New Program--Section hiking the Pacific Crest Trail! (more details to follow)
Good news! Ralph and I are giving a number of talks/slide presentations in July and August on section-hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.
Our Pacific Crest Trail program: Not everyone has the time and inclination to thru-hike the entire 2,650 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), but many dream of hiking part of it. Others would like to do all of it--eventually, but how? When Ralph and I made our first hike on the PCT in 1989, it was really about climbing Mt. Whitney. We didn't plan to complete the JMT, much less the PCT, but after a few more Sierra trips, the bug took hold and we went on to complete both. We started doing two trips a year on the PCT--one in Southern California in early spring, and one in Northern California and points north in late summer. We continued doing 400 or so miles each year until, finally, in 2010, we made their final push and did our 400 miles through the Cascades in Washington.
We will give an overview of the PCT--such as the route, elevations, and resupply info. Who is hiking? How difficult is it? What resources are available (such as water reports)? They'll share tips and best practices. Throughout, you'll enjoy images of the journey. The goal is to help you plan and prepare for your own adventures--whether for sections of a few dozen miles or of a few hundred.
We are very excited about these events; please mark your calendars and join us. Events are free, but reservations at REI events are highly recommended. Details and signups can be found at https://www.rei.com/stores/berkeley.html
Susan is the author of Patagonia Chronicle: On Foot in Torres del Paine, Camino Chronicle: Walking to Santiago, and We're in the Mountains Not over the Hill: Tales and Tips from Seasoned Women Backpackers.
We are Bay Area residents. We are long-distance hikers who have section-hiked the entire 2,650-mile Pacific Crest Trail, walked almost 2,000 miles of pilgrimage trails in Spain, France, and Portugal, climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, and completed the Circuit Trail in Torres del Paine, Chile.
If you are interested in hosting one of our programs, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Camino program:
Since 2001, independent travelers Susan and Ralph Alcorn have walked close to 2,000 miles through France, Portugal, and Spain following ancient pilgrimage routes to Santiago de Compostela, the reputed burial place of the disciple Saint James. Susan will give a digital presentation of their five-week trek along Spain’s most traveled route, the 500-mile Camino from Roncesvalles to Santiago, and will share a few highlights of their days on pilgrimage paths in France. Come walk with Susan through quaint medieval towns in the high mountains of the Pyrenees, across the fertile red soils of the Rioja region, to the lush green Galician Hills. Following the program, Susan will sign copies of her book Camino Chronicle: Walking to Santiago.
Camino Chronicle: Walking to Santiago was named a finalist for the prestigious Ben Franklin award for Best Travel Essay 2007. Awards were given by the PMA, Publishers Marketing Association, in New York City on May 31, 2007.
Visit Susan's blog at www.backpack45.blogspot.com where she discusses hiking, backpacking, the writing life, and what makes life so interesting and sweet.
Please check back for changes and updates. E-mail Susan at backpack45 "at sign" yahoo.com for more info on events.
Podcast with Aaron Richardson at http://onlinebusinessrookie.com/2008/11/11/exclusive-release-my-first-interview/
For bookstore readings, backpacking clinics, Pacific Crest Trail, John Muir Trail, Patagonia and Camino de Santiago slide presentations contact Shepherd Canyon Books at 510-339-3441. Out of the San Francisco Bay Area presentations will be considered.
Feedback from Event Planners
7/2016: Updating work soon!
April 23, 2008
Dear Susan, On behalf of the Sonora Branch of AAUW, I want to thank you for your wonderful presentation to our group. ...I heard glowing reports about your photos and the description of your journey across Spain. Everyone really enjoyed it.
Sincerely, Sue Osborn
January 31, 2008 Thank you so much for coming to our branch and giving your wonderful lecture on traveling the Camino! Honestly! My only goal was to provide good adult programming to our community and now I find myself ready to go on a trip of my own. All because of your inspiring lecture and beautiful slides! Thanks again for being a bright spot in our dreary January and for being such an excellent kick-off to our series of adult programs. Sarah Spindle and the Ygnacio Valley Library staff (Walnut Creek, CA)
Free Hiking Newsletter: To receive Susan's backpacking/hiking newsletter, send a message to backpack45 "at sign" yahoo.com. In the newsletter, there are always trail tips and information, notices of upcoming hikes and gatherings, and news of interest to the hiking community. After a long-distance hike, you'll find a write-up of our experiences and summaries of those trips are archived on this website under "Monthly Newsletter."
