Alamere Falls

  • Category: hiking swimming
  • Pt. Reyes National Seashore near Bolinas, Marin County
  • Bolinas CA 94924
  • USA

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(26) Reviews
Ashleigh S.
San Francisco CA
5.0 stars
Best Waterfall Hike in the Bay Area
How to get there: Take Hwy #101 to San Rafael, and take the Sir Francis Drake Blvd. exit. Drive 20 miles to Olema, then drive south on Hwy #1 for 9.1 miles to Bolinas Rd. (unsigned). Turn right and drive 1.8 miles to Mesa Rd. Turn right and drive 4.7 miles to Palomarin trailhead.   

I LOVE waterfalls!! Hands down the most amazing hike in the Bay Area. Located at the Point Reyes National Seashore, this particular hike starts at the Palomarin Trailhead and is a moderate 7.5 mile hike out and back.

About a 15 minute walk from the trailhead, you'll reach two signs, one of which will say Coast Trail (12 mile hike); for the shorter scenic route to Alamere Falls, take the trail towards Wild Cat Camp. The path to Alamere Falls can be easily missed (so watch for the sign), this is a narrow trail with dense vegetation, so get ready to duck and dodge and keep a good distance away from the person in front of you so that the branches they walk through don't slap you in the face.  There is also poison oak along the trail so make sure you make necessary precautions (e.g. long pants). 

Once you get through the vegetation and reach the coastline, you will have access to a few waterfalls. Remember to bring your camera and take some pictures here, but make sure you also brave the cliffs, brittle rocks and loose gravel and head towards the trail on the right that leads down to the beach.  It's definitely an unofficial pathway and is a little more dangerous, but its totally doable and highly worth it! You'll scramble down a cliff to see one of the greatest treasures the Bay Area has to offer. The waterfall is absolutely magnificent and heads directly into the ocean (its a rarity in the world to actually be that close to a waterfall that sits on a beach like Alamere).  Once you're done admiring the majestic qualities of nature, the hike back to the trailhead will feel like a breeze.

If you have time on your way back you can make a stop at Bass Lake to cool off and try your luck on the rope swing (link).

* There are no maps at the Palomarin trail head.  Make sure you have a book or print out a map from the National Park Service website.
* Bring a lunch and eat it at the waterfall.  Being scenic with plenty of open space, and a relatively short hike to the falls, no cooler is needed. 
* Again, poison oak is common here.  Wear long pants and long sleeves to be safe.

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