Camino and Hiking Events in August 2018

Buen día, amigos. Local Camino events provide some great training hikes and learning opportunities, plus the camaraderie of being on the Camino, right here at home. Below is lineup of Camino-related events and hikes for August 2018 in the San Francisco Bay Area and slightly beyond.

Lake Merritt Walk
Saturday, August 4, 10:30 am

Join us on this walk that takes place on the first Saturday of the month, rain or shine. We meet at the Pergola (aka “The Columns”) on the east side of Oakland’s Lake Merritt at 10:30 am, and start walking by 10:45 am. It’s a level, 3.3-mile walk around the lake that takes about an hour. Whether you’re a newbie or Camino veteran, everyone is welcome. Bring your questions, answers and pilgrim spirit!

Directions: Take BART to the Lake Merritt or 19th Street Oakland station and navigate your way to the Pergola.
Service Modification for August 4: For those coming from SF on BART, train service will stop at West Oakland with free AC Transit bus bridge to 19th Street. See the BART alert for details.

If you drive, make sure to give yourself enough time to find parking, as there are many activities on Saturday mornings in the Lake Merritt area. FYI: There is a small fee lot at the corner of Euclid and Grand Avenues that is close to the Pergola.

RSVP not required, but if you’re on the NorCal Facebook group, join event.

Camino 101: Resources
Wednesday, August 8, 2018, 6:30 – 8:30 PM
REI Sacramento, 1790 Expo Parkway

Join the Sacramento Chapter of American Pilgrims on the Camino (APOC) to discover handy tips and beneficial resources for your upcoming Camino de Santiago. They will introduce different websites and books, various apps and blogs that people have found helpful both in planning their upcoming journey as well as to utilize while on their Camino. They will set aside a large portion of time to answer questions on topics that have been discussed in the first two presentations. Have a packing question? Unsure if you should book a bus or train ticket? What is it like to sleep in a room with 50 strangers? Can you drink the water in Spain? How safe is your pack in the albergue? Feel free to bring your questions and ask a group who has walked this path before.

This is a free event but you must register with REI to guarantee a seat!

Angel Island Hike
Saturday, August 25th

Angel Island

Join us for beautiful vistas of the San Francisco Bay Area as we hike the five-mile loop trail around historic Angel Island. This is a moderate hike with just 400 feet of elevation gain, but brings us to the former Immigration Station, the so-called “Ellis Island of the West,” and various Army installations that were active from the Civil War through the Cold War.

Dress for the weather (layers work well) and bring a bag lunch, water, hat, sunscreen and your phone/camera. Walking poles will be helpful, but not required on this path. If you are yet to experience the Camino, bring your questions so you can get advice from seasoned pilgrims. Led by Rob Nickerson, chapter steering committee member. No RSVP required. Just meet us at the ferry landing on Angel Island at 10:30 AM.

Getting There (by ferry)

From SF to Angel IslandBlue & Gold Fleet

  • Ferry Building: Depart 9:15 AM (Adult $19.50, Senior 65+ $11) or Pier 41: Depart 9:45 AM (same prices)
  • Angel Island: Arrive 10:10 AM

Prices are the round-trip total (one-way tickets are sold so buy two to save time) and include the Angel Island State Park admission fee. If you purchase your tickets online, print and bring your confirmation. If you start at the Ferry Building, exchange it for your boarding pass on the ferry. Otherwise, purchase them on board. If you start at Pier 41, go to the Blue & Gold box office to purchase or exchange your confirmation for the boarding pass if you purchased online.

From Tiburon to Angel IslandAngel Island Tiburon Ferry

  • Tiburon Terminal: Depart 10:00 AM (Adult $15, Senior 65+ $14)
  • Angel Island: Arrive 10:15 AM

Prices are round-trip and include the Angel Island State Park admission fee. Purchase tickets on board. Cash or check only. No credit or Clipper cards. The Tiburon terminal is located at 21 Main St. Here are driving directions and parking information.

From Oakland or Alameda: Although there is service to Pier 41 on the San Francisco Bay Ferry, the transfer time is too tight (5 min.) to connect with the Blue & Gold Fleet ferry departure at 9:45 AM. Instead, take BART to San Francisco and exit the Embarcadero station. Walk east on Market St. to the Ferry Building and take the ferry as described above.

Service from Vallejo to Pier 41 is available from the San Francisco Bay Ferry. However, service from Larkspur on the Golden Gate Ferry does not begin early enough.

