Trail Mavens


Skill-based camping and backpacking trips for groups of extraordinary women. Ready to build fires, read maps, pitch tents, hike, laugh, and drink wine around the campfire? Join one of our weekend adventures.

pt reyes kayak camping


Boat-in camping is unlike anything else you've ever done. There's nothing quite like paddling a mile across a stunning bay, hopping out of a kayak into ankle-deep water, and pulling your vessel onto a sandy beach that's only accessible the way you just got there. The Tomales Bay side of Point Reyes is one of the most ethereally beautiful destinations we visit, a stunning setting for you to hone your own skills, deeply connect with other amazing women, and spend some quality time with the most important person in your life: you. We'd be remiss if we didn't mention the bioluminescence, too. If the night is dark enough, we'll be able to wave our fingers underwater and see them sparkle.

trip dates:

october 1-2

adventure type:

kayak camping

activity rating:

moderate, no previous
kayaking experience required

Trip Highlights

  • Fall asleep to the sound of the waves lapping just outside your tent
  • Spot cormorants, pelicans, ospreys, seals, tiger sharks, and bat rays as we cross Tomales Bay and explore the ins & outs and beaches of the interior coastline
  • Be dazzled by nighttime bioluminescence
  • Teach and learn camp set-up and break-down, open-top sea kayaking, fire-starting, camp cooking, and Leave No Trace principles
  • Hang and learn with a posse of inspiring women
  • Relax and unplug without emails or texts to distract you from you
  • A portion of your registration goes to Point Reyes National Seashore, to preserve and protect it for future generations

Itinerary Summary


7:30am departure from San Francisco and carpool to Marshall, kayak outfitting, paddle across world-famous Tomales Bay, afternoon hike or kayak exploration of neighboring beaches, down time for you, Outdoor Skills 'office hours', dinner, beach bonfire, s'mores, revelry, and one last paddle to see if we can spot the bioluminescence twinkling beneath our kayaks.


Leisurely breakfast, camp break-down, paddle to Marshall. Picnic lunch and closing ceremonies at Cowgirl Creamery in Point Reyes Station, and return to SF mid-afternoon, pending traffic.

Guides reserve the option to modify trip itineraries as necessary
due to weather, illness, injury or other unforeseen incidents.


Every single Trail Mavens trip starts with strangers. But don't worry - if you're nervous about not knowing anyone or not being skilled enough, every single Trail Mavens says this before they go.

To feel more confident before signing on, read our FAQs for the info you need.

+ Packing list

Each Trail Maven should plan on bringing the following:

  • Sleeping bag rated at 30° or colder
  • Sleeping pad
  • Headlamp with new batteries or spares
  • Backpacking bowl/cup/spork
  • A sense of adventure
  • Sleeping bag liner (if borrowing a Trail Mavens sleeping bag)
  • Personal clothing
  • Sturdy, broken-in walking/hiking shoes
  • Water bottles and/or hydration bladder with a minimum 2L capacity
  • Sunscreen/sun hat/sunglasses
  • Health insurance card & ID
  • Tampons/pads as needed
  • Toothbrush/mini toothpaste
  • Personal medications
  • Glasses/contacts with solution
  • A pen
  • Trail Mavens alumnae only: previous Field Notes
  • Optional: lightweight backpacking pillow, small bottle hand sanitizer, earplugs, lightweight sandals for hanging out at our campsite, camera, bandana to keep sun off your neck

Items in bold will be provided at no additional cost for any woman who needs them.

+ bathrooms and hygiene

Our campsite on the west shore of Tomales Bay features pit toilets, and no running water. That's right, we're carrying all our own water over on our kayaks, about a gallon per person. (We're hardcore like that.) We'll use our fresh water to drink, cook, and wash our hands. We recommend taking a dip in Tomales Bay if you want to get all-the-way wet!

No need to change your plans because of your period. Period. For more detailed info on managing your time of the month in the outdoors, we recommend these posts by Snowqueen and Scout and REI.


Plan to book flight arriving in the Bay Area on Friday and departing no earlier than 10pm Sunday night, or Monday morning.

+ cancellation policy

Should you decide to cancel your trip for any reason, Trail Mavens is able to offer refunds at the following rates:

  • 21+ days prior to trip departure date: 50% of trip cost refunded.
  • 14-20 days prior to trip departure date: 25% of trip cost refunded.
  • 0-13 days prior to trip departure: No refunds.



... love open, honest, hilarious conversations with other women. Surface stuff is fine at home, but you know the best stuff comes out while you're sharing a Platypus full of wine under the stars.

... haven't learned how to start the fire, work the stove, or purify water. Get hands-on practice here, with other adventurous women (so you don't have to trial-and-error on your own).

... thrive on being pushed - tenderly and lovingly - outside your comfort zone, because you know that's where the magic happens.

... feel creative, inspired, and happy when you're outside (and you could definitely use a little more of that right now).


... think getting a little sweaty, dirty, and marshmallow-y sounds gross.

... don't want to experience the outdoors with a group of rad, like-minded women.

Trip Investment: $405 (early bird), $425 (after 9/1)

trip fee includes...

... all Point Reyes campsite, parking, and permit fees, plus tandem kayak, PFD, and wetsuit rental

... guided, hands-on outdoor skills instruction and facilitation from a WFR certified guide, plus access to the collective brilliance of your group

... delicious meals from Saturday afternoon through Sunday morning, plus wine, whiskey, and s'mores for the evening hours

... all the gear you need, just in case you don't have any; just bring clothes and a toothbrush

... a donation back to Point Reyes National Seashore, to preserve and protect it for future generations


We don't want finances ever to be the thing that gets in the way of your coming on a Trail Mavens trip. We offer installment plans and photographer discounts.

To learn more, email and we'll get you set up.


Additional questions? Email!