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Gualala Arts

Promoting public interest and participation in the arts since 1961.

Archive of past events: 2004 through 2014

Gualala Arts Lecture Series presents:
Southwest Coast Path

with John Petersen
Thursday, March 27, 2014, 7:00 p.m.
Admission is $5

Southwest Coast Path Retired teacher and inveterate hiker and kayaker John Petersen shares his experiences hiking what he feels is the world's finest unknown hiking trails in his Gualala Arts Lecture Series talk on Thursday, March 27 at 7:00 p.m. in Coleman Auditorium.

The Southwest Coast Path is 630 miles from Minehead on the Bristol Channel along the scenic Devon coast, around the tip of Cornwall and into the English Channel near Bournemouth in Dorset. First, Petersen walked from Land's End to Mousehole on the Cornish coast and loved it. When he learned the length of the entire trail he vowed to walk every step.

To complete the trek "in one go" as the British would say could take eight weeks. Petersen did 300 miles in 2009 and completed the task in July of 2012. He is no stranger to long distance hikes and has done parts of the Pacific Crest Trail, Australia's Bibbulmun Track, and international hikes in France, Switzerland, and Italy. For him, the Southwest Coast Path is the best.

Although the trek is in England where no one is very far from a pub anywhere in the country, the trip is not an easy one. The path climbs a total of 115,000 feet, almost the equivalent of walking from sea level to the top of Everest - four times! However, unlike Sierra backpacking, Petersen traveled European style with a light pack and evenings in bed and breakfasts along the way. There was always a refreshing pint after a thirsty day on the trail.

Southwest Coast Path The journey combines a history lesson in one of England's most scenic areas where King Arthur once ruled, with breathtaking views even for residents of the Mendonoma Coast. In addition the hiker can enjoy many colorful seaside villages with charming accommodations and friendly residents. The trip can be anything from an afternoon walk to a multi-week workout. One can even make arrangements to transport luggage. More information is available on the internet at

Petersen's talk should appeal to the many local hikers that daily walk our trails. His commentary and video presentation will more fully help the audience appreciate this secret gem and he will be available for questions. A $5.00 admission charge will be collected at the door.

The Gualala Arts Center, located at 46501 Old State Highway in Gualala, CA,
is open weekdays 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and weekends from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Please call (707) 884-1138 for more information, or email

Serving the coastal communities of northern Sonoma & southern Mendocino Counties.