Archived on-line Podcast (trailcast #26, dated April 5, 2006) on Robert Butler's website: www.trailcast.org. Susan Alcorn describes her process of writing about women's backpacking for her book We're in the Mountains Not over the Hill: Tales and Tips from Seasoned Women Backpackers, and the hikes she and Ralph have completed that have gone into her upcoming book, Camino Chronicle: Walking to Santiago.
KPFA "Cover to Cover" interview: Author Susan Alcorn interviewed by Denny Smithson, May 24, 2004. Go to www.KPFA.org and check Denny's archived programs.
If you would like to be on Susan's e-mail list to receive her monthly newsletter with backpacking tips and news, send an e-mail message to: backpack45*yahoo.com (Important: substitute a @ for the * in the e-mail address.)
Susan's blog, which has hiking related topics, but also her musings, is at backpack45.blogspot.com.
Photo hiking related events:>
California Wildflower blooming schedule - the www.calphoto.com website has a lot of things besides wildflowers - photo tips, fall colors calendar, various how to photo topics, but look here for Antelope Valley poppy display times, San Francisco regional park current reports on wildflowers, much more
The website for the Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve near Lancaster, California is http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=627 The poppy season is generally mid-March to mid-May; the reserve is open year round sunrise to sunset. The visitor center is open during the poppy season.
Wildflower Bloom Information Poppy Reserve Wildflower Hotline: (661) 724-1180
Theodore Payne Foundation Wildlflower Hotline: (818) 768-3533
San Francisco Bay Area Local Pilgrim Gatherings:
For current local pilgrim events: www.facebook.com/groups/Peregrinos.Northern.California
Outings and hiking related Events. This section is being updated! Check back soon!
Suggestion: When considering a hike with a group, contact the
hike leader to find out his/her pace and focus so that you
will know it's a good match with your interests.
The Sierra Club has free or low cost local hikes throughout the year. To find your region and hiking calendars, click on Sierra Club Regional Outings. For the San Francisco Bay area Sierra Club and other local hiking clubs click on Sierra Club SF Hiking, or San Francisco Bay Area Hiker.S.F.
http://www.slackpacker.com is a good place to find links to hiking websites both in the U.S. and abroad. Updates regularly.
Regional: S.F. Bay Area women who enjoy
hiking with a congenial group have many
opportunities: Women on Common Ground (women only) hikes are sponsored by East Bay
Regional Park District and led by naturalist Katie Colbert. Dates,
times vary. Reservations required, contact:
925-862-2601. EBRPD also offers Wednesday walks (open to
all ages and abilities); obtain a flyer by calling
Diablo Hiking Club (Pleasant Hill Recreation) offers day hikes and ski trips (Sierra). Some members are interested in finding backpacking partners. Contact: www.geocities.com/diablohike, E-mail email@example.com, or board member Ellen Salassi (925) 229-3313 for further information.
The East Bay Casual Hikers http://hiking.bondon.com is an informal co-ed group of adults who meet regularly to go hiking. Their hikes are generally 3-9 miles in length, or 2-4 hours, on public trails in the Contra Costa Country area. Their website also has an extensive listing of other Bay Area hiking groups. Also contact: Jon Bondon (925) 210-2242 or email: JBondon2@BrwnCald.com
http://www.bahiker.com/ This website lists where-to-hike info for the San Francisco Bay Area.
www.tahoerimtrail.org has a series of guided hikes that let you complete the TRT over the course of the summer. The website also lists a number of good day hikes. Something like 20 hikes and backpacks are scheduled annually.
Emma Gatewood first hiked the entire 2160 mile Appalachian Trail at the age of 67. She last hiked it at the age of 76.