Walkabout California

Hiking Inn to Inn

All Blog Posts (71)

Santa Catalina to Newport Beach: Walkabout Malibu to Mexico

This easy three day, 23.5 mile walkabout starts on the beautiful island of Santa Catalina. Enjoy the slow pace of island life. Explore Catalina’s shoreline by kayak, and hike its rugged mountains. Then take the ferry to Long Beach and hike three days to Newport Beach, strolling on classic Southern California surfing and swimming beaches. Along the way, sample the delights of interesting seaside towns – good food, fun bars, live

music, and unique inns.…

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Added by Tom Courtney on July 3, 2014 at 7:00am — No Comments

Santa Monica to Santa Catalina: Inn to Inn Hiking on the SoCal Coast

This moderate three-day, 38 mile adventure hikes a Pacific shoreline that varies from wide Southern California swimming beaches, to paths along coastal bluffs, to boulder hopping under steep cliffs where few hikers venture. It passes through sections of deep urban development as well as untouched wilderness where your only company will be sea mammals and shore birds. Along the way you’ll visit delightful beach towns, a luxurious resort, and the beautiful island of Santa Catalina.…

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Added by Tom Courtney on July 2, 2014 at 8:30am — No Comments

Guided Hikes to Truly Experience Yosemite

There’s nothing better than exploring the gorgeous Yosemite area than by hiking through it to get closer to nature and the spectacular surroundings. With guided Wawona hiking tours from the Redwoods in Yosemite, you’ll be able to learn about area…

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Added by Mike Cooperberg on June 23, 2014 at 11:47am — No Comments

Mt. Tam

Hi,

This past weekend, Memorial Weekend, my husband and I did the Mt. Tam Circumabulation Inn to Inn.  Fantastic.

One quick comment, on the hike from Stinson Beach to Olmea, we encountered some difficulty on the final 1.5 miles.  The distinct trail is no longer and after wandering up a hill following the fence, we found a crag outlayer. We turned around and proceeded down the highway into Olmea.  Fortunately we stayed at the Point Reyes Seashore Lodge which is located at the…

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Added by Kathleen Barber on May 27, 2014 at 11:00am — No Comments

Eastern Sierra

There is a string of resorts down the eastern Sierra.  Lee Vining to June Lake to Mammoth Lakes to Convict Lake for example.   Walkabout, have you considered finding a route over there?  Or, do trail (not direct enough) and lodging (booked a year in advance or several-night minimums) limitations make that route unrealistic for now?

Added by jeff bodington on August 15, 2013 at 9:12am — 1 Comment

Exploring the Malibu Coast

The Santa Monica Mountains soar to the sky.  The wild beauty of the Pacific and its shoreline fills the senses.  Hike rocky shores below steep cliffs, unpopulated secluded beaches, and popular Southern California strands on this 3-day, 32-mile Walkabout. …

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Added by Tom Courtney on December 14, 2012 at 7:00am — No Comments

Query re hiking from Truckee to Squaw to Tahoe City

Hi - Any recommendations regarding this hike? How difficult is it? We're planning to do it in two weeks.

Thanks! Katie

Added by Katharine Keller on June 19, 2012 at 9:11am — 1 Comment

Exploring the Sierra Foothills Along the American River: Auburn to Sacramento

The American River starts high in the peaks of the Sierra Nevada. It winds and crashes through deep canyons down to the foothills where it eventually is tamed to form Folsom Lake. Released again, it flows wide and powerful to meet the Sacramento River. The discovery of gold on the American in 1848 brought a…

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Added by Tom Courtney on April 16, 2012 at 1:30am — No Comments

Santiago!

The guidebooks warn of the fierce weather in Galicia.  Storms blow in from the Atlantic bringing wind, cold, rain, and snow.  But, the weather for us, in late October, is ideal for hiking - crisp, cool mornings; warm, sunny afternoons.  In fact, I had only taken my rain jacket out twice during the six week pilgrimage because of slight drizzle.  Now, with the short autumn days, the leaves of oaks, maples, and chestnuts are turning yellow and orange.…

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Added by Tom Courtney on November 2, 2011 at 3:30pm — No Comments

Entering Galicia

Leaving the plains of north-central Spain, the pilgrim climbs and decends through the mountains of eastern Leon and into Galicia.  As each day passes and the Atlantic Coast draws nearer,  the terrain becomes more lush and verdant.  Ascending out of Rabanal for 1,000 feet, we reached the highest peak on the Camino, Cruz de Ferr, at 4,938 feet.  The trail passes through dense forests of oak, eucalyptus, birch, chestnut, and pine. Climbing out of Villafranca, the trail ascends 1,200 feet, drops…

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Added by Tom Courtney on October 29, 2011 at 11:29am — No Comments

