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Swim at the Inkwells

Lagunitas, California

based on 4 reviews


Added by Tyler Drake

The Inkwells are natural swimming pools just east of Samuel P. Taylor State Park in West Marin. The pools are filled with water flowing down from Kent Lake. It's a great place to get refreshed after a long hike or just to cool off. You're ~15 minutes from Fairfax, so grab lunch and head out there. Duration: A couple hours.

These natural swimming holes are filled with water flowing from Kent Lake, so they're usually pretty refreshing. And by refreshing, we mean cold. We know this first-hand by testing the pools in the winter months. Let's just say if you can stay in for more than 5 seconds, you're a hero. If you jump off the rocks, do so from the far side (furthest from Sir Francis Drake Blvd), it's deepest on that side.

This spot can get crowded during the summer months with campers at Samuel P. Taylor and the generally high temperatures in the area. On the other side of Sir Francis Drake Blvd (SFD), there's a parking lot, but parking is only allowed for 1 hour. Look on the side of the road for pullouts, where you can stay for longer periods of time.

After you're done hanging out and sufficiently cooled, head back toward fairfax on SFD. On your right-hand side, there's a family-run bar, Papermill Creek Saloon, to stop in and grab a cold one.

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Swim at the Inkwells Reviews

So beautiful, but proceed with caution. It is easy to read up online about the water quality here. Often there is a sign posted at the site warning poor water quality. Unfortunately Ink Wells only passes weekly tests for safe bacteria levels 40% of the time. I am sure there is a way to support Marin County's efforts toward better water quality. The county researches and educates regarding septic leakage and ranching practices that might contribute to the less than desirable bacteria levels... If you do dip, make sure to rinse off as soon as possible and keep tabs on how you feel a few days after & take your vitamin C etc.. By all means try not to open your mouth or eyes in the water!

Loved hiking around the area and taking a fresh dip in the river! Make sure to park at the Cronin parking lot - the map doesn't have the exact location.

Lots of fun, water is definitely cold but great on a hot day. It's a little further down the road than the map shows, right by Leo T Cronin parking lot.

This is definitely a chill spot to take a very chill dip!

If you go in the winter, be prepared for a very, very quick dip. In mid January, those pools aren't warm. With that said, on a hot day/after a long hike, this a great spot to cool off.

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!


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