Mount Tamalpais State Park

Quick Facts

Mount Tamalpais State Park

California

(415) 388-2070

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

Just north of San Francisco's Golden Gate is Mount Tamalpais. It has redwood groves and oak woodlands with a spectacular view from the 2,571-foot peak.

On a clear day, visitors can see the Farallon Islands 25 miles out to sea, the Marin County hills, San Francisco and the bay, hills and cities of the East Bay, and Mount Diablo. On rare occasions, the Sierra Nevada's snow-covered mountains can be seen 150 miles away.

Coastal Miwok Indians lived in the area for thousands of years before Europeans arrived. In 1770, two explorers named the mountain La Sierra de Nuestro Padre de San Francisco, which was later changed to the Miwok word Tamalpais.

With the Gold Rush of 1849, San Francisco grew and more people began to use Mount Tamalpais for recreation. Trails were developed and a wagon road was built. Later, a railway was completed and became known as "The Crookedest Railroad in the World." It was abandoned in 1930 after a wildfire damaged the line.

Map of Mt. Tamalpais (CA)

Latitude, Longitude: 37.895924, -122.608272

READ MORE

Activities

  • Bicycling

    More than 50 miles of trail are within the park and connect to a larger, 200-mile-long trail system. Bicyclists are challenged by the twisting road to the top of the park's summit.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    Bootjack picnic area, on the Panoramic Highway northeast of Pantoll, has tables, stoves, drinking water and flush toilets. The area accommodates groups of up to 50 picnickers. East Peak summit has picnic tables, an accessible restroom, a visitor center staffed on weekends, and a refreshment stand open intermittently during the summer.

  • Camping

    Several campgrounds are open all year. The Pantoll Campground, on the Panoramic Highway, has 16 sites approximately 100 yards from the parking area. Drinking water, firewood and restrooms with flush toilets are nearby. There are no showers. Campsites are available first come, first-served.

    Rocky Point-Steep Ravine Environmental Campground, on a marine terrace one mile south of Stinson Beach, has seven primitive sites and nine rustic cabins. Each cabin has a small wood stove, picnic table, sleeping platforms and an outdoor barbecue, but no running water. Restrooms and water faucets are nearby. Reservations are highly recommended. The Alice Eastwood Group Camp, located on the Panoramic Highway near the Mountain Home Inn, has two sites for organized groups of 25 to 50 people. Both sites have tables, barbecue grills and a large area for tents.

    Frank Valley Group Horse Camp, on Muir Woods Road about one mile north of Highway 1 at Muir Beach, has tables, fire rings, drinking water, pit toilets, two horse troughs and corrals for up to 12 horses. Call (800) 444-7275 for campground reservation information.

  • Fishing

    Contact the park for information on fishing.

  • Hiking

    Hikers enjoy more than 50 miles of trails in the park that connect to a 200-mile trail system over land managed by the Marin Municipal Water District and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

  • Historic Sites

    The 3,750-seat Mountain Theater, officially the Cushing Memorial Amphitheatre, was built of natural stone in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The theater can be reserved for special events. Each spring since 1913, the Mountain Play Association theatrical company has presented outdoor productions of Broadway musicals. For dates and reservations of Mountain Theater performances, contact the Mountain Play Association at (415) 383-1100.

  • Horseback Riding

    Horses are allowed only on fire roads and designated (posted) hiking trails.

    Frank Valley Group Horse Camp, on Muir Woods Road about one mile north of Highway 1 at Muir Beach, has tables, fire rings, drinking water, pit toilets, two horse troughs and corrals for up to 12 horses. Call (800) 444-7275 for campground reservation information.

  • Picnicking

    Bootjack picnic area, on the Panoramic Highway northeast of Pantoll, has tables, stoves, drinking water and flush toilets. The area accommodates groups of up to 50 picnickers. East Peak summit has picnic tables, an accessible restroom, a visitor center staffed on weekends, and a refreshment stand open intermittently during the summer.

Seasonality/Weather

Summer and spring are warm, fall and winter can be cool. Layered clothing is best.

Park Partners

Mount Tamalpais Interpretive Association

The Mount Tamalpais Interpretive Association is a volunteer organization whose purpose is to promote the conservation, education and interpretation of California State Parks, primarily at Mount Tamalpais State Park in Marin County.

(415) 388-2070

Directions

Driving

North of San Francisco's Golden Gate. From Highway 101 take Highway 1 to the Stinson Beach exit and follow signs up the mountain.

Flying

The closest major airport to Mount Tamalpais SP is Oakland International Airport, approximately 22 miles away. From there, myriad car rental services are available, ranging from Alamo to National and beyond. For more information, call 510-563-3300.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(415) 388-2070

Campground reservations

(800) 444-7275

Links