Monday, May 11, 2009

Going coastal

With the valley temperatures heating up Alice and I decided to begin our coastal explorations. We looked over a few short hikes from everywhere from point Reyes to Humboldt County and then settled on a trip to the Marin Headlands and the Coastal Trail for a cool trip along the coast.

Set just off the Golden gate Bridge, the Marin Headlands are a beautiful collection of beaches and trail that are part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The opportunities range from the lighthouse at Point Bonita to museums and bike and hiking trails.

Our plan was to make our way along the Coastal loop but looking at the map we decided to hug the coastline and hike along the magnificent views of the Pacific Ocean and the rugged cliffs that line the headlands. Our hike started from the old Fort Cronkite and Rodeo Beach and climbed up the cliffs. The temperature was warm at times but stepping near the edge of the cliffs we were greeted with a chilly blast of near 50 mph winds coming in from the ocean.

The sights were grand as waves crashed into the black rock of the cliff face. Seagulls and pelicans skimmed the coastline before soaring up a few feet away from us. Wildflowers sprung out among the ice plants that lined the trail while abandoned gun emplacements from World War II stood silent guard toward the bay.

We finished our windy hike and headed back home. Our next coastal visit will probably take us to the Point Reyes Trails as we continue or coastal views.

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