Alamere Falls is one of those rare and special places where a beautiful waterfall cascades directly onto the beach. The most popular of these, Bass Lake, is a summer swimming destination. It is not maintained and features unstable cliff surfaces and tons of poison oak. Here are a few helpful tips to avoid the crowds and stay safe on the trail: Every hiker should be prepared, particularly on long hikes like the one to Alamere Falls. Bewar… Point Reys doesn't recommend to visit these falls and main trail even doesn't have sign when you need to turn to see Alamere falls. The hike to the falls from the Palomarin Trailhead is 6.5 miles one way. Also make sure you’ve got a full tank of gas before heading out to hike the falls. Required fields are marked *. For this reason, I recommend starting your hike from the Bear Valley Trailhead instead of the Palomarin Trailhead. There are several other park-sanctioned trails to the falls, each with their own unique scenery and challenges. For the prepared hiker, the trails to Alamere Falls offer a fun, challenging hike with the reward of a dramatic, up-close view of the spectacular waterfall as it plunges to the sea. Start early to avoid heavy crowds (and because it’s a big hike). To see the falls at its fullest, make the hike to Alamere Falls in the Winter or Spring after heavy rain. For your safety, please use only park-sanctioned trails like Palomarin, Bear Valley, Five Brooks, and the walk from Wildcat Beach. If you’re crazy about the ocean, the beach, and waterfalls, Bolinas’s Coast Trail is bound to become one of your all-time favorite spring hikes. On a clear day, you can make out the. Chimney Rock — This popular overlook area near the lighthouse will give you a close-up view of elephant seals during breeding season from December through March. The rocky scramble requires scooting and climbing to reach the bottom. Along the way, I will share fun facts about the ecology while bringing more awareness to the miracle of nature surrounding us. Many people must slow down to figure out a safe way to navigate downward, so there’s often a bottleneck of hikers at different spots along the trail. Portions are unpaved, washed-out, and filled with significant potholes. Highly recommended..! Climbing Stormy Stack will treat you to spectacular panoramic views of both the Pacific Ocean and nearby Pelican Lake. Over the years, a “shortcut” trail has gotten popular, cutting off nearly half the distance. . Most exciting part is by the beach to walk down the steep cliff and climb up the cliff...!Alamere falls is much smaller than 5 years ago, maybe the timing...? This rocky beach provides great ocean views and opportunities to spot wildlife in tide pools. Wear long pants, particularly if you plan to hike the “shortcut” trail. Not far from the Palomarin Trailhead, the Coast Trail splits. Website. Prepping You To Make The Hike. , at the Point Reyes Seashore, is a gorgeous scenic jewel set close to the city of San Francisco. If waves are already reaching the base of the bluffs at Wildcat Beach, turn around. On busy summer days, even arriving at 8 am may mean adding distance to your hike from your parking spot along Mesa Road, Alamere Falls in Point Reyes National Seashore is an essential bucket list hike in California, The most popular route to the falls starts at the Palomarin Trailhead, although you can also start at the Bear Valley or Five Brooks Trailheads, . Roughly 4 miles into your hike, you’ll reach the “shortcut” trail to Alamere Falls. This is dangerous and the reason the National Park Service does not condone this route. Your email address will not be published. Things are busiest on weekends and holidays, so plan accordingly by arranging your hike Tuesday through Thursday if you want to beat the crowds. Except for the climb up the cliff initially, the rest of the hike back was a breeze. The Palomarin Trailhead is roughly 5 miles northwest of Bolinas, California. Maps are an ever-important part of planning a hike. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The Alamere Falls Hike is an easy trip for beginner and regular hikers alike. From San Francisco, it takes about 1.5 hours, mostly due to the scenic winding of Highway 1. Your email address will not be published. You can take the half-mile trail down to Palomarin Beach. I’ve had these boots for over 3 years and, Keep in mind that the official trail to Alamere Falls is a long 13.8 miles, so. Typically, September and October are the warmest months in the Bay Area. Instead, we were looking for a longer hike and we wanted to see Wildcat camp, so we did the whole out-and-back trail. If you’re planning to stay on a weekend, you should book 6 months out when reservations open on Recreation.Gov. . If there was ever a time to be a morning person, this is it. Start at the Palomarin Trailhead located in the parking lot near the restrooms. Thanks to the mild weather in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Alamere Falls trail is accessible all year long. A rare