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At The Edge Of Seawater, Or, Saturday Morning at 7:30am

From inside out.

And outside in.

I love an estuary. When is it water and when is it dirt? When an ocean, when a marsh and when a river? When is that sound you hear wind rushing through treetops, when a full creek running?

One might even say, we are all each other. When we love someone we permeate each other at the margins, the edges.

What I mean is that my husband and I stayed at the most wonderful local place last month. Nick’s Cove, in Marshall, California, just up from Pt. Reyes Station. I cannot imagine a more perfect view. It’s as though I’d invented the moon for this moment.

Fog on the first morning of our visit.

We tried to go hiking that day but we sloshed our way along a path that had zero idea if it was Marsh or Hill, and when rain began to fall in earnest we turned right around and went back to the hotel.

Nothing like a bath when you’re chilly and damp.

Excellent bathroom wallpaper, no notes.

Then an actual bar at which we sat, had martinis, and ate dinner. Food was just regular ol’ food but I hadn’t done that since COVID began and it was intoxicating. Nah, not from over-consuming. From newness.

Sunsets. What is light and what is dark? What cloud and what the infinite universe?

Proving that indeed, of course, silly mortal, I did not invent the moon. What way is lit? I sure as heck don’t know and I sure as heck love the feeling of the question in my chest.

Bed was super nice. Love the colors, denim blue and dusty cognac, two of my faves in juxtaposition.

The second day, sun out, we did manage a hike. Trees limned by moss and light.

And the wildlife! On the road there we saw one fox. Then two deer on the trail. Then three raccoons back at the parking lot. Having scampered across the meadow (second baby is behind the mother) they proceeded to hide under our car. Hide under our car! Waiting for snacks! Which we did not give them, cheeky critters.

On the way home we saw four wild turkeys. Felt like a day on Sesame Street, 1-2-3-4, in the magic nearly-wilds.

Back at Nick’s the tide was out. I always find low tides dispiriting in the city or by a freeway. Mostly mud. But here it was just another occasion for marine conjunction; light, water, dirt. Oh, and if you’re a birder, trust me they’re feasting just out of frame, beaks down and feathers up.


OK, sure, trees understand they are not the sky.

I was reluctant to post about this place, because it’s so small, so wonderful, and so often fully booked. But heck, who are we if we do not share our good fortune?

Have a wonderful weekend everyone.

22 Responses

  1. So glad you posted! Literally heartwarming for me. About forty years ago I lived a few years in West Marin. Wrong partner, unsettled time personally, but I loved living along Tomales Bay, loved the little communities around it, and loved the big seashore on the other side. I’ve had a strong affection for the area ever since and a little envy for those who still live there. Wish I didn’t live 3,000 miles away. But we (the right partner and I) stayed in one of Nick’s cabins recently and it was perfect. Still the same feeling of place.
    Your photos and words do a nice job of evoking the bay. And Nick’s Cove does a terrific job of preserving and continuing this rare environment in a way that fits West Marin. Not every inn needs to be 5 star plush and peddle current haute cuisine. Thank you!

    1. I’m so glad this is a shared experience. I can so imagine why people might want to live there. It’s like finding a piece of the Bay Area that used to be. And I agree, the luxury here was the view and the environment, i.e. beauty over-the-top.

  2. How beautiful! Idyllic, I would say. This brightened my day — I’m so glad you shared. Thank you, Lisa! I hope the rest of your weekend is absolutely lovely. xoxo

  3. What a lovely report and great pix. My sister stays at that place every so often. They love it. A special part of CA.

  4. You’re at Nick’s Cove. After Manka’s in Inverness had their fire, Nick’s was my go-to place. Last time there, my birthday 2012 or so. Restaurant used to be very good. Stopped with friend a few years ago, decided to go to the wonderful Osteria Stellina in Point Reyes. It closed during the pandemic. So much has changed… The landscape there is still gorgeous. Last time there a glorious covey of quail was scurrying about like a ground murmuration. Such a beautiful mix of land and water all over that area. Glad you got out.

    1. We were! The food is no longer particularly good, in comparison to the other options we have for food in the Bay Area. But it’s not bad either. A ground murmuration:)

  5. Looks wonderful, Lisa. I love the ocean, the sea, rivers, water of most any kind. I was disappointed when we travelled south to visit friends at the end of February to find their ocean was spoiled by lines of high-rises and fast four-lane traffic. Not my idea of the ocean. Yours on the other hand looked perfect. xo

    1. If you went all the way to LA, yes, it’s so strange and also iconic the way that whole city exists in relationship their beautiful beaches and the Pacific. The PCH, why? This was the opposite.

      And yet I know people love LA.

  6. Looks like a special spot…I love being near the ocean and the accommodations look very comfy. Glad to hear you had a great time and enjoyed a meal out…hope that you will continue to share your adventures.

    1. Oh exactly. We are kind of sick of the corporate/chain five-star places, which sounds very bratty, but when they cross into spend-money-just-because-you-can territory, it does the opposite of feeding the soul.

  7. Beautifully written, so evocative it makes me want to jump in the car for a getaway there. And it looks wonderful in every way.

    1. Thank you, KSL. I think you’d adore it. The light is beyond, so are the textures in the estuary mud at low tide.

  8. Living close to nature and the landscape is restoring. This place looks really lovely. The views are splendid as well. I am glad you enjoyed your time exploring.

    1. Isn’t it glorious! Like, I’d be OK with just the view but some creative decor is all to the good:)

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