Catholic Spain

Spain has deep Roman Catholic roots, going back, legend tells us, to Christ´s apostle, St. James, Santiago.  The pilgrim passes through perhaps a half a dozen village each day, almost all dominated by an ancient stone and wooden church.  We often stop to sit in the cool, dark sanctuaries for a moment of contemplation and to experience the beauty and devotion  represented by centuries old statues and paintings of the saints and Holy Family.  We have occasionally attended services in churches…

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Added by Tom Courtney on October 22, 2011 at 12:21pm — No Comments

Leon

I entered the narow, winding streets of the old city of Leon.  It was the day of the festival of San Froilan y las cantaderas and a grand medieval faire filled the plazas with hundreds of booths selling roasted meats and octopus, pastries, sweets, jewerlry, soaps, perfumes, clothes, wood carvings, and tarot readings.  People were dressed in renaissance costumes.…

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Added by Tom Courtney on October 15, 2011 at 9:17am — No Comments

The meseta

After hiking the verdant foothills of the Pyrenese and through the lush vineyards of La Rioja, the Camino enters the meseta, flat tabletop land that covers 40% of Spain.  For the next 120 miles the pilgrim ascends long mesas and descends into broad valleys.  Wheat fields stretch for as far as the eye can see, now freshly harvested in early October.  Rivers, lined with cottonwoods, meander through the plain.  Small medieval villages along the rivers, break up the sameness of the terrains.…

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Added by Tom Courtney on October 10, 2011 at 10:53am — No Comments

Burgos

The ancient city of Burgos was founded in 884 as a defensive fortress for the Kingdom of Navarra against the Muslims to the south.  Today´s pilgrim hikes several kilometers through stark, modern Burgos before passing through 14th century walls, under Arco de Santa Maria, and into the magical old city.  Here the streets are narrow and winding, there are few cars, but the lanes are busy with foot traffic.  People crowd the shops and sidewalk cafes.

After 13 days of hiking and 180 miles,…

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Added by Tom Courtney on October 7, 2011 at 10:07am — No Comments

A day in the life of a pilgrim

After a few days on the Camino, the pilgrim´s life settles into an easy rhythym.  Albergues may be small with only a dozen beds or big with bunk beds for 100 in a large room.  It is wise to sleep with earplugs or you will enjoy all the sounds of nocturnal humanity.

People begin to stir around 5:30am.  alarms beep, pilgrim pack away sleeping bags and prepare to hit the trail.  I usually am out of bed by 6:30 and hiking by seven.  This is my favorite time of day.  It is still dark and…

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Added by Tom Courtney on October 5, 2011 at 9:27am — 1 Comment

Entering Rioja

The Camino traverses western Navarra Province mostly on country trails, passing through small villages, always dominated by a church, the tallest building.  Pilgrims are a major source of revenue, and many villages will offer a cafe, a fountain, and possibly a small inn and/or albergue.  The harvested grain fields of the rolling farmland yielded to bountiful vineyards as the trail approaches Rioja Province, the home of some of Spain´s finest red wines.

I entered the city of Logrono at…

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Added by Tom Courtney on October 3, 2011 at 7:14am — 1 Comment

Stopping at a country inn along the Camino

Pamplona is the capital of Navarra, a semi-autonimous province, the south being more Castilian, the north, Basque.  The Basque are a fiercely independent people.  Linguists tell us that the Basque language, Euskara, is one of Europe´s oldest and has no know relationship  to any other language.  It is as if the basque…

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Added by Tom Courtney on September 27, 2011 at 2:30am — No Comments

Hiking through the foothills of the Pyrenees

The hike from Roncesvalles to Pamplona took two days, climbing and descending the foothills of the Pyrenese.  Most of the trail was on mountain paths, ascending to ridges and dropping into the valley of the Rio Arga, which the trail crossed and recrossed.  Early in the morning, before dawn, I hiked with the north star to my back and Orion high overhead, passing through the ¨woodlands of the witches,¨ a dense beech forest.  During the 16th century, it is said that covens of witches practiced…

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Added by Tom Courtney on September 24, 2011 at 7:30am — 1 Comment

Hiking el Camino de Santiago de Compostela



I have wanted to hike el Camino de Santiago de Compostela, the Way of St. James, ever since I read Pualo Cuelho´s book The Pilgrimage more than a decade ago.  Now, with the publication of Walkabout Northern California: Hiking Inn to Inn this spring, I decided to give myself the gift of a 500 mile trek across northern Spain.

 

The legend of the Camino began in AD 813 when Pelayo, a religious hermit, heard the song of angels and followed a star to an ancient Roman… Continue

Added by Tom Courtney on September 22, 2011 at 8:07am — 2 Comments

On the SF to Half Moon Bay hike walking on sand?

I plan to walk from SF Fort Funston to Half Moon Bay, as in the book. I have a few questions.

Was there a lot of walking on sand? If so, what shoes should be worn and were the tides a problem or dangerous?

Also, is there a good place meet up with people at Fort Funston (i.e. a parking lot or building that can be easily found with a car)?

Added by Jennifer Breckler on September 11, 2011 at 5:31pm — 1 Comment

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