and extraordinary tidefall located in the Point Reyes National Seashore in Marin County in California, the Alamere Falls is one of the few waterfalls that flow directly into the ocean. There’s a small parking lot at the trailhead, but parking is also allowed on the western side of Mesa Road. My passion is exploring America’s national parks and I’m so happy to be able to share that passion with you! Be aware that some of Mesa Road makes for rough driving. Taking that into consideration, come as early as possible. popular. There’s a small parking lot at the trailhead, but parking is also allowed on the western side of Mesa Road. An unmarked trail through thick, unmaintained brush cuts west to the top of Alamere Falls. For that reason, it is. The right fork continues on the Coast Trail and the left fork takes you to the Ocean Lake Loop Trail. After 1.4 miles on either trail, you’ll reach the campground. Alamere Falls is a coastal waterfall on the Point Reyes National Seashore, do I have to say more to convince you to go see it? You might find morning fog most of the year, but the fog is sure to burn off after you begin your hike! Alamere Falls is a hike along the coast with sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean which passes by lakes before ending at cascades and a spectacular waterfall (or tidefall) which drops into the ocean. My mission is to provide you with super-detailed guides to the U.S. national parks and empower you with the outdoor skills you need to explore them to their fullest. Over the years, a “shortcut” trail has gotten popular, cutting off, This shorter trail is not sanctioned by the park service and requires scrambling down a rocky ledge, The 13.8-mile trail to Alamere Falls from the Palomarin Trailhead starts in a eucalyptus grove, . Alamere Falls, Pelican Hill, and Crystal Lake via Greenpicker Glen Wildcat Ridge [CLOSED] is a 20.3 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Olema, California that offers scenic views and is rated as difficult. To beat the crowds, arrive at the trailhead before 8 am. One trail heads towards Alamere Falls and the other towards Palomarin Beach. Log In Not far from the Palomarin Trailhead, the Coast Trail splits. Gray Whale Migration — Between Chimney Rock and the lighthouse, many gray whales and their calves can be spotted in mid-January through the middle of March as well as in late April or the beginning of May. In the summer, while there might be warm temperatures and plenty of sunshine inland, the park can be covered in a chilly fog. 16 likes. Five Brooks is just ten minutes down the road from the Bear Valley Visitor Center. And if you get close to Alamere Creek and see the bridge to cross it, you’d definitely gone too far! There’s no potable water at this trailhead, but there are a few vault toilets and a place to dispose of garbage and recyclables. The trail to Alamere Falls was closed for quite a long time because of a storm damage. Alamere Falls: Best hike in Marin - See 83 traveler reviews, 181 candid photos, and great deals for Bolinas, CA, at Tripadvisor. Alamere Falls Hike. The falls are a dramatic sight as water cascades over a ~30 foot tall cliff onto the south end of Wildcat Beach. A water reservoir will reduce the weight of carrying large amounts of water on long hikes. The next morning at low tide, you can take the short hike to the falls and back easily. It can be reached via the Alamere Falls Hike that is found on the Point Reyes National Seashore. Roughly 4 miles into your hike, you’ll reach the “shortcut” trail to Alamere Falls. Ready to pack up your bag and start your Alamere Falls hike? Bear Valley offers restrooms with flush toilets and a potable water source near the parking area of the trailhead. There are a number of outstanding points of interest near Alamere Falls. ), Hiking for Beginners: The Ultimate Guide for New Hikers, 10 Hiking Essentials: The Ultimate Hiking Gear Guide. It should only be attempted by those in good physical shape and in hiking boots with proper traction. This excursion requires a bit of planning. November and December are known for chilly temperatures and strong winds, so wear something insulating and make sure your shoes have good traction. The second decline will take you along the trail to Wildcat Beach, where you can view the main falls from the sand. First, you need to decide whether you’ll take the unsanctioned Alamere Falls Trail down to the beach (about 3.7 miles from the Palomarin trailhead). The parking lots fill up quickly and you’ll have to queue for entrance or come another day if it’s full — there’s no shoulder parking allowed at most trailheads. About 1.5 hours from San Francisco, the Palomarin Trailhead gets crowded early. The 13.8-mile trail to Alamere Falls from the Palomarin Trailhead starts in a eucalyptus grove. Shortcut Hike to Alamere Falls. , September and October are the warmest months in the Bay Area. Alamere Falls is accessible from three trailheads in Point Reyes National Seashore. Alamere Falls has