Tips for Walking

Tips and Tricks for a Successful Urban Walking Journey in the Bay Area

What to bring: a small backpack, with minimal clothing (layered tops, light pants, socks, walking shoes, underwear, toiletries, a hat with visor, and lightweight Goretex jacket (with reflective fluorescent color) for walking along major roads and bike routes)

Equipment: Smart Phone with cellular access for Mapping and GPS locator, Titanium walking sticks (available at REI or other outdoor sporting goods shops); and small folding umbrella (or poncho).

Routes: See routes for each trip on tabs. You can deviate along the specified routes to avoid heavily trafficked areas. Just keep your target destination in mind at the key junctions where major turns have to be made and so you don’t drift too far off course. You can do this on most legs of the walks if you are familiar with the neighborhoods. Be aware of dead end streets and road blocks that might require backtracking.

Distances and Areas of Interest average about 10 miles a day. Start with something closer (7-8 miles) on the first day, then gradually increase the distance after you get used to walking. Maximum could be up to 20 miles for experienced walkers, but we haven’t ventured more than about 17 miles in any one day. That is already pretty exhaustive on flat terrain. Naturally the distance and elevation changes are variables that need to be taken into account when planning your trip.

Hotels and Restaurants Along the Way: Google map potential hotel sites along major business routes such as El Camino Real for best results. It’s best to use national chains (such as Marriott, Sheraton, Hilton Garden Inn, Holiday Inn Express, etc.) for easy bookings and cancellations. You can cancel reservations if plans change or you don’t make it by 6pm the day of your walk. Book directly through hotel chains for best pricing, and don’t forget to check discounts for AAA members, seniors and corporate travelers. A good starter is to use one of the following links:

Budgeting for Each Route: Depending on your standard and how close you are to urban areas, hotel chains can range from $100-$300, with $150 being the average; local, suburban hotels can be less expensive, so check those first.

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