Winter Surf Warning
Every year people drown in the surf off Northern California beaches - don't let it be you! Be extra alert on park beaches during the winter storm season. Do not turn your back on the shoreline and watch for extra powerful “sneaker” waves.
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?
In November of 1969 American Indians being relocated and terminated by the U.S. government occupied the then vacant island of Alcatraz. Their 18 month occupation would bring an end to the federal termination policy, saving the tribes.