We’ll finish up in time to take the last ferry back to SF that departs at 4:20 PM and arrives at Pier 41 at 5:25 PM. Those returning to Tiburon have more options with the last departure at 5:20 PM.

Angel Island Summit Option: Depending on time and interest, a break-out group will hike up to the top of Angel Island at Mt. Livermore (788 feet).

Post-Hike Happy Hour: If time permits before the ferry ride back, we’ll stop by the Angel Island Café for drinks and live music.

Group photo taken before the hike by Rennie Archibald

Group photo taken by Rennie Archibald before an Angel Island hike


Free Oakland Hiking Tour on Labor Day
Monday, September 3rd
9 am – 12:30 pm

Enjoy a hike from Oakland’s Dimond District up to Joaquin Miller Park. This beautiful 7.5 mile hike will go through Oakland’s Dimond Canyon and Joaquin Miller Park, and will finish with a spectacular view of San Francisco Bay.

When: Monday, September 3 at 9:00am (the group will leave promptly at 9:10am)
Where: Meet at La Farine Bakery: 3411 Fruitvale Ave, Oakland, CA 94602 – free parking in back
Details: Steady, 7.5-mile hike in Oakland’s largest wildland trail system, with some steep uphills and downhills, and narrow trails through the canyons. Bring water, sturdy shoes, and bus fare ($2.25).

Register at:

Watch 30-second PSA:

 “From right here in the heart of urban Oakland, we’re connected to a trail system that spans the entire East Bay. You could hike for days and days.”—Stan Dodson, Tour Leader

I went on the hike twice and highly recommend it for Camino training.  I observed that most people on these hikes don’t bring trekking poles. Pilgrims, there are some steep parts at the end, so if you have poles, bring them.

Health & Hiking POLES Weekend Retreat in Point Reyes with Jayah Faye Paley
Fri., Sept. 14, 12:30 pm to Sun., Sept. 16, 4:30 pm

Join trekking pole expert Jayah Faye Paley for a Health & Hiking Poles Weekend Retreat, September 14-16.   This is an opportunity to condition yourself for the Camino and/or LIFE!  Get away for 3 days and 2 nights at the wonderful Clem Miller Environmental Education Center.

Click here to see the schedule and much more info.  Most weekends thru Point Reyes Field Institute run $440 and you have to bring all your own food.  This Retreat is $285 and includes most of your (healthy & yummy)  food.   Here’s the description:

Connect with nature.  Rejuvenate.   Experience a variety of classes and activities designed to help you maintain your ability to enjoy the outdoors.   Together we will learn transformative skills focused on improving and maintaining your individual skeletal structure and quality of life.

The weekend will include structured classes, group movement and exercise sessions plus a variety of health and wellness discussions.  Participants may enjoy all or some of the activities.   Learn and practice skills and brilliantly designed, progressive routines to enhance your health and joint function as well as optimize, personalize and program your fitness.

Expert instruction will help you improve your ability to hike efficiently and comfortably using poles. A variety of top quality poles will be provided – learn which model fits you best and will enable you to achieve your hiking goals. Weekend rate includes two nights’ accommodations.  Food is brilliantly organized and all you have to bring is a few items, not all your own food.

RATE: $265 Member Price / $285 Non-Member Price
Weekend rate includes two nights’ accommodations and most meals.

Welcome Home Potluck
Oakland, California
Saturday, November 10, 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

St. Augustine Catholic Church
400 Alcatraz Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

Help the Northern California chapter celebrate this year’s returning pilgrims at our annual Welcome Home Potluck. We’ll be gathering at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Oakland, near the border with Berkeley.

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.

Visit 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!

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!

I am sharing the recently updated vision statement of American Pilgrims on the Camino.


We inspire all who seek the spirit of the Camino to connect with the global community of pilgrims.


Foster the enduring tradition of the Camino by supporting its infrastructure, gathering pilgrims together, and providing information and encouragement to past and future pilgrims.

Organizational Values

Community, Gratitude, Service, Simplicity

Spirit of the Camino

  • Live in the moment.
  • Welcome each day – its pleasures and its challenge.
  • Make others feel welcome.
  • Share.
  • Feel the spirit of those who have gone before you.
  • Imagine those who will follow you.
  • Appreciate those who walk with you today.

The Spirit of the Camino is printed on our APOC Credentials. I love it.

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