Some things in life you just have to do for yourself and not watch a movie about it before you take the plunge.
Yes, you read that right.
Don’t watch any movies about it first. Independent or from Hollywood.
About what? Hiking that is.
Yes we know the conventional wisdom is to acquire all of the education you can about a subject or pathway ahead of time. Study films and talk to people to gain some insights on their experiences.
We’re good with the last suggestion.
The thing about hiking movies is that something bad always seems to happen to the hero or heroine.
Look at some of the titles and what happens during their hike.
In Back Country, a great Canadian film, you will eventually be mauled by one of the largest bears you’ve ever seen.
It is distributed by IFC Midnight. Not IFC Daytime. Not IFC Bedtime. Midnight. Madness.
How about A Lonely Place To Die? Does the title provide you with any clues? Here is the storyline. The operative word is “Die”.
While hiking and climbing in the Scottish Highlands, a group of five mountaineers discover a young Serbian girl buried in a small chamber. What should they do? Rescue her of course.
One small detail before you do. She’s been kidnapped.
Forget the, let’s go get help and come back later theory (Translation: I’m gonna save my butt first. I’m going to high tail it out of here). When you do, she won’t be there when you come back with help because her captors have seen your tracks and moved her.
In the attempt to get the girl to safety, you’ll become caught up in a terrifying game of cat and mouse with the kidnappers.
So far, no good. Time for another hiking movie.
Maybe 127 Hours?
What does that stand for anyway? Whatever it stands for it’s too darn long.
Expect to lose an arm or a leg. Maybe both.
Hey, here’s one. The Loneliest Planet? Could be something to think about except here you won’t be lonely for long because someone is going to put a shot gun to your head.
Why don’t we keep browsing? Yeah. Here goes one. The title? Landmine Goes Click. Guess who is standing on the landmine, out in the woods, with a shot gun pointed at him while his girlfriend is about to get raped?
Well we could keep going but we think that you get the point.
Not so sure that watching a hiking movie before you go hiking is the best idea.
Look, we have hiked to and through a ton of places in Northern California and never once had a shot gun placed at our head. Never stepped on a landmine either. Fortunately have seen but avoided all bears not named Yogi. We were more concerned about Mountain Lions but never saw one of those either.
Still there are dangers out there.
Aren’t there dangers in the city too?
Life is to be lived so get out and hike. Especially around Northern California and near San Francisco.
Yes, do your research and homework first and initially try small, safe easy hikes with friends who have already hiked before.
Your biggest concerns will be about not getting lost and making sure to have enough food and water.
So let’s say that you have done your due diligence.
Where can you go to get some gear and advice in the San Francisco Bay Area?
Young’s Backpacking received some nice reviews. Here is their information found at their Facebook, “Quality Equipment For Hiking, Backpacking and Mountaineering. Arc’Teryx, Mystery Ranch, Patagonia, North Face, JanSport, Gregory, Osprey, MSR, and more!”
They are located in Berkley.
Now that you are almost ready, remember that suggestion about listening to someone who is a seasoned hiker? Why don’t we do that now and turn our attention to a visiting writer.
This doesn’t come with a Hollywood movie.
The 5 Best Places To Hike Near San Francisco, California
By Trev Fenner
If you live in the Bay area of California or are just visiting, there is an endless supply of beautiful outdoor recreational areas to hike. Hiking in the San Francisco area is not only a great way to get in some great exercise to improve your health, it’s a wonderful way to see some of the most beautiful natural landscapes throughout the area.
There are lots of great areas for hiking or taking a nice long walk to clear the mind and stretch those legs. Here are five of the best places to go hiking in the San Francisco area. Situated among the beauty of the coast line, San Francisco has a small community feel with a big city attitude.
Strawberry Hill, hidden within San Francisco’s Golden State Park covers and entire island in the middle of Stow Lake. At a height of 430 feet tall, it is the highest point in the whole park. This is a gorgeous place to take a two plus mile hike and take in the views of Downtown San Francisco, Marin and the Golden Gate Bridge. You’ll not only take in some truly gorgeous views, but have some fun getting fit at the same time.
Those who have hiked Lands’ End have said it’s probably the most perfect hiking area for those looking for a great workout, and best part – if you get tired you can stop and take in the view of the Golden Gate Bridge. It’s a three and half mile round trip and if you are looking for an even more extensive ‘workout’ simply follow the signs that will take you to Mile Rock Beach were you can visit Eagle Point Labyrinth or hike down to the beach and back. You’ll find yourself getting fit in no time, or even discover if you not as fit as you thought you were. Either way it’s a great hiking experience.
The Bayside trail is less than a mile each way but you will get a bit of a workout because of the substantial amount of stairs. Don’t let the stairs scare you out of hiking this great trail though, because it’s well worth the beautiful views of the Bay, the Marin Headlands and the Golden Gate Bridge. In case you haven’t notice almost every great hiking area gives you a view of the Golden Gate and the Bay itself. The Bayside trail also gives hikers a history lesson along the way on the gun batteries.
If you love hiking along the lake-shore on sandy trails then head over to Fort Funston for some fun. Fort Funston is in Southwest of the city and is a part of the ‘Golden Gate National Recreation Area The park’s trails present extensive views of the ocean for those who enjoy seeing the natural beauty of the coast.
What could be better than hiking in the forest? Well hiking in the forest in the city of course. Mount Sutro Out & Back is amazingly beautiful filled with green ivy, forget-me-not flowers, ferns all set among the giant eucalyptus and various other plant life. It’s like being transported into a fantasy kingdom are you walk into the fog and mist suspended in the treetops. Of course like the other great hiking areas, you will get the glimpse of the Golden Gate Bridge.
Regardless of what kind of outdoor recreation you want, and whether or not you are hiking for health, fun or get fit, there is no better place around than the San Francisco area for some awesome hiking experiences.
One of my favorite outdoor gear websites is Fenner Supply Co.. They offer a big selection of stuff and most of it is pretty affordable even for a mid-20’s outdoorsy dude like myself. Definitely check them out, and don’t forget to use code TFEZINE10 to get 10% off your first purchase over $100!
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Opening photo pexels.com rawpixel.com photo credit