Whether you're looking for an easy Sunday stroll or a rugged mountain path to explore, California State Parks' new online guide to hiking trails will have you strapping on your boots and making tracks across the shorelines and summits that grace the Golden State.
If you've ever wandered through the bishop pines or sweeping grasslands of the Point Reyes National Seashore, you know just how beautiful the park is. A seemingly effortless gift from Mother Nature, most visitors don't realize it takes an invisible army of volunteers to ensure the land is safe and accessible to all, especially the flora and fauna who call the park home.
The fish are here, the water conditions are great, and it won't last long! Save the Redwoods League, Redwood National and State Parks, and the North Coast Redwood Interpretive Association are offering free, guided trips to view the annual migration and spectacle of spawning salmon, on Saturdays and Sundays through the end of January.
Stretching from Point Reyes National Seashore, south through the Marin Headlands and parts of San Francisco, to San Mateo County on the Bay Area Peninsula, the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) contains more endangered species that any other national park in continental North America.
Hunted to the brink of extinction at the turn of the 20th century, the northern elephant seal has made a strong comeback in the past 100 years, thanks in part to both government restrictions on hunting and their own secluded, deep-sea lifestyle. For just a few months each year, these unique creatures come ashore, returning to various spots along the California coast to compete, mate, and give birth.
For 11 years the Common Murre Restoration Project has been restoring seabird colonies on a small seastack known as Devil's Slide Rock, on the San Mateo County coast just 15 miles south of San Francisco. The Devil's Slide breeding colony held close to 3,000 Common Murres (Uria aalge) as recently as the early 1980s, but was wiped out as a result of human-caused mortality.