Muir Woods National Monument, located just north of San Francisco and part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, is noted for its mystical grooves of centuries-old redwood trees. Many nature lovers hold a special place in their hearts for the property. It was created as a result of a land grant intended to protect the ancient trees from a logging industry growth. The Coast Miwok people had lived in the area for almost 10,000 years before that. Muir Woods is becoming a popular destination for both locals and visitors wishing to get away from the city for some fresh air and rich foliage in the dense woodlands.
First and foremost, you must prepare how you will get to Muir Woods ahead of time. Parking spaces at the monument must be reserved in advance, so this is easier said than done.
For the best availability, make sure to register your spot as soon as possible online. Entrance tickets can be purchased at the same time as your parking spot for $15 per car. The cost of entrance for adults is $15, while admittance for youngsters is free.
Keep in mind that the drive up to the park is challenging and mountainous, with winding, narrow roads and a few hairpin corners. If you want to let someone else drive, you can take the Muir Woods Shuttle. You’ll have to make another reservation online, but a round-trip shuttle ticket will only cost $3.25. Every day, shuttles run from Sausalito and Marin City, California, to the park, which takes about 45 minutes. If the park is crowded, get in line as soon as possible for your favourite shuttle return to town.
Dress For The Weather
The ocean fog supplies much-needed moisture to the huge redwoods at Muir Woods, which is located directly on the shore. The mystery mist, as well as cold breezes, can be found most mornings. Temperatures rarely exceed 70 degrees, and there is plenty of shade, as you might expect.
Warm layers are recommended, as well as a waterproof outer layer in case of rain. Which is likely from November to April. If you’re going to the park at that time, make sure you have an umbrella in case the weather forecast calls for rain. You don’t want to waste your time at the park by becoming damp and uncomfortable.
The ocean fog provides much-needed moisture to Muir Woods’ massive redwoods, which are placed right on the beach. Most mornings, the mystery mist, as well as frigid gusts, can be found. Temperatures rarely reach 70 degrees, and as you might think, there is plenty of shade.
Warm layers and a waterproof outer layer are advised in case of rain, which is likely from November to April. If you plan on visiting the park at that time, bring an umbrella in case the weather forecast predicts rain. You don’t want to squander your time at the park by becoming wet and uncomfortable.
If you plan to remain for the day, bring nutrient-dense snacks with you to eat along the way. This will help you maintain your energy levels. While the park’s entry has a nice concession booth, we like to bring our own food and a refillable water bottle for climbing and trekking.
Just make sure you leave enough room in your pocket or backpack to stow any trash you may have and bring it out of the park with you. There are no trash cans along the paths. Which is by design in order to keep this location as pure and as close to its natural state as possible.
Take a look but don’t touch
For good reason, Muir Woods has implemented a “Leave No Trace” policy. The policy was put in place to protect the park’s flora and animal life. Do not stray from the trails or paved paths, no matter how enticing it may be. Many of the species found here are exceedingly vulnerable. And, even a single step of the trail can trample and kill them.
Look around in astonishment, take photos. Maybe even draw what you see, but don’t touch or take anything from the area. Remember that everything you see at Muir Woods is protected by federal law, so leave it where it belongs so that others can enjoy it.
Pursue Your Goals
This suggestion may be the oddest of them. However, if you’re familiar with the Japanese tradition of forest bathing, you’ll have a greater idea of what we’re talking about. Visiting Muir Woods is a sacred experience for many individuals, allowing them to slow down and communicate with nature at its most beautiful. It’s rare to have the chance to entirely disconnect (there’s no Wi-Fi!) and take up such a fantastic ambience.
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Perhaps it’s to reflect on life, give thanks, or find calm as you take in nature’s magnificence on its own terms. Whatever your goal is, this is the place to achieve it. Muir Woods is a location where you can open your mind and heart to the wonders of the natural world. Its magnificent redwood giants are hundreds of years old and, with careful conservation, will survive for hundreds more.
Cathedral Grove is one of our favourite areas within the monument. You’ll see signs encouraging quietness, and you’ll be able to take a peaceful stroll through the ancient, massive trees, listening to the pure sounds of nature just 20 miles from one of our country’s most densely populated areas.