This past Memorial Day weekend, my wife, daughter and I decided to go on a 4.2 mile long hike along the Coast Trail from Palomarin Beach to Alamere Falls in the Point Reyes National Seashore in Marin County, California. We thought to ourselves that this little adventure shouldn’t be too hard. After driving an hour and a half through the city and to our final destination, we finally got on our way at a quarter past three. Scores of people were passing us left and right as we attempted to scramble up and down the rugged terrain. As hikers traversed from the opposite direction, there were several instances where we would take turns letting each other squeeze by the narrow pathways that are surrounded by poison oak, redwood trees, wildflowers, and other native flora. Scorched by the summer heat, we took refuge in the cool shade whenever possible while cursing and swatting the mosquitos with little success. Despite these insignificant annoyances, we pressed forward with great enthusiasm by knowing what beautiful discovery lie ahead.
Alamere Falls is a 40-foot tide fall that drops down onto the beach and flows into the Pacific Ocean. The upper Alamere Falls consists of 3 separate cascades upstream from the main waterfall. They range from 20-30 feet in height and are fed by the Alamere Creek.
(above) Looking down the steep hillside from the Coast Trail about 1/4 of the way to Alamere Falls.
(above) About the halfway point
(left) Trail surrounded by beautiful coastal redwood trees and lush ferns. (right) View of the California coastal range.
(above) Surveying the steep inclined pathways down towards the beach. Note that the people in the background are actually standing on a 40 foot cliff that overlooks the beach and the main Alamere Falls.
(left) Posing in front of one of the three upper cascades. (right) My wife caught a photo of us doing our toy photography! You can check them out on my Instagram page @russ_berrie.
At around 6 pm, we decided to turn around and climb back up the same steep cliff. It was a bit of a challenge gaining our footing on the loose rock while balancing on narrow ledges. Once we made it to the top, we continued onwards, crossing off familiar checkpoints along the same, windy route back to the parking lot. In great spirits, we managed to make it back before sundown despite having been bitten by more mosquitos… well, mostly me.
All in all, the hiking trip and the drive getting there and back was worth it. We have already set our sights for Point Reyes later this month and Yosemite in July!
(above) View of Bass Lake along the Coast Trail.