Monday, June 9, 2014

60 Hikes in 60 Miles in 60 Weeks: Week Forty-one
Angel Island State Park

What it's like:
A 5 mile loop packed with unforgettable, one-of-a-kind views of Mount Tam, the Golden Gate Bridge, and San Francisco.

Why now:
It's a spare the air day as I'm writing this, and Angel Island is one of the Bay Area's premier public transit hikes. If you live in San Francisco (or are visiting) make the trip door to trail without your car. Take BART or Muni to Pier 41, then enjoy a lovely (and cool) ferry ride to Angel Island.

If you can't make it this week:
Ferry service from San Francisco is limited in the "off season" (late autumn and winter). An early spring visit (via the Tiburon ferry) offers colorful wildflowers and lonely trails.

Insider tip:
North Bay folk, catch your Angel Island ferry in Tiburon. East bay peeps, get yours in Vallejo or Alameda.

Angel Island is hike number 1 in 60 Hikes in 60 Miles: San Francisco (third edition)Read about this hike on BAHiker.

Alternate choice:
Coal Mine Ridge, at the edge of Portola Valley, is a small preserve laced with easy-going trails. This 3.1 mile loop is a good one for new hikers or families, and is mostly shaded. Be sure to visit one of my most beloved Bay Area trees, an ancient sprawling coast live oak near the junction of Old Spanish Trail and Coal Mine Ridge Trail.

Post your comments and experiences here or on the BAHiker Facebook page.

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A map, compass, or GPS should be packed for your hiking expedition. At all times, you should be aware of where you are and where you're going, as well as the locations of all the campsites, emergency exits, water supplies, and rest spots. Even if you have a backup GPS, the American Hiking Society advises having a map or compass with you. Knowing what to anticipate allows you to prepare other elements more effectively and enjoy the hike without being concerned about getting lost.

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