While in Calif we were staying with a friend in the Saratoga area and were pouring over our maps trying to decide where to go when she mentioned Stinson Beach was at the end of a very winding road. It was also the beach that was used in the Bette Midler movie "Beaches" . We had to go
it was one of the windiest roads I have been on
there seemed to be continuous curves and the road was cambered in every direction which makes for riding a two wheeled vehicle very challenging. Many curves were slow to " 10 or 15 MPH " . Luckily we were navigating in our rented car.
this section of highway from Mill Valley to Stinson Beach is actually part of Hwy 101 which travels along the rugged coast, mostly without guard rails on the cliff side . The road is narrower than normal and you have to be careful to watch for oncoming cars in your lane after a tight corner
There are few spots to turn off for photos, but the weather was on our side and the temperatures were just perfect
This scenery is what we imagine it should be and the reason we like to breathe in the beauty of California's rugged coast
We soon find ourselves at the Muir Beach scenic lookout
there is a walkway on the ridge of this hill which goes to a viewing platform. This is the view you see as you look north
We soon find ourselves at Stinson Beach where we decide to have a lunch break
It is a small town who cater to tourists, like ourselves. There are a couple of restaurants and a few fast food self serve eateries.
(the Main street, looking south)
We ate here. You order at the counter, you are given a number and the food is delivered to your table
Here is the front view of the restaurant as viewed through the window of the hippy/artist across the street
While we were at the Muir Beach Lookout we met a local who told us about Bolinas, which is another town just 5 miles north of Stinston Beach. Bolinas is a private community who dislike outsiders. They have removed all of the signs which lead to their town in the hope that you won't find it. This local told us that the state often put up signs directing people to this town and they are quickly removed. While we were heading north we overshot the town by over 10 miles and had to double back but eventually we found it
We were told that Bolinas was originally home to many hippies, though older now
you can tell by the community bulletin board that this indeed an artist's community
The main commercial area is about a block long and this grocery store looks like something out of the 50's
Wharf street leads to the main beach area where there are a few stilt houses built over the water .
Nearly forgot to post a photo of Stinson Beach with its flat sand beach