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Sandy's Sunday Challenge - Double (or Single) Dipsea

  • Mar 30, 2014 · 8:30 AM
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Hello Fellow Hikers:

What: Double Dipsea Trail (Option 2 is Single Dipsea)

Where: Starts at Old Mill Park in Mill Valley and goes to Stinson Beach!

When: Sunday, March 30th 2014 at 8:30am. On the trail by 8:45am

Distance: Double Dipsea is 14.8 miles; Single is 7.4 miles

Difficulty: HARD. There is significant elevation gain. It's a tough trek up and down steep stairs. I would rate the single as a 6/10 and the double as a 8/10.

Alex is doing this hike again later in May, so don't fret if you can't make it. That said, I totally stole this chart from Alex's post b/c I think it is hilarious and accurate. 


Since we got rained out and had to cancel the backpacking trip, I wanted to post something that would challenge us and give us a BIG payout. This is the first trail that came to mind. 

The Dipsea trail starts at Old Mill Park in Mill Valley. It then proceeds to go up and down very steep steps through thick, green shaded forests. When I say steps I mean steps - over 650 of them! After many miles of ups and downs the trail opens up with stunning views of the destination ahead - Stinson Beach! 

I'll be doing the trail to Stinson Beach, then doing lunch and some R&R on Stinson Beach before heading back on foot. This is the double dipsea - mill valley to Stinson and back. It will be an all day event, starting at 8:30 and (including lunch and relaxation time in Stinson) returning early evening. 

There is a second option. There is a bus/shuttle from Stinson back to Old Mill Park. I've never taken it, but it is an option if people would like to do only one direction. So if you don't want to do the whole day trek or if you don't want to relax on Stinson (it would be madness not to) or if you decide to relax so long you change your mind about the return trek (more likely) there is another option. 


-This is not a trail for beginning hikers. It is hard and will work you for sure. If you are not ready, start training and put yourself on the wait list for Alex's hike in May. 

-The trail will be slippery after the rain - wear shoes with good grip/soles. Please not sandals or sneakers. 

-Bring layers - as any bay area hike it's likely to be cool in the morning, hot in the afternoon and then cool again in the early evening.  NO COTTON

-Bring a rain layer just incase please

-Bring a headlamp. I plan to be back in daylight, but anytime it's this long of a hike it's important to be prepared for it running later than planned. 

-Bring at least 2liters of water

-Bring Lunch and Snacks for the Trail - your going to be getting a work out!

-Maps are always important to have with you - if you have it bring it. 

 -Trekking poles are optional and may be helpful for the ups and downs

-If you take any daily medication, bring it. If you are allergic to anything, bring your medications (especially if you have an Eppi Pen). 

Though I want everyone to come, safety is most important. If you are not dressed appropriately for the conditions and/or do not have adequate hydration, footwear, etc I will ask you not to hike with the group. Please come prepared.  

Sent me an e-mail if you have any questions or concerns. 

See you on the trails!


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  • Louisa

    Day couldn't have been better! Great weather, perfect company.

    1 · March 30, 2014

    • Sandy

      Agreed. Thank you all!!

      March 31, 2014

  • Tara S.

    Family plans have changed and I'm going to spend the day with family instead of hiking. Hope you guys have a fantastic hike! No, I am not bowing out because of the weather - it's gonna be sunny and gorgeous :)

    March 29, 2014

  • Sandy

    Don't let today's rain get you down. Tomorrow is still supposed to be sunny!

    March 29, 2014

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