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Pinnacle Gulch - Shorttail Gulch Trail Loop

Intermediate
 4.3 (3) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A loop route leading down a gulch and back up another gulch while enjoying the beautiful Bodega Bay.


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Map Key

2.0

Miles

3.2

KM

Loop

262' 80 m

High

7' 2 m

Low

286' 87 m

Up

285' 87 m

Down

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

27%

Max Grade (15°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Views · Wildlife

Family Friendly The route isn't overly long, and provides youngsters the perfect place to learn about the tidal ecosystem.

A $7 Parking Fee or Sonoma County Regional Parks Pass must be displayed on vehicle dash.

Overview

There are views all the way down to the beach and back up, making for an enjoyable hike. Once you reach the beach, there is plenty of marine life to observe in the tide pools, as well as shells to find on the beach.

Need to Know

Be aware of when the tide is rising! Also, look both ways before you cross the street.

Description

The parking lot for the loop is across the street from the actual trailhead. Start heading down the Pinnacle Gulch Trail and you'll descend large steps leading through a few switchbacks. You may want to pause on your way down to let the view of the gulch and coast soak in for a while. A steep half-mile trail leads to a spectacular view of hidden coves and rock formations. Fishing is excellent but challenging. This area is the perfect place to spend an enjoyable day for picnicking, sightseeing and relaxation.

Once you've finally reached the beach, be sure you are aware of tide conditions. There are two sections of rocks to scramble through, so be prepared for that as well.

Within those rocks are lots of tide pools full of sea anemones, starfish, crabs, sea snails, and other life. Keep your eyes out for seals blending in with the rocks and sand and be sure to keep a respectful distance. Remember, it's okay to admire and appreciate, but please do not disturb or touch!

Once you've passed the second set of rocks, you'll eventually come up to the Shorttail Gulch Trail. Shorttail is quite a bit steeper than Pinnacles. It (as well as Pinnacles) has a running stream you can hear and see at times. There are a few shaded spots that will have mushrooms growing around if the conditions are right.

Finally, you'll reach the street again. From here, you have to navigate through the neighborhood back to the parking lot. Take Osprey Drive to the west, making a right onto Mockingbird Drive, which will lead you back to the trailhead and your vehicle.

Contacts

Shared By:

Kevin Bonner

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 3 votes

#2993

Overall
  4.3 from 3 votes
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Recommended Route Rankings

#438

in California

#2,993

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920 Since Jan 29, 2017
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Photos

Jump on the Pinnacle Gulch Trail to experience this gorgeous view of the trail's namesake.
Jan 30, 2017 near Bodega Bay, CA
Can anyone tell me what these are?
Jan 1, 2018 near Bodega Bay, CA

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Check-Ins

Jan 1, 2018
Jes Labampa