Wild Tao: Hiking and Qi Gong in Big Sur Wilderness
October 4–8, 2021
October 4, 2021
 - 
October 8, 2021
with Noël Vietor, Fletcher Tucker and Jim Gallas
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In search of balance, the ancient sages of China walked into the woods to attune themselves with nature in its sublime integrity. The timeless wisdom uncovered in their wild wanderings was called simply Tao, “The Way.”

Qi gong — the practice at the heart of Taoism — is dedicated to harmonizing body, mind, and spirit with the elements of nature. In this age when so many of us feel disconnected and overwhelmed, wilderness remains a powerful healer and teacher, and qi gong can bring us back to the center.

Join us to learn an accessible qi gong form called Wai Dan Gong (“Easy Tao”), while immersing in the majestic landscape of Big Sur. We rise each morning to practice, harmonizing breath and movements with the flow of waves greeting Esalen’s cliffs. After breakfast, we set out on a wilderness hike to mindfully explore Big Sur’s enchanted redwoods, sun-steeped meadows, and mountains that rise from the sea. All along the trail, we explore qi gong as a pathway for returning to a grounded, spacious, revitalized state of being — in harmony with nature, embodying Wild Tao.

Notes:

  • Answers to frequently asked questions about the workshop can be found here.
  • Various hiking abilities can be accommodated, bearing in mind that day hikes are three–eight miles in length, with uneven and often steep terrain. If you have any questions about your ability to participate, please read the workshop FAQs.
  • A $75 parks permit and parking fee will be added to the workshop cost.
Noël Vietor

Noël Vietor

As co-founder of Wildtender, Noël Vietor is dedicated to helping people build meaningful relationships with the self, the earth, and the community. Having found healing and a sense of belonging while hiking the Big Sur wild, Noël is honored to create this opportunity for others through Wildtender’s immersive wilderness programs.

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Fletcher Tucker

Fletcher Tucker

Wildtender co-founder Fletcher Tucker is a devoted student and teacher of California natural history, awareness traditions, ancestral skills, and wisdom and trail-craft. Fletcher is committed to re-connecting human beings in body, mind, and spirit with wild nature and our more-than-human relations.

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Jim Gallas

Jim Gallas

Jim Gallas was mentored by Dr. Chui Nan Lai to teach Wai Dan Gong (aka “Easy Tao” qi gong). He has taught this form since 1993, including the last fifteen years at Esalen. He also teaches yoga, shiatsu, reiki, and anatomy.

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Workshop Schedule

Mon 8:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Tue - Thu 7:30 am – 8:30 am
Tue 9:30 am – 5:30 pm
Wed 9:30 am – 12:30 pm
Wed 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Thu 9:30 am – 5:30 pm
Fri 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

More activities can be found on our open class schedule.

See general schedule information including arrival, departure and meal times.

Accommodations & Tuition

Click Register Now to view availability of accommodations and all-inclusive, program-specific tuition. Please note that not all accommodation levels are available for every workshop and additional faculty fees may apply.

COVID Update

All guests will be required to provide proof of vaccination upon arrival starting September 3, 2021. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Masks are no longer mandated indoors or outdoors, except during massage sessions. Guests are not required to provide testing or vaccination verification before arriving on campus. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

All-inclusive Pricing