Camino and Hiking Events in April 2018

Here’s a roundup of Camino-related events and hikes in the San Francisco Bay Area.

REI Presentations on the Caminos Norte / Primitivo with Susan & Ralph Alcorn

Learn about the Norte and Primitivo routes with Camino veterans Susan and Ralph Alcorn. View images of these beautiful, historic, and exciting trails and learn more about the similarities and differences between the Francés, Norte and Primitivo routes. The Alcorns completed their 700-mile Camino Norte and Primitivo walks during 2015-2016. From their experiences came Susan‘s new book, Healing Miles: Gifts from the Camino Norte and Primitivo, which is now available in paperback and Kindle versions.

Susan and Ralph presented this topic at the March Lunch & Learn program.  I highly recommend attending one of their upcoming talks, especially if you are planning to walk the Norte or Primitivo routes.

The next talks will be:
Tuesday, April 3rd at REI Fremont at 7-8:30 PM.
43962 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA
Register online

Wednesday, April 4th Corte Madera at 7-8:30.
213 Corte Madera Town Ctr.
Register online

More dates (click city name to register):
Concord: 7:00 –  8:30 PM
San Francisco: 7:00  –  8:30 PM
San Carlos: 7:00  –  8:30 PM
San Jose: 7:00  –  8:30 PM
Dublin: 9:00  –  10:30 AM

Lake Merritt Walk
Saturday, April 7, 10:30 a.m.

This is an informal gathering that takes place on the first Saturday of the month, rain or shine. The group meets at the pergola on the east side of Oakland’s Lake Merritt at 10:30 a.m. and starts walking at 10:45 a.m. in a clockwise direction around the lake. It is a paved and level 3.3 mile walk and takes about an hour. Whether you’re a newbie or Camino veteran, everyone is welcome at these monthly walks.  RSVP not required, but if you’re on the NorCal Facebook group, join event to see who’s coming.

Directions: Take BART to the 19th Street or Lake Merritt Oakland stations and navigate your way to the Pergola. If you drive, make sure to give yourself enough time to find parking, as there are many activities on Saturday mornings in the area.

Please note that there will not be a presentation after the April walk, but there will be an informal lunch in the area with NorCal Chapter Coordinator Guy Joaquin.  Enjoy!

Camino Brewing Co. Grand Opening
San Jose, CA
April 7, 2018

Camino Brewing Company brews craft specialty beers inspired by co-founders Allen and Nathan’s 1900 mile bike pilgrimage along the Camino de Santiago. The taproom is finally going to open!  Show your support by attending the grand opening  and enjoy some great beer, food, games, live music, and family-friendly fun.  Here’s the invitation:

It’s been a long journey. We invite you to make your way to Camino Brewing Co. for the grand opening. Beer brings strangers together. Come join our brewmaster, brewers, and friends, and be a part of the celebration. Activities all day long starting at 2 pm and going to 10 pm. Live bands, 3 bars, outdoor beer garden, food trucks, games, and great music!
Revel in the Journey.

The Camino Brewing Company is located at 718 S. First Street, San Jose CA 95113    Free Parking Lot Under Hwy 280.

What time does it start?  Beer-thirty, of course!  Or whatever time you can get there. Check hours and follow the journey at:

National Gathering of American Pilgrims on the Camino
April 12 – 15, 2018
Vallombrosa Center, Menlo Park

This event is full, but details are available on this page:

Health & Hiking Poles Weekend Retreat with Jayah Faye Paley
April 13-15, 2018
Point Reyes National Seashore

Connect with nature.  Rejuvenate.  Experience inspiration for enhanced health and wellness.  Together we’ll learn transformative skills focused on improving and maintaining your skeletal structure and quality of life.   Activities include: Hiking with Poles (Quality Poles Provided), Fitness for the Trail, Strength Training, Stretching, Recovery Strategies.  Accommodations and Most Meals Included.

Details and registration at:

Twin Peaks Hike
San Francisco, California
Saturday, April 28, 10:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Panoramic view of San Francisco, the East Bay and Mt. Diablo way beyond from Twin Peaks Blvd.

Panoramic view of San Francisco, the East Bay and Mt. Diablo way beyond from Twin Peaks Blvd.

Join us for a spectacular climb to the top of San Francisco on this 6-mile hike up and over world-famous Twin Peaks. At an elevation of 922 feet, only Mt. Davidson to the south is higher within the city limits. Starting at the Glen Park BART station, we’ll follow Islais Creek in Glen Canyon Park to the trail up to Twin Peaks. On the summit of the south peak, we’ll pat ourselves on the back for arriving on foot, rather than car or bus, and then marvel at the 360-degree view from the Farallon Islands to Mt. Tam, over to Mt. Diablo and then down to the San Mateo Bridge (fingers crossed for a clear day). After lunch, we’ll visit two secret city treasures: Tank Hill and Mt. Olympus before passing through Buena Vista Park and ending at 16th Street Misson BART station.

For more details, visit

Camino Happy Hour at a location near BART! Date and details coming soon.

Because the Bay Area has so many great restaurants, we like the idea of trying a different venue each month. If you have a recommendation for the May Happy Hour, please share!


4th Annual Lake Tahoe Pilgrim’s Rendezvous
July 20 – 22, 2018

I’m sharing an event hosted by Camino friends Dave Jennings and Monica Armanino.  An open invitation to Pilgrims, both those who have walked a Camino to Santiago de Compostela, and those planning to walk a Camino in the near future.

Join Dave and Monica for a weekend of hiking, and experience or rekindle the ‘SPIRIT’ of the Camino de Santiago. All amidst the natural beauty of the Sierra Nevadas.  Share Camino experiences, community meals, Pilgrim Mass, Camp-out in the pristine mountain setting at 8900 ft. on Mt. Rose (North Lake Tahoe), or enjoy the hospitality of a veteran Pilgrim’s home.  A heart and mind altering experience. Limited group, reserve early. There is no charge, like much of the Camino it is all Donativo.

For information, full schedule, and reservations contact:
David Jennings – Cbellasail@sbcglobal or (530) 412-0144  

I had the pleasure of meeting Dave and Monica at a hike in Pt. Reyes when I was preparing for the albergue experience.

That’s a wrap!

There are always opportunities to train for or learn about the Camino. 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.

For those who live elsewhere, there are Camino hotspots all over the USA and the American Pilgrims on the Camino (APOC) website has a listing of local chapters where you can find Camino events. There are also many active Facebook groups to learn about events in your region. Check your local REI store for workshops and presentations about the Camino. Check for events in your area.

apoclogoVisit the Northern California Chapter page on the APOC website.

Join the Peregrinos Northern California Facebook group (closed group for Northern California residents only)

Buen Camino!

Here is a short prayer suitable to say before an Easter meal.

Easter Grace Blessing
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with us this day.
May this meal be blessed as we gather to celebrate together.
May your love be shared amongst us as we enjoy the gift of fellowship.
May we remember to give out the grace and forgiveness that you have freely given us,
And may we always give thanks for your sacrificial love.

The Camino Provides patch

The rainbow shell design was inspired by the concept of chakras. Learn more.
Purchase for $4 each at

My mission is to celebrate the Camino de Santiago and the pilgrim’s journey, from the calling to Compostela and beyond. I do this by sharing informative tips on training, gear, and routes; by promoting Camino related events in the Bay Area; by interviewing pilgrims and sharing inspiring stories; and by curating content relevant to the Camino.  Purchases help to defray the costs of hosting and managing this blog so that I can keep sharing the Camino love!

Digame, por favor.

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