Coming in 2021!

The Sierra Herbfest

Reserve your space now!

Sierra Herbfest 2021

Sierra Herbfest Creek
Sierra Herbfest Creek

Sierra Herbfest Attendees
Sierra Herbfest Attendees

The California School of Hispanic Herbalism is happy to announce the return of the biennial Sierra Herbfest!

Set your calendar for July 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th! Set up is Thursday the 8th. We hope folks will show up on Friday or early Saturday.

For those interested in the 2021 Last Annual High Sierra Herbfest and Primitive Skills Meet:

We are asking a donation of $50 USD for our hard work and supplies we will have to purchase for this event.

More info soon!

from the Director:

The Herbfest was inspired by the Mid Atlantic Primitive Skills gattherings in Virginia and Maryland where Lynn and I taught off and on for several years. I taught  herbs and Lynn taught first aid for adults and kids. 

I started the Herbfest 20 years ago making it a semi annual event. Over the years the event took in many different ways skills....some primitive, some survival (like picking locks and handcuffs) and some esoteric like sun cooking. 

Dear FB friends, herbalists, bushcrafters, preppers, survivalists and crackpots I've learned to love: For the past three years Lynn and I have hoped to have another (Last Annual) High Sierra Herbfest and Primitive Skills Gathering. Two years ago we had too much snow (in the summer), last year we had fire, this year we have COVID. Next year if the world still exists we are making plans to try again. We are hoping to have event in June or early July so there is an abundance of plants. We drove to our traditional spot this last week and food Clarks Fork to be untouched by the fires of last year. The creek is running cold and clean and the burned lumber around the campsite is being removed. The forest service took out many of the camp sites possibly for social distancing reasons. This means less crowding. For those of you who have joined us in the past you know what to expect. For those of you who don't's a surprise every year. But some staples are medicine making, lectures on primitive skills, fire making, water purification, cast iron cooking, wilderness first aid, bannock baking, maybe an herb walk, star walk, spinning (maybe), natural dyes, and other goodies. Depending on time and interest I'd like to teach Bug Out/Get Home Bags, easy tinctures, teas, and washes, and salves (on the run.). For those of you flying into San Francisco International Airport it's about a five to six hour drive in good traffic. In bad traffic it's another story. We need everyone to pony up as we cannot take a financial loss on this any longer. We just want to break even, not make a profit. We want everyone to rent their own camp site. More information on that next year. We want this to be a full three day event. We also want this to be alcohol free...or at least drink in your tent. No Mary Jane, pot, grass, dank, or whatever you call that whacky tabaccy these days. Some things you will need to bring is a tent, mat, sleeping bag, stuff to cook with and food to cook, fuel is you have a cook stove (oh that reminds me....we might make a hobo stove!), water container, warm socks, a warm shirt, warm jammies (It's known to get cold even in the summer) and rain gear for sudden thunder storms. T shirts and shorts are also recommended. Don't expect to be doing laundry so save a clean set of clothes for the ride home. Bathing in Clarks Fork Creek is a refreshing experience....but baby wipes are a must. No one has ever gotten sick at an Herbfest but there have been some heat issues and one serious knife cut. There is no longer an hospital within driving distance so don't get hurt. We will have a certified EMT/LVN present (my wife). On our final full night we have two stews, one with lamb or beef, the other vegetarian. By that time folks should be able to bake bannock bread in ashes or in cast iron. There are stores on the way up to Clarks Fork especially in Oakdale, so you can purchase food and beverages there. May I also suggest getting instant coco, coffee, and some tea. Tea is refreshing and reduces thirst. But you will be urged to drink ALOT of water. We will be at 6200 hundred feet and you can dehydrate quickly. So I hope this has whetted your appetite a bit. Please say a prayer to whatever deity you pray to, admire, or sing Leonard Cohen songs to that all our works pays off. 8-26-2020

COVID-19 Information

lavender plant ©2015 by Roane
 lavender in bloom - antiseptic!
chicken matazh ball soup ©2020 by Roane
 chicken soup w/ garlic - antiviral

    ! COVID-19 PREVENTION Recommendations !

We recommend:

– Wash your hands frequently (lavender oil is antiseptic!)
– Stay hydrated (drink lots of water.)
– Avoid close contact with others.
– Take it easy (catch up on your reading.)
– Sleep a lot!

– Keep your energy up (see our recipes!)
– Immune system support (rosehip tea, mustard greens.)
– Chicken soup (garlic, ginger, rosemary, sage, thyme.)
 These herbs are addressed in the COVID-19 video!

– Free!! COVID-19 HERBAL CARE Lecture

Chuck is speaking quietly –
we recommend clicking the CC button or using headphones.

Our Purpose

image of Lori and Chuck march 2012 from Alejandra Palos
Lori and Charles March 2012

The California School of Hispanic Herbalism officially opened its doors in January of 1998 in the San Francisco East Bay city of Richmond, California, to teach and preserve the healing traditions of the Hispanic curanderos and curanderas (folk healers) of California. Many of these classes had been informally taught for two years prior to the creation of the school.

Primarily offering classes in herbalism, the school also stresses an understanding of Curanderismo, the healing techniques and philosophies of Native-Hispanic California.  The cross-cultural influences of European and Asian herbs, along with the use of native plants, made California Curanderismo a unique and potent healing medium.  These practices also include the use of intuitive diagnosis skills, psychoactive plants, ritual and magic.

Charles and Lori will also perform ritual healings based on the folklore rites of curanderismo, for those unfortunates who feel their illness is of a spiritual nature. They also investigate some paranormal activities, and may attempt a "limpia" (cleansing) of a person or place if absolutely necessary. We do not video tape our rituals or limpias for the privacy of our clients and their family. We do not use psychics or mediums in our cases again for reasons of privacy. We do use scientific equipment to help us determine if any paranormal activity is present.

Contact Us


  phone: (510) 672 7849

  Please leave clear phone messages. Do not rush through.
  Your call will be returned in time.