Mill Valley has an active and inclusive sports and recreation scene for those looking for recreational sports activities. There are organized adult leagues and general recreational activities. With Mount Tamalpais, state parks and open spaces surrounding Mill Valley, hikes, mountain biking, and trail running are very popular with residents and people in the greater San Francisco Bay area.
Team sports are a great way to get fitness into your schedule and an opportunity to meet new people who share the same interests. In Mill Valley team sports include Australian rules football, baseball, basketball, broomball, cricket, field hockey, flag football, soccer, softball, and more.
Action sports in Mill Valley include skating, motor bike riding, mountain biking, BMX, and bungee jumping. If you enjoy water sports, you can sign up for canoeing, kayaking, kite boarding, rowing, sailing, swimming, water skiing, whitewater rafting, and windsurfing.
Winter sports such as skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and sledding are just a few hours’ drive away at Bear Valley, Tahoe, and Reno.
To pick up a game or join a team, start at Sportsvite. You can search by sports, teams, events, leagues, and stay connected with other people who are also looking to join at a similar level.
Mill Valley’s just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco making it easy to join leagues in the city. Sunday Recess is a co-ed multisport adult recreational sports league based in San Francisco. Every week, teams gather on the field to face off in fun, all-out events such as kickball, dodge ball, flag football, ultimate Frisbee, and soccer. At the end of the games, players usually join a casual get together at the local bar.
Classic Billiards and The Mayflower Pub in San Rafael offer some great ways to sharpen your pool skills. Classic Billiards offers League play on Mondays and Thursdays.
If you’ve wanted to soar through the air (without engines) California Hang Gliding in San Rafael is the way to go. The glide with trainer Paris Williams gives you a bird’s eye view of some of the most stunning areas of the bay and the open spaces in Marin County. Detailed instructions and a ride with the instructor keep you safe and able to enjoy the exhilarating ride.
San Francisco Seaplanes Tours
Mill Valley’s own San Francisco Seaplanes Tours takes you right above the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, San Francisco Giants AT&T Ballpark, Point Bonita Lighthouse, and over Marin County. If you want to make a romantic getaway, the Sweet Champagne Tour takes you and your loved one over the California coastline while you enjoy a glass of champagne.
Trail running in Mill Valley is hugely popular because of the town’s surrounding areas. The Marin Headlands (a 20-minute drive from Mill Valley) and Mount Tamalpais comprise one of the largest and most beautiful parklands near an urban metropolis. The trails around Marin Headlands, Muir Woods, Mount Tamalpais State Park, and Mount Tamalpais Watershed are specially ideal for trail running.
A 20-minute drive from Mill Valley takes you to the Marin Headlands, a sprawling area with rolling hills covered with coastal scrub along a rugged coastline. You can get some beautiful views of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco from the Marin Headlands. The main trailheads are at Rodeo Beach, Muir Beach, and Tennessee Valley. While most of the trails here are non-technical fire roads, the terrain is hilly so expect a great change in elevation as you run. The hill climbs can sometimes gain 800 feet of elevation. You may also choose numerous loops to design your preferred run.
The following trails are known for their beauty and accessibility.
The Coastal Trail between Rodeo Beach and Muir Beach is perhaps the most scenic train in the Marin Headlands. Some stretches are single track and you can see the coastline, including secluded Pirates Cove which is a real treat. This is not a great area for running during the rains or high winds as the trail is exposed and can get slick.
Muir Woods National Monument
Muir Woods is well known for its grove of ancient coastal redwoods. Its proximity to San Francisco makes it a favorite tourist destination. If you prefer a quieter time, the winter and spring is a good time to visit: Redwood Creek is full, the trails are less crowded, and the forest floor is lush from the rains.
Mount Tamalpais State Park
Mount Tamalpais State Park is one of the most beautiful of the California state parks. A view from the peak of Mt. Tam on a clear day is matchless. There are several trails in Mount Tamalpais State Park which can get quite crowded on summer weekends. The park is also very beautiful in the rest of the year and worth a trip.
Other trails in Mount Tamalpais State Park include:
Coastal Trail via Pantoll
Matt Davis-Steep Ravine Loop
Mount Tamalpais Watershed, some trails within the Mount Tamalpais Watershed include the Northside Trail to Inspiration Point, Colier Spring Trail, Rock Springs Trail to West Point Inn, and Nora Trail
Bon Tempe Lake
Cataract Falls Trail
Complete Coastal Trail
Marin is a popular venue for trail races and ultras. Some of the prominent events are:
The Mill Valley Street Scramble is an Urban Adventure Hunt that takes runners on the paths, streets, and stairs of Mill Valley, Homestead Valley, and Tamalpais Valley, in addition to areas in Belvedere, Corte Madera, Sausalito, Strawberry, and Tiburon. The challenge: 45 locations. Your task is to visit as many locations on foot or bike within 90 minutes – or as long as you need. It’s like the Amazing Race without the humiliation tests and without the limitations of time unless you want to add it.