Another after work jaunt, and new to me spot – Mount Burdell. The website blurb has this to say: “Marin County’s largest open space preserve, Mount Burdell rises to a 1500 feet summit with panoramic views.” AND! The world’s best bik’n buddy was visiting and had agreed to join in the on foot adventure. Woohoo!
The park has several trailheads, we only went to one, but they all look to be similar neighborhood access points, rather than a single large parking lot type of a deal. Easier/cheaper in some ways, and it’s cool to have open space so accessible – that people can just go out their front door and BOOM there they are! Although I always wonder how much folks actually take advantage, and hopefully there aren’t conflicts between people who live in the neighborhood and “outside” users. The spot we started at actually had several places to park that weren’t in front of someone’s house, which was nice.
I had looked around a bit online, but ended up just downloading the map from the Parks website and planning my own route. The usual criteria – loop, if possible, and covering as much trail as possible without repeating. Ohand favoring trail over fire roads.
We were quickly out of the neighborhood and gaining elevation, getting views to the south. The route wound over open hillsides and through more forested sections. We encountered grazing cattle, and in several spots had to go through gates.
In several places we saw large piles of rocks, indeed, the trail we took up to the top of the ridge was called Old Quarry. It was quite steep, giving me a sense of accomplishment and relief. It wasn’t a single definitive peak sort of experience, but there were nice views both to the south and out to the north west. We tried to figure out where some of the west county roads we’ve ridden on were in the landscape, but didn’t feel like we had much success with that.
We took a different way down, seeing a cyclist we’d seen earlier – doing loops of his own. As the sun sank toward the horizon we started to get the magic hour light, which then deepened to twilight. I didn’t read a trail sign right, or somehow missed a turn, so we didn’t do exactly what I’d looked at doing on the map, but we didn’t get lost, and got back to the van before it was completely dark. Super fun having company, and *woot woot* I’m to double digits on the count! We didn’t get to all of the park, so I’m open to the possibility of going back some time. And/or checking it out by bike.
3/12/2021, 5.9 miles