Hiking Inn to Inn
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. This moderate 66-mile, four-day walkabout starts in the foothill town of…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on April 12, 2019 at 1:59pm — No Comments
A small herd of tule elk bounded out of the trees and into the marsh. All males with impressive racks, they splashed through the shallows startling egrets and sending a flock of ducks aloft as they raced to an open field and disappeared.
Grizzly Island, 8,800 acres of marshland is a…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on February 13, 2019 at 11:30am — No Comments
There is a surge of popularity for hiking from inn-to-inn in Europe, and the same is true in California. Adventurers hike trails connecting coastal villages along the wild Pacific. They trek through the majestic Sierra Nevada Mountains, along the serene beaches of Southern California, and through the parklands around the San…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on January 22, 2019 at 10:55am — No Comments
Hike the spine of the High Sierra along the Pacific Crest Trail on this 3-day, 30 mile walkabout. This is a challenging hike, but you’ll be rewarded with stopovers at mountain resorts in spectacular settings and with the solitude and pristine beauty of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Start your journey…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on October 11, 2018 at 12:30pm — No Comments
An enchanted land of rugged mountains, alpine lakes, clear streams, deep glaciated canyons, and other-worldly hydrothermal landscapes, Lassen Volcanic National Park is a wild and exotic Northern California treasure. Towering above it all, Lassen Peak rests after its most recent eruption in 1917.
Added by Tom Courtney on August 9, 2018 at 10:30am — No Comments
Is there anything better than a leisurely drive through Tuscany? Yes! A multi-day hike from hill town to hill town savoring the Tuscan countryside at two miles an hour, exploring farmland and forest, walking the quiet streets of ancient villages, meeting the locals, and enjoying the famous wines and cuisine.…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on May 15, 2018 at 11:22am — No Comments
Beautiful Slovenia, a pastoral country of 2 million, lies in So. Central Europe, nestled between the Alps and the Adriatic Sea. Set in its NW corner, in the Julian Alps, Triglav National Park is a land of raging rivers, crystalline lakes, alpine meadows, and soaring peaks. At its heart stands Mt. Triglav, Slovenia’s tallest mountain.
After spending a few days in…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on March 15, 2018 at 11:21am — No Comments
They fly 2,000 miles to return to their winter home. When the temperature dips below 55, they gather in pulsating clusters, clinging to eucalyptus branches, their feet intertwined. The day warms, and sunlight falls on a cluster. They burst forth, a fluttering orange and black cloud.
Added by Tom Courtney on December 5, 2017 at 9:51am — No Comments
The summer Yellowstone crowds disappear, and serenity settles on the land for both people and animals. Bison gather in the geyser basins where food is more abundant. Elk graze along river banks. Wolves and coyotes come to pick off the vulnerable.
Yellowstone is unique in the world – 2 million acres with…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on February 27, 2017 at 9:17am — No Comments
A red-tailed hawk swoops low, and 1,000 startled snow geese lift with a cacophony of honks and chatter. They ascend in disarray, filling the sky. Breathtaking chaos. Then they gradually assemble, circle, and return to their vernal pond.
Winter is the season to visit Colusa National Wildlife Refuge. On the…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on January 11, 2017 at 10:49am — No Comments
This one day, 23.8 mile “bridge hike” connects two multi-day walkabouts. There are no inns or restaurants, but the inn-to-inn hiker is rewarded with the longest stretch of accessible uninterrupted, undeveloped shoreline for over 200 miles. Hike miles of plateau between coastal mountains and the sea. Walk through Camp Pendleton where you will experience an active Marine Corps base at two miles an hour. This is a challenging hike. Be sure to bring your driver’s license. They will check it as…Continue
Kayaking up stream, the river stirs. A harbor seal pokes his head above the surface and stares back at us. Overhead, an osprey glides, searching for lunch. Blue herons perch on limbs of firs, pines, and redwoods on the river banks. We startle a cormorant. Madly slapping the river and running along the surface, she takes…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on November 23, 2016 at 9:02am — No Comments
We round a curve and halt. A herd of 50 female tule elk crosses our trail. There are three males. Two are smaller, but one is massive, standing tall above his harem, with a huge candelabra rack, seven points on each antler. He looks like he is having a very good year.
It is late October, the tail-end of…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on November 10, 2016 at 9:00am — No Comments
Stand on cliffs overlooking La Jolla Bay, and take in the abundance of wildlife. Migrating whales feed close to shore. Sea lions bark a noisy chorus from offshore outcroppings. Harbor seals lounge on sheltered beaches. Dolphins, leopard sharks, shovel-nose guitarfish, and Garibaldi damselfish ply the clear waters.…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on November 2, 2016 at 10:30pm — No Comments
From San Francisco’s Cliff House, Ocean Beach beckons. Broad and flat, it stretches as far as you can see, disappearing into the mist. Stride out on 9 miles of uninterrupted beach to start this 30-mile, 4-day walkabout. Urban life fades as you hike a coast that is extraordinarily wild.
Hike miles of…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on November 2, 2016 at 7:00pm — No Comments
We hiked this trail in late July. It was still spring time in the high country. The wildflowers were spectacular, and they should continue into late…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on August 9, 2016 at 9:30am — No Comments
Cinque Terre is the jewel of the Italian Riviera. Rugged mountains plunge to the Ligurian Sea where five medieval coastal villages, each with its own dialect and identity, enchant visitors. Come for the swimming, the sun, the wine, and for hiking.
The car-free villages are connected by a web of trails. They…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on July 19, 2016 at 3:00pm — No Comments
Gliding peacefully across Utica Reservoir, high in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Boulders, deep below the surface catch the morning sun in the clear waters. An osprey circles overhead, intently searching for breakfast. Our kayaks and paddles are all that disturbs the still surface.
Three easily accessed lakes…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on July 5, 2016 at 10:00am — No Comments
Desolation Wilderness is a land of spectacular beauty. Soaring peaks of granite, honeycombed with scores of lakes, it towers over the southwest corner of Lake Tahoe. This High Sierra Nevada, 7 mile round-trip hike takes you to Lake Aloha and the heart of Desolation Wilderness.
Leave Hwy. 50 at Echo summit and…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on June 24, 2016 at 10:59am — No Comments
At a communal dinner, the night before we are to set out, our host asks us to each say why we are walking el Camino de Santiago. Everyone has a reason, usually a life change – recovering from a recent divorce, mourning the loss of a loved one, frustration with a job and the need for change, trying to figure out what to do with one’s…Continue
Added by Tom Courtney on May 28, 2016 at 10:00am — No Comments