Inverness Ridge: The Missing Piece

Inverness Ridge: The Missing Piece

Sat, May 4
Explore geologic features evidencing the displacement of the Point Reyes peninsula northward along the San Andreas fault.

The Point Reyes peninsula is a migrant, having traveled several hundred miles northward from its place of origin. Time and tectonics have left their mark on the landscape, telling a story of epic proportion. The story is there for anyone to read, if only they know what to look for.

In this class, participants will be introduced to the mechanics of plate tectonics through examination of local topography and geology. We’ll caravan to nearby vistas and out-crops and learn to read the land as geologists. Along the way we’ll put our hands on remnants of ocean floors and granitic peaks, and ponder the processes at work beneath the ground we walk on.

We’ll also confront the specter of Deep Time and what it means to live on a planet constantly involved in the process of becoming. Most importantly, we’ll see the world with new eyes, and cultivate a deeper appreciation for the puzzle piece we call Point Reyes.

Don Jolley is a long-time resident of west Marin, and served for three decades as a teacher of Maths and Sciences at the Bolinas School. Don has extensive experience in outdoor education, having led over fifty expeditions to the eastern sierra and western interior to study geology and earth’s history as preserved in the fossil record.

Photo Credit: Bill Helsel, used with permission


-We will be meeting at the Bear Valley Visitor Center

– Please arrive 10-15 minutes early to check in

– Refunds available for all classes 7 days in advance of the start date, after 7 days and before 2 days, participants can credit their class for a future date. All requests before 48 hours in advance will be declined. For COVID policy, see below.

– Please follow the parking instructions for the facility used that day

– Please provide an email you check regularly for updates and reminders about your class

– Registration is required online prior to the event in order to maintain class sizes

– Sales end 48 hours before the start date.

– Waitlists are available when the class sells out

What to Bring

Day Pack


Warm Variable Weather Clothing

Hiking Shoes

Water Bottle

Notebook and Pen/Field Journal

Eventbrite Confirmation Email

Binoculars (Optional)

Camera (Optional)

About the PRNSA Field Institute

The PRNSA Field Institute offers hands-on environmental education classes throughout the year that foster enjoyment of Point Reyes National Seashore. Our classes are led by expert instructors, who take you out of your everyday life and into the natural world. We host a variety of classes about the arts and sciences and have something for everyone. You can reach the Field Institute at (415) 663-1200 x304 or by email at

Interested in becoming a member of PRNSA? Click Here!

Interested in becoming a PRNSA Field Institute volunteer facilitator, or are you an outdoor educator or artist who would like to teach a PRNSA Field Institute class? Send an Email!

For any questions, please email us at

COVID-19 Field Institute Guidelines

Please respect the following COVID-19 procedures:

· Perform a health self-check before coming to class using the CDC Symptoms of Coronavirus as a guide

· Do not attend class if you are experiencing COVID symptoms, know that you have had a close exposure, or are suffering from any flu-like or respiratory illness

· Contact the Field Institute if you will not be able to attend due to COVID. You may be eligible to receive a full or partial refund

· Participants exhibiting signs of respiratory illness may be asked to leave class

· Masks are optional at your discretion

· Please bring your own food and water

All guidelines are subject to change pursuant to State or County Health order updates.

Thank you for your cooperation in following these guidelines to help keep everyone safe.