Notes for Potential Hikers
This particular route was put together with these goals:
- Access via public transit from San Francisco.
- About 75 miles, an easy distance for our five day trip.
- Visit a wide variety of habitats, including closed canopy Doug Fir forest, open grasslands, sandy beaches, rocky shoreline, fine tidal estuaries, and old growth Redwood forest.
- Include some trails we had never walked previously. This included the Perth Fire Road, which turned out to be a terrific way to access Point Reyes from a bus stop. The second was an old ranch road from Five Brooks up to Bolinas Ridge; this trail is not signposted on the ground and passes near a park service residence, but is on public land.
To get to the trailhead, we took Golden Gate Transit bus #101 from San Francisco to the San Rafael Transit Center, and then connected with the Marin Transit bus #68 to Inverness. It was a short walk through the tiny town of Inverness to reach the Perth Fire Road, which climbs directly up to the top of Point Reyes Hill, and from there we were on trails for the rest of the hike. The best way to end this hike would be to take the Sausalito Ferry back to San Francisco, but if the ferry schedule is not suitable you can catch a bus from the Spencer Avenue Bus Pad instead: Golden Gate Transit bus #101, #70, or #27.
We found usable surface water, requiring treatment, in streams. The CalTopo map shows the locations of six reliable sources of potable water.
We stealth camped, using our stealth camping techniques. There are campgrounds, a hostel, and a couple towns on or near the route, as shown on this CalTopo map.
The route from the beach to the top of the bluff an Alamere Falls is quite loose and crumbly. Caution is advised if you attempt this. If you do not want to do this climb, follow the Coastal Path from Wildcat Camp instead of walking south on the beach. Even though the weather was fabulous, there were very few other people out on the weekday trails. Pesky insects were not present.