After leaving Bolinas, I didn't have a solid plan of where to go next. I'd heard that at least one internet friend was going camping at a place called Steep Ravine. Google maps told me that Steep Ravine was just a few miles down the road from Bolinas. I took a leisurely ride in that direction, and arrived pretty early. I'd been advised by a person who had local knowledge that Steep Ravine was a tourist trap. It's probably true that in the summer the rustic cabins at Steep Ravine are a popular destination, but the campsites are somewhat secluded, and on this winter day, only 3 out of 7 sites were occupied.
I picked a site with an unobstructed view of the ocean.
Since it was only midday and I had the place more or less to myself, I explored the area a bit, and enjoyed some of the local flora and views.
I made some food:
Eggs and cheddar and bacon and avocado. Not too shabby.
I was starting to think that the people I'd hoped to meet at the campground weren't going to show. But just before sunset, four new friends arrived.
Soon, sunset was the major event.
(photo by Manny Acosta)
After dark, I played around with some long-exposure photography.
This was a fun screw-up.
San Francisco lights in the distance:
And our campfire:
And a delightful moonrise over the ridge:
The next morning, my camping companions departed early, while I took full advantage of the nice weather for screwing around some more at the campsite. I just wasn't ready to leave such scenery.
I rode down the coast, which was breath-taking, but decided to turn inland to check out Muir Woods. Unfortunately that area was an absolute zoo, cars and people everywhere, so I just kept pedaling up and up and up, then down and down and down, into Mill Valley. No good pics, unfortunately.
After stopping for groceries in Mill Valley, I again saw my previous night's camping friends. They'd had some delays, and amazingly we saw each other at an intersection. Amazing coincidence.
We took the secret route to the Golden Gate. This is me.
They crossed the bridge, but I opted to remain in the Marin Headlands. By the time I got near the familiarly comfortable Marin Headlands hostel, I decided to spend another night in the hostel - fully stocked with groceries, I was especially excited to use the full kitchen to make myself a nice meal. And the promises of a hot shower and wireless internet access were alluring. I must be getting soft. Here's the hostel.
It's a lot bigger than it looks in this picture. For hikers and bikers, it's $24/night, which is an amazingly good deal.
Stay tuned for my excursion in the East Bay area, and in the city of San Francisco itself...