Tomales Point Trail

 12 votes

9.8 Miles 15.7 Kilometers


0%

Singletrack

996' 304 m

Ascent

-996' -304 m

Descent

534' 163 m

High

83' 25 m

Low

4%

Avg Grade (2°)

13%

Max Grade (8°)

All Clear

5 days agoUpdate

A trail with spectacular coastal views and probable elk sightings.

Megan Wilder

Overview

The Tomales Point Trail travels along the ridgeline towards the northernmost tip of the peninsula offering amazing views of the Pacific coastline and down into Tomales Bay. The wide former ranch road passes through scrub and grasses with only minor hills to climb.
Features: Birding — Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
Family Friendly: You don't have to make it all the way to the point to have a great time on this trail. Given that the trail cuts through the elk preserve, kids are sure to catch a glimpse of these majestic animals.
Dogs: No Dogs

Description

The parking for the Tomales Point Trail is on the site of the Pierce Ranch house and dairy barn where locally famous butter was produced starting in 1858. The dairy products were shipped to San Francisco from a dock in Tomales Bay.

This mellow trail is an out-and-back, so you can turn around at any point. The "official" doubletrack trail ends after a long descent to the Lower Pierce Ranch near a pond and grove of eucalyptus. An "unofficial" singletrack trail continues on to vista point at the very tip from which you can see Bird Rock (to the west) and Bodega Head (to the east). The trail becomes fainter the further you go towards the bluffs.

If you stay long enough, in a few millennia you'll become detached from California - the San Andreas fault runs under Tomales Bay, taking Pt. Reyes north on its tectonic plate away from California's southbound plate. Another word to the wise: check the weather for a clear day, as fog frequently obscures the views. It is also windier and colder on the coast. Note: bikes are not allowed on this trail.

Flora & Fauna

This trail is located within the Pt. Reyes Nat. Seashore elk preserve so you are nearly guaranteed to see some of the ~450 native tule elk which live here. In September the male elk are in their rut, so listen for bugling and crashing antlers. Elephant seals congregate on the beaches below in February and March. Other wildlife include mountain lion, raccoon, rabbits, birds non-venomous snakes. Wildflowers (especially poppies, iris and lupine) are abundant April-June.

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4.8 from 12 votes


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Check-Ins

Jun 18, 2017
Jae Seo
Jun 17, 2017
Harshani Peiris
Jun 11, 2017
Randy Carnley
AWSOME hike, did not complete full trail due to time and possible impending weather, but we will be back to complete trail 8mi
Jun 3, 2017
Wilma E
1:07pm start
May 28, 2017
Nicole Barger
May 21, 2017
Dean Avdalas
Great hike, kinda foggy but worth it! 9.8mi
May 20, 2017
Owen McClain
There was fog most of the way, but very rewarding at the point! Definitely worth the drive and the hike! We got to see some Tule Elk out too! 9.6mi
Apr 23, 2017
Alyssa Grace
10mi

Trail Ratings

  4.8 from 12 votes

#166

Overall
  4.8 from 12 votes
5 Star
75%
4 Star
25%
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1 Star
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Rankings

#26

in California

#166

Overall
242 Views Last Month
1,383 Since Jan 30, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

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Conditions


All Clear 5 days ago

Getting forecast...

I've hiked this trail over 10 times. Its a really great view the entire way with lots of changing scenery. There are almost always some elk to be seen, and if you look into the estuary you can often see dozens to hundreds of harbor seals. If you make it all the way to the point in good time its a really cool spot to take a break. May 25, 2017


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