Pantoll on Mt. Tamalpais has all the amenities for a car-camping weekend, reservations aren’t needed, and it’s located conveniently between Highway 1 and Mill Valley. All 16 of the campsites are nestled together under the woodlands, at 1,500 feet on the mountain’s south-facing slope. It’s also a hub for great daytime trails, 9 to be exact, including the legendary Dipsea. You can hike-in from Stinson Beach for a more backpacking experience, or if you just need a convenient campsite, drive up close and pitch your tent.
What Makes It Great
Mt. Tam is picturesque, offering ocean views and forest vibes. Pantoll sits at the intersection of both abounding with hiking trails, and mountain or road biking routes. It’s a great campsite for people hoping to relax and camp with ease. If you need a last-minute urban escape, Pantoll will solve your problems. On a clear night, hundreds of thousands of stars reveal themselves and the far away sounds of local wildlife echo between the trees. If you arrive on a Thursday to camp for the weekend, you’re sure to have no hassle getting a good spot.
Who is Going to Love It
Campers looking for an easy last-minute camping trip will love Pantoll. It’s right off of Panoramic Highway and close to Highway One. It's great for family camping with fido, or a quick getaway from San Francisco or Oakland. If the campsites are full, there is an area reserved for RVs and folks who want to sleep in their cars. Pantoll is perfect for a campfire feast under the stars, secluded from the outside world.
If you’re looking to stay active during your camping trip, this is the best place for it. You can wake up, pick a trail and start hiking or biking, exploring the giant Redwoods of Mt. Tam. It’s also a great campground for visiting surfers, with two fun breaks less than 10 miles away.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
Pantoll is right off of Panoramic Highway on the south slope of Mt Tam. It’s also a Ranger Station, where you can buy firewood and consult local rangers for trail news and conditions. Since it is first come, first served, it’s highly recommended to get there very early on a weekend to secure a campsite and parking spot (only one car is allowed per site). Once you have your spot, you can hit the trails and come back for a sunset dinner. Well-behaved leashed dogs are welcome, and for $25 you’ll get everything you’re looking for in a camping experience.