Cheryl Klampe Van Hess is from Aumsville, Oregon, USA

What motivated you to walk the Virtual Camino?

My motivation came from the disappointment I endured when after 5 years of planning to do the Camiño Frances I was diagnosed with AFIB and was told by my cardiologist that I should not do my 5-year dream. Luckily, after months of not even being allowed to walk, the meds were regulated and working and I was able to start walking and walking my 1/2 marathons again. THEN, I began my research and discovered the Portuguese Camiño and eventually my cardiologist approved this undertaking. The sendra Litoral Portuguese Camiño from Porto was the PERFECT CAMIÑO for me. I LOVE the beach and ended up adding the espiritual variante until I met up with my daughter in Tui for her to do the last 100 km with me. We then took a bus to Muxia and walked to Finisterre. All said and done, I logged 424 miles- close to the distance of the Camiño Frances…… so now, the virtual Camiño Frances is helping to fill the void in my heart that I thought was impossible!!! I’m still hoping some day to be able to experience the Camiño Frances but if it doesn’t happen the wonderful virtual Camiño has been amazing!!

When did you start using the Camino for Good app? How many days did it take you to “walk the Camino”? How many miles do you average in a day?

I started February 28th. I’m at about 80% complete as of 5/14/2021. I average 4-8 miles on the days I walk. Long days are 10-13. I anticipate I will arrive in Santiago by the end of May. It’s been wonderful and I plan to go back when I’m done and read all the info, look at the pictures and listen to all the stories that go along with the fun passport included in this virtual Camiño.

How does the weather impact your walking? What are some other challenges you faced?

I don’t let the weather impact me unless it is too icy or snowy which happens very seldom in OREGON- I just put my Camiño rain gear on and go for it!!

What has walking done for you spiritually? Mentally? Physically?

Walking has always been my “free therapy” now for many years. It also helps keep me physically fit. Spiritually goes hand in hand with the mental aspect!!

What was most enjoyable about the Camino for Good experience?

Reliving my Camiño Portuguese experiences!!

Feel free to share anything else!

Thank you soooooo very much for developing this amazing Camiño and for helping out the wonderful people that provide housing for the pilgrims.

Thank you to Cheryl for sharing your story with the CFG community. Buen Camino!