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Pescadero Marsh Natural Preserve

The 243-acre Pescadero Marsh Natural Preserve, a part of Pescadero State Beach, includes the only extensive wetland along the coast of the San Francisco peninsula. The preserve includes a complex of several habitats—a tidal estuary, freshwater marsh, brackish water marsh, dense riparian woods, and northern coastal scrub. It is an important wintering ground for waterfowl on the Pacific flyway.


More than 200 species of birds have been recorded in the marsh, including more than 60 that nest there, among them the Great Blue Heron. Species in the marsh listed under the Endangered Species Act include the San Francisco garter snake, California red-legged frog, tidewater goby, steelhead trout, and Coho salmon.

Pescadero Marsh


A foot bridge was installed in 2011, which enables easy access to the back of the marsh. The bridge is slightly north of the center Pescadero parking lot. CSPA was instrumental in facilitating the funding for the bridge.

Several hiking trails are available. Download a trail map here.

Dogs are prohibited at all times.

Nature Walks

Pescadero Marsh docents lead nature walks in the marsh twice a month:

  • First Sunday of the month at 10 a.m.
  • Third Sunday of the month at 1 p.m.

Walks last about two hours. Dress in layers, bring binoculars, water, wear a hat, and enjoy the marsh. Meet the volunteer docents in the middle parking area for Pescadero State Beach on Highway 1. Pescadero State Beach has three parking areas.

  • From the north, the parking area for marsh walks is immediately south of the bridge, on your right.
  • From the south, the lot is 1/4 mile past the flashing light at Pescadero Road and before you reach the bridge, on your left.

Map to Pescadero Marsh Natural Preserve

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