2016's Best Adventures

2016 has been a year of many... surprises. And adventures! From going on a hike in the High Sierra to discovering waterfalls close to home, here's to what we loved about 2016. In 2017 let's log on, and get out!

My Weekend Sherpa:

Want to do it Did it
Week of:

1) Three Falling

Three waterfalls, incredible autumn colors, and hardly any people. McCloud Falls might be the best waterfall hike in Northern California. There are bigger waterfalls in the state, but it’s the whole package that makes this 4-mile (round-trip) hike truly memorable.…

2) Dam Tam!

Hike in the Sierra without leaving the Bay Area! Well, at least it seems that way. The sparkling reservoirs on the north side of Mount Tamalpais offer miles of hiking trails and the kind of peaceful forest sensation that could…

3) Picnic and a Pedal

West Marin has all the right stuff for an autumn afternoon getaway: bike paths, babbling brooks, canopy forests, and secluded picnic spots. Combine a picnic and a pedal at Samuel P. Taylor State Park, where the leaves are churning out…

4) New Year's Bendolution!

Ahhh, the old New Year’s Resolution … easy to make, hard to keep. So start with something really fun, like experiencing a new winter weekend adventure: Bend, Oregon! Bend is the ultimate mountain town. Flanked by the Cascades and home…

Discover Bend

5) Peak Pondering

Some of the most magical hikes begin like a magic trick: The start is filled with lots of people, cute farm animals, and some hustle-bustle frenzy. Then, within minutes, it vanishes! All you have to do is find the entrance…

6) Lands Zen

Find a little peace in San Francisco on an urban walk featuring a beautiful new stairway, panoramic views, a labyrinth, and plentiful coastal drama. Indeed, Lands End is a popular outing on the weekend, but go early or a couple…

7) Steep Sleep

Perhaps the best deal in the Bay Area: an oceanfront cabin at Steep Ravine for $100. The challenge? Actually reserving one of these popular cabins! Don’t be dissuaded; the effort is well worth it. Ten stand-alone cabins cluster on the…

8) Secret Redwoods (+ Swimhole!)

It’s rare to have one of Northern California’s biggest attractions all to yourself. Unless you’re in on a secret. Grizzly Creek Redwoods State Park is a little-known gem where skyscraping reds (the tallest living trees in the world!) fly under…

9) Wicked Waterworks

Despite its devilish hot name, Mount Diablo has a cooler, splashier side. Heavy winter rains create a collection of six scenic waterfalls encircling the mountain's rugged northern canyons. Take the grand tour on this 5-mile loop with a gentle climb…

10) Hidden Long Ridge

After heavy rains, the rolling headwaters of Peters Creek in Long Ridge Open Space Preserve pulsate along the forest floor via a series of small waterfalls that cut grooves in sandstone boulders. See it on a 4.5-mile loop hike starting…

11) Rae of Light

Want special access to some of the most beautiful lakes in the Sierra Nevada? Grab your backpack and lace up your hiking boots for a multi-night journey on Rae Lakes Loop in Kings Canyon. On the agenda: spiky granite peaks,…

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