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Point Reyes Circumambulation
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Amy Lauterbach
(drongobird) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Point Reyes Circumambulation on 10/11/2010 23:12:51 MDT Print View

Point Reyes Circumambulation

Point Reyes National Seashore.
April 2-7 2009. ~120 miles.

This report is from a trip Jim and I took in the spring of 2009. I hadn't gotten a round to posting it, but now that the season is ending for hiking in high mountains, I've turned my thoughts back to hikes appropriate for the winter.

This was a fantastic trip, and a little different from most Point Reyes hikes, so I thought it would be worth sharing.

Link to Route Map
Link to Google Map (gmap-pedometer) allowing you to zoom in on details of the route, satellite images, etc. The line follows our route, within a few hundred meters. (If you double click in gmap it will extend the route, which will make you quite confused.)


Our goal was to hike the perimeter of the peninsula, staying as close to the water as possible. At times, we were forced away from the water by high tide or impassable rocks.

Point Reyes is a great place to hike all year, excepting for winter storms which can be very windy and very rainy. Those storms typically last for only a couple of days, but there is often a week or two of fine weather in between. The maritime influence is strong, making the temperatures very mild. If I remember correctly, the weather station at the Point Reyes Lighthouse records the least diurnal and seasonal swings in temperature of any US weather station.

The NPS policy for the Point Reyes National Seashore limits camping to a half dozen designated back-country campgrounds. In general we are pretty rigorous about following park rules, however, on this trip we broke the rules because the campground locations do not meet the needs of the route. Our personal guidelines for illicit camping; set up after sunset, leave camp by sunrise, no fires, no flashlights, no noise, no cutting vegetation, not visible from any trail, don't ask and don't tell.

We ate a meal at the Drake's Beach Cafe, and resupplied our groceries in Bolinas.

Public transit is available to Bolinas and Inverness, making it possible for Bay Area residents to take this trip without using a car.


Here's a Link to the FULL ANNOTATED PHOTO show, posted on smugmug.

And here are a few photos from the annotated show...






















Edited by drongobird on 10/11/2010 23:13:49 MDT.

Jay Wilkerson
(Creachen) - MLife

Locale: East Bay
Pt. Reyes Circumambulation on 10/11/2010 23:16:53 MDT Print View

Excellent details and pictures Amy!

Stupid question what does circumambulation mean?

Amy Lauterbach
(drongobird) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
circumambulation on 10/11/2010 23:21:29 MDT Print View

circumambulate |ˌsərkəmˈambyəˌlāt|
verb [ trans. ] formal
walk all the way around (something) : they used to circumambulate the perimeter wall.

Brandon Sanchez
(dharmabumpkin) - F

Locale: San Gabriel Mtns
re: Point Reyes Circumambulation on 10/11/2010 23:25:58 MDT Print View

Thank you Amy for posting another one of your trips. You two always take such unique and creative trips. A friend and myself are planning on walking from SF to Santa Cruz after being inspired by your trip. Keep posting!

Scott Truong

Locale: Vancouver, BC
Cool... on 10/14/2010 08:37:17 MDT Print View

Thanks for sharing.. you've given ideas for suitable winter camping destinations.