Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Rock Spring "Final Exam" Hike (5/10) Preview

As we do each year, we'll wrap up the Spring College of Marin hiking series with this Mount Tamalpais State Park hike. (Click here for a recap of our 2010 hike.  View photos from past hikes in the online album).

Here's Wendy's outline for the hike: "We should see Coral Roots (a native orchid), Meadow Rue, and Golden Banners on this mostly shady loop hike."

"Bring a plate and utensils, and food to share for the Gourmet Final!"

Directions to trailhead: Go south on Highway 101 to the Stinson Beach/Highway 1 exit. Go west on Highway 1 and wind around a lot. At the top of the ridge, turn right onto Panoramic Highway and continue to the 4-way "crossroads." Take the middle road to Mt. Tamalpais. Continue along this road for 5-6 miles.

At the Pantoll Ranger Station the road divides. Take the upper road for about 1 mile. The road divides again. This is Rock Spring. Park here. (Click here for a Google Maps map showing the parking area at the trailhead.  Right click on the teardrop icon or click on "Directions" on the left-hand side of the screen to get  driving time and directions from your location.)

Driving time from College of Marin 55 minutes.

Carpoolers can meet at the Greenbrae Park and Ride lot at 9:10 a.m. (Click here for a Google Maps map showing the parking lot on Drakes Landing Road; right click on the teardrop icon to get driving time and directions from your location.)

Outhouse at trailhead and mid-way.

Weather forecast: As of Tuesday, May 3rd, the National Weather Service forecast for the area around Rock Spring on Mt. Tam was sunny, with a high near 68. (Click here for an updated forecast).

More on this hike: The "B17 Simmons - Potrero - Arturo Trails" hike in the Martins' book, Hiking Marin, shows the trails that we'll be hiking on, although we'll probably follow a different route (Simmons to Benstein to Potrero Meadows to Laurel Dell and back up the Cataract Trail to Rock Spring). Page 6 of the state park brochure has a trail map that shows the area.

Here's the hike profile and route we'll follow.

The Google Earth image below shows were we'll be on the mountain. (Click on the photo to open a larger image in your Web browser).

Barry Spitz at Book Passage on June 4th

Marin hiking trail expert, Barry Spitz, will be speaking at Book Passage bookstore at 51 Tamal Vista Boulevard in Corte Madera at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 4th.

(Book Passage Photo)
Here are the details from the store's Website:

"The mountain is eternal, but trails change, and in his new book, Mount Tamalpais Trails, Barry Spitz updates and expands the roster. Spitz, who has spent more than forty years uncovering Mt. Tam’s secrets, shares his encyclopedic knowledge of the mountain’s complex network.

"A revised and expanded edition of his classic guide, this new book includes detailed descriptions of more than 160 trails and fire roads—every inch of which he walked and measured—and completely new maps, as well as full-color photos and an introduction to Tam’s natural and human history.
"Barry Spitz is the author of nine local interest outdoors and history books, including histories of Mill Valley, Marin, and San Anselmo."

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Mount Tam Benefit: "The Mountain Calls: Film & Verse"

(Rick Charles Flickr Photo)

Although during the course of each year we meander our way up and down many trails on Mount Tamalpais, we never stroll around the former U.S. Air Force radar station on the mountain's West Peak.

(David Abercrombe Flickr Photo)

You can learn more about the West Peak area this coming Thursday at a special event that will be held at the Throckmorton Theatre in Mill Valley, "The Mountain Calls: FILM & VERSE A Special Evening to benefit Mount Tamalpais."

Here's the program description from the theatre's Website:
"Come celebrate Mt. Tam and join us for The Mountain Calls, a special evening hosted by Tomales Bay Miwok descendent Sky Road Webb and television host Doug McConnell and featuring two award-winning local artists whose work has been inspired by Mt. Tam and the natural environment:
"Visual storytelling artist Gary Yost will share short films, including the premiere of Song of the Last Place (There Is Nowhere Else to Go), a film about the West Peak of Mt. Tam featuring musicians Jimmy Dillon and Katy Boyd.
"Celebrated poet Jane Hirshfield will do a reading, set before a stunning time-lapse of Mt. Tam.  One Tam partners will also share sneak peeks of upcoming projects and events on the mountain."
You can buy general seating tickets ($30) in advance online. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The show begins at 7:00 p.m.

Gary Yost has produced four films about Mount Tam.

His last such film was "The Invisible Peak." (See below; click on the link if the video player does not display).

(Click on the link below if the video player does not display).

The Invisible Peak (hidden in plain sight) from Gary Yost on Vimeo.

At the Thursday event, Yost will show some of his films, including his latest, "Song of the last Place." (Here's the "teaser;" click on the link if the video player does not display.)

Song of the Last Place Teaser from Gary Yost on Vimeo.

In years past, Yost worked as a fire lookout on Mt. Tam and he produced a film about that experience.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Updates on Summer Meandering in Marin Hikes

Just two hikes to go before we wrap up the Spring 2016 College of Marin Meandering hiking series!

Then $20 "Pay If You Go" Hikes (click here for details) will be offered on these Tuesdays:
  • Tuesday, May 17 - Bolinas Ridge Shuttle Hike
  • Tuesday, May 24 - NO HIKE
  • Tuesday, May 31 - NO HIKE
  • Tuesday, June 7 - NO HIKE
  • Tuesday, June 14 - Bear Valley to Five Brooks Shuttle Hike,
    Point Reyes National Seashore
  • Tuesday, June 21 - Abbott's Lagoon, Point Reyes National Seashore
  • Tuesday, June 28 - Muddy Hollow Trailhead,
    Point Reyes National Seashore
  • Tuesday, July 5 - NO HIKE
  • Tuesday, July 12 - Shell Beach Shuttle Hike, Tomales Bay State Park
  • Tuesday, July 19 - Angel Island State Park
  • Tuesday, July 26 - TBA
  • Tuesday, August 2 - Palomarin, Point Reyes National Seashore
 (Dates and details for Tuesday hikes later in August to be announced) 

Wendy will also lead a "Pay If You Go Hike" on Monday, May 16, a Marin Butterfly Count on Sunday, June 12, and a minus tide hike with PRNSA on Monday, July 4th. Check with her for more information on those outings. 

 Summer 2016 College of Marin Monday Hikes
    Wendy will also be offering a Monday Meandering hiking series through the College of Marin; the first hike is on Monday, June 13, the last is on Monday, July 18th. Registration for that series opens on Monday, May 9th.