Northern California

Local getaway: Escaping San Francisco

by Estevan Padilla

2 people, 1 dog, 250 miles, 3 days

After being quite restricted to our apartment, I decided to escape the city to a secluded Airbnb at Mt. Veeder with my partner and my dog Yorgos. We picked up the (pet-friendly) Porsche Macan we booked in San Francisco, then first headed north on Highway 1 and stopped near Mt. Tam to walk around some redwoods with the pup.

He was clearly feeling a bit cagey and was losing his mind through the forest trails. After the rain began we drove up through the Mt. Tam Watershed for some views. The drive was ethereal for a moment as the rain cleared and some rainbows came out to play.

Once we reached the town of Sonoma it was nearly sundown and the rain had picked up once again. We began our ascent up the mountain and still hadn’t eaten. We stopped and asked a kind stranger for food recs and they said that we better head back to Sonoma. We raced into town for groceries, then quickly back up the road. The landscape was eerie and burnt from forest fires, but they provided amazing vistas and an incredible sunset. Back at our cozy Airbnb, we set up dinner and watched the stars.

Early the next morning, we drove the Porsche out to Bodega Bay on the Sonoma coast. The sun was shining and relaxed with a meal at Doran Beach. Yorgos was running happy like a lunatic once again, and boy was he filthy when we left.

The drive to Point Reyes was great and we made sure to stop and see cows as often as possible. After a brief look around the Point Reyes Lighthouse, we headed back to the city. On the way we stopped at a local market to see the famous dilapidated beached ship. It’s cool every time, but this time I lost a shoe to the viscous mud that it rests in.

We raced to make it back to SF for the sunset and pulled off above Baker Beach for cotton candy sky views. It was a great trip. It was a good reminder that to escape sterile city living you don’t have to go too far, and having a car makes things that much easier.