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  1. Northern CA

    SLO Jam

    Ahhh, winter on the Central Coast. Fewer crowds, amazing outdoors, and some wine to top it all off. Adventure, unwind, and take it SLO.

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  2. Northern CA

    Backdoor Marin

    So close, so wild, and sometimes so popular! Marin packs plenty of secrets, you just have to know which door to open. Here are a few less traveled hikes. Knock, knock!

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  3. Southern CA

    Winter Cruise

    Grab your bike and get out there for a body-warming spin in winter's cooler temps. These three routes serve up spectacular scenery with everything from easy cruising to challenging climbs. And ice cream, too!

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  4. Sponsored
    2024-02-07

    Sonoma Valley's 100 Days of Winter Wellness Guide

    This winter wellness plan goes to 100! Nurture yourself in 2024 with Sonoma Valley’s 100 Days of Winter Wellness guide. It’s a perfectly curated array of inspiration and ideas.

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  5. Northern CA

    Storm Troopers!

    When El Niño's storms are pounding the coast, don't run for shelter, run for the trails! Here are three trails that offer great vantages of the approaching storms, and are short enough to retreat if there’s a downpour!

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  6. Southern CA

    Winter Sands

    Some winter wonderlands are filled with sand. Here are three great ways to celebrate winter with secluded beaches, lively tide pools, and sunset bonuses.

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  7. Northern CA

    Make Your Winter Escape

    Bodega Sunset Sensation! Tiny Bodega Head has long lured visitors to its dramatic cliff-above-ocean setting and excellent vantages for spotting migrating gray whales. Hike here on a winter day right before sunset and you'll be treated to fewer crowds and a glorious technicolor dream show, powered by nature. National Treasure The 1,665-acre Point Arena–Stornetta Public Lands were last year designated as part of the California Coastal National Monument by President Barack Obama. This Mendocino County gem is a spectacular place to hike along bluffs overlooking small coves, sea caves, and offshore islands. It's also a prime whale-watching spot. Beach Stroll with Your Best Friend Long walks on the beach, in the East Bay? Indeed. Alameda's Crown Memorial Beach is a relaxing stretch of sand that's an impressive 2.5 miles long, and it's dog-friendly too! Nice and New Hike through some stunning canyons studded with ancient oaks and opening up to huge views at the newly opened Mindego Gateway trailhead in Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve. Warm Bath and a Waterfall Hike What's better than hiking to a waterfall? How about relaxing afterward in a warm mineral bath? Do both at Ukiah's Vichy Springs! BONUS: National Parks are waiving their entrance fees on Monday, January 18, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

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  8. Southern CA

    Winter Wonder Hikes

    Summit and Sip: Secluded at 1,500 feet in the Santa Monica Mountains, Tuna Canyon Park is quiet even on a weekend afternoon. This 3.8-mile (round-trip) hike to the preserve's western viewpoint has wowing views up the coast of Malibu. Sip Tip: There's a nearby wine tasting room with food trucks too. The Big Wild: Get a highlight reel of all that's wild and wondrous in Southern California on an 11-mile (round-trip) loop hike in Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Park. Park It Beer: One of the best views of the downtown skyline is in Vista Hermosa Park, just a mile from the heart of the city, yet an oasis world away with a meandering trail. There's a Beer Bonus, too! Insta-View: Reaching a stunning peak vista in under a mile? If it sounds too good to be true, you haven't been to Ventura County's Camarillo Grove Park. Free for You and Me: National Parks are waiving their entrance fees on Monday, January 18, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

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  9. Northern CA

    New Trails and Views

    Happy New Year! Out with the old, in with the new: Here are three adventures throughout the Bay Area that feature something all new, and ready for you!

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  10. Southern CA

    Big Wild Hikes

    Happy New Year! Get started on an adventurous 2016 with any (or all!) of these three epic hikes, featuring peaks, marshland, a cave, a labyrinth, some scrambling, and classic coastal scenery.

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  11. Northern CA

    Best Adventures of 2015

    1) Master of Tam This 8-mile classic Mount Tam hike is one to return to year after year. There are multiple ways to start it, but it's kind of nice to get the uphill out of the way first. 2) Hidden Coastal Hike Big Sur's Garrapata State Park is a coast-hugging beauty with little-known trails leading to a Big Surplus of vistas. Do this 2-mile (round-trip) oceanside hike with nonstop views of epic coastline). 3) Light the Way to Whale Watching What's the secret for spying gray whales during winter's migration season? Location! And location doesn't get any better than from the top of the tallest lighthouse on the West Coast. 4) Strong, Rugged, Beautiful Jenner and the Sonoma Coast have big views, a beautiful hidden state beach, and sublime (beginner-friendly!) kayaking. 5) Viva Anderson Valley Just a few hours north of San Francisco, Anderson Valley packs in everything you'd want for a glorious weekend getaway: fabulous (affordable!) wineries, hiking in the redwoods, and a hilltop gem for spending the night. 6) Tree Swing Hikes The Central Coast adventureland of San Luis Obispo County is surrounded by ancient volcanoes, green hills, and dramatic coastline. Toss in some tree swings on hikes, and see SLO from new heights. 7) Yurts So Good Set high in the Santa Cruz Mountains, with an entourage of spectacular redwood trees, Mount Madonna County Park is 3,200 acres of beautiful secluded land dominated by redwoods, with hiking trails, four campgrounds, and five awesome yurts! 8) Know Your ABCs ABC = Adventures in British Columbia! The westernmost Canadian province has a rainforest with a hidden hot springs, epic hiking in Whistler, and incredible lake and oceanside respites for eating, drinking, and sleeping. 9) Sierra Secret The quiet town of Sierraville is basecamp for adventure: Spend the night in spectacular fire lookout, take a dip in a nearby hot springs, and find glorious Sierra solitude on the trails. 10) Best in Beaches Three of California's top state beaches are located in Monterey County—do some sand hopping!

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  12. Southern CA

    Top Adventures of 2015

    1) Peak Season in a State Park Hike 5 miles (round-trip) to a mountain peak in the desert without leaving Los Angeles County, at Saddleback Butte State Park. 2) Hidden Beach Camping on the Central Coast You want your California beach camping to be off the beaten path? There's a secluded slice of beach paradise for that. 3) Haunting of the Hollywood Sign Is the world's most famous sign haunted? Find out for yourself on a cardio-filled 7-mile (round-trip) hike in Griffith Park. 4) The Redwoods Nearby The towering, fog-enshrouded coastal redwoods of the northern coast feel like a world away from LA, but did you know you can find redwoods right in Orange County? 5) Stone Stairway to a San Diego Peak Adventure up in San Diego County! To 5,737-foot Stonewall Peak. This 4-mile (round-trip) hike leads to a brilliant panorama via a set of carved stone stairs. 6) Cave, Man! One of SoCal's coolest caves is found just outside of suburbia on a solid loop hike and short scramble in Los Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve. 7) LA Gone Wild Cardio hiking, stunning views, and a location that's super close to downtown? Urban adventure has a wild side, and the proof is on Mount Washington with this 4-mile loop. 8) Sunny Side Up We all know the sun rises in the east, so West Coasters are deprived of ocean sunrises, right? Not exactly. There's a vantage from Point Dume Nature Preserve where the sun comes up smack dab over the Pacific. 9) Joshua Tree on a Whim Enjoy marvelous hikes and a place to soak your bones and sip a cocktail after adventures among the whimsically wild trees of Joshua Tree National Park. 10) Bike + Beer = Beautiful Go on an 8-mile bike ride with plenty of scenery, greenery, and a pit stop for an imperial pint at a taproom beer haven with serious British influence. BONUS Beyond Discover New ABCs. ABC= Adventures in British Columbia! The westernmost Canadian province has a rainforest with a hidden hot springs, epic hiking in Whistler, and incredible lake and oceanside respites for eating, drinking, and sleeping.

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  13. Northern CA

    Merry in the Moment

    It's something dogs do really well. Live in the moment. Not worried about stuff in the past or dwelling on things to come. It's about what's right in front of you, right now. During the holidays, things can get a little stressful. One way to help deal with that stress is to get outside. It doesn't have to be a big hike—it could just be taking a walk down the street or hopping on your bike to go to the store. What's right in front of you? Take a breath, look around. You're alive! In California! That's pretty cool. We'll celebrate that. Enjoy the holidays, from all of us at Weekend Sherpa. PS - Next week is our annual Top 10 featuring some of your favorite adventures of the year. Make it merry!

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  14. Southern CA

    Merry in the Moment

    It's something dogs do really well. Live in the moment. Not worried about stuff in the past or dwelling on things to come. It's about what's right in front of you, right now. During the holidays, things can get a little stressful. One way to help deal with that stress is to get outside. It doesn't have to be a big hike—it could just be taking a walk down the street or hopping on your bike to go to the store. What's right in front of you? Take a breath, look around. You're alive! In California! That's pretty cool. We'll celebrate that. Enjoy the holidays, from all of us at Weekend Sherpa. PS - Next week is our annual Top 10 featuring some of your favorite adventures of the year. Make it merry!

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  15. Sponsored
    2024-02-07

    Sonoma Valley's 100 Days of Winter Wellness Guide

    This winter wellness plan goes to 100! Nurture yourself in 2024 with Sonoma Valley’s 100 Days of Winter Wellness guide. It’s a perfectly curated array of inspiration and ideas.

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  16. Northern CA

    Star Wars Adventures

    See Yoda in a National Park, You Will: It's the only Bay Area campus in a national park. George Lucas's Letterman Digital Arts Center in San Francisco's Presidio is a great place for a winter afternoon walk among its 23 acres of open space, with postcard views of the Golden Gate Bridge and a chance for a selfie with Yoda, being Yoda, in front of Building B. Walk the Waterfront: The massive white cranes along Oakland's waterfront are known as the inspiration behind the "Imperial Walkers" in George Lucas's Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. But did you know there's a pristine 38-acre park tucked among these behemoths, with bird watching, beautiful views of the bay, lovely pathways, and restored wetlands? Hike to Blockbuster Views: Back in the '70s George Lucas was best known for making blockbuster movies. But he was also making some blockbuster real estate purchases. Marin's Lucas Valley is home to Skywalker Ranch. See the ranch, the San Francisco skyline—and a whole lot more—on a 5.75-mile loop hike to the high point on Loma Alta. Zipline the Big Reds: George Lucas had Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia flying through the redwoods on Imperial speeders for Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. Get that feeling ziplining on a canopy tour through a redwood forest in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Go Over to the Dark Side: Actually, it's only the name, Death Valley, that sounds dark. This national park is as golden as it gets, with varied desert terrain. As a film location for scenes from the original Star Wars, the entire park looks like a movie backdrop.

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  17. Southern CA

    Merry Outdoors

    Ho-ho-ho, it's go-go-go for these super fun adventures that keep the outdoors merry and bright. Happy holidays, SoCal!

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  18. Southern CA

    Brews and Views

    Looking for a great way to enjoy some holiday cheer? Go on a hike with gorgeous views and follow it up with a seasonal beer!

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  19. Northern CA

    Joy to the Wine

    'Tis the season … and a really good reason to visit wineries growing merrier and brighter by the vintage—and the outdoor activities! Here are three standouts not named Napa or Sonoma that are making their mark for outstanding wines and good times in the great outdoors.

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  20. Northern CA

    Sunset Surprise

    Whether the air is crisp and clean, or cauliflower clouds crowd the skies, winter sunsets are simply beautiful in these three Bay Area spots. Take a breather this holiday season. Watch a sunset.

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  21. Southern CA

    Tree Me

    Tree's company this holiday season. Whether you're solo, coupled up, or want to get outside, here are some great motivators. Do all tree!

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  22. Southern CA

    Shake Your Giblets

    #Felfie: Put your animal instincts to a positive cause by visiting Farm Sanctuary in Acton. Located about an hour from downtown Los Angeles, this 26-acre sanctuary is one of only three across the United States that shelters animals who have been rescued from the factory farming industry. Take the one-hour guided tour ($10) where you can meet the animals and snap a #felfie (that's a farm-selfie, for the uninitiated). From A to Zuma: One word to sum up the lower Zuma Canyon: Sycamores. This less-traveled 3-mile out-and-back hike begins at Zuma Canyon's wide mouth, a sycamore-studded wanderland leading to the last truly wild stretch of canyon left in the Santa Monica Mountains. Dogs can come with! Travel Channel: Want to do one of the best hikes in Channel Islands National Park? The 7.5-mile (round-trip) hike to Smuggler's Cove on Santa Cruz Island starts at Scorpion Anchorage and ascends a singletrack trail with sweeping views of inland hills, panoramic vistas, and a gorgeous secluded cove.

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Trending Stories NorCal

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  1. From Town to Falls

    Mount Tam’s Cascade Falls is a bit under the radar, tucked back off a residential area in Mill Valley. Some people drive up to the tiny parking lot nearest to the falls. Do an easy 3-mile (round-trip) hike right from downtown Mill Valley, weaving through quiet streets and secret trails.

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  2. The Carson Show

    Carson Falls is ready for primetime. This three-tiered, 100-foot stunner is hidden back in a canyon outside of Fairfax and reached on a 3.25-mile (round-trip) hike.

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  3. Sugarloaf Ridge State Park waterfall hike in Sonoma Valley

    Sweet as Sugarloaf

    Right in the heart of wine country there’s plenty more than wine flowing right now, with an oft unheralded waterfall that surges to an exuberant spectacle from all the recent rain.

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  4. Sponsored

    Sonoma Valley's 100 Days of Winter Wellness Guide

    This winter wellness plan goes to 100! Nurture yourself in 2024 with Sonoma Valley’s 100 Days of Winter Wellness guide. It’s a perfectly curated array of inspiration and ideas.

    View

Trending Stories SoCal

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  1. A woman stands at Dante's View in Death Valley, looking out to Telescope Peak and Manly Lake, Badwater Basin below.

    Sunset Hike (and Manly Lake Vista!) at Dante's View

    It’s one of the world’s best places to watch a sunset. Dante’s View is a 5,476-foot vantage of the whole southern basin of Death Valley from the top of the Black Mountains. On clear days you get views of both the highest and lowest points in the contiguous U.S. 

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  2. Skull On!

    Temescal Canyon not only has epic views, it's got a waterfall right now, one that only shows after big rains. Head out on this 4.6-mile loop.

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  3. Woman hiking on the trail at Trebek Open Space in Los Angeles County

    Trebek Open Space

    While most hikers head over to adjacent Runyon Canyon, instead do the 2-mile hike at Trebek Open Space and pay your respects to the legendary Jeopardy host and philanthropist, Alex Trebek.

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  4. Woman on Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes at Death Valley National Park

    Starry Night & Dark Sky Adventures

    You don’t have to stay out all that late to experience eminent stargazing at Death Valley National Park. The park's been given the highest ranking of darkness by the International Dark-Sky Association. Here are a trio of amazing ways to witness the mesmerizing night sky at Death Valley:

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