Alpine Lake was my half-way-to-37 hike. Well, one of them anyway. And I’m pretty sure it’s going to end up on my top 10 list. (Why yes, I have started plotting that already.) Here’s why: this one relatively short hike includes a stroll along a pretty lake (once you get past the water pump), a climb through towering redwoods, and ends along an open ridge with views of the bay and hills. Really, the only way this hike could be any better is if you were allowed to go for a swim in the reservoir on the way out.
Crowd factor: Surprisingly light
Exposure: Mix of shade and sun
Distance: ~5 miles
Difficulty: Getting up to the ridge isn’t an insignificant feat, but otherwise it’s flat
Pro tips: After working up an appetite, hit up Sol Food in San Rafael. Skip the line for the restaurant; order take out next door instead and go sit in their cute little tropical patio. While you’re there read about the woman who started the place.
Date hiked: 6/25/17
Source: Hiking Marin 3rd Edition by Don and Kay Martin