August 2018
Welcome to the California Alpine Club's Outings e-bulletin. Look here for details about upcoming outings and our monthly Saturday Sorties to trails of interest throughout the Bay Area. We'll also tell you about new trips in the planning stages and other Outings-related news. So read on, enjoy!
The Diaspora of Backpacking Refugees
When smoke from Northern California's various fires invaded the Lake Tahoe area, the intrepid members of our first backpack outing started looking for other destinations. Ultimately we decided to delay our adventure until fall. But that didn't mean disappointment and a ho-hum weekend at home. Finding ourselves with a weekend free, we made the best of it, each finding our own adventure in places of beauty and clean air.

Van Damme State Park: With our Van Damme camping trip just around the corner, Outings co-chairs Renee Hamilton and Ernie Castiaux took a drive to Mendocino to scout the area. CAC member and Van Damme ranger Cindi Whitehead helped us select the most spacious campsites for our upcoming outing, and directed us to some beautiful trails in Van Damme and Russian Gulch State Parks. We dined in nearby Mendocino and visited the Point Cabrillo Light Station. With beaches, redwood forest trails, historical sites and several nearby state parks, Van Damme State Park offers something for everyone. There is still space on this terrific outing, so sign up if you want to be a part of the adventure.
A peek of the dramatic coast near the Point Cabrillo Light Station.
Beautiful trails abound in the shade
of the magnificent redwoods.
Point Reyes National Seashore: Bob Harlow, on the other hand, was bound for Point Reyes. He snagged the last cancellation, explored the trails and camped under the stars with the gentle sound of waves on Sculptured Beach. A perfect way to make the best of a Sierra backpacking cancellation!
The adventure begins at the Bear Valley Trailhead,
Sculptured Beach
Dennis Winslow found clean air and good water right here in the San Francisco Bay. Dennis took his canoe out for some practice runs in anticipation of the CAC Upper Missouri River canoe trip in Montana, September 16-22. 
Upcoming Outings
Bioluminescence on a moonless night
on Tomales Bay
Bioluminescence Kayak on Tomales Bay
September 2, 2018
Originally limited to 12 participants, our bioluminescence kayak trip quickly oversubscribed. Renee Hamilton was able to secure spaces for 28 members reserving every possible place with two different outfitters. A reminder to all participants: please complete your waiver before arriving at the departure point so that it doesn't delay our departure. Also, if you wish to use Alpine Lodge as your home base for the kayak trip, please contact Mary Ann Bernard at Standard lodge fees apply.
Upper Missouri River, Montana
Upper Missouri Canoe Trip
September 17 - 21, 2018
ATTENTION! Due to a cancellation, there is one space available on the 4-night/5-day canoe exploration of the Upper Missouri River in Montana with Bob “Dr. Outdoors” Hanson. Trip cost is estimated at $250.00 per person, which includes canoe rentals and meals. It does not include transportation to Great Falls, MT, two overnights in the Best Western Hotel or car shuttles at the river. This trip has been full for many months, so act quickly to take advantage of this opportunity. If you want to join this trip, please contact Renee Hamilton at and send a $100.00 deposit to Renee Hamilton, 1 McIntosh Court, Novato, CA 94949. (415-686- 3966). Your check will not be deposited until you are confirmed on the trip.
Van Damme State Park
October 5-7, 2018
Join Renée Hamilton and Ernie Castiaux for an exploration of Mendocino’s Van Damme State Park, which offers a scenic beach, a lush fern-filled forest and year-round camping. This park has something for everyone: easy, moderate and strenuous hiking trails, redwoods, a beach and protected coves for kayaking and the famed pygmy forest. Of all the park system's units along the Mendocino coast, Van Damme is perhaps the richest in terms of historical resources connected with the redwood lumber industry. We are especially fortunate that park ranger and CAC member Cindi Whitehead will camp with us. Cindi is a font of information about the park, it's history and the surrounding area. Trip cost of $75 includes campsite and all meals from Friday dinner through Sunday lunch. For information, contact Renee Hamilton at 415-686-3966 or To join this outing, please send payment of $75 to Renee Hamilton at 1 McIntosh Court, Novato, CA 94949. Payment via PayPal is also accepted.
Monarch Butterfly Day Trip
December 2, 2018
Join Renée Hamilton for a day trip to Natural Bridges State Park in Santa Cruz during the peak season of the Monarch Butterflies. The day begins with a docent-led tour at 11:00 a.m. to learn about the life cycle of these amazing and beautiful insects. After a potluck picnic lunch, continue to the nearby tide pools that promise to be teaming with life around the 1:04 p.m. low tide. The docent tour is free of charge, but there is a $10 parking fee at the State Park. If you would like to join this outing, please notify Renée Hamilton at 415-686-3966, or
Christmas in the Monterey Adobes
December 7 - 8, 2018
Return to the days of Alta California and see Monterey’s historic adobes splendidly decorated for the season with welcoming,
candle-lit luminarias at each entrance. Enjoy festive music, living history portrayals, and the warm spirit of this year’s 34th annual celebration. Cost is $50 and will cover the Adobes tour ticket, happy hour on the 8th and a sack lunch on the 9th for a beautiful hike at Point Lobos State Reserve. A group motel rate has been secured and you will be provided information so you can make reservations individually. For information, contact Rani Devadasan at or 415-497-5568. To reserve a spot, please send a deposit of $50 to Rani Devadasan, 1225 Denlyn St., Novato CA 94947.
But that's not all!
Here's what we have in the works in 2019....
Wild & Scenic Film Festival
Nevada City - January 18-20, 2019
Save the date! Join Mary Cahill for a very special weekend in Nevada City during the Wild & Scenic Film Festival. Experience the adrenaline of adventure films from around the world and learn how individuals and communities are taking action. The Wild and Scenic Film Festival will leave you feeling inspired and motivated to make a difference in your community and your world. There will also be opportunities for area hikes to explore the beauty of the Nevada City environs. This trip is in development, so stay tuned for details in future e-bulletins.
Death Valley
March 27 - 31, 2019
SAVE THE DATE! Join Mary Larkin-Berlinski for a weekend of car-camping and exploring the mystifying and eerily beautiful landscapes of Death Valley. This trip is in the very early stages of development and a description will follow, but we want you to save the date. Cost is estimated to be $100 per person. For more information, contact Mary at or 831-345-6963.
Berry Creek Falls
Big Basin Backing
April, 2019
Ernie Castiaux will lead a 2-night/3-day easy backpacking trip in Big Basin State Park. This is a great destination for beginner backpackers, as the hike to our overnight destination, Sunset Trail Camp, is only 6 miles. We'll spend two nights there, allowing for beautiful day hikes in one of our state's most beautiful redwood parks. Ernie has chosen April to take advantage of peak water in the park's myriad waterfalls. Reservations will be made in January, at which time we can lock in a weekend date.
Grand Canyon Raft Trip
July 8 - 15, 2019 (Tentative Dates)

