An awkwardly cold coast; Three days in Point Reyes

Reaching the first campsite was easy. About 6 miles in and without very much elevation change, it was a peaceful walk in the park. New shoes and a new backpack, I was ecstatic. New Year’s Day, perfect weather, we hit Glen Camp before we knew it.

…And almost wish we didn’t. I knew a cold snap was hitting California. 32f for the lows and 55 for the high. Not bad, if you have the right gear. Only problem is, our campsite was one of the only ones where sun did not hit the entire day. Permafrost ground. My sleeping bag could handle it, but not my pad. Needless to say my toes were not happy that night. A warm Marmot fleece helped, as did an always trusty Arc’Teryx Atom LT. I love those things.

A bright, nearly full moon made night shots look like day. The feeling of walking around, only seeing by lunar light is one every person should experience at least once. A blessing on the one hand, since seeing the world by night must seem like how an owl experiences the world. On the other, photographing is often times not as fun.


Heading out of camp in the morning was glorious. An uphill climb of six more miles proved a dream. Point Reyes National Seashore is a delight to backpack through because of its diversity. From coastal redwoods to what felt like miles of jungle, you never get bored and nary do you want the trail to stop. Places to stop and rest were plenty, and never does the challenge escape any sense of benevolence. The last time I was in this place was in middle school. Its magic has not dwindled one bit.

A gasp of warm air. We reach Sky Camp with the elation of a well earned trek. Sky is one of those site that you never forget. Isolated camps, open vistas, striking meadows, and for this trip, plenty more moonlight meant a dreamscape filled with wonders afar. I might call it luxury camping. It almost doesn’t feel hard enough, but in the end, the peace is worth it. As it always is with the wilderness.

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