Virtual Guidebook to Marin and the North Bay Counties
Tomales Point
Point Reyes National Seashore California


I consider this to be one of the best hikes in California - great scenery and guaranteed wildlife. My wife and I try to hike it every year.

As you approach the northern tip of the Point Reyes Peninsula watch for an unusually tall and strong fence just before the road ends at historic Pierce Ranch. You are now in the elk refuge, where several herds of native tule elk (slightly smaller than the Roosevelt elk, or wapiti) roam free.

Start hiking at the ranch and follow a gravel road paralleling the top of the ridge, watching for groups of elk. After an hour or so you will reach Elk Pond, where there are always elk. If you want more exercise and drama, keep going north even though the trail almost disappears in thick bushes. The yellow lupine blossoms here in April are superb. Eventually the peninsula narrows and drops to surf-lashed rocks. There is a wonderful "end of the world" feel out there.



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(April 10, 2005)


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(April 10, 2005)


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(April 10, 2005)


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(April 10, 2005)


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Elk Pond and tule elk on the Tomales Point Trail. This subspecies of elk disappeared from the peninsula before 1900, but was reintroduced in 1978.

(April 5, 2009)


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Aligned stones pointing at Mount Saint Helena, on the Tomales Point trail. Origin of the stones is unknown and their meaning debated.

(April 5, 2009)


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(April 10, 2005)


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(April 10, 2005)


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Viewpoint above Pierce Ranch

(April 5, 2009)


Next Locality: Pierce Ranch and McClures Beach