made a name for itself as a beautiful and popular Bay Area getaway spot. This hike was similar to other seaside trails around The Bay; soft ground, exposed with little shade, and extremely populated by the early afternoon. . Ask Vitaliy94080 about Alamere Falls. , particularly on long hikes like the one to Alamere Falls. After another half mile, you’ll reach a split in the trail. See more of Alamere Falls on Facebook. Arrive by 8 am to ensure a parking spot. . You might find morning fog most of the year, but the fog is sure to burn off after you begin your hike! limited in Point Reyes National Seashore. Alamere Falls is 7.1 miles one way using the Five Brooks trail. When you emerge from the grove, you’ll be on a rolling, exposed dirt path along the coastline (seriously, the coastal views never get old!). These social media pages can also give you an idea of how crowded the park is, and whether or not it is at capacity or closed for weather events. I’ve wanted to hike to Alamere Falls at Point Reyes National Seashore for the longest time, and I finally had a commitment-free morning to make the drive out to Marin this past weekend to check this popular Bay Area hike off my must-do list. When you emerge from the grove, you’ll be on a rolling, exposed dirt path along the coastline (seriously, the coastal views never get old!). Welcome to Well Planned Journey. The easiest and most accurate way to monitor conditions is by checking the Alamere Falls Facebook or Twitter pages. Where it passes along the coast, this trail is exceedingly narrow and steep. The hike is 8 miles, little inclines here and there but no major uphill or downhills until you get to the waterfalls. Your email address will not be published. However, it is not without its dangers. Maps are an ever-important part of planning a hike. A visit to Sculptured Beach is worth the trip when you're visiting. Alamere Falls is an incredibly popular trail, so it is important to start your hike early, regardless of when you go. Learn how your comment data is processed. Doing so could result in injury or death. You might find morning fog most of the year, but the fog is sure to burn off after you begin your hike! During what they call “winter” here, I kind of forgot about it and in April this year, I was determined to hike there no matter what. To get the same beach-level view as those coming from Wildcat Campground, you’ll need to scramble down a rocky cliff edge. About 30 minutes into our hike.. Alamere Falls Climbing Waterfall Hiking Beach Top Outdoor Walks Outdoors Standing on top of the waterfall.. either you climb down, or hike for another hour towards the beach to get to the waterfall. At about 1.4-miles into the hike, the trail will head up a moderate grade for quite some time where it leads further into the woods and away from the coast. Make sure you park in the gravel lot, not in the paved lot that’s reserved for Visitor Center parking. Most of the trails to Alamere Falls are rated as moderate to difficult, so come prepared with the following basics: Remember that only two trailheads have both potable water and toilet facilities and plan accordingly. Besides being a rather long hike, the trail is overgrown at parts with poison oak, ivy, and stinging nettles. Alamere Falls is a “tidefall” (a waterfall directly into the ocean) located north of San Francisco in the Point Reyes National Seashore.The hike is approximately 9 miles round trip, with a few offshoots if you want to tack on some extra miles. As always, it’s important to pack out any and all trash. While an AWD vehicle is ideal, a low-clearance sedan can make the trip (slow and steady wins the race!). Doesn’t matter the day of the week, Alamere Falls hike is a hot spot and you will not be alone. Point Reyes National Seashore has so much to offer, like the popular Tomales Point Trail at the other end of the park. This trail’s distance with the short cut is about 4.5 miles each way; otherwise, expect about a 6.5-mile trip each way, making it a 13-mile round trip. The cliff edges in this area are unstable. After you've visited Alamere Falls, you can explore everything there is to see and do within just a few miles of the area. Bolinas - After introductions and basic stretching, we will head out on the 8.4 mile round trip journey to Alamere Falls. . Even if you choose to view the falls this way, precautions must be taken to ensure you will not be swept away by the strong currents that often batter the bases of the bluffs. TIME SPENT: 4-5 hours OR 7-8 hoursHEIGHT OF ALAMERE FALLS: 39′WILDLIFE SPOTTED: Quail, turkey vulture, falcon, banana slug, black lizard (unidentified), rabbit, grey fox, harbor seal. The last 1.2 miles of Mesa Road is unpaved and riddled with potholes. This trail is less traveled than Palomarin, so it’s a nice choice for those looking for more peace and quiet on their hike. This location boasts several vault toilets as well as receptacles for your garbage and recyclables. off the cliff edge, hitting hikers below. Most people