If you cross the Golden Gate Bridge, just north of San Francisco you will find Marin County, a beautiful, sparcely populated oasis of redwoods, beach and countryside. I roadtripped with a friend north up the 101, and then went west towards Muir Beach, until finally driving along the coast up to Stinson Beach. The drive over the hills was a little trecherous, speckled with road-side grazing deer, but the small, single lane highway made it seem like we were miles and miles away from the city when we were really only about a 30 min drive away.
Once we arrived at Stinson, we tipped our hats to the (amazingly) good weather by heading straight to the beach, where kids were still swimming and surfers still catching waves, despite it being late October. There was barely a breeze, and luckily enough no fog either. We ate lunch at a locally run, organic, open-air cafe before heading out for some surf. We drove around Bolinas Lagoon to the north side of Bolinas Bay where the town, Bolinas is actually situated. We rented boards and wetsuits and spent the next 3 hours riding waves without ever feeling cold.
We welcomed the evening by settling on the beach ontop a sleeping bag we took from the Bolinas “free box,” a place where you leave or take what you dont need or have. We stayed there throughout one of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen, and on through to the darkest point of night where the only light you could see was the distant city glow of San Francisco, still within eyesight but definitely out of mind.
The following day we drove through Samuel P. Taylor Park, home to some enormous redwoods, and all the way to Pt. Reyes Lighthouse which sits at the end of Drakes Bay in Pt. Reyes National Seashore Park. Enroute we stopped in some tiny, historic towns like Pt. Reyes Station, Inverness and Olema, and dipped our toes in the sandy beaches of Drakes Beach and North Beach.
It was the perfect getaway out of the city, only a short drive away, with enough natural beauty, solitude and quietude to make us totally forget about the stresses awaiting our return home to the huslte and bustle of the bay.