Enjoy one the most outstanding kayaking destinations in Northern California. The Tomales Bay is a protected bay, located a short distance from the city of San Francisco. The bay offers a thousand of acres of water and outdoor recreational opportunities to enjoy. The large open expanse of water lends itself well to all types of boating activities, including water and jet skiing, SUP paddling, windsurfing, sailing, personal watercraft and power boating. Hog Island is in the northern section of Tomales Bay across from Whites Gulch on the west side and Nicks Cove on the east side. The island is open on the west side only for day use.
Kayakers can plan on nonstop adventure at this delightful paddling retreat. During the early morning hours as the sun rises over the mountains, perfect reflections of the surrounding terrain are cast onto the bay’s glassy water surface. When the day is done, watch the sun paint the sky with a vibrant array of rainbow colors.
Point Reyes is the most widely used area for kayaking on Tomales Bay. The Point Reyes area is famous for its scenic beaches, and wildlife abounds in this spectacular setting. Colorful sea stars float beneath your kayak as magnificent elk wander the hillsides. You can explore secluded coves, watch birds soar above your head, and catch fish swimming in the water around you.
After an invigorating paddle, you can take a refreshing swim, or savor a tasty picnic on one of the four small beaches in the state park on the west side of the bay. Kayakers can pull ashore on these beaches to grab a bite to eat, but fires and overnight camping are not permitted in the state park beach areas. If you plan to have a beach fire on national seashore beaches, stop by national park visitor centers for a free required permit.
Bishop Pine and Douglas fir surround the west side of the bay, and there are oak woodlands and grasslands with cattle ranches on the east side. Hog Island is in the northern section of Tomales Bay, across from Whites Gulch on the west side and Nicks Cove on the east side. The island is open on the west side only for day use.
The northern end of Tomales Bay opens to Bodega Bay and the Pacific Ocean, while the southern end is fed by Papermill Creek and is encircled by wetlands. Black Mountain rises at the southern end of the bay. The bay is fifteen miles long and relatively shallow and narrow. The best time to paddle the smooth sparkling water surface is during the early morning hours, before the wind picks up in the afternoon. Strong afternoon winds are common.