
2. Fountain Pens are lovely, but not the most practical. Mostly they won’t go wrong, but if they do, they do so messily and are fiddly to fix.
3. One notebook is not enough - particularly when there are long flights before and after the walk.
4. Keeping loose paper as a souvenir doesn’t work. A fixing method pays dividends.
This year’s kit1. Nock Seed A6. Hard-wearing cordura in a bright purple. I can throw it into my backpack, happy that everything is protected, and slip it into a sling bag that I take out in the evenings.
2. A pair of Field Notes Mile Markers. Just feels appropriate. Mile Marker is a classic Field Notes Edition, which I think got a little over-shadowed by National Parks.
3. My Pilgrim’s Passports. On camino, you collect stamps, to demonstrate that you have travelled “the way”. I collect one where I stay each night and at least one more each day. These are your key to the Compostella, which is awarded to qualifying pilgrims in Santiago.
4. A Penco Holdfast stapler. I staple keepsakes into my notebook at the end of each day. They serve as memory prompts, reminders of the journey.
5. Writing Instruments. This changes all the time. When I carried in my pocket, a Schon Dsgn in stainless steel or copper was just the thing. Robust and heavy. The Seed however, lends itself to long and thin. I’m trying to keep myself to two - and for the moment, I’m settled on a Brands Hall by Field Notes backed up by a Koh-i-noor mechanical pencil.