Rodeo Beach - Black Sands Beach Loop
9.5 miles     1500 ft
23 Jun 2012

An awesome hike through two beaches and hills in Marin Headlands with great valley views.

Location: Marin Headlands

Elevation Profile
Trip Planning

Trail Maps

» Official Trail Map: Good map showing various trails.


To Black Sands Beach (3.3 miles): From Marin Headlands Visitor Center, walk up the road (see trail map) and find the Coastal Trail going south (1.9 miles) to reach Conzelman Road. In June 2012, we apparently took a circuitous route (see GPS Tracks) to emerge somewhere on Conzelman Road, about 0.4 miles to the east of the parking lot for Black Sands Beach. If you study the GPS tracks, you'll notice a side trip to a hill overlooking Rodeo Lagoon. The views of the lagoon are superb from atop this hill.

After reaching Conzelman Road, we climbed a short hill overlooking the Pacific. This hill is adjacent to a pedestrian crossing on Conzelman Road, near which there is also a parking lot for a few cars. After enjoying awesome views from atop this hill, we climbed down and walked along Conzelman Road (0.4 miles) to reach the parking lot for Black Sands Beach. Beyond the parking lot, follow Upper Fisherman's Trail and walk on the beach and return by the same route to the parking lot on Conzelman Road (1.0 miles).

To Wolf Ridge (Hill 88) (3.5 miles): Follow Coastal Trail to Bunker Road (0.5 miles). Turn left on Bunker Road. Within a few yards, turn right along an unnamed wide fire road, which connects to Rodeo Valley Trail. Then follow Rodeo Valley Trail (0.4 miles) → Miwok Trail (1.2 miles) → Wolf Ridge Trail (0.7 miles) to reach a paved road. Turn left on the paved road to reach a hill top, explore the buildings there and return (0.7 miles round-trip). The views from the hill top are gorgeous. One can see Rodeo Lagoon, Rodeo Beach, Golden Gate Bridge, the coastline and various valleys in Marin Headlands all around.

To Rodeo Beach (1.7 miles): Follow Coastal Trail (1.7 miles) all the way to Rodeo Beach. There are trails going all the way to Tennessee Point (see trail map), which you may wish to explore in a side trip.

To Marin Headlands Visitor Center (1.0 mile): Walk across Rodeo Beach (0.4 miles) → follow Lagoon Trail (0.6 miles) to reach Marin Headlands Visitor Center.


Location: (Marin Headlands Visitor Center) 948 Fort Barry, Sausalito, CA . Parking area is visible in Google Maps if you zoom in sufficiently.

Google Maps:

Parking Fees: None (last visited: May 2010)

Capacity: About 25 cars.

Latitude: 37.830612     Longitude: -122.524745

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