Copyright: - California State Parks
Hiking in Olompali State Historic Park
Olompali State Historic Park encompasses land that has been a cultural crossroads, beginning with a large Coast Miwok village. The name "olompali" comes from the lost Miwok language and may be translated as "southern village" or "southern people." The Coast Miwok inhabited at least one site within the area of the present-day park continuously from as early as 6,000 B.C.,up until the early 1850s.
- The park contains "kitchen rock," a large boulder used as a mortar in which early people ground acorns and seeds into a fine flour for food preparation. Many women would gather near such grinding rocks to prepare food and socialize. There is a project underway to build several structures representative of a Coast Miwok village. Partially completed now, one may see two kotchas (houses), one made from redwood bark and another made with bundles of native tule reeds. The project involves local volunteers including several families representing Coast Miwok descendants.
Recreation - Visitors may also use the hiking and horseback riding trail as well as shaded picnic area. The village will be used as an interpretive and educational site.
Climate - Climate in the San Francisco-Bay area varies greatly with elevation and the amount of coastal influence. Areas with more coastal influence experience moderate temperatures year round with fog likely from June through mid-August. Plan your coastal visit in the late summer or fall to ensure the best conditions for viewing the scenery. Also, occasional clear days between winter and spring storms are incomparable. Areas further inland experience greater temperature extremes, with relatively cooler winters and hot summers. Inland areas often receive frost on winter nights. As throughout most of California most of the precipitation comes in the winter months, with April through October normally very dry.
The park is located three miles north of Novato on U.S. 101. The park entrance is accessible only to southbound traffic from Highway 101; northbound vehicles should continue north past the park and make a safe U-turn in order to travel south and enter the park.