Ben Johnson - Hillside - Ocean View - Redwood - Sun - Dipsea
9.5 miles     2400 ft
3 Jul 2010
Summary

A great hike through varied terrain including redwoods forests and green rolling hills.

Location: Mount Tamalpais State ParkMuir Woods National Monument

Elevation Profile
Trip Planning

Trail Maps

» Official Trail Map: Decent quality map. However, mileage information is missing. Not enough details of trail intersections, some of which have no signposs.

» RedwoodHikes Trail Map: Annotated trail map of Muir Woods National Monument and most of Mt Tamalpais State Park. An excellent quality trail map ($6.95 in Jan 2012) that is recommended for avid hikers. Mt Tamalpais has plenty of trails and trail intersections. This map shows them very clearly. Much better than official state parks map or GGNRA map.

Route

Route: unnamed trail (0.3 miles) → Stapleveldt Trail (0.6 miles) → Ben Johnson Trail (1.0 miles) → Hillside Trail (0.7 miles) → Main Trail → Ocean View Trail (1.2 + 0.3 miles) → Panorama Trail (0.3 miles) → Redwood Trail (0.8 miles) → Sun Trail (0.7 miles) → Dipsea Trail (0.9 + 1.7 + 0.3 miles) → TCC Trail (0.4 miles) → unnamed trail (0.3 miles).

Notes:

  1. From Pantoll Ranger station, the route steadily takes you 1300 ft down to Muir Woods Bridge #2 through pleasant shaded trails.
  2. Ocean View Trail then climbs up about 800 ft through thick redwoods to reach Panoramic Highway.
  3. Redwood Trail and Sun Trail are mostly in the sun, losing about 1000 ft.
  4. Dipsea Trail is unshaded. Along with TCC Trail, it entails a vigorous 1600 climb from Muir Woods parking lot to Pantoll Ranger station.
  5. Ben Johnson, Hillside and Ocean View Trails are shaded and replete with redwood trees.
  6. Redwood Trail and Sun Trail are unshaded but provide excellent panoramic views of valleys composing Mount Tamalpais and Muir Woods. Dipsea Trail is also unshaded most of the time. TCC Trail is shaded.
Trailhead

Location: Intersection of Panoramic Highway and Pan Toll Road, Mill Valley, CA 94941 . No street address. Parking area is visible in Google Maps if you zoom in sufficiently.

Directions:

The official street address is: 3801 Panoramic Highway, Mill Valley, CA -- this address maps to some strange location on Google Maps. Bing Maps shows it correctly.

From south bay: Go along Highway 1 and cross Golden Gate Bridge. Take exit 445B to merge onto CA-1 North towards Mill Valley / Stinson Beach. After 3.6 miles, turn right onto Panoramic Highway. Drive for 5.3 miles, following signs for Mt Tamalpais, to reach the park headquarters.

Google Maps:

Parking Fees: $8 per vehicle (last visited: Jan 2012)

Capacity: Dozens of cars may be parked at Pantoll Ranger Station, the Park Headquarters for Mt Tamalpais.

Latitude: 37.904556     Longitude: -122.604010

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