Hot Spot: Go See Mickey
Say you’ve got an urge to climb, but not much time. You want something out in the fresh air, but you don’t want to spend most of the day driving. And you are starting from the densely populated Bay Area.
Paul Barraza, manager of Berkeley Ironworks, suggests heading for Mickey’s Beach. Sometimes known as Red Rock Beach, Mickey’s is about a mile south of Stinson Beach in Marin County, right off Highway 1. Both bouldering and rock climbing are available.
“There probably is not a lot of good stuff for true beginners,” Barraza cautions. “There’s not a lot of stuff below 5.10. For moderates and intermediate climbing that would be a good range.”
Route names, like Holy Mackerel, Endless Bummer and Shell Shock should hint at what to expect.
There are always at least a few people out at Mickey’s Beach, but it’s not usually crowded, Barraza says. Remember that some climbing routes are smack up against the water, so be aware of tide tables. Coastal weather can play a role too. Summers can get pretty foggy, but you might catch a clear day and get baked by the sun. Clear weather is more common during the rest of the year. Always expect some wind.
“If you have a bad day climbing there, at least you are on the beach,” Barraza notes.
And watch out for distractions when you are climbing. It’s a nude beach.
Labels: climbing, hot spots