The Commute is what we call the 52.6-mile walk from San Jose to San Francisco.
What started out as a lark — to see if we could walk straight from San Jose to San Francisco without stopping for sleep — turned into a bit of an obsession It’s a new urban trail. A destination and a journey. The Commute is our challenge to you: to endure daunting mileage, exhaustion and discomfort, so you too can experience the profound sense of accomplishment and wonder that traveling such a distance on foot and proving your fortitude imbues.
It’s a fresh way to explore a familiar setting.
Starting in Downtown San Jose at the site of our first state capital, the walk route mostly follows El Camino Real for forty miles through 18 different cities on the way to San Francisco. The road narrows and widens through every community: through neighborhoods, industrial buildings, past car dealerships, office buildings, parks, shops, universities, freeways, cemeteries, and everything in between.
Taking it all in from your own personal vantage gives you a chance to witness the vibrancy of life along the Peninsula from a perspective which is obscured behind the glass of a car window.
The journey is a physical and mental endurance challenge.
Your feet will ache, your muscles will grow tired and sore. You’ll be baked by the heat radiating from asphalt during the day, chilled by the bitter-cold winds of the upper peninsula in the dead of night. Despite all these physical discomforts the biggest challenge is mental: when you’re dog-tired and all you want to do is get some sleep. Pushing comfort aside to achieve the greater goal, you have to choose to keep going with each step.
Even attempting it is a badge of honor.
Walking The Commute, even if you don’t walk the full distance, is unique and remarkable. It’s a hard thing to do when driving is so much easier. About half of the people who start The Commute don’t finish, but for most even walking part of the way means walking than they have ever done before. With guts and an adventurous spirit you can do an extraordinary thing that most other people will never even consider trying.
The challenge is open to all who would attempt it. But be prepared to get prepared.
You don’t need to be an extreme athlete to do the walk. People as old as 60 have completed this challenge with gusto. You just have to be prepared. With some practice under your belt, some trusty gear on your back, and a solid plan for emergencies in place you too can safely make the trek.
Be a legend. Walk The Commute.