Stephanie planned an amazing weekend in Marin for the 4th of July long weekend.  We got up there early evening on Friday, and I was able to work in the car on the way up so we could get going a bit earlier.  Traffic was still bad, but I can’t even imagine what it would have been like should we have left later.  We got to the inn and it was adorable.  She really picked a great place, with a nice owner who cooked us breakfast in the morning.

We dropped off our stuff in the room, then left to get to the kayaking.  We got to the launch point and there was only one group there so we assumed incorrectly that we were with them.  Turns out there are four or five groups that head out for this bioluminescent kayaking trip every evening, so we found the group we were supposed to be with and it worked out.  I didn’t realize it but the skirt on my kayak wasn’t sealing properly so it kept popping off on the first part of the trip, and I got soaking wet pretty quickly.  It wasn’t that bad, since I’m naturally pretty warm.

We got to see some harbor seals and a lot of cormorants.  There was one cormorant who had gotten the plastic rings from the top of a six pack stuck around its wing or neck and it had gotten another ring stuck on the tree near its nest.  It had died and was mangled, hanging from the plastic six pack rings.  I had heard about that kind of thing, but had never actually seen it before, it was very disturbing.

We got across Tomales Bay, and landed on a beach for a snack of cookies and hot chocolate.  It was nice to get out of the wet kayak, and dry off a bit.  After snacks, as it was getting dark, we got back in and I was able to properly seal the skirt.  We paddled over to a dark secluded cove and I was surprised by how much bioluminescence there was.  There was certainly the most I’ve seen in any one place.

We paddled back across and everyone else had a really hard time keeping up, the wind in the last stretch was strong, so many of them were getting blown down the coast.  We made it back to the Inn and got some great sleep after washing all the seawater off.

The next day we had an amazing breakfast prepared by the inn owner, then we headed out to the northern point of Point Reyes.  It was a lovely hike where we got to see a ton of elk.  We didn’t know this but these were native Californian Elk.  We had a nice lunch by a tiny pond there, then headed back to the town.

Stephanie looked up a meadery, and we got some drinks there.  It was interesting with all the different types of honey and the different meads that those honeys made.  The flavor was distinctly different with all of them.  I would really like to try a cyser that was made with orange blossom honey.

Then we went to the Cowgirl Creamery, and got some really amazing goat cheeses.  One was a standard goat cheese and the other was a truffle goat cheese, and possibly the best cheese I’ve ever had.  They also had some really tasty looking crackers that we got to go with the cheeses.

We headed out to our next place an Airbnb at Mills Valley.  It was cute, and pretty basic, but everything we needed and more for the evening.  We went into Mills Valley proper and got some pretty tasty food at the nice restaurant there.  We then just went back to the room and cuddled while watching some anime on netflix.

The next morning we got up decently early to get to Muir Woods.  We were able to get parking, but we still had to park on the street despite getting there at 8:15.  We had a really nice hike once we got out of the valley.  There were more people on the early trails than Steph and I usually like to deal with, and I could tell she was getting aggravated by it.  Luckily once we made it to some of the lesser used trails the crowds abated, leaving some wonderful views for us to observe in private and peace.

On the way back home we decided to look up restaurants along our route, and found an amazing dumpling place in Outer Richmond.  They had some of the best soup dumplings I’ve ever had.

All in all Stephanie planned an amazing weekend, and I’ll have to repay her with a similarly amazing weekend soon.