Cataract Falls in Marin County is probably the best-known waterfall in the Bay Area, and for good reason. It gets really, really big after a spring rain, sprouting up to nine silvery cascades, some more than 50 feet high, plunging purposefully down the Cataract Creek streambed on the north slope of Mount Tamalpais.
The surrounding forest, with its moss- and lichen-covered rocks, ferny ground cover, gnarly oaks and sentinel redwoods, can seem an enchanted place, especially just after a rain.
The 2.6-mile trail to the falls is strenuous and very popular on weekends. Wooden stairs ease the 750-foot elevation gain in places, but you’ll still have to scramble over stray rocks and boulders. Bring pick-up bags, drinking water and snacks, if not a full-on picnic to enjoy in the Laurel Dell picnic area at the top of the ravine.Posted on: June 29, 2022