All "Water" Stories in Northern CA

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    All Roads Lead to Rogue

    Idea for your next road trip: Go Rogue! The Rogue Valley in beautiful Southern Oregon has some of the state’s best hiking, swim holes, and wineries, and the charming historic towns of Ashland, Medford, and Jacksonville.

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    Small Craft Morning

    San Luis Obispo Bay is a lovely place to kayak. The highlands backing the bay and a jetty at its western end protect the harbor from tough paddling.

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    Wine O'Clock

    Wine may be Napa’s most famous liquid, but there’s a way you can just stick with water and still enjoy yourself (really!). Do a 3-mile out-and-back hike at Rector Reservoir Wildlife Area northeast of Yountville.

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    Easy Does It, East Bay

    Lafayette Reservoir is an East Bay classic and this time of year we recommend simply stretching your legs on the trail around the reservoir.

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    Hello, Kitty Kat

    One of the best ways to enjoy the bay in fall is to actually get out on the water, where clear days bring clear views of the Golden Gate and a few big surprises. Book yourself onboard Captain Joe’s 65-foot catamaran, “Kitty Kat” for a smorgasbord of sightseeing and sea life. Yep, you’re on a boat!

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    Kirby Appeal

    Still haven't cycled over the Golden Gate Bridge yet? We have a twist on this classic tourist outing. It's very simple. Instead of crossing over the bridge and veering right to head down to Sausalito with the Bike and Roll crowd, turn left and go up Conzelman Road toward Hawk Hill. You can do this as a hike, too.

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    Jenner's New Views

    If Big Sur had a little sister, we think it would be the Sonoma Coast … equally beautiful yet less filled with people, especially when you hike the new trail system at the Jenner Headlands Preserve in Sonoma County. These beautiful developed trails opened last year, offering…

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    Battery Recharger

    So close, yet far enough to get swept up in iconic coastal scenery—that pretty much defines this classic hike in the Marin Headlands. Go on a winding 5-mile loop hike that brings together the best of the headlands. Starting from the main Rodeo Beach parking area, head east along…

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    Santa Maria Is Magical

    Ready to find a beach to call your own? Make a visit to Santa Maria Beach in Point Reyes. It’s often overlooked for nearby Limantour Beach. What makes Santa Maria so quiet and peaceful? The 3-mile bike (or hike) in!

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    Del Valle Daytrippin'

    Livermore is popular for its tasty wines, but it has another liquid asset for a triple-play summer day. Head to the East Bay’s Del Valle Regional Park for a reservoir-to-ridge hike, a scenic boat ride, and some beach time. From the boat launch area, start hiking on the East Shore…

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    Cheers to Chimney

    If you’re looking for all that Point Reyes has to offer in spring, Chimney Rock is the place to be. The 1.75-mile (round-trip) hike to Chimney may be short, but packs a visual punch, quadrupling the viewing thrills during spring and early summer. The cooler temperatures on the…

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    Nuclear Option

    A private stretch of the glorious Central Coast with poppy-studded hills and wild coastal bluffs is ours for the hiking, and you’ll never guess who the willing-to-share landlord is: none other than PG&E’s Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant. Point Buchon Trail makes a grand tour of…

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    Hike the Dunes to the Beach

    Bodega Head is popular for its impressive cliff-hugging hiking trails, but few people follow the path north to a less-trodden hiking trail winding along the bluff and down to spectacular South Salmon Creek Beach. To make this 4-mile (round-trip) journey from the Bodega Head…

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    From Peak to Beach

    Morning on the mountain, afternoon at the beach, and in between both: banner ocean views. It’s all within 3 miles’ reach on the Peninsula when you get an early start at Montara State Beach. From the parking lot, beeline for Montara Mountain’s north peak trailhead, which is across…

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    Going Big on the Coast

    What’s one of the best things to do on the California coast during winter months? Whale watching! Especially, migrating gray whales. And San Mateo County’s Año Nuevo State Park puts you in the perfect position to see them, via a 3-mile (round-trip) hike that includes a stretch of…

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    Whale, Hello There!

    Blissfully quiet on winter mornings, San Gregorio State Beach on the San Mateo Coast is ideal for spying gray whales.

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    Bewitched, Bothered, Bewildered, and Bodega!

    Whale watching, hiking along bluffs, and a picnic overlooking the Pacific with the one(s) you love: no, it’s not a Cialis commercial—it’s a great way to spend the day in a gorgeous setting. The tiny outcropping of Bodega Head on the north coast is a scenic standout, thanks to its…

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    Sands of Time

    Those who want a fresh perspective and a quiet place to contemplate New Year’s goals should get an early start and head south of Half Moon Bay to San Gregorio State Beach. Blissfully quiet on early winter mornings, the wide beach has a large cave to explore and more than a mile…

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    From Redwoods to Sea Stacks

    In the heart of Anderson Valley, Hendy Woods State Park is rarely crowded, especially in winter, and has a star attraction: ancient redwoods. There’s an easy 2-mile (round-trip) hike among the redwoods via the Discovery and Upper Loop trails. Meander among 300-foot coastal…

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    The Ghost & the Fairy

    It’s hard to resist paddling the tranquil waters of Golden Gate Park’s Stow Lake … home to ducks, geese, gulls, turtles, tourists, and—according to legend—a ghost! Urban myth or not, the story is a bit of a sad one. During the 1800s a woman sat down at a bench along the lake, and…