Easy and fantastic middle section

Peak Summited2019 Mount Tamalpais
Type of HikeDay hike
TrailheadDipsea Trail at Panoramic Hwy
Hiking CompanionsHiked with a group
Road ConditionsRoad suitable for all vehicles
Bug StatusNo bugs
Snow ConditionsSnow free
Trail ConditionsTrail in good condition

The beginning section of trail is gently rising as we traversed along the coast.  It was a foggy morning, but just barely so it was cool but humid.  When we turned off on the Steep Ravine Trail, we learned its description was apt – steep it was, but really beautiful as we crossed over the creek, back and forth, many times while climbing steeply.  Eventually, we left the creek and water, but it was just as steep and warmer, so when we reached the Pantoll camping area, we were ready for a good break.

From there, the trail up to the summit was a nice, gentle climb that went by quickly, with an ever increasingly vast view. Disappointingly, when almost to the summit, you discover that others have just driven up to where you are, so you didn't “earn” an exclusive privilege.  But, after a gander at the gravity car and a steep final climb to the top, that was forgotten as the most amazing 360 degree views are revealed from beneath the fire lookout tower.  What a great place for a lunch, accompanied by birds and thieving squirrels.

We took the alternate way down, Rock Spring Trail, just to mix it up as much as possible, then the Matt Davis Trail from  Pantoll down to Stinson Beach where we grabbed smoothies and shakes from the snack shack and took them out to a bench on the beach.  A treat well earned.  Then we had almost a mile walk back up to the car parked on Panoramic to cap off the day.


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