access this trail from Coast Trail - South. This area is home to many swampy ponds and 4 lakes. Stay on the trail this includes taking the official trail instead of the “shortcut”). It’s a lot of up and down (especially on the longer trail) and much of the trail is exposed to sunlight.APPROX. . This 8-mile, out and back hike has approximately 450 feet of elevation gain in the first 2 miles before dropping back down to the coast. Point Reyes Lighthouse – Built in 1870, this picture-perfect lighthouse can afford an awesome view on a sunny day. As we’d been warned, we had to park out car about a … This post may contain affiliate links, where I make a small amount if you choose to purchase. I had covered much of distance on previous hikes, but retracing one’s steps is a necessary hurdle when covering all the trails. popular trail, so it is important to start your hike early, regardless of when you go, Alamere Falls is accessible from three trailheads in, I recommend starting and ending at the Palomarin Trailhead for the Alamere Falls hike. Thanks to the mild weather in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Alamere Falls trail is accessible all year long. Always check the. Alamere Falls! Coast trail is not closed as mentioned in the AllTrails app. Best Time to Hike Alamere Falls. to ensure you will not be swept away by the strong currents that often batter the bases of the bluffs. Most visitors can complete the Alamere Falls trail in about two to three hours each way if you are of a moderate fitness level. Alamere Falls, at the Point Reyes Seashore, is a gorgeous scenic jewel set close to the city of San Francisco. There is no cell phone service on this footpath, and visitors traveling to Alamere Falls using this “trail” have often been injured or become the focus of a search-and-rescue mission. From here, Alamere Falls is only a 1-mile hike along the beach away. This trail is not sanctioned by the National Parks Service and should never be attempted. Parking at this trailhead fills up fast, so come early. But if you are adventorous hiker the it is definitely worth it. For more on tide tables and staying safe on the coastal hike to Alamere Falls, read the “Tips on Hiking Alamere Falls” section below. One trail heads towards Alamere Falls and the other towards, This rocky beach provides great ocean views and opportunities to spot wildlife in tide pools, Make a weekend out of your trip to Alamere Falls by, . The most popular of these. Thanks to the mild weather in the San Francisco Bay Area, the. With only 8 campsites, Wildcat Campground is almost always booked, particularly on weekends. ALAMERE FALLS | HIKE LIFE | SF Bay Area Day Trip Join us on one of our hikes and this time as we explore our way to Alamere Falls in Bolinas, … The Palomarin Trailhead provides both trash and recycling receptacles. It was a four-hour hike, … To stay on the official trail, you should continue straight past this turn-off, following signs for Wildcat Campground. Much of this trail, particularly on the unmaintained, “shortcut”. The rocky scramble requires scooting and climbing to reach the bottom. Alamere Falls. A little over an hour from San Francisco, this is the perfect day trip to escape the city and see the beauty of the biggest Bay Area waterfall. Want to learn more about the. For that reason, it is incredibly popular. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. There is a peaceful shaded walk that puts you on a cliff next to the ocean. Possibly the most popular of the trails leading to Alamere Falls, the Palomarin Trailhead is on Mesa Road, around 5 miles outside of Bolinas, to the northwest. Rangers have to make at least one emergency rescue per week due to hikers getting stuck or injured. Leave no trace and protect our parks! This trail was closed in 2014 after storm damage made the trail unsafe, but it’s still the most popular way to reach the falls. Although 8 miles seems daunting and might turn some people away, the hike is extremely accessible to hikers of all levels. Here is where the trail will run adjacent to some small ponds, Bass Lake, and eventually Pelican Lake. Experts recommend you carry at least 0.5 L of water per 1 hour of hiking. The “shortcut” trail saves you 5 miles and 1,000 feet of elevation gain but you hike at your own risk. If you’re planning to stay on a weekend, you should book 6 months out when reservations open on, Even with a reservation, you’re required to pick up your permit at the Bear Valley Visitor Center on your arrival date, For this reason, I recommend starting your hike from the Bear Valley Trailhead instead of the Palomarin Trailhead, Alamere Falls is the best waterfall near San Francisco. This part of the trail is only accessible by one hiker at a time, so you may need to wait to descend and return. Thank Vitaliy94080 . Because of its coastal location, proximity to San Francisco, and the challenging natures of the trails, there are a few things you should know before you go so you can make the most of your visit. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Great hike, constant elevation change, Beautiful views. All of these trails can take you to the Wildcat Campground, where you can safely view the falls from Wildcat Beach after a short, 1.1-mile walk. Depending on the trail you’re hiking, you should plan to begin two to three hours before low tide so you’re able to access the falls at Wildcat Beach. For hikers on a budget, the Columbia Newton Ridge boots are perfect. This was a long traverse of the mid-peninsula from Five Brooks Pond to Alamere Falls and back, about 9 miles each way. An unmarked trail through thick, unmaintained brush cuts west to the top of Alamere Falls. However, there’s no water available, so make sure you bring plenty in with you. The Palomarin Trailhead provides both trash and recycling receptacles. Hi, I’m Julia! Regardless of the trail you choose, always check, or when the tide is coming in. Emily and I had Alamere Falls on a list for quite some time. Alamere Falls is one of only 34 waterfalls in the world that flows into an ocean. Have questions about planning your Alamere Falls hike? Take note: it is also the site of multiple search-and-rescue operations each year. With only 8 campsites, Wildcat Campground is almost always booked, particularly on weekends. The “shortcut” trail saves you 5 miles and 1,000 feet of elevation gain but you hike at your own risk. This trail breaks off from the official route about 4 miles from the Palomarin Trailhead. Things to See and Do Near Alamere Falls. Taking that into consideration, come as early as possible. , with the Palomarin Trailhead easily the most popular route to the falls area. Alamere Falls is the best waterfall near San Francisco. Ready to pack up your bag and start your Alamere Falls hike? Check out this trail map and elevation profile of the official Alamere Falls trail. This is the perfect hiding spot for poison oak and ticks. The incoming tide can trap you and potentially lead to injury or death. . It’s a really unique coastal waterfall. I don’t know when it opened again but it wasn’t updated on my hiking app and so I did not attempt to hike there in the Autumn of 2017. Shortly after Pelican Lake is the spur trail that leads to the lookout point above Alamere Falls. under 3 miles from the Palomarin Trailhead, you’ll find a short side trail leading to the side of the lake. If there was ever a time to be a morning person, this is it. Before starting your hike, make sure you have all these hiking essentials packed: This hike comes with more risk than others, particularly if you’re attempting the dangerous “shortcut” trail. A popular viewpoint and lunch spot is just next to the falls on an open, wide part of the cliff. This unmaintained trail is covered in poison oak and ticks, so be sure to wear long pants. So you may have to walk back and forth a few times to find the exact entrance to the shortcut on your left. If you’re around San Francisco for a little while and looking for something to do that involves nature, definitely look into this hike. Before starting your hike, make sure you have all these hiking essentials packed: Keep in mind that the official trail to Alamere Falls is a long 13.8 miles, so be prepared with all 10 hiking essentials and sturdy hiking boots. Besides taking a dip in pristine Bass Lake along the Palomarin Trail, the following sights are all in the Point Reyes park. This 13-mile trail to a stunning, and rare, 40-foot falls should be on your California bucket list. Pets are not allowed on the trails, and some areas have spotty — or no — cell phone services. Keep your distance from wildlife and respect other hikers. This trail breaks off from the official route about 4 miles from the Palomarin Trailhead. Rocks can crumble, causing you to fall, or loose gravel can fly off the cliff edge, hitting hikers below. While no easy treka 13-mile (20 km) minimum round-trip hike is requiredthis spectacular spot is a popularand a sometimes overcrowdedvisitor draw. This shorter trail is not sanctioned by the park service and requires scrambling down a rocky ledge. Alamere Falls is a tidefall, or a waterfall that flows directly into the ocean. of the 30-foot-high falls thundering onto the sands of Wildcat Beach. Palomarin Trailhead to Alamere Falls is an incredible hike! From Bolinas, you’ll follow Mesa Road to the trailhead parking area. Tips For Your Hike Bass Lake is a popular summer swimming destination, but be warned, there’s no lifeguard on duty. The hiking distance to Alamere Falls beginning from the Bear Valley Trailhead is 7.3 miles one way. This is dangerous and the reason the National Park Service does not condone this route. The Best Time to Visit is When You’re Prepared. The National Park Services recommends hiking to Wildcat Beach Campground and then walking down the beach at low tide to view the falls. Social media and bloggers have popularized an “Alamere Falls Trail” as a short-cut to the falls. 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