align-toparrow-leftarrow-rightbackbellblockcalendarcamerachatcheckchevron-downchevron-leftchevron-rightchevron-small-downchevron-small-leftchevron-small-rightchevron-small-upchevron-upcircle-with-crosscrosseditfacebookglobegoogleimagesinstagramlocation-pinmagnifying-glassmailmoremuplabelShape 3 + Rectangle 1outlookpersonplusImported LayersImported LayersImported Layersshieldstartwitteryahoo

Beginners’ Backpack Course–learn the basics of backcountry travel

*** Update March 9: This course has been filled to capacity. Whether you have RSVP'd or not, we are no longer accepting applications. ***

Application deadline: Saturday , March 2.

Please note that for this meetup, your RSVP does NOT sign you up for the course.  Deadline for signups is Saturday, March 2.

Indoor seminar: Saturday, March 16, 9 am – 5 pm, Naturebridge Conference Center, Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

Backpack trip weekends: April 13 – 14, April 20 – 21, April 27 – 28, May 4 – 5 (choose one).

Learn how to travel safely and comfortably with only a pack on your back—during the annual Beginners’ Backpack Course run by the Sierra Club Bay Chapter’s Backpack Section. This opportunity is ideal for folks with little or no experience in backpacking who want to explore backcountry trails and get away from the crowds.
The course consists of:

  • a full-day indoor session including short lectures, discussions, and a slide and equipment show;
  • one overnight weekend backpack trip (Saturday – Sunday) in the Bay Area in small groups led by experienced instructors, to try out your gear, learn how to set up a tent and operate a backpack stove, practice basic navigation skills, and, most important, experience how it feels to hike with a heavy pack on your back. Participation in the trip requires attendance at the indoor session.

You should be in good physical shape with no serious health conditions, and should have some experience in day hiking.

Families with children over 12 are welcome. The course is not suited for younger children.

Cost is $65 per adult; $40 for children 12 – 17.

Early registration is recommended, as space is limited. Applications received after March 2 will be considered only if space is still available.

Information and sign-up forms:

For further questions contact Thomas Meissner at [masked] (strongly preferred) or [masked] (only if you do not have access to e-mail).

Join or login to comment.

  • Roger W.

    Hey guys, this class is full. We can't take any more people for the class and trips. If you missed out signing up and would be interested in a future class, email me and let me know. Thanks.

    March 10, 2013

    • Dee

      Hello please notify me too if you decide to repeat this class in the future. I am very interested. Thanks a lot.

      March 14, 2013

    • Roger W.

      We'll certainly do that...

      March 14, 2013

  • Cynthia A D.

    While I have backpacked before, I have never been formally trained. I'm interested in more information, please

    March 10, 2013

  • Laura B

    REI San Francisco is having a used gear sale this Saturday if anyone needs to buy something.

    February 28, 2013

  • Roger W.

    You will need some basic gear for the overnight backpack trip - a tent, sleeping bag, backpack, etc. Many people use the trip to purchase and try out some gear (since you can always exchange it at REI if it doesn't work out for you). If you're not yet sure backpacking is for you, or if you're on a limited budget, you can also borrow gear from friends or rent some gear from local stores. We'll give a lot of advice in the class on what gear you will eventually need to backpack in all conditions, but for the training trips you will not need to purchase a full range of equipment.

    1 · February 28, 2013

  • Linh

    I'm very interested in this event! I have a quick question, will we be required to purchase various backpacking gear for these trips?

    February 27, 2013

  • Cynthia A D.

    While I have backpacked before, I have never been formally trained. I'm interested in more information, please

    February 23, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I work on Saturdays now

    February 25, 2013

  • Gary C.

    Just found out that I will have to be out of town that weekend. Will there be another course coming up soon?

    February 23, 2013

    • Will L.

      Our beginners' backpack course is held once a year.

      February 23, 2013

  • Bob S.

    Please note that simply RSVPing to this announcement does not enroll you into the course. You will need to register through the Backpacking Section's page at the Chapter website as shown in the listing above.

    February 23, 2013

8 went

Your organizer's refund policy for Beginners’ Backpack Course–learn the basics of backcountry travel

Refunds are not offered for this Meetup.

People in this
Meetup are also in:

Sign up

Meetup members, Log in

By clicking "Sign up" or "Sign up using Facebook", you confirm that you accept our Terms of Service & Privacy Policy