When the summer heat hits in the Sacramento Valley, my fail-safe hiking destination is the Marin Headlands in the Golden Gate Recreational Area. Even after all the spring wildflowers have faded away, there is still plenty of natural beauty to see on the hiking trails above the Pacific Ocean.
In early July we took an eight mile hiking loop through the Marin Headlands through the Fort Cronkhite area. We started on the Miwok Trail to the Old Springs Trail that dropped us next to the Miwok Livery Stables in the Tennessee Valley. We ate our lunch while folks rode their horses in the arena. From there we followed the Tennessee Valley Trail down to an unnamed, but mapped, trail up the hill to the Coastal Trail. This connector trail is very steep. It is about a 600 foot climb in elevation in less than a mile of trail.
We followed the Coastal Trail down to Battery Townsley that overlooks the Ocean. On the first Sunday of the month, Battery Townsley is open to the public with guided tours. It was interesting to see the inside the bunker that held the 16-inch guns built before World War II. We followed the bunker trail down to the Rodeo Lagoon Trail and back to the car.
Even though there was a constant marine overcast with a stiff breeze, we still managed to get sun burnt. But then we didn’t think a short hike would turn into a four hour excursion. That’s how the cool weather of the coast can be deceptive. You don’t get as hot and tired as if you were hiking in 90 degree temperatures, but you forget to put on sunscreen.
Marin Headlands Trail Pictures
Here are some of the images from our hike along the trails. All photographs were taken with my Apple iPhone 6.