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Dad O'Rourke's Bench/Mt. Tamalpais State Park/North Bay

Pros: One of the most photogenic vistas north of San Francisco
Cons: Foggy conditions obscure the view
Best For: A quick fix for city blues

Dad O'Rourke's Bench

No trail markers to guide your way up to Dad O'Rourke's Bench. Park at the Rock Springs lot, cross the road and walk uphill, heading southwest, on foot trails leading to a tree-wrapped promontory. There you will find a bench carved out of the stone, with killer views of ocean, coastline and the oak-studded knolls of Mt Tam.

Richard Festus "Dad" O'Rourke loved this spot and called it "the edge of the world". On his 76th birthday in 1927, the bench was dedicated to him, along with a sweet plaque affixed to rock.

An hour's drive from San Francisco and a fifteen minute walk uphill get you to the bench in time to savor part of the day in tranquility. Bring your kindle and something to munch on...oh, and a jacket just in case.

Noteworthy: O'Rourke was a founding member of the Tamalpais Conservation Club in 1912.

Dad O'Rourke's Bench
Rock Spring Area
Mt. Tamalpais State Park
Mill Valley, Ca. 94941
Directions From San Francisco: Take the Golden Gate Bridge onto Hwy 101 and exit at Hwy 1/Stinson Beach. Follow Hwy 1 to Panoramic Hwy turnoff into Mt. Tamalpais State Park. Take Panoramic Hwy to the Rock Spring parking area. Cross the road and head southwest, uphill to the bench.