Mary Larkin-Berlinski is also working on an 8-day Grand Canyon whitewater raft trip that includes a hike in and carpool back to the South Rim. The cost will be approximately $2900 plus air fare. This trip is in development and the dates are not yet confirmed. Stay tuned for more information.
Lake Genevieve
Lake Genevieve Mule Pack
August 18-23 (Tentative Dates)
Mary Larkin-Berlnski will lead our annual mule-pack trip, this time to beautiful Lake Genevieve in the Desolation Wilderness. The cost is estimated to be $400, which includes the wilderness permit, mule outfitters to carry our gear out and back, and all meals including Sunday night prior to meeting the outfitters Monday morning. Group size is limited to 15. For more information, contact Mary at or 831-345-6963.
Saturday Sorties
In recognition of the far-flung nature of our membership as well as the beauty that the entire Bay Area has to offer, the Outings Committee has launched Saturday Sorties. On the second Saturday each month, we’ll enjoy a day outing to locations primarily outside of Marin. Our goal is to bring the warmth and camaraderie we experience with the California Alpine Club to all our members, wherever they live, and create more opportunities for all to enjoy Nature’s bounty throughout the Bay Area and beyond.

Berkeley's Hidden Paths and Stairs
September 15, 2018
Explore Berkeley's Hidden Paths and Stairs with Karen Ulring. This 2B hike begins at 10:00 a.m. on September 15th. We will start our adventure at the corner of Bay View and Euclid Avenues across from the Berkeley Rose Garden and have lunch at Tilden Park. A complete description can be found on (MailScanner has detected a possible fraud attempt from "" claiming to be 
Another Report from the Trail
On August 4th,