Way back in the Kent Woodlands area, up some long and windy roads, one finds a wonderful section of the Marin County Open Space Preserve off of Crown Road. It is a well known and favorite series of trails, bike rides and hikes on the northeast side of Mt. Tamalpais. It’s wonderfully accessible for people of different athletic abilities and modes of transport (foot or bike), and depending on which route you choose can be completed in one hour to several hours.
From Crown Road, the trails branch out in several directions. You can go directly north to Phoenix Lake, and then hike around that (see #24 for more information about Phoenix Lake). Or, you can head south along Crown Road until it branches into either a deadend bit of Crown Road or onto Phoenix Road to the right. Take the right hand branch and follow it until it becomes a fire trail, and then take the fire trail until it branches again. To the right is Indian Creek Fire Road, and to the left is a trail that loops you back down to Evergreen Drive. If you want to make this an 45 minutes to one hour walking loop, take Evergreen Drive to the left. Evergreen Drive then leads to Crown Road where you’ll go left and walk back up to complete your loop.
If, however, you want a much longer hike, or you’re on your bike and can cover a much greater distance, follow Indian Creek Fire Road all the way up to the Eldridge Grade Fire Road and follow that back down to the west end of Phoenix Lake. From there, you’ll take the trail back around the lake to the southeast end, and hook then back up with the trail to Crown Road.
Where: Crown Road, Kentfield (map of general area and starting point)