What we're about
If you like to plan ahead, there are three hikes/walks/tours scheduled each week for the next three months. (Videos of past hikes are available here, click. While there you can Subscribe, comment and like what you see.) We'll be hiking in the most spectacular settings for the season. We'll hike in the shade if too hot and in the sun if chilly. Try to find the fog when the temps rise. Have lunch with a spectacular view and out of the wind. Hopefully with picnic tables and restrooms. Safety is always my #1 priority. I will be as aware as I can of any danger. But I can't be responsible for your safety. As adults you are responsible for your own personal safety and what you decide to do.
Liability Disclaimer: The organizer of this meet-up is not operating a business. All participants agree to assume 100% responsibility for their own safety, conduct, and well-being and recognize that possible hazards exist while participating in outdoor activities, and agree to participate solely at their own risk. If you RSVP “Yes” and/or attend any event, it shall be conclusively presumed that you understand and agree to this policy.
Look at some of the over 3000 photos (now over 4000) and picture yourself right there. Stay in shape and look ahead to bright days, sign-up for some hikes in the future while on-line here.
The group is for walkers and hikers who love to be immersed in the gorgeous, special places California offers. And while in that immersion, connect not only emotionally to these places, but learn about the natural science and human history of the locations. And to do this with kindness, patience and open heartedly. And best of all to make friends with those we get to know.
But the reality of managing a Meetup group is hard work. It has to be done carefully. Good judgement and basic people managing skills are needed. Around the world about roughly, 35% of those signing up for an Event, will actually show up.
I tell frequent no-showers to not bother to RSVP anymore and just show-up and surprise us! But some are RSVPing to whatever is interesting and then choose as the weekend approaches. I call it short-listing. I guess it's nice to make the short-lists.
When you compare Meetup to the social clubs of the past. Ski Clubs, Swim Clubs, Yachting Clubs, Country Clubs, Sierra Club, American Youth Hostels etc. Meetup is just Club Lite. Committing in a very personal relationship is a challenge for many. Is the same thing happening here in broader social relationships? Maybe keeping it lite is a way of compartmentalizing, keeping safe emotional boundaries. If friendships develop it will happen over the long term when an amount of certainty has developed?
If your work or life situation is totally stressing you out look for the Forest Bathing moments and Ocean Bathing (at Duxbury Reef) on the hikes that have as a goal reaching a meditative state of mind.
I've been leading hikes on Mt.Tam since 1995. So I know the areas very well. And also what to look for and when. I also love doing architectural tours of areas of Berkeley, the UC Campus, Albany, Richmond and El Cerrito.
These are very doable hikes for everyone who can hike. If you can manage walking up some very steep hills, can maintain your balance on very rocky, root covered uneven surfaces and have the stamina to walk about five miles you'll do fine. I think the best thing is to have a routine where you are walking everyday including going on these hikes. Please let me know if I can answer any questions, as far as getting started?
If the above concerns you let me say this. You have to start somewhere. Walking is very gentle. Come do as much as you can and then come again and do a little more. If you have to stop and go back to your car, just be aware of the return route. There is so much to gain don't let negative concerns stop you.
The cost of living in the Bay Area is very high. We all have to work, or have had to work, very hard, to afford to live here. One of the mitigating factors is the openness to diversity found here. One aspect of life here we can control is how we access one of the most beautiful outdoor recreation areas in the whole country. Not only the beautiful lands, the Bay and bio-diversity but the weather to allow us to get outside 24/365.
With the above said, utilize our amazing outdoors to forget about work and worries or the ravages of age and everyday cares and achieve a relaxed state of mind and body to the greatest extent you can. That's the goal of this Meetup and has been my personal goal for over twenty-seven years of spending as much time outdoors as I can. I'm never disappointed by this local outdoor experience. As well as the socializing, potential new friends met. Resulting in fulfillment of another vital need, maintaining our emotional well being and staying mentally healthy as well.
The bang for the effort put in, outweighs the driving time effort and the trade-offs, versus something else I could be doing.
Not only the intrinsic benefit of being out in nature. The physical/aerobic and muscle toning exercise is vital to our long term health. Regular outdoor hiking is a totally sustainable program of the healthiest, safest use of recreation time and a very affordable venue. I think the natural qualities found in the nature of Mt.Tam are unmatched by any other urban recreational area in the country. Make the best utilization of what is offered there.
It seems many have the impression that to have a fulfilling outdoor experience something very special must be experienced, via thrill seeking. The lure of a waterfall, spectacular views, sunsets, the full moonrise, the very peak of the wildflower bloom, some sort of special outdoor event, an unusual snowfall here, the height of fall foliage, mushrooms in profusion or some other unusual or rare occurrence must be sought to get the bang the effort requires.
Don't get me wrong the above are all fabulous. But they do not result in your having a sustainable, regular program for good health, well being, relaxation and fitness. And the great fallacy is, yes the above are great, but a plain, old regular hike on Mt.Tam, once or twice a week is so fulfilling all by itself. In this manner you can add a new, way of a way of life experience. Not just hit or miss thrill seeking, but a way of life that results in sustainable, ongoing happiness and health.
The organizer of this event is an unpaid volunteer and not a professional hiking guide. By signing up for this event you agree to assume all responsibility for your own safety, health consequences, conduct and well-being, and you hereby release its organizers, hosts and participants from any and all liability, claims, demands or causes of action that you now have, or may have in the future, for illness, injuries, damages, and/or economic loss of any kind or nature, arising in whole or in part out of the activities, advice, or information contained herein. You are also acknowledging that you are aware and have made your guests aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with this type of outdoor activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards.