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Spring in Europe
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Max B

Locale: PNW
Spring in Europe on 11/06/2012 00:20:03 MST Print View

It looks like I might have a few weeks Europe from Mid-April to Mid-May and I've never done any backpacking on the continent. I've got a lot of flexibility as to where I'll be flying into at this stage and wanted to see if there are some favorites that might be accessible at that time of the year.

Thanks in advance!

William Chilton
(WilliamC3) - MLife

Locale: Antakya
Re: Spring in Europe on 11/06/2012 00:51:13 MST Print View

This might give you some ideas.

Edited by WilliamC3 on 11/06/2012 00:58:57 MST.

ed hyatt
(edhyatt) - MLife

Locale: The North
Spring in Europe on 11/06/2012 01:02:12 MST Print View

If you like snow then Scotland would be great -Scotland is great per se though!

Rather depends on what you are after as a backpacking experience, Europe has huge variety - what sort of backpacking do you envisage?

Max B

Locale: PNW
trekking in europe on 11/08/2012 18:09:04 MST Print View

Thanks William, I read that trip report a few months back and the haute route through the Pyrenees that looked pretty amazing. I'm thinking though that I would want something that is 2 weeks maximum and I wouldn't argue if I actually did two one week trips in different areas just to get a different experience.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Spring in Europe on 11/08/2012 19:52:32 MST Print View

> Europe from Mid-April to Mid-May
Anywhere up in the mountains could easily be still snowed in during that period.

I remember arriving at Tarascon in the Pyrenees at the end of May 2007. Our route WAS to have been along the Pyrenees for the first few days, but we had neither snow shoes nor snow stakes for the tent (nor enough warm clothing, really). So the route got changed.

I don't think the mountain huts open until the middle of June. A lot of the valley camping grounds don't open until the middle of June.


Amy Lauterbach
(drongobird) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Spring in Europe on 11/08/2012 22:49:54 MST Print View

April and May is a fine time to walk in England and Wales. There are thousands of miles of public rights of way, the flowers are blooming and the spoken language is usually intelligible. Try one of the National Trails, Wainwright's Coast-to-Coast or Drake's more challenging Cambrian Way.

James and Amy

Michael Schwartz
(greenwalk) - MLife

Locale: PA & Ireland
Spring in Europe on 11/08/2012 23:36:45 MST Print View

I'd consider Spain, Italy, and Southern France. Check out Cicerone Press's web site, which has a good deal of info. And you can download the guidebooks. Mike

Wim Depondt
(wim_depondt) - F - MLife

Locale: The low countries
how about Morocco on 11/18/2012 09:48:33 MST Print View

My choices would be limited to
- Ireland, England or Wales (quid Lake District?)
- Lapland (winter hiking). E.g. Kungsleden or Sarek (impressions:
- Morocco (ok, not exactly Europe but it is merely a couple of hours flying). For impressions (M'Goun massive):
The peaks & passes might still have some snow. Trailblazer has a good guidebook. Knowledge of French is paramount when travelling without a guide.

As other posters already noted: virtually all major European mountain regions will still be snowed under. Mind you, first half of April still is skying season in the Alps, so that might also be an option.


edit: added info about language knowledge in Morocco.

Edited by wim_depondt on 11/18/2012 09:50:05 MST.

Stuart R
(Scunnered) - F

Locale: Scotland
Re: Spring in Europe on 11/18/2012 13:27:55 MST Print View

I may be biased, but May is the best month for walking in Scotland. Spring is well under way so the winter weather is over, hours of daylight are good, snow will be gone apart from the hill tops, and the first midges will not have hatched.

Be aware that we don't have the manicured trails that you get in many places, paths are rougher and not sign-posted. You may need to read a map. Avoid the WHW unless you enjoy the sounds from a road (highway).

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: Mind your own business
Re: Re: Spring in Europe on 11/18/2012 15:26:38 MST Print View

Anywhere in Ireland or Scotland gets my vote.

Alex R

Locale: SE England, NW England..
RE: Spring in Europe on 12/02/2012 08:48:55 MST Print View

As others have said, spring is a great time for hiking in Europe! Particularly if you are considering long-distance walks in England / Scotland, often the weather is drier in spring and there are the most hours of daylight. Here are some useful web links to give you a few ideas..

Further south around the Mediterranean (at low altitude) its also a good time to hike, warm but not too hot. Unless you have winter gear probably best to avoid the Alps until summer.

Hope this helps!