Catching a glimpse of migrating Pacific gray whales and watching Northern Elephant seals come ashore to breed at Point Reyes National Seashore will be made a bit easier for visitors beginning in January when the seashore's shuttle bus service resumes.
The 13th season of shuttles gets under way January 1 and will run approximately through mid-April, according to Point Reyes Superintendent Cicely Muldoon.
Limited parking is available at such prime viewing areas as the Historic Lighthouse and Chimney Rock headlands. The shuttle buses help ease congestion in these areas. The shuttle transportation system was identified as an important tool to protect the fragile headlands but also allow access for visitors, according to seashore officials.
Bus service runs only on weekends and holidays in good weather; rain may cancel the shuttle bus on any given weekend or holiday. Ticket sales open at 9:00 a.m. at the Ken Patrick Visitor Center at Drakes Beach and close at 3:00 p.m. Children 16 and under are free, adult tickets are $5.00 per person and federal Senior and Access Pass discounts apply to the purchase.
Sir Francis Drake Highway is closed at South Beach junction when the buses are operating. Chimney Rock Road is also closed to all vehicle traffic when the shuttles are operating. Road closures begin at 9:00 a.m. and the road reopens approximately at 5:15 p.m. For more information, please call the Bear Valley Visitor Center at (415) 464-5100 x2 x5 or visit the seashore's Winter Shuttle Bus System page.