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Tomales Point Trail

MODERATE 538 reviews

Tomales Point Trail is a 9.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Inverness, California that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
9.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,177 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

trail running

walking

bird watching

beach

views

wildlife

over grown

no dogs

Hike out to Tomales Point with stunning views surrounding you on all sides. An excellent out and back day hike. This open trail offers spectacular views of Tomales Bay, Bodega Bay, and the Pacific Ocean. It is also a prime wildlife viewing trail, as it is remote and the tule elk are enclosed in this reserve. The first 3 miles to Lower Pierce Point Ranch are well marked and maintained, but the last stretch can be overgrown with bush lupine and other shrubs, so long pants and long sleeves are a good idea. The journey all the way to the Point is worth it, for the view is unparalleled. Fog and wind can limit visibility and make this hike more challenging. The Tomales Point Trailhead is at the end of Pierce Point Road, 40 minute driving time from Bear Valley.

hiking
muddy
3 days ago

recorded Tomales Point Trail

hiking
muddy
12 days ago

hiking
13 days ago

Wonderful views of elk and several coyotes.

26 days ago

Great viewing of the elk and coyotes.

hiking
26 days ago

If you don’t enjoy crowds I would recommend arriving by 9am. We only saw a handful of people on the way out and it was very serene. Beautiful hike throughout, Elk were amazing. We stopped and ate sandwiches at the point and watched for whales (didn’t see any). The way back was packed with people (many large groups and some even playing music....). Moderate is a fair rating for this trial.

hiking
muddy
28 days ago

This trail was great for beginners. Bring water and layers as you will work up a sweat if you go all the way to the point. Don’t forget sunblock as there is no shade. The Elk are beautiful and very aware of your presence. We also saw red tail hawks. Beautiful. I’m sure on a more costal foggy day it would be windy and chilly.

hiking
28 days ago

Simple casual and fun hike with great views all along. PS: towards the end, you might see it not well maintained!

hiking
29 days ago

Great trail. Took our 3.5 yo and our 10mo in a backpack. Very exposed so bring lots of sun screen. There was tons of wildlife (bobcat, coyote, elk, hawks). This was open despite government shutdown.

30 days ago

great views

hiking
1 month ago

Windy but beautiful. Saw a herd of elks before the sunset. Stunning views. Easy hike except the wind.

hiking
1 month ago

Great Hike. Saw two coyotes, elk and deer. Bathrooms were closed when I went due to the government shutdown. Hardly any trees on this hike but amazing views.

hiking
1 month ago

Did this on Jan 12, 2019. Beautiful views of ocean and also wildlife— lots of elk quite close by along the trail, and lots of birding opportunities. Incline is not too bad as well. Got to tomales point trailhead parking lot around 10:45 and the small parking lot was full but there’s grass area right next to it that is used as overflow. By the time we left (around 3:45), there were double the amount of cars.

1 month ago

Loved seeing the elk and pretty flat - my 9 year old was able to complete the hike!

1 month ago

Nice hike for those who want lots of wildlife and ocean scenery. Started before sunrise and by the time I was back the lot was very full. Recommend getting there early.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike. It is neat to see the Elk herds. Worth the trip.

hiking
1 month ago

One of my very favorite hikes. Seeing water on both sides is amazing. The Tule Elk are fun to see on the way.

hiking
1 month ago

I’ve got to agree with everyone else: fantastic hike. In addition to the views you’ll see tons of raptors - especially Harriers, Red-Tailed Hawks and Kestrels - as well as Tule Elk, Mule Deer and Coyotes.

1 month ago

Beautiful crisp blue Christmas Day hike. Definitely worth waking up early to avoid the crowds. Majestic elk and magical floating birds. A Sonoma County gem! The views at the point are stunning.

hiking
1 month ago

very windy but awesome views. saw elk, coyotes, vultures. highly recommend but dress warm!

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hills and weather, perfect for a Thanksgiving hike.

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing hike on very easy terrain. Too bad I forgot my binoculars because the elks were beautiful and majestic, we also got to see whales in the distance!

3 months ago

Beautiful Views! The Elk are Spectacular!!

hiking
3 months ago

My first time in Point Reyes. So beautiful! The elk, the wild flowers, the views. At first I was thinking this hike is on the easier side of moderate but the distance definitely makes it a bit more challenging. The distance and fighting through the head-high wild flowers to get to the end.

hiking
4 months ago

Great hike!

We started the hike about 9:30am October 20, 2018. Couldn't ask for better weather. There was a little coastal fog that burned off quickly and no wind.

The first part of the hike is easy and the views of the Pacific Ocean are amazing. Elk can be found throughout the trail. About a mile in, the trail has a good moderate climb.

The real reward is when you reach the point. Because there was no wind, we enjoyed our sandwiches while watching a seal play in the water. We were literally perched on the cliff overlooking the beautiful waves crashing on the shore below.

The return trip was on the same trail, but there were lots of hikers by this time. So glad we left early so we could enjoy some solitude before the crowds. When we returned to the parking lot around 2:00 pm, it was full!

We strolled around the old ranch there looking at the buildings, etc. By the time we returned to our car, about 2:30pm, we noticed that the wind had picked up.

Highly recommend this hike in the morning to avoid crowds and wind!

hiking
4 months ago

Good hike—stunning views of Tomales Bay, Bodega Bay and south to Drakes Bay. Mild incline about a mile into the hike, but easy hiking on the maintained trail. The last half mile on the unmaintained stretch is a narrow, sandy channel through scratchy foliage, so long pants are a plus, but the view is worth the effort. Lots of Tule elk, we also saw a fox and a coyote as well as birds galore. Be aware that the whole hike is exposed, so take water and keep that in mind as regards clothes. Hike this! It’s awesome.

hiking
4 months ago

This is a super easy hike and very scenic, but long as everyone says. You will get up close and personal with the elk and the birds at the end. I give it 4 stars because there is no water refill stations in the park at all and bathrooms are scarce. But this hike in particular is great.

4 months ago

It took us just under four hours to hike this out and back trail. The views were stunning and we saw many elk as well as a wolf. We enjoyed the hike even though it was raining for about half of the way to the point. The cliffs were a beautiful sight and the sun sparkling on the ocean was beautiful.

hiking
4 months ago

One of my top favorite trail, very scenic. Lots of Elks. I love the cliffs at the end of the trail, very relaxing and peaceful. Highly recommended.

hiking
5 months ago

Awesome hike. Lots of elk, especially when you make it to the watering hole. That last mile of sandy trail wears you out though. But the cliffs are worth it. Highly recommended.

5 months ago

Many Elk. Very minimal inclines. Many children and elderly on the trail. Went barefoot the last mile or so in the sand. One of the calmest and most serene 10 milers in my experience

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