Temporary Closure of Waters Around Alcatraz Island
From 7/3 to 9/22 a 500’ marine buffer zone is in effect, closing the perimeter of Alcatraz Island to all private vessels to protect nesting seabirds during America's Cup racing. Tours to Alcatraz continue as usual during the races. More »
Muir Beach (but not nearby Muir Woods) closed July 8-November 2013, but local businesses are open
Though Muir Beach is closed from July 8-November 2013 due to construction, the PELICAN INN IS OPEN. Restrooms and parking are not available at Muir Beach. Pacific Way is closed except to residents. Check back for updates or call (415)561-3054. More »
CAUTION: Post Storm Damage to Coastal Trail
The Presidio Coastal Trail segment just north of the Pacific Overlook and adjacent to Lincoln Blvd remains CLOSED indefinitely. We have posted signage to alert bicyclists and hikers and with information for safe trail alternatives. More »
Please do not feed or approach wildlife
Tennessee Valley is an amazing offshoot of the Marin Headlands, with hiking trails that suit the whole family. The Tennessee Valley Trail is mostly level; it begins at the parking area and travels 1.7 miles to Tennessee Beach. For the more adventurous hiker, there are a number of other trails leading into the hills above Tennessee Valley.
With its many trails, Tennessee Valley is well suited for the whole family. However, even on leash, dogs are not allowed on any trails in Tennessee Valley except on the Coastal Trail where it crosses the valley, connecting Rodeo Valley and Muir Beach. Dogwalking is allowed on-leash on the Miwok trail from the Tennessee Valley parking area north to Highway 101, and on leash or under voice control in Oakwood Valley which is off Tennessee Valley Road a short distance before you reach the Tennessee Valley parking lot.
Tennessee Valley contains a bevy of wildlife; from mighty raptors to common swallows, the birds of the valley will keep your eyes on the skies. The skies are not the only place to view wildlife; the valley is teeming with deer, coyote, and on an occasion you might even see a bobcat.
In the spring time the vegetation of the valley is lush and green and/or blooming and you will find lupine, checker-bloom, blue-eyed grass, California buttercup, and California poppy. In summer, the grasses turn golden, and by late summer you can find fennel, lizardtail, sagebrush, sticky monkey flower, and blackberry bushes. In winter and early spring, rains turn the golden grasses back into green fields. At any time of the year Tennessee Valley is worth the visit.
With hiking and cycling trails and a plethora of wildlife you would never know that the bustling metropolis of San Francisco is 20 minutes away. Bring the family, have a picnic on the beach, discover the wilds of Tennessee Valley, and remember to take only pictures and leave only foot prints.
Tips and Highlights
For more information please contact the Marin Headlands Visitor Center at (415) 331-1540
Camping in Tennessee Valley is by permit only. For further information on camping please click here.
To attain a camping permit you must call and make reservations through the Marin Headlands Visitor Center.
To Tennessee Valley from San Francisco
To Tennessee Valley from the East Bay
To Tennessee Valley from the North
Did You Know?
Megafossils (fossils that can be observed with the unaided eye) are rare in Franciscan Complex rocks, but the rocks of “The Rock,” Alcatraz, have yielded significant examples.