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ベンチュラのブリュワリー・スルーハイキング (前編)|by リズ・トーマスのハイキング・アズ・ア・ウーマン#39

2022.11.18
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Ventura Brew Thru

Ventura, California is an oceanside city north of Los Angeles famous as a surfing destination—and a great brewery town. Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia’s founder, is a surfer and climber who chose the city as Patagonia’s headquarters because of its beauty and easy access to ocean and mountains. Ventura is also home to 14 breweries.


Urban Hike in the ventura.


We visited 14 breweries in the ventura.

As a thru-hiker who loves long distance walking in beautiful places and beer, I decided to “brew-thru-hike” Ventura over 3 days and 60 miles with my friend and travel writer Shawnté Salabert, who had written about the town before and could share its history with me.


We walked along a trail that circled around the ventura.

Shawnté and I started at the Channel Islands National Park Visitor Center, where ferries embark to the Channel Islands, one of the least-visited national parks in the US. Shawnté wrote an article on the national park for Outside Magazine and told me of kayaking from her campsite, watching sea elephants, and the adorable miniature island foxes found nowhere else in the world.


A bike trail along Arundell Baranaca surrounded by fields.

As an outdoorsy town, even the outskirts of Ventura had hidden bike trails nestled between fields along Arundell Barranaca (Spanish for a narrow, winding river gorge—an exaggeration in this case) and the industrial areas where breweries are often found. After 4 miles, we reached our first brewery: MadeWest’s main brewing facility. With hip art, modern décor, and fancy glassware, it was easy to forget we were in the warehouse part of town.


Shawnté enjoying our first beers of the Ventura Brew Thru at MadeWest.

California’s coast is famous for fish tacos and getting a taco along with my beer became a theme on this thru-hike. Many breweries in the US were not designed with full kitchens (and in some places, serving food at a brewery is illegal). So as a workaround, breweries invite food trucks to park nearby so people can enjoy their beverage with food.

House of Tacos was serving up fish tacos and I relished the first (and one of the best) fish tacos of my trip.


The first of many fish tacos consumed on the Ventura Brew Thru.

Ventura has a mild climate, so is also home to some of California’s best fresh produce. On our way to our first brewery, we passed roadside fruit stands where we snacked on the sweetest strawberries I’ve tasted. At one farmstand, the farmer even let us walk through the fields and pick our own strawberries.


Strawberry fields.


Topa Topa Brewing

The southern part of Ventura has more space than downtown, so many breweries who are canning and need distribution centers set up in this area. Such is the case with Topa Topa Brewing, whose downtown location near a surf shop has become a favorite post-work hang-out place for Patagonia employees. The connection continues: Topa Topa’s main brewing facility on the outskirts of town was formerly Patagonia’s distribution center.


Topa Topa Brewing

We enjoyed Topa Topa’s Nitro Ube stout in their native garden and dog-friendly, kid-friendly space.


The taproom inside of Poseidon Brewing.

Seaward and Poseidon Brewing were streets apart and felt like a local’s bar. Seward is a small and intimate brewery filled with locals and covered in ocean memorabilia, giving it a vibe unlike any other brewery in Ventura.


Friends joined us for a beer at Poseidon Brewing.

Poseidon Brewery has a wide-open bar and large event space. A band was setting up for live music and we enjoyed duck nachos from a food truck. Across the street was Concrete Jungle Brewery, which went out of business during the pandemic.


One of many murals in downtown ventura.

As can happen on urban thru-hikes, the pleasures of town can easily distract from making miles. We found ourselves at Rincon Brewery, our last brewery of the first night, right before their kitchen was closing.


The outside of Rincon Brewery at night, when we finally reached it.

Located in a suburban area, it operates as a restaurant and brewing facility with lots of space for big parties. Rincon is where I had the best fish of the entire trip alongside a light rice beer to finish off the night.

Belly full, we walked the last few miles by moonlight along the beach on the Ventura Beach Bike Trail. With sounds of the waves and dunes by our side and nearly 20 miles of hiking complete, our walk back to the hotel felt like a complete day.


Entering the world famous Ventura Farmer’s Market.

Day 2 started off with breakfast at the world famous Ventura Farmer’s Market. The mild climate that grows those super sweet strawberries also is home to avocadoes, stone fruits, and the famous Ojai Pixie mandarin (which Topa Topa Brewing uses in their Ojai Pixie IPA). It hadn’t been my intention, but the fresh quality of the produce was so good, I ended up purchasing way more than I could carry for the day. Luckily, we were able to stash our treasures in the hotel room before continuing onto our hike.


Some of the fresh produce I found at the Ventura Farmer’s Market.

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Liz Thomas

Liz Thomas

2011年にアパラチアン・トレイルを女性の最速タイムで踏破した記録(当時)を持っていることで知られている。彼女はトリプルクラウンを達成しただけでなく、米国に15以上あるトレイルでのスルーハイクを経験し、今まで15,000マイル以上ものトレイルを歩いてきた。また、彼女はその経験をロング・ディスタンス・ハイキングのコミュ二ティに還元することにも熱心で、American Long Distance Hiking Assosication-West(ALDHA-West)のバイスプレジデンドも務めている。彼女がハイキングを本格的に始める前は、イエ-ル大学の森林環境学部で環境科学の修士課程を修了し、彼女が手がけた、ロング・ディスタンス・ハイキング・トレイルとその保護およびコミュニティに関するリサーチは、名誉あるDoris Duke Conservation Fellowshipの賞を受けた。スポンサーはAltra, Gossamer Gear, Probar, Vermont Darn Tough socks, Mountain Laurel Designs, Sawyer filters, Montbellで、アンバサダーとして活躍している。
http://www.eathomas.com/

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