Marshall Beach Tomales Bay
Our mission to take 52 day trips around the Bay Area continues this month with a hike to Marshall Beach (address is Marshall Beach Rd, Inverness, CA 94937). 80-minute drive from San Francisco/Oakland
Marshall Beach is on the Inverness side of Tomales Bay in the Point Reyes area (not to be confused with the town of Marshall which is on the other side of Tomales Bay). This is a fun 2.4 mile hike (1.2 miles each way) that takes you through cow pastures to a secluded beach.
You’ll definitely want to pay attention in order to find the trailhead. We had to ask the cows for directions:
Below is the parking lot (enough for about 30 cars) and trailhead. No dogs or camping for those hiking in (though you can reserve camp sites if you boat in).
We went on a super-foggy day which was fun…things were lush and it was a mystery as to what was 200 yards ahead.
The hike to the beach is flat-to-down hill.
We found this cool mushroom off the trail (it looked like a crab):
The beach is small but we hear it’s almost always secluded (while we were there on a weekend, 3 hiking groups and one fishing boat visited (and 3 seals!). Here’s what the beach looked like:
We found cool-looking oyster shells:
When the tide got high there was a fun breach across the beach creating a mini river (it was a lot cleaner than it looks!):
A handful of sail boats and kayaks cruised by while were there.
We found these cool succulents growing out of the mountain-side by the water.
There’s a bathroom right by the beach:
The initial 1/2 mile hike back is the toughest part. Our 5-year old powered through with a few breaks:
Overall, Marshall Beach Tomales Bay is a nice quiet hike to the beach…definitely great if you want to enjoy nature and avoid the crowds.
Places we eat at after visiting Inverness are usually:
- Salt Water Depot (12781 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, Inverness, CA 94937) — we usually have oysters, salad and fish and chips.
- Cafe Reyes (11101 CA-1, Point Reyes Station, CA 94956) — we’ve only had the pizza there and it was yummy and came out super-fast (7 minutes)