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Steep Ravine Climb

Marin, California

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Steep Ravine Climb

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  • There is a dirt parking lot across the street from the entrance. - Steep Ravine Climb
  • Steep Ravine Climb.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • Paved road down to the cabins.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • View toward Stinson Beach and Bolinas. Your climb will start at the beach at the bottom of the image.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • These eco cabins are available for rent.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • California poppies (Eschscholzia californica) along the road.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • California poppies (Eschscholzia californica).- Steep Ravine Climb
  • Once you arrive at the cabins, follow the pathway on the right down to the beach.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • Switchbacks on the Steep Ravine Climb.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • A view of the cabins from the ravine entrance.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • Follow the beach to the end, then start heading up the ravine.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • Water cascading out of the ravine.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • You will be climbing up rocks and trees as you ascend the ravine.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • View from the midway point.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • Ascending the ravine.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • Wreckage in the ravine.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • The waterfall at the end of the ravine ascent.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • - Steep Ravine Climb
  • If you decide to climb up to the right of the waterfall, follow the rock ledge, then climb up under this pipe.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • This last section is quite exposed.- Steep Ravine Climb
  • View from the top.- Steep Ravine Climb
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Great views. Unknown location. Unforgettable hike.
Cons: 
Can be slippery. Dangerous during runoff. Poison oak.
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Region:
Marin, CA
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
No
Net Elevation Gain: 
400.00 ft (121.92 m)
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Total Distance: 
1.54 mi (2.48 km)
Trail type: 
Loop
Trailhead Elevation: 
400.00 ft (121.92 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Contributor

This is easily one of the most unique hikes you will encounter in Mount Tamalpais State Park. The ravine is located next to the Steep Ravine Cabins, which were built in the 1940s by landowner William Kent, Jr. and are now rented out on a per-night basis. The hike itself is short but technical. The hike requires scrambling and some exposure to heights, and it can be especially treacherous after a rain. But the surprises at the top are well worth the risks.

Start your hike at the dirt parking area across Highway 1 from the Steep Ravine entrance. If you have rented a cabin, you will be allowed to drive right down to the Steep Ravine parking lot; otherwise, hike a mile down a paved road. From the cabins, follow the path to the right and down to the beach. Walk to the end of the beach, and then look to your right. That stream bed is your trail. There is more then one way up, but you will mostly find yourself climbing straight up the rocks.

After a bit of rock hopping, you will see the first signs of the rusty wrecks that lay above. Highway 1 can be very dangerous for drivers, and these examples have been here for quite a while. Above the wrecks you will find a beautiful waterfall and a great spot for lunch.

Once you are ready to move on from the waterfall, you can choose between three directions. You can climb up above the waterfall and continue rock hopping, though this section can be very overgrown and may be impassible at certain times of the year. Going left will leads onto a very steep, very exposed hillside. Going right is the best option, and this path leads to a cliffside. It is also exposed, but you will have more to hold onto. Follow the cliff until you get to the pipe. Climb up the rock, under the pipe, and then to the right. Following the small path will bring you back to the paved road and your car.

Note: Wear long pants, as there can be a lot of poison oak in the area.

 

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