From multiple campsites mere steps from the Pacific Ocean, to serene oases in the midst of towering redwoods, excellent camping and backpacking options abound in San Francisco and the Bay Area. Angel Island State Park is a quick ferry ride from downtown (though you’ll need to book far in advance), and campsites are available at Mount Tam State Park, Point Reyes National Seashore, and Mount Diablo.
And for some seriously sophisticated adult beverages around the campfire, your best bet is Bothe-Napa State Park, nestled in the heart of Napa Valley wine country. Pick up a bottle or two at the nearby Velo Vino, just down the road in St. Helena, a hybrid of tasting room/bike museum that’s owned by the same folks behind Clif Bars.
One word of wisdom: California state parks open up their reservations six months in advance, on the first of every month. It may seem excessive to plan so far in advance, but it’s most guaranteed way to secure a your spot. Some places have walk-up reservations only; calling ahead can ensure there’s still space.
Sierra Club San Francisco Bay Chapter,Trail MavensSports Basement, REI