What more could you ask for! A waterfall dropping right into the ocean! Thats what you get at Alamere Falls, and more! This is an excellent hike along the California Coast Trail starting from the Palomarin trailhead near Bolina. It is incredibly pretty with amazing ocean views and lush vegetation (especially in spring). The last half mile of the trail is along a signed spur trail (off the Coast Trail).
As you approach the top of Alamere Falls from the spur trail, it becomes a bit tricky to negotiate. You need to carefully scramble down to Alamere Creek, which is a bit steep. Then you must cross Alamere Creek, which may be tricky in high water. At this point a pretty upper cascade is viewed, 3 separate cascades about 30 ft. in total height. From the top of the cliff, you can also get a nice side view of Alamere Falls itself, dropping 40 ft. down onto the beach. To get down to the beach, you must carefully scramble down the cliff. This is dangerous and not for everyone. The cliffs here are very crumbly, and a fall here could cause a serious injury. It may be my wild imagination, but it seems to have gotten worse in the last 4 years. When we first came here 4 years ago, we managed to (carefully) get down to the beach carrying our baby, and I did not think it was all too bad. But this time around, it seemed too dangerous to consider taking a baby down.
Once down at the beach, you will be treated to a wonderful experience, standing beside a 40 ft. waterfall on the ocean. It is a lot more impressive in the winter months after there has been a lot of rain. Be sure to check the tide charts before coming here because at high tide, it is probable that the ocean waves will be coming right up to the cliff, and it will be impossible to get down to the base of the falls.
If there has been a lot of recent rain, you may wish to consider hiking up the beach for a couple more miles. There are a couple more waterfalls (Phantom Falls and Horsetail Falls) which are accessible at low tide.
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