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Mount Tamalpais State Park/Steep Ravine Dipsea Trail One Way With Shuttle/North Bay

Pros: A redwood canyon hike an hour from the city
Cons: Heavy use on holidays
Best For: A creekside, scenic descent to Stinson Beach, through the redwoods

Mount Tamalpais

This hike down through a redwood canyon, all the way to the beach, is magic. Leaving a vehicle at the Stinson Beach parking lot, and taking the Marin Transit shuttle bus up the hill to the trailhead, makes this a one-way, downhill all the way, easy hike.

After rains, the creek is full of cascading water, and one is never far from it, on this beautifully maintained foray to the sea. Most of the walking is deep inside a redwood canyon, but towards the end, one steps out onto grassy meadows strewn with flowers, with views of the Northern California coastline. Quite a gem, this one!

Noteworthy: If you are hiking during the rainy season, be sure to wear shoes that can handle the mud.

Steep Ravine/Dipsea Trail
Drive time to Stinson Beach is about 1 hour, without traffic...best to allow more time.
Directions to Stinson Beach Parking Lot:
From San Francisco take the Golden Gate Bridge heading North. The road becomes US 101. In about 5.5 miles take the CA 1 -Mill Valley-Stinson Beach exit (445B) and stay on CA 1 until you enter the town of Stinson Beach. The Stinson Beach parking lot will be on your left. Park there and wait at the shuttle bus stop. Your destination is Pantoll Station, up the Panoramic Highway, where the trailhead is located. Be sure to check the shuttle schedule in advance, as departure times vary.

For the Marin Transit shuttle schedule from Stinson Beach to Pantoll Station:
http://www.marintransit.org/routes/61.html