Camino and Hiking Events in October

One of the best ways to prepare for the Camino is to join one of the pilgrim related events, hikes or workshops available to the public. This month I offer an exclusive discount to a Life in a Walk documentary screening and a selection of organized walks that you can join.  So, get out there for a hike to enjoy the changing colors of the season, crisp fall weather, and spectacular Bay Area sunsets!

Lake Merritt Walk
Saturday, October 3, 10:30 am
This is an informal gathering that takes place on the first Saturday of the month, rain or shine. The group meets at the Lake Merritt Pergola on the east side of Oakland’s Lake Merritt at 10:30 am and starts walking promptly at 10:45 am. It’s a level walk 3.3 miles around the lake and takes about an hour.

Lake Merritt Walk, Sept. 5If you decide to join one of these walks, make sure to give yourself plenty of time to find parking as there are many activities on Saturday morning in the Lake Merritt area. Or take BART to Lake Merritt or 19th St. stations.  RSVP for Oct. 3 Lake Merritt walk.

See photos and video from the Sept. 5th walk: A Buen Camino around Lake Merritt

Hiking Tour in Oakland
Monday, October 12, 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Dimond District: From urban streets to tree lined trails, the East Bay is a hiker’s paradise. This tour will start in Oakland’s Dimond District, climb through Dimond Canyon Park, wind through Joaquin Miller Park and up to the Bay Area Ridge Trail at Chabot Space & Science Center. If you’re pooped after the 5.5 miles, you can catch the bus right back down to your starting location.  RSVP Here

Walk Mission San Francisco de Asís to Mission San Rafael
When:  Wednesday, October 14th
Where:  Mission Dolores – 16th and Dolores Street
9:00 a.m.  Mass at the old mission
9:45 – 10:00 a.m. departure to Mission San Rafael
It seems fitting to close the season with  a repeat of one of our most favorite walks. Join the California Mission Walkers group for a mid-week walk and ferry ride between Mission Dolores (the oldest standing structure in San Francisco) and Mission San Rafael.  These are the only two California missions that can be visited in one day without driving.
If you wish to attend, there is a 9 am mass in the old mission. Or, you can have a look around the old mission.  It opens to the public at 9 am (there are admission fees).
We will set out for San Rafael at 9:45 am, proceeding along Mission Street to the Ferry Building.   There we will take the ferry to Larkspur Landing ($10 each way, $5.00 for Seniors, Clipper cards work).  From there, we will walk along the old railroad bed to Mission San Rafael.  Bring a lunch or explore nearby downtown San Rafael.  Early afternoon, we will return to Larkspur and on to San Francisco via ferry. See
Larkspur Ferry Schedule.
Total walking distance — under 10 miles, no hills.
For more info contact Lin Galea,

LIFE IN A WALK documentary

LIFE IN A WALK follows Yogi Roth and his father, Will, on their trek along the Camino De Santiago, a famous pilgrimage through Portugal and Spain, where Yogi listens to, learns from and discovers more about his hero than he ever imagined.

Bay Area screenings of LIFE IN A WALK documentary:

Oakland, CA
Tuesday, October 27, 7:30 pm

Piedmont Cinemas, 4186 Piedmont Avenue
I have arranged for an exclusive discount for my blog followers for this screening. Enter “caminoprovides” as the Promo Code and get 20% off your order.

San Francisco, CA
Wednesday, October 28, 7:30 pm

San Francisco, CA Opera Plaza Cinema / Landmark

Check the website,, for a screening in your area, or to bring it to your city.

Pole Hiking Workshops

Roberts Regional Park 100-M

Have you ever wanted to try hiking poles? The East Bay Regional Parks District offers poles technique workshops and hikes on the beautiful trails of the Oakland hills.

Poles: Skills & Techniques Plus Hike – 10894
Thursday, October 8, 10am – 3:30 pm
Redwood Regional Park: Canyon Meadow Staging Area
Experience everything in the Basic Hiking Skills & Techniques class plus a serenely-beautiful Redwood practice hike. Learn individualized strategies for improving your performance on varied uphill and downhill trails. “Test drive” different pole models; learn which fit you best (5 mile hike).
One space left as of Oct. 2! Registration online.

Poles for Balance & Maintaining Mobility – 10895
Saturday, October 24, 1:30 – 4:30 pm
KENNEDY GROVE, Fern Cottage:- Easy-to-learn pole techniques and gentle exercises empower people with mobility challenges to maintain walking form, navigate everyday obstacles, reduce risk of falling, restore spine function, improve stamina and strengthen muscles that support weight-bearing joints. Optional lovely practice pole walk (1/3 mile). Special equipment provided.  Registration is required.

Poles 2: Practice Hike at Botanic Garden – 10896
Friday October 30, 1:15 – 3:30 pm
Tilden Park, Berkeley: Regional Parks Botanic Garden – Refine, enhance and learn new skills on gentle, varied terrain. Connect with nature while improving confidence, pole performance and body awareness. Explore the Park District’s unique California Native Garden. Previous poles instruction REQUIRED (2 mile hike). Register online.

Poles 3: Practice Hike Plus Yoga – 10897
Saturday, October 31 9:00am to 1:30pm
Redwood Regional Park:  Canyon Meadow Staging Area
Hike, Stretch, Strengthen, Breathe! Practice pole hiking skills; improve your trail performance while mindfully experiencing beautiful Redwood trails. Interspersed stretches and strengthening movements focus on improving longevity and joint health (4 mile hike). Previous EBRPD pole hiking instruction REQUIRED.  Register online.

Registration required. Visit
See East Bay Regional Parks District newsletters for more details and October workshops:  Download: September – October 2015 ~ Regional In Nature Acrobat PDF

REI Events in the Bay Area

REI Berkeley – Garage Sale
Saturday, October 3, 7 am – 12 pm
Get out your membership card so you can access rock bottom prices on used gear and clothing! Don’t live in the area?  Find deals at the REI website and outlet!

Backpacking Basics
Berkeley REI
10/08/15, 07 – 8:30 pm
REI will take the mystery out of Backpacking with an overview of planning, preparation and gear. Learn how to choose a pack, select proper clothing and footwear.

Travel Light
Berkeley REI

10/14/15, 07:00 PM
Traveling should never be a burden. Join us for practical tips on lightening your load while maximizing the experience. You’ll leave with the tools to keep overweight baggage at bay on your next adventure.

Hiking the Bay Area’s Best Places
Mt. Tamalpais: Rock Springs
10/18/15, 09 am – 1 pm
Come join an REI Outdoor School Instructor on a hike in one of the Bay Area’s best hiking places. We’ll introduce you to local natural gems, teach you a few tips to making hiking more comfortable and help you hike at your own pace. See class / session details for which Best Hike we’ll be doing.

Marin Headlands Hike and Hops
Sunday, October 25,  9:00 AM  –  2:00 PM
Muir Beach 
Explore some of the world’s most beautiful coastline right here in your own backyard on a 5 mile coastal hike with 1000 feet of elevation gain. Relax afterward with a pint in hand at the famous Pelican Inn in Muir Beach.

Full Moon Hike
10/27/15, 06:45 PM
Tennessee Valley Trailhead, Marin Headlands
There’s nothing like hiking under a full moon! Join a trained REI Outdoor School Instructor for a special moonlit adventure at a nearby park. We’ll also teach you a few tips for hiking at any time of day. See location details for more information on the venue.

If you live near a REI store, there are many workshops and occasional discussions with Camino book authors and hiking experts. Check for events in your area.

And don’t forget, REI Members,
Earn a $20 Bonus Card
When you spend $100 or more through Oct. 5th in stores or online!

Help support this blog by purchasing through my links and REI banners.

For those who live elsewhere, there are Camino hotspots nationwide and the American Pilgrims on the Camino (APOC) website has a listing of local chapters where you can find pilgrim events. There are also many active Facebook groups to learn about events in your region.

If you know of any Camino related events for the SF Bay Area that should be included in the monthly roundup, please use the comment form below, or email me.

See you on the trail. Buen Camino!

Digame